• 1 "If the human brain were so simple that we could understand it, we would be so simple that we couldn′t."

    -Emerson M. Pugh
  • 2 "I believe in an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out."

    -Arthur Hays Sulzberger
  • 3 "I used to think that the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. Then I realized who was telling me this."

    -Emo Phillips
  • 3 "I put my heart and my soul into my work, and have lost my mind in the process."

    -Vincent Van Gogh
  • 4 "The purpose of education is to replace an empty mind with an open one."

    -Malcolm Forbes
  • 5 "The chief function of the body is to carry the brain around."

    -Thomas A. Edison

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The Department of Psychiatry of the Erasmus MC is dedicated to excellence in clinical care, research and education.



It is a great pleasure to announce the following recognitions of achievement of Steven Kushner

Steven Kushner

First, Steven has been elected as Chair of the Dutch Society for Neuroscience, starting 1 July 2018. A true honor to run the nations Neuroscience!

Second: the Dean has invited Steven to