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Svend Davanger, MD, PhD, is Associate Professor at the Institute of Basic Medical Science and Centre for Molecular Biology and Neuroscience, University of Oslo, Norway. He is a researcher and teacher of neuroscience, with a primary interest in stroke, cell-to-cell communication in the brain, and the neurobiology of meditation. He was affiliated with Stanford University 1995-97 and University of Bergen 1997-2003. In Acem, he has been an instructor since 1981.
Halvor Eifring, PhD, is Professor of Modern Chinese, Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages, University of Oslo, Norway. He has published books and articles on Chinese language and literature and on Norwegian slang. Recently, he initiated an international cross-disciplinary research project on the cultural history of meditation. He was Visiting Fellow at Princeton University in 1992 and Visiting Scholar at National Taiwan University in 1995, Peking University in 2000, Harvard University in 2001, and Center for Chinese Studies, Taiwan, in 2007. He has been an Acem instructor since 1979, and an initiator since 2001. He started Acem in Taiwan and China and is currently General Secretary of Acem International.
Øyvind Ellingsen, MD, PhD, is Professor of Cellular Cardiology, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging, Norwegian University of Science and Technology. He is also Consultant in Internal Medicine, Department of Cardiology, St. Olav’s Hospital, Trondheim, Norway. An acknowledged researcher in exercise training and cardiovascular health, he has received the Ole Storstein’s Award for Excellent Cardiovascular Research, and is a member of the Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters. In 2003-04, he was Visiting Scholar at University of California, San Diego. He has been an Acem instructor since 1972 and an initiator since 1980. He is the author of several articles and a CD on meditation, relaxation and stress management.
Margareta Hammarlund-Udenaes, PhD, is Professor at the Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences, Uppsala University, Sweden. Her research focuses on pharmacokinetic principles, i.e., how the body handles drugs, in particular how drugs are transported into the brain, including their optimal dosing. She is also interested in optimising methods for brain drug delivery in early drug discovery. She has been an Acem instructor since 1982.
Anne Grete Hersoug, PhD, is a Clinical Psychologist and currently works as Senior Researcher at the Department of Psychiatry, University of Oslo, Norway. She also owns a private psychotherapy practice and does psychotherapy research for the Norwegian Multicenter Study on Process and Outcome of Psychotherapy. She has published extensively on the development of working alliance, defensive functioning and therapist interventions in psychotherapy. She became an Acem instructor in 1973 and is currently International Secretary of Acem International.
Merete Lund Hetland, MD, PhD, is Associate Professor and Consultant in Rheumatology at Copenhagen University Hospital at Hvidovre, Denmark, where she works in clinical and laboratory research in inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. She is the head of the DANBIO registry. She has been an Acem instructor since 1984, and an initiator since 2003.
Are Holen, MD, PhD, is Vice Dean and Dean of Medical Education at the Faculty of Medicine, Norwegian University of Science and Technology. As a physician he specialises in psychiatry and psychotherapy and is a consultant in the field. An internationally renowned expert in stress psychiatry, he spent time as Research Scientist at the University of California in San Francisco, 1991-93, and as Visiting Professor at the School of Medicine, Stanford University, 1999-2000. His research interests include traumatic stress, medical education and group processes. He learnt yoga in 1961 and meditation in 1963. While still a student, he founded Acem School of Meditation in 1966 and Acem School of Yoga in 1968. During Acem’s first years, he spent some time in India, comparing and exploring different experiences from that country’s long meditative traditions. He is the head of Acem International, and the author of several articles and books on Acem Meditation.
Nina Aarhus Smeby, RN, PhD, is a Senior Researcher at the Department of Clinical Research, Ullevaal University Hospital, Oslo, Norway. Her PhD thesis studied the relationship between felt expressed emotion, social interaction and distress/burden in families with a member suffering from schizophrenia or related psychosis. She became an Acem instructor in 1973.
Erik Ekker Solberg, MD, PhD, is a Senior Consultant at the Medical Department, Diakonhjemmet Hospital, Oslo, Norway, where he works in clinical cardiology. He is a specialist in internal medicine, cardiology and sports medicine, a fellow of the European Society of Cardiology, and a member of the European Heart Society’s group on sports cardiology. The main focus of his research is on cardiology related to sports. His PhD thesis “Psychobiological effects of meditation” (University of Oslo, 2004) contains 7 articles exploring the effects of Acem Meditation. He has been a meditation instructor and a yoga teacher in Acem since 1975.
Morten Wærsted, MD, PhD, is Senior Physician/Researcher at the National Institute of Occupational Health, Department of Musculoskeletal Disorders in Oslo, Norway. His research focuses on attention-related muscle activity as a contributor to sustained occupational muscle load. He has been an Acem instructor since 1972.
Pär Westlund, PhD, is Associate Professor at Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, and Head of Laboratory Medicine in the Division of Diagnostics in Gävleborg. He was head of the Laboratory branch of the WHO Centre for Reproductive Research at Karolinska Hospital 1990-2000. He collaborates with several drug companies and conducts research on lipid-derived hormones, e.g. Prostaglandins and Estradiol. He became an Acem instructor in 1981.