Pancras Hogendoorn, Eline Slagboom and Ton Schumacher elected to KNAW
On 28th April, it was announced that LUMC professors and ambassadors Pancras Hogendoorn and Eline Slagboom, as well as LUMC professor Ton Schumacher have been elected as members of the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences (KNAW). All three professors will be officially installed as new members on Monday 13th September.
Leiden Convention Bureau's ambassador Pancras Hogendoorn (Professor of Pathology, Dean, and Vice-President of the LUMC’s board of directors) is known for his ground-breaking molecular-genetic and clinical-pathological research on human bone and soft tissue tumours. His work has led to precise diagnosis and treatment for patients who previously had few therapeutic options. The significance of Professor Hogendoorn’s work in the diagnosis and classification of these rare tumours was recognised by the WHO (World Health Organisation) in 2012, when they invited Hogendoorn to join the board that categorises tumours in bone and soft tissues. Since then, he has ensured worldwide improvement of classification, research and care in his field.
In addition to being a researcher, Hogendoorn is also a prominent ambassador for science. He is co-founder of the National Science Agenda, a member of the Top Team Life Sciences & Health (which brings together science, industry and government) and is chairman of the European association of universities’ Biomedical science group.
Why are some people in their nineties still happy on their bicycles, while other elderly people already have multiple illnesses at the age of seventy? Eline Slagboom (Professor of Molecular Epidemiology), ambassador of the Leiden Convention Bureau, has devoted her scientific career to studying the genetic factors that stimulate healthy aging and the molecular profiles in blood that tell biological age. These profiles are related to the metabolism, inflammation and the bacterial composition of the body.
Professor Slagboom has conducted much of this research in the Leiden Longevity Study, of which she is the founder. In recent years she has broadened her approach and initiated molecular profiles in national population research (BBMRI-metabolomics) and linked them to lifestyle interventions. She and her colleagues have also worked on uncovering the long-term effects of environmental factors before birth. Slagboom has been leaving her unique mark on aging research for thirty years.
Ton Schumacher (endowed Professor of Immune Technology) has made discoveries that are essential for the treatment of cancer with immunotherapy. For example, he contributed to the knowledge of how T-cells in tumours can be activated more efficiently and how proteins on tumour cells contribute to successful immunotherapy in individual patients. Professor Schumacher is internationally renowned for his technological innovation. The fundamental discoveries resulting from these innovations he acquires in the clinic. The special combination of academic excellence and entrepreneurship that Schumacher embodies is an asset to the KNAW.
The KNAW has approximately five hundred and fifty members and has elected twenty-three new members this year, including three foreign members. Members of the KNAW - leading scientists from all disciplines - are chosen on the basis of their scientific achievements. A membership is for life.