CARIM Newsletter September 2021

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This newsletter contains information on the following subjects:
  • Esther van Heel leaves CARIM
  • Uyen Nguyen receives Dekker Grant
  • Michiel Henkens Coordinator of the 'Hartenbank'
  • Harry Crijns Research Grant
  • Who's new?!
  • Science Day MUMC+
  • Kootstra Fellowship 
  • Academic Events
  • Paramount Papers
  • Cardiovascular Grand Rounds
  • New grant management system
  • CARIM Symposium - 24 November
  • Altmetric Explorer: insight into mentions of your work 
  • Lectures, symposia & events
  • Joint Dutch German Vascular Biology meeting
  • Grants Grace
  • Media Moments

CARIM newsletter

Contributions for the newsletter (e.g. news of events and grants, important publications, societial impact related topics and research results related to CARIM's research) can be sent to Please submit the text in English and include a short title. The text should be max. 200 words. If applicable, include high resolution pictures and other documents.

If you have a top publication or a translational development worth mentioning, please contact CARIM

Esther van Heel leaves CARIM

After her summer vacation, colleague Esther van Heel is no longer part of the CARIM Office. She will continue her career elsewhere within UM. Esther joined CARIM as a Financial Consultant many years ago and has been responsible for the finances of many PI-groups. CARIM thanks her for her work and efforts during all her years at our School.
As of the 1st of October a new financial consultant will start at CARIM. In the meantime you can contact Wouter Hankel for your questions.


Dr. E. Dekker Grant for Uyen Nguyen 

The Dutch Heart Foundation (NHS) has awarded Uyen Nguyen with a Dekker grant "Clinical Scientist 2021" 

A Dekker grant from the Dutch Heart Foundation allows you, as a researcher, to take the next step in your career in the field of cardiovascular research. It is a personal grant, intended for your development as a researcher and for setting up an independent line of research. 

Predicting and preventing arrhythmias in heart failure

Patients with heart failure in which the ventricles do not contract at the same time due to a conduction disturbance are usually given a special pacemaker. This pacemaker delivers an electrical impulse to both ventricles simultaneously. However, patients who receive this treatment sometimes also experience cardiac dysrhythmia, which can lead to a cardiac arrest. Doctors do not know in advance in which people this can happen and to what extent there is a relationship between these cardiac dysrhythmias and the pacemaker therapy.
To better understand the occurrence of life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias, it is important to properly map the heart's current impulses during the recovery phase. 

Uyen Chau Nguyen will therefore examine these patients before and after the implantation of such a pacemaker with a comprehensive cardiac ultrasound that consists of a kind of "vest" of 200 electrodes. In this way she can analyze how the current stimuli and the electrical recovery on the heart are influenced by the pacemaker and to what extent they change in patients with cardiac arrhythmia. She is also using computer models to investigate where in the heart the pacemaker leads to the most favorable current-pulse conduction in certain patients.

With her research she hopes to be able to predict and prevent arrhythmia in these patients.

About the Grant:
Type of scholarship: Clinical Scientist
Amount: approximately € 245.000 
Duration: 3 years
Where: Maastricht UMC+


Michiel Henkens Coordinator of the 'hartenbank'

Michiel Henkens has been selected as coordinator of the 'Hartenbank'. 

the 'Hartenbank' of the Netherlands Heart Institute (NHI), a non-profit organisation founded June 2020, is a central biobank in which heart tissue from deceased donors and associated medical data is stored for scientific research. This heart tissue can be used to investigate how a healthy heart functions and what exactly goes wrong in various heart diseases. Both people with and without heart diseases can register as a future donor at the NHB. 

Michiel Henkens (MD, PhD-student and coordinator of the NHI): “There is currently a major shortage of heart tissue and associated medical data to enable fundamental and translational research into heart diseases. Because of this shortage, researchers often look for alternatives such as animal and cell models. The NHI will fill this gap and provide a unique source of high-quality cardiac tissues with accompanying medical data, thereby facilitating and improving the quality of cardiovascular research. As such, the NHB will function as a translational bridge to boost cardiovascular research focused on optimising (early) diagnosis and prognosis of a wide range of heart diseases.

