The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded a 2.1 million euro grant to Frank Holstege, Genomics Professor at the Biomedical Genetics Division. This “ERC Advanced Grant” is awarded to scientists with a long track record who wish to set up an unconventional project that will take them in a new direction in their research field.
Scientists from the Hubrecht Institute and the University Medical Center Utrecht (UMC Utrecht) have developed a cell culture model of human colon cancer progression. This model mimics the situation in patients more closely than any other colon cancer model so far. It enables researchers to study processes involved in colon cancer development and find new cancer drugs. The work by Clevers and colleagues is published online in Nature this week.
This weekend in Copenhagen, Professor Marc Bonten of the University Medical Center (UMC) Utrecht was presented with the 2015 Award for Excellence in Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases by the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID). Bonten was given this award in recognition of his important contribution to research and education in the field of clinical microbiology and infectious diseases in general and antibiotic resistance in particular.
Every year, around 250,000 children worldwide die from respiratory tract infections caused by the human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Paediatrician Louis Bont and cell biologist Norman Sachs utilize miniature lungs developed in the Hubrecht Institute to model RSV infection and develop a vaccine. They have been awarded a Seed Money Grant by the University to initiate the project.
Five novel gene variants appear to play an important role in the development of coeliac disease, a common autoimmune disorder. These variants together account for 18% of the genetics of coeliac disease. This is the conclusion of a large-scale study led by geneticists Cisca Wijmenga from the UMCG and Paul de Bakker from the UMC Utrecht. This knowledge makes it possible to predict with increasing accuracy which patients are at risk of developing coeliac disease. In total, the researchers have now elucidated 48% of the genetic factors contributing to coeliac disease. The study is being published today in the leading journal Nature Genetics.
Two researchers of the UMC Utrecht recently received a Rubicon Award from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO): Emiel Post Uiterweer and Sebastiaan van Heesch. NWO assigned the awards to a total of 18 recent PhD graduates to conduct research at top foreign institutes. In this way young scientists get the opportunity to gain international research experience as a stepping stone to a scientific career.
A new treatment for liver cancer developed by the University Medical Center (UMC) Utrecht has received the European CE mark for quality and safety. This implies that hospitals throughout Europe can now start using this innovative treatment that uses radioactive holmium microspheres to attack liver tumors. The treatment is being marketed by Quirem Medical, a spin-off company of the UMC Utrecht.
Hurler’s syndrome, a rare inherited metabolic disease, should be included in the neonatal screening panel. This will allow babies as early as two months old to receive stem cell treatment before damage is caused to their brains and skeleton. The Dutch Health Council has recommended this on the basis of research conducted by Dr. Jaap Jan Boelens of the University Medical Center Utrecht.
Patients with pneumonia can initially be treated with most common antibiotics. According to research carried out by University Medical Center Utrecht (UMCU) in the Netherlands, they are just as effective as the more expensive alternatives. The fact that bacteria are less likely to become resistant to these so-called beta-lactam antibiotics is an additional benefit. The results of this study were published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Today 18 European academic partners and 3 pharmaceutical companies are launching a new project under the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) funded New Drugs 4 Bad Bugs (ND4BB) program: COMBACTE-CARE.
COMBACTE-CARE (Combatting Bacterial resistance in Europe-Carbapenem-Resistance) will bring highly innovative studies and activities related to the treatment of patients with infections caused by Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE). Being very difficult to treat and sometimes deadly, CRE are considered to be one of the most dangerous resistant bacteria in the world. University Medical Center Utrecht is the project’s managing entity.