Among the candidates nominated by the Selection Committee headed by Professor Yücel Kanpolat, Vehbi Koç Foundation's Board of Directors chose Professor Turgay Dalkara for the contributions he has made to the science of medicine as a result of his international research on brain diseases and migraine. A graduate of Hacettepe University, Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Dalkara is a Professor of Neurology at the same school, and the Director of Neurological Sciences Institute. With one of his research interests focusing on cerebral ischemia, Professor Dalkara is a visiting professor at Harvard Medical School, and he also has a joint appointment at Massachusetts General Hospital as guest professor and pharmacologist, contributing to research projects.
In 2009, Professor Dalkara headed a team of Turkish scientists at Nature Medicine, a leading journal in its field. He is an advisor to TÜBİTAK president since 1999 and the chief coordinator of Hacettepe University Faculty of Medicine; he is also a full member of organizations like International Brain Research Organization, Society for Neuroscience, and European Neuroscience Association, as well as Turkish Academy of Sciences (TÜBA). Professor Dalkara heads the Brain Research Planning and Coordination Commission founded in connection with TÜBİTAK to set certain standards in Turkey about evaluating and encouraging research related to cerebral and neural systems, to determine modern goals and to coordinate them.
He has authored 115 articles that have been referenced 3500 times in the world of medicine, and won multiple national and international awards. Professor Dalkara plays a key role in the development of neuroscience in Turkey with his efforts on the editorial boards of many publications, the responsibilities he assumes on the review panels in Europe and the USA, and the opportunities he creates especially for young scientists.
At the awards ceremony on February 25, 2010 attended by members of the Koç family and distinguished guests, Professor Dalkara took the stage after Mustafa V. Koç, and said, "Turkey has people who want to serve healthcare. However I am concerned about two issues. For one, we are still hesitant about providing support for science. And two, we are not experienced enough in how to support science. If we can successfully overcome these two challenges, I believe that Turkey will provide significant contributions to world science in the not so distant future."
Vehbi Koç Anma ve Ödül Töreni