Cooperation through CEEPUS – Successful exchange between Graz and Prishtina

2. May 2024 AlumniStipendiumForscher/innen
Toskë Kryeziu is a Pharamacist from the University of Prishtina working on effective cancer treatments. He has successfully used his CEEPUS funded stay in Austria to establish regular exchange between Graz and his home university.

My doctoral research, titled "Development and evaluation of cytotoxic activity of novel essential oil delivery nanosystems in cancer cell lines" was conducted under the mentorship of Prof. Assoc. Dr. Mimoza Basholli-Salihu (Uni Prishtina) and Univ.- Prof. Dr. Andreas Zimmer (Uni Graz). This collaborative project involved three prestigious institutions: the University of Graz (Austria), the University of Trakya (Turkey), and the University of Prishtina (Kosovo).

The goal was to encapsulate essential oils from the Lamiaceae plant family—known for their potent biological activities—into innovative nanodelivery systems (liposomes and nanoemulsions) to enhance their bioavailability and stability, thus improving their therapeutic efficacy against cancer. Using techniques such as the ethanol injection method for liposomes and high-pressure homogenization for nanoemulsions, we developed nanosystems that demonstrated enhanced cytotoxic/anticancer and antioxidant activities in various cancer cell lines, including breast, prostate, and colon cancer.

Publishing of findings

Throughout my academic career, I have focused on publishing my findings in respected international journals and presenting them at international conferences. My publications explore nanoemulsions and liposomal formulations, demonstrating significant potential to transform cancer treatment through more effective use of natural compounds.

Transformative time in Austria

The scholarships and support from OeAD and CEEPUS were highly influential in my academic and personal development. My time in Austria was especially transformative, allowing me to immerse myself in a multicultural academic environment that developed my professional growth and sparked lasting friendships and collaborations. This rich experience not only enabled me to be mentored, trained, and successfully complete my PhD studies but also contributed to winning a significant research project. As a result, I am now a teaching assistant at my local university (Uni Prishtina) and a postdoctoral researcher.

Continuous exchange between Graz and Prishtina

The international exposure I gained through my studies in Austria has been invaluable. It has taught me the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration and cultural exchange, which I now advocate in my professional engagements. I made many friends in Graz during my studies; their help was crucial in completing my PhD. With my mentors, we continue to send diploma students to Graz annually, publishing our results in international journals and presenting at conferences. Additionally, as a passionate cyclist, I cherished exploring the scenic roads around Austria, which enhanced my experience living and studying there. I will always treasure the memories and friendships formed during this time.

Postdoctoral Fellowship in nanotechnology

As I continue my research journey, I aim to further explore the applications of nanotechnology in medicine, particularly in developing more effective cancer treatments. The promising results from my PhD work inspire me to pursue further research that could lead to innovative/supplementary novel therapeutic approaches. This aspiration is culminated as I am now undertaking a Postdoctoral Fellowship in nanotechnology cancer treatment research.

Future Dreams

I am deeply grateful for the opportunities I've had to grow as a scholar under OeAD's and CEEPUS's support. My dream is to become a professor, where I can continue to contribute to the global scientific community and hopefully inspire the next generation of researchers. I look forward to exploring the untapped potential of nanotechnology in medicine, aiming to make significant advancements in this field.

About Toskë Kryeziu

Ass. Dr. Sc. Toskë Kryeziu is a Pharmacist and holds a PhD in Experimental Biomedicine. He is currently serving as a post-doc at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Prishtina in Kosovo. He also works as a teaching assistant, contributing to the education of future pharmacists by covering important modules such as "Drug Quality Control" and "Basics of Pharmaceutical Technology". His research interests cover Nanotechnology, Liposomes, Nanoemulsions, Encapsulation, Stability, Cytotoxicity and Cancer. He has come to Austria two times in July 2019 and September 2022 with CEEPUS.