Marjolein van Egmond
Academic Editor

Marjolein van Egmond


Summary

Marjolein van Egmond is Professor in Oncology and Inflammation. She is Principal Investigator at the Department of Molecular Cell Biology & Immunology and Staff Member at the Department of Surgery, both at VU University Medical Center. Throughout her career she has been fascinated by the role of antibodies in immunity and the activation of immune cells via antibody receptors (Fc receptors). Initially her research focused on the role of the Fc receptor for IgA (Fc RI) in protective mucosal immunity. Her lab furthermore discovered that aberrant IgA initiates perpetual neutrophil activation, leading to severe tissue damage in multiple auto-immune diseases and chronic inflammation. Additionally it is now clear that antibodies can be used as therapeutic drugs to engage the immune system to fight cancer. Due to her dual appointment at a research and clinical department, she is in an excellent position to translate experimental findings into clinical applications. Marjolein van Egmond was awarded a VENI, VIDI and VICI from the Innovational Research Incentives Scheme (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, NWO).

Immunology

Work details

Professor in Oncology and Inflammation

VU University Medical Center
Molecular Cell Biology and Immunology
Innate myeloid cells, such as monocytes, macrophages and granulocytes (neutrophils), play an important role in host defence against pathogens as well as tumour cells. Our research group focuses on the diverse functions of macrophages and neutrophils, which are also referred to as inflammatory cells. These are phagocytic cells that can kill pathogens and tumour cells, especially in the presence of antibodies. It is however becoming increasingly clear that innate myeloid cells can play a deleterious role when their physiological role is derailed, which can lead to severe tissue damage. Additionally, they can promote tumour growth through production of growth factors and by promoting angiogenesis. Gaining a better understanding of the role inflammatory cells play in physiological and pathological processes will help to develop novel strategies to modulate their function, as our research aims to translate pre-clinical findings into clinical applications.