On September 16th 2013, the Academic Council at Varna Medical University elected Assoc. Prof. Mona Stancheva, PhD, for the academic position "Professor" in the scientific specialty "Bioorganic chemistry, chemistry of the natural and physiologically active substances".
Prof. Mona Stancheva has taken part in the development and implementation of 5 scientific projects, 3 of which have been funded by the Ministry of Education and Science from the "Scientific research" Fund. As a result of the successful fulfillment of three of them and with the Professor's active involvement the unique "Nutrition and Environment Laboratory" has been established at the Department of Chemistry of Varna Medical University. A new scientific section "Foods Chemistry – Composition, Quality and Safety" has been established under her guidance and a number of methodologies for food analysis have been developed and introduced. Prof. Stancheva received "Varna Award" for scientific achievements conferred by the Governor and the Mayor of the City for the implementation of the project entitled "Safety and Food Value of the Black Sea Food Products" which has a great significance for the country and the Black Sea Region and whose leader is Prof. Stancheva.
Prof. Stancheva's scientific research and applied activities have been purposefully conducted and associated to important fields of human health. One of the fields of her scientific efforts is food safety. For the first time in Bulgaria, ten different types of Black Sea fish have been - sprat, gobies, scad, shad, mullet, turbot, belted bonito, red mullet and garfish, etc. taken from three different regions of our Black Sea coast – North and South. An analytical procedure for the determination of sustainable organic pollutants in foods of animal origin. For the first time in Bulgaria, the contents of organic polluters and toxic heavy metals (Pb, Cd, Cu, Mn, Fe, Ni, As, Hg, Zn и Cr) have been explored. The research also has a monitoring effect. The data about the pollution with persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and heavy metals have been updated for the Black Sea, which in its nature are the only one for the Bulgarian part of the Black Sea and for the investigated fish.
Another field of Prof. Stancheva's scientific research activities is food composition. The investigations performed on Black Sea and some sweet water types enrich the data about the fat-acid composition and the contents of vitamin A, E and D. It has been established that the Black Sea fish are a very good source of proteins and polyunsaturated lipid acids of average energy value which determines them as foodstuffs of a very good quality.
Prof. Stancheva has also worked in the field of catalytic research. A new V2O5 - ZrO2 catalyzer was obtained with a higher catalytic activity and selectivity in the oxidation reactions of oxilol-to- phthalo anhydride. The use of processed vanadium-oxide catalyzers for obtaining new catalyzers is important for the reduction of environmental pollution with the toxic chemical element vanadium.
In her work entitled "Persistent Organic Pollutants in Foods" Prof. Stancheva examines 12 persistent organic pollutants prohibited for use, according to the Stockholm Convention (2001) . The monograph presents research from all over the world about the content of these pollutants, special attention being paid to sea food since the pollutants are accumulated in them and disintegrate very slowly.