More information about the NHB can be found at:

Harry Crijns Research Grant

Prof. dr. Harry J.G.M. Crijns was tot December 2020 voorzitter van de vakgroep cardiologie van het Maastricht UMC+ en bestuurslid van CARIM. Gedurende zijn lange en succesvolle carrière in de translationele en klinische cardiologie heeft Prof. Crijns ontelbare bijdragen geleverd aan de cardiovasculaire wetenschap, in het bijzonder op het gebied van atriumfibrilleren. Hij heeft een belangrijke rol gespeeld in de vormgeving van cardiovasculaire research op lokaal, nationaal en Europees niveau en heeft een grote impact gehad op de carrières van vele assistenten en collega’s en op de levens van vele patiënten en hun naasten.
Hart en vaat onderzoekfonds Limburg, onderdeel van Health Foundation Limburg, heeft dan ook besloten om een Harry Crijns Research Grant in te stellen. Deze grant ten bedrage van € 25.000 wordt periodiek toegekend aan jonge wetenschappers die zich bezighouden met klinisch cardiovasculair onderzoek en daarmee bijdragen aan de realisering van de doelstellingen van onze foundation.

Download hieronder de informatie over hoe u een aanvraag kunt indienen. Let op: indienen vóór 1 oktober 2021

Who's New?!

I am Stefan Meier and started my PhD on the 1st of September 2021 under the supervision of Dr. Jordi Heijman and Prof. Dr. Paul Volders. I recently graduated from the master in Systems Biology at the Faculty of Science and Engineering of Maastricht University. During the master, I followed Jordi’s course on cardiovascular systems biology and that’s when I became increasingly interested in mechanistic modelling of cardiac electrophysiology. My PhD project will focus on the relationship between ion-channel trafficking and arrhythmia stabilisation by combining electrophysiological data obtained from the ‘wet’ lab with programming in the ‘dry’ lab.  

My name is Baixue Yu and I will start my PhD on the 1st of October under the supervision of Prof. Dr. J.C. Judith and Prof. Dr. L. Schurgers. I recently graduated from the master in Cardiovascular pharmacology at the Department of Biomedical Research Center of Fudan University in China. During my master, I practiced many lab skills and gradually found that I am interested in doing researches. My PhD project will focus on Single cell sequencing to resolve mesenchymal cell heterogeneity and function in vascular ageing.

Invitation Maastricht UMC+ Science Day: More knowledge, better life

On Thursday 30 September the Maastricht UMC+ Science Day will take place for the second time. Under the theme ‘More knowledge, better life', we will show various examples on how the connection between scientific research and healthcare can create impact for patients and society. Prof. Jaap van Dissel, director of the Centre for Infectious Disease Control at RIVM, Chair of the Outbreak Management Team and honorary doctor at Maastricht University, will give the closing lecture. The Science Day is inspiring for each staff member at Maastricht UMC+; for researchers, clinicians, nurses and support staff. The programme is in English.

Venue: Congress Centre MECC
Day & time: Thursday 30 September 2021, 12:00 - 18:00h
Registration: via the registration form
click here for the full program 

Register now via this application form Do not wait to register, the number of places is limited. The deadline for registration is 15 September, or if we reach the maximum capacity.

For more information visit:
For all other questions, please sent an e-mail to:

Kootstra Fellowship 1 October 2021

We are pleased to inform you that the call for the “Kootstra Talent Fellowship” (KTF), round Fall 2021 is open. The application deadline is 1 October 2021.

The KTF aims to facilitate talented researchers to develop their own research ideas and CV, and subsequently help increase their chances of obtaining personal grants at external funding agencies.

The call is open to:

  • researchers who obtained their PhD degree at the FHML of Maastricht University within one year of the application deadline, or
  • researchers who are finalizing their PhD at the FHML of Maastricht University.

Please note that (i) the KTF must start within six months of the grant being awarded, and (ii) the candidate’s PhD thesis must have been approved by the evaluation committee before the fellowship can start. No exceptions will be allowed, and the Board will withdraw the award when this timeline is not met. Researchers in training as a medical specialist, or ‘arts-assistant niet in opleiding’, who meet the above criteria can submit an application. Please note that written permission from the training head is required in this case.

Applications can be submitted by email to the Grants Office of the Faculty of Health Medicine and Life (FHML) (

Please arrange to have the scientific director of CARIM confirm his willingness and ability to provide the 50% matching in a supporting letter. Without this letter your application is not eligible. If you need support regarding your application, please contact CARIM's funding advisor Willem Wolters.

- Guidebook Kootstra applications
- Application format Kootstra Talent Fellowship (KTF) - Fall 2021 
Narrative CV format Kootstra Talent Fellowship (KTF) – Fall 2021
Call for proposals / procedure


Academic Events

Please notice: Because of the stricter COVID-19 measures, defences that were scheduled in the aula will take place online or will be postponed.

PhD Conferral Rick Schreurs, 10 September, 10.00 hours 
Supervisors: Prof. F.W. Prinzen, Prof. J.G. Maessen 
Title: Novel indication and optimization strategies for cardiac pacing

PhD Conferral Roman Zeleznik, 16 September 14.00 hours
Supervisors: Prof. H. Aerts, Prof. U. Hoffmann (Harvard University Boston, USA)
Title: Deep learning in cardiovascular imaging using A1 to improve risk predictions and optimize clinical workflows

PhD Conferral Mariusz Kowalewski, 20 September 10.00 hours 
Supervisors: Prof. R. Lorusso, Prof. J.G. Maessen
Co-supervisor: Dr E. Bidar
Title: Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Support in Complex Clinical Scenarios of Refractory Cardiogenic Shock in Adults

PhD Conferral Han Jin, 21 September 16.00 hours 
Supervisors: Prof. E.A.L. Biessen, Prof. J.C. Sluimer 
Co-supervisor: Dr E. Smirnov
Title: Tangible Heart, Silicon Brain Computational Modelling of Cardiovascular Diseases

Inaugural lecture : P. da Costa Martins - 8 October 2021 
Inaugural lecture: K. Vernooy - 12 November 2021 

Paramount Papers


Exogenous loading of miRNAs into small extracellular vesicles

Small extracellular vesicles (sEVs) are lipid bilayer particles secreted by nearly all animal cells, and are responsible for the delivery of molecular compounds in autocrine, paracrine and even endocrine-like fashion. To harness their potential as delivery agents for therapeutically relevant compounds, researchers have focused in developing methods for loading. However, so far, there hasn’t been consensus on which loading method is most efficient on sEVs. This work focused on answering this question, by comparing different previously reported methods for the post-isolation inclusion of microRNA in sEVs. Our findings showed that, in the conditions tested, Exo-Fect™, a commercially available compound, as the superior technology. Further study revealed that this compound interferes with membrane composition of EVs, which may be behind their different interaction with receptor cells, leading to a distinct intracellular processing, when compared to their native counterparts.
Ricardo C. de Abreu, Cristiana V. Ramos, Clarissa Becher, Miguel Lino, Carlos Jesus, Paula A. da Costa Martins, Patrícia A. T. Martins, Maria João Moreno, Hugo Fernandes, Lino Ferreira
Journal of Extracellular Vesicles, 2021, Aug 2; 10-10, e12111. doi: 10.1002/jev2.12111

Click here for the full paper 

Cardiovascular Grand Rounds Maastricht

10 September - Marieke Kruip, Erasmus University Medical Center 
'COVID19 and hemostatis; from bench to bedside'

24 September - Thomas van Sloten, MUMC+ 
'Dementia and late onset depression: vascular diseases?'

8 October- Thomas Münzel, UMC Mainz, Johannes gutenberg University, Mainz Germany
'Noise, a new and important cardiocascular risk factor'

22 October- Amanda Kiliaan, Donders Institute, Radboud UMC Nijmegen
'Impact of obesity on brain function and structure in mice and men.'

5 November - TBD

19 November - Jan van den Bossche, UMC, Amsterdam 
'Metabolic control of macrophages in atherosclerosis'

3 December - Lucio Barile, Cardiocentro Ticino Institute, Switzerland 
'Role of exosomes in cardiovascular diseases: Therapeutic tools and potential biomarkers'

17 December - Ana Briones, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, Spain
'Novel inflammatory mechanisms involved in vascular damage in hypertension'

8.00-9.00 AM
ZOOM-link for all meetings:
Meeting ID: 972 2487 2025
Password: 678252

Cavaris: save your old applications!

The Heart Foundation will be implementing a new grant management system this fall. We will not be taking applications that were never submitted to the new system. Did you ever start an application in Cavaris but never submit it? Do you want to keep the information from this application? Then save it via Cavaris as a pdf or copy the text. Questions? Mail

CARIM Symposium - 24 November 2021

CARIM Symposium 2021 will take place on Wednesday November 24 (save the date!!). This year’s Robert Reneman Lecture will be given by Professor Barbara Cassadei, University of Oxford:

The location of the symposium will be the Minderbroedersberg (unless the corona measures do not allow it) followed by a festive evening at Thiessen. More information on the programme will be distributed as soon as possible.

Altmetric Explorer: insight into mentions of your work 

Altmetric is a platform that gathers altmetrics, a new type of alternative metrics that captures the societal impact of research output instead of traditional metrics such as citation counts.
Find out about Altmetric Explorer and how you can use it via this weblink

Lectures, symposia & events

Lecture Dr Jeff Bulte (John Hopkins) department of Radiology: 8 September 2021 
Dutch Translational Metabolism 2021 seminar series: Prof. Stephan Herzig - 9 September 2021
Cardiorenal Seminar: Prof. Andreas Herrmann - 23 September 2021 
Maastricht UMC+ Science Day: More knowledge, better life - 30 september 2021 

Loop met je dokter - 2 October 
Dutch Translational Metabolism 2021 seminar series: Prof. Shingo Kajimura - 7 October 2021
Inaugural lecture : P. da Costa Martins - 8 October 2021 

Third Joint Dutch German Vascular Biology meeting - 3-5 November 2021
Dutch Translational Metabolism 2021 seminar series: Prof. Antonio Zorzano - 4 November 2021
Inaugural lecture: K. Vernooy - 12 November 2021 
Dutch Translational Metabolism 2021 seminar series: Prof. Ralph DeBerardinis - 7 December 2021
Joint meeting between the German Society for Microcirculation and Vascular Biology, and the Netherlands Vascular Biology Organisation (DEBS/MiVaB) - 3 to 5 November 2021

School Council 2021:
12 October:  13.00 - 15.00 hour 

School Council 2022 
24 January:  13.00 - 15.00 hour
7 April :         13.00 - 15.00 hour 
13 June:       13.00 - 15.00 hour 

KNAW agenda
Brightlands news

Third Joint Dutch German Vascular Biology meeting - 3 - 5 November 2021

We are delighted to announce the third joint Vascular Biology meeting between the German Society for Microcirculation and Vascular Biology (GfMVB), and the Dutch Vascular Biology Societies (DESB, MiVaB), 3 - 5 November 2021, in Goettingen is now LIVE and open to receive your abstracts and conference registration. 

Our meeting will bring together investigators from all fields of vascular biology for the exchange of new concepts and discussions of outstanding questions in the field. Angiocrine signaling, Angiogenesis, Arteriogenesis, Lymphatics, Vascular Mechanobiology, the Microcirculation in Cardiac Regeneration, Systems approaches & single cell sequencing, and the Microcirculation in Covid-19 patients are just a few of the topics addressed at our meeting. In particular we are very excited to welcome Nobel laureate Prof. Stefan Hell, who will spearhead a special symposium dedicated to novel imaging modalities in the cardiovascular system. 

We expect that our event will take place in “LIVE” modus ! So if you want to meet your colleagues in person, have vivid scientific discussions while enjoying a great atmosphere, this is what you have to do: Visit our website now at and select “Registration for the Goettingen 2021 conference”.

Good news for PhD students and Postdocs: we got great financial support from DEBS, ESM, EVBO and GFMVB and can now offer >15 travel and poster awards - just submit your abstract and select the appropriate travel award option in the “travel grant menu” during the registration procedure. In addition we will have the Aletta Jacobs awards (in total 3) for talented female scientists in the field of microvascular biology at the start of their career (PhD, first year Postdoc). More information on the Aletta Jacobs award and selection criteria can be found on our website:

we look forward to seeing you,

on behalf of the GfMVB: Rabea Hinkel and Ferdinand le Noble
on behalf of DEBS: Jaap van Buul, Ed Eringa

Grants Grace

For information related to calls or to discuss (other) funding possibilities in the future (e.g. funding roadmap), please contact Willem Wolters for support. If you decide to prepare a proposal, please inform Wouter Hankel well in time for the budget, especially when matching is required. 

Please note that UM has a license with the searchable funding database: This is available for all UM and Maastricht UMC+. You can set alerts to receive the latest information on opportunities in your area of research. If you cannot access the database, please contact Willem Wolters.

The online tool Impacter addresses all items for a good impact chapter of your draft proposal. Moreover it gives you feedback on the societal impact section of your research proposal, such as the knowledge utilization paragraph in all NWO proposals. In short, Impacter helps to write a better application.

In recent years,  the attention for social impact has increased and so has the wish to measure it. Examples of proposed indicators include references in patents, policy documents, textbooks and news papers. This new type of indicaors is named "altmetrics". The UM has a license for the use of Altmetric Explorer. Altmetric is a platform that tracks and analyses the online activity around scholarly research outputs. It gathers data on outreach activities through (social) media, user statistics from reference managers, and mentions in patents and policy documents.

Check out the CARIM website and our monthly funding alert for an overview of the current and upcoming funding opportunities.

Media Moments  30/7 Ook deze week was er weer de nodige media-aandacht voor het kweekvleesproject van Mark Post (CARIM). Deze keer onder meer op de wetenschapspagina’s van De Volkskrant, maar ook via een artikel in het Amerikaanse populairwetenschappelijke magazine Discover of een zogenoemde long read in de Britse kwaliteitskrant The Guardian (   24/7 Mensen die in een sociaal isolement leven hebben een grotere kans op diabetes type 2 (suikerziekte). Ook is het risico op complicaties aan hart en nieren groter. Mensen uit hun sociaal isolement halen kan dus een bijdrage leveren aan het voorkomen en behandelen van diabetes type 2. Tot die conclusie komen wetenschappers van de Maastricht Studie na uitgebreid literatuuronderzoek onder leiding van Miranda Schram (FHML). Ze vertelt erover in een gezamenlijke uitzending van de programma’s RadiOlympia en het NOS Radio 1 Journaal op NPO Radio 1. Tevens schreven de medische nieuwswebsite Skipr, vakblad Nieuws voor Diëtisten en dagblad Trouw erover ( Later in de week besteedde ook het tv-programma Editie NL op de commerciële zender RTL 4 aandacht aan het onderzoek (  18/7 Wereldwijd is er nog altijd veel aandacht voor het fenomeen kweekvlees. Vaak wordt de Universiteit Maastricht in de berichtgeving genoemd, al is het maar kort. Om die reden keert het onderwerp kweekvlees ook sporadisch terug in de Media Issues, maar het is wellicht aardig om zo nu en dan een klein overzicht te delen. Dit was (een deel van) de oogst van afgelopen week: artikelen in de Britse kwaliteitskrant The Guardian, de Duitse kranten Berliner Morgenpost en Hamburger Abendblatt (, de populaire Argentijnse dagbladen Clarín en Perfil ( of het internationaal verschijnende online magazine The Diplomat ( Mark Post (CARIM) was in eigen land vooral in het nieuws rond kweekleer. Zakelijk tijdschrift MT/Sprout schreef een uitgebreid artikel over zijn nieuwe startup Qorium, die onlangs 2,6 miljoen euro binnenhengelde via Brightlands Venture Partners (  22/7 Het is wellicht niet het eerste wat men op een menukaart verwacht: een knapperig stukje meelworm. Toch is het vanaf deze maand toegestaan om te eten. Maar er staan ons op het gebied van voedsel nog veel meer ontwikkelingen te wachten. Mark Post (CARIM) vertelt als studiogast in de dagelijkse talkshow Op1 (WNL, NPO 1) over kweekvlees en hoe het ons leven kan veranderen. In het buitenland was er dit keer aandacht voor de UM en Mosa Meat in het Schotse dagblad The Herald, een van de oudste kranten ter wereld ( En eerder deze maand kwam Mosa Meat langs in het beroemde actualiteitenprogramma 60 Minutes op de Amerikaanse tv-zender CBS ( Mark Post was in eigen land ook in het nieuws rond kweekleer. Zakelijk tijdschrift MT/Sprout schreef een uitgebreid artikel over zijn nieuwe startup Qorium, die onlangs 2,6 miljoen euro binnen hengelde via Brightlands Venture Partners ( Ook dagblad De Limburger besteedde aandacht aan dat nieuws.  Mensen en dieren kunnen heel ziek worden van een tekenbeet. Maar nu blijken de eiwitten uit het speeksel van dat beestje ons juist te kunnen helpen. Ingrid Dijkgraaf (CARIM) maakt die eiwitten synthetisch na om een betere behandeling van hart- en vaataandoeningen mogelijk te maken.  7/8 Dominik Linz (CARIM) werkt mee aan internationaal onderzoek naar boezemfibrilleren en slaapapneu. De helft van de patiënten met boezemfibrilleren heeft namelijk ook deze slaapstoornis. Patiënten met boezemfibrilleren die zich op de poli van het Maastricht UMC+ melden, worden tegenwoordig dan ook gescreend op slaapapneu. Dat doet de patiënt, met digitale begeleiding, gewoon lekker zelf thuis. Dagblad De Limburger schrijft over de nieuwe methode.  5/8 Dezer dagen is het 8 jaar geleden dat, onder massale belangstelling van de media, het allereerste exemplaar van de kweekhamburger werd gepresenteerd in Londen. Een kwart miljoen euro koste het schijfje vlees toen, inmiddels zijn we heel wat jaren verder. Mark Post (CARIM) vertelt als studiogast in het programma Limburg Centraal op de regionale tv-zender L1 of het moment dat die kweekburger op ons bord ligt nu echt steeds dichterbij komt. Enkele dagen eerder keerde het kweekvleesproject van Mark Post ook al terug op de wetenschapspagina’s van De Volkskrant (, maar ook in een artikel voor het Amerikaanse populairwetenschappelijke magazine Discover of via een zogenoemde long read in de Britse kwaliteitskrant The Guardian (  In het vakblad VMT voor de voedingsindustrie verscheen afgelopen week een uitgebreid artikel over het onderzoek van Linsay Ketelings (UCV). Zij concludeert dat de risicobeoordeling van kweekvlees nog knap ingewikkeld is. UM-spinoff Mosa Meat is overigens bezig met het indienen van een aanvraag voor een Europese marktvergunning onder het novel food regime. Op 2 november a.s., tijdens het door VMT georganiseerde online seminar Food Future Update, zullen levensmiddelentechnologen en engineers van Mosa Meat worden geïnterviewd over dit onderwerp.

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