I am the PI leading the Laboratory for Stem Cell and Cancer Research, a research group belonging to the Erasmus MC Cancer Institute. The main research goal of our laboratory is the elucidation of the molecular and cellular basis of tumor initiation and progression, and the translation of these mechanisms into preventive and therapeutic intervention.
More in particular, our overall approach to cancer research is to establish a parallel between the organization of normal tissues and that of tumor masses.
We are a team of young (with the exception of the PI!) and enthusiastic scientists from different regions of the world working as master (MSc) or PhD students, postdoctoral fellows, and research technicians. I do hope that you will enjoy visiting our web site and that the visit will inspire you.
Education and career
I became a MSc (cum laude) on “Molecular analysis and chromosomal localization of the TK gene co-transfected in mouse cells with satellite DNA” in 1984, at the Faculty of Biology, Department of Genetics, University of Pavia, Italy.
I earned the PhD degree on my thesis “Evolution of Multigene Families: Hemoglobins and Haptoglobins” in 1990 at the Faculty of Medicine, Department of Human Genetics, University of Leiden.
My research field as post-doc at the Department of Human Genetics, University of Leiden, was "Molecular genetics of hereditary colon cancer" under the supervision of prof. P. Meera Khan.
My research field as visiting scientist at the Dept. of Molecular Genetics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University, New York, USA, was "Generation and Analysis of Transgenic Mouse Models for Colorectal Tumorigenesis" under the supervision of prof. Raju Kucherlapati.
My research field as fellow of the Royal Dutch Academy of Science (KNAW) was "Generation and Analysis of Transgenic Mouse Models for Colorectal Tumorigenesis".
I worked as visiting professor at the Dept. of Human Genetics at University of Newcastle upon Tyne, U.K., hosted by Prof. John Burn.
At the University of Leiden I worked as associate professor (UHD) at the Department of Human Genetics, later I became full professor of “Cancer Genetics” at the Department of Human and Clinical Genetics.
Since 2003 I am full professor of “Experimental Pathology” at the Josephine Nefkens Institute of Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam. Last year I also became visiting professor at Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, P. R. China.
Scholarships, grants, and awards
Erasmus MC Zorg: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hide: phenotypic plasticity and epigenetic control of EMT in oral cancer metastasi
KWF kankerbestrijding: Secretory Paneth-like cells as the origin of intestinal cancer
A complete overview of publications can be found here: