East Netherlands


Grants for innovative research in healthcare

Concepts for a Healthy Life – Epilepsy, cancer, insecurity due to gender incongruity, corneal regeneration and multimorbidity: ZonMw is awarding money to five research teams (including Radboud researchers from the East Netherlands) that will set up innovative collaborations that contribute to innovation in science and healthcare. The teams will each receive a maximum of 750,000 euros from the ZonMw Open Competition programme.

These are the projects in which researchers from Radboud University and Radboudumc are participating:

Linking mTOR to deregulated GABA signaling in developmental epilepsy

Prof. E.M.A. (Eleonora) Aronica – Amsterdam UMC-AMC
Dr D. (Dirk) Schubert – Radboudumc

Epilepsy is a common neurological disease, affecting approximately 180,000 people in the Netherlands. Treating childhood-onset genetic epilepsies is challenging. This project brings together researchers with expertise in epilepsy, neuropathology and neurophysiology to elucidate the mechanisms underlying altered neuronal network function in epilepsy, using human brain tissue and human cell models.

Disturbed protein complexes on cancer cells leads to reduced therapy response

Prof. A.B. (Annemiek) van Spriel – Radboudumc
Prof. P. (Piet) Gros – Utrecht University

Protein complexes on the cancer cell surface can facilitate growth. The researchers are investigating the structure and organisation of protein complexes on the cancer cell surface. This research may provide prospects to make cancer cells more sensitive to immunotherapies.

Navigating uncertainty in gender incongruence and differences in sex development (DSD)

Dr C.M. (Chris) Verhaak and dr A.J.M. (Anke) Oerlemans – Radboudumc
Dr W.J.P. (Wyke) Stommel – Radboud University
Dr M.A. (Marij) Hillen – Amsterdam UMC-AMC
Dr A.L.C. (Annelou) de Vries – Amsterdam UMC-VUmc

Transgender and intersex children, their parents, and healthcare providers face substantial uncertainty. This covers medical, psychological, ethical and communicative aspects regarding treatment decisions and longterm development of the conditions. This project aims to understand uncertainty and support children, parents and healthcare professionals in recognizing, discussing and coping with uncertainty.

Cornea regeneration instructed by molecular cell identity characterization

Dr H. (Jo Huiqing) Zhou – Radboud University
Dr M. (Mor) Dickman and dr V.L.S. (Vanessa) LaPointe – Maastricht University

The current treatment for cornea damage depends on stem cells in the patient’s own healthy eye. No treatment is available for patients with two injured eyes. Scientists will develop a novel regenerative technology to convert patient’s skin and mouth cells into cornea stem cells to restore vision.

Dynamic symptoms networks – a novel paradigm to improve diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of multimorbidity

Prof. M.G.M. (Marcel) Olde Rikkert and Dr G.M.E.E. (Geeske) Peeters – Radboudumc Prof. T.M. (Thomas) Gill – Yale School of Medicine
Prof. C.L.H. (Claudi) Bockting and dr R. (Rick) Quax – University of Amsterdam

The researchers aim to develop a novel theory to improve diagnosis and treatment of older people with complex health problems. Symptoms of diseases overlap and influence each other. The insights gained through this theory can inform doctors about the optimal strategy to treat patients with multiple concurrent diseases.

  • For a list of all of the projects that got a grant in this round, please go to the ZonMW website.


Source: Radboud University, partner Think East Netherlands