Dr. Unnur Thorsteinsdottir, A Leading Scientist Joins ORF Genetics

Dr. Unnur Thorsteinsdottir, Vice President of Genetic Research at Decode Genetics and Dean of the School of Health Science at the University of Iceland, has become a member of the board of ORF Genetics.

Dr. Thorsteinsdottir is among the most influential genetic scientists in the world, at the forefront of women in science globally, and Europe’s most influential female scientist according to Research.com.

"It is a tremendous asset for ORF Genetics to be able to benefit from the knowledge and experience of Dr. Unnur Thorsteinsdottir, a leading scientist, in the company's upcoming journey," says Berglind Rán Ólafsdóttir, CEO of ORF. “Our MESOkine product line was developed to meet the needs of cultivated meat producers and offers enormous potential in a market that is rapidly evolving. In addition to strong sales and marketing efforts, ORF emphasizes ongoing scientific product development to maintain the significant competitive edge we have achieved. Dr. Thorsteinsdottir’s expertise will play a crucial role in this development. ”

“I have been following the success of ORF closely in recent years,” says Dr. Thorsteinsdottir. "The company is currently at a crossroads as it plans to scale up a new product, MESOkine, which the ORF research team has now been working on for four years. The company's scientific foundation is exceptionally strong, and I look forward to supporting the future growth of ORF Genetics in a new and critical market based on this strong foundation.”

It is estimated that around 15% of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide can be attributed to traditional meat production. Cultivated meat, produced with protein growth factors from ORF, made from genetically modified barley, does not contribute to such emissions and is therefore a vital part of the solution when addressing climate change.

Dr. Unnur Thorsteinsdottir has a Ph.D. degree in molecular biology from the University of British Columbia in Canada and did her postdoctoral training at the Institut de Recherches Cliniques de Montreal in Canada. Since 2000, she has work in human genetic research at deCODE genetics and as a Vice President of Research of that company from 2010. In 2022 she became the Dean of the School of Health Science at the University of Iceland. Dr. Thorsteinsdottir has been a member of numerous boards and committees, such as the board of RANNÍS, chairman of the board of the RANNÍS program in the field of science, technology, and innovation and a member of the Science and Technology Council of Iceland.

She has received numerous awards for her work and research, including the Knight's Cross of the Icelandic Order of the Falcon for her contribution to genetic research and science.