Ewa Ehrenborg

Ewa Ehrenborg

Professor | Academic vice president | Docent
Telephone: +46852482801
Visiting address: BioClinicum, Plan 8,Karolinska Universitetssjukhuset Solna, 17176 Stockholm
Postal address: K2 Medicin, Solna, K2 Kardiov m Hagberg C Ehrenborg E, 171 77 Stockholm

About me

  • I am Professor of Molecular Cardiovascular Medicine at the Department of Medicine, Karolinska University Hospital, Solna (MedS) and since January 2023 I am Academic Vice President for Higher Education.

    In addition to educational commissions at various levels, I devote myself to translational cardiovascular research. My research aims to delineate how lipid metabolism, inflammatory response and autophagy processes in cells of the arterial wall interact in the development of cardiovascular disease.

    My long-standing commitment to education at KI ranges from teaching at courses to strategic levels in committees, councils and boards. I was Departmental Director of Education (GUA) at MedS 2016-2022. During 2022, I was a member of the Programme Committee in the Study Programme of Medicine. I have previously been a member of the Programme Committee in the Study Programmes in Biomedicine and the Director of the Centre for Clinical Education (CKU) at KI. I have received the Biomedicine Programme and KI's Pedagogical Prize.

    Other positions of trust that I have or have held include member of the Swedish Heart-Lung Foundation's Research Council, the Swedish Research Council, the Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education (STINT), the Finnish Academy, the European Lipoprotein Club, KI/Region Stockholm's Education Advisory Committee, as well as the R&

  • D Committees at Capio St. Göran's Hospital (KI Chairman), Karolinska University Hospital and Health Care Services Stockholm County (SLSO).

    I have been a teacher representative at the Faculty Board and worked on behalf of the President, Vice President and Academic Vice President for Higher Education with issues related to collaboration with Region Stockholm with a particular focus on work-based learning (VIL). This provides great opportunities to contribute to a beneficial and constructive collaboration between KI and Region Stockholm with the aim to develop education and research.

    MD, Karolinska Institutet, 1988
    PhD in Medical Science, Karolinska Institutet, 1994
    Post doctoral fellow, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, 1995-1997
    Assistant Professor, Medical Research Council, Karolinska Institutet, 1997-1999
    Teachers of the future (37.5 credits), Karolinska Institutet, 2000-2002
    Associate Professor in Molecular Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 2001
    Professor of Molecular Cardiovascular Medicine, KI, 2011

    Academic prizes and awards
    The Biomedicine Programme's Pedagogical Prize (awarded by the biomedicine students at Karolinska Institutet), 2005
    Karolinska Institutet's Pedagogical Prize, 2017


  • My research is about the atherosclerosis process, which is characterized by fat accumulation and inflammation in the vessel wall. An important control mechanism for cell quality and survival in the vessel wall is autophagy, which ensures that protein residues and damaged cell parts are broken down. Autophagy also seems to play a role in how fat stored in fat droplets inside the cells is taken care of and how the inflammatory response is regulated. However, the role of autophagy in the development of cardiovascular disease in humans is largely unknown.

    The overall aim is to identify which factors are of importance for the interplay between fat metabolism, inflammation and autophagy in the development of cardiovascular disease. The research project focuses on understanding how macrophage fat metabolism affects inflammation and autophagy during the atherosclerosis process, and on identifying factors/proteins in the autophagy process that are relevant for the development of vulnerable plaques and/or progression of atherosclerosis in the vascular wall. The aim is to develop new treatment methods and preventive measures for cardiovascular diseases.

    The research project is supported by, among others, the Swedish Research Council (VR) and the Swedish Heart-Lung Foundation (HLF). I am/have been the main supervisor of seven PhD students, six of whom have defended their theses, as well as co-supervisor of three PhD students, one of whom has a PhD thesis. Been a member of the examining committee or an opponent at >

  • 45 public defences of doctoral theses. In addition, I have been the main supervisor of eight postdocs.


  • In 2022, I was a member of the Programme Committee in the Study Programme of Medicine and between 1999-2018, I have been involved in the biomedicine programme as a teacher, course coordinator and/or member of the Programme Committee in the Study Programmes in Biomedicine. The focus is on student-activating teaching with a clear connection to research and the development of peer learning. Another important goal has been to increase interprofessional learning between clinic-based and experimentally oriented student groups at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

    Other pedagogical leadership and positions of trust at KI and/or Region Stockholm include Director of Studies at Karolinska University Hospital (Solna), co-chair of the Educational Congress, Director of the Center for Clinical Education (CKU) and Departmental Director of Education (GUA) at MedS.


All other publications


  • Professor, Department of Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 2011-

Degrees and Education

  • Docent, Karolinska Institutet, 2001

Leadership and responsibility assignments

  • Academic vice president, Academic Vice President for Higher Education, Karolinska Institute, 2023-

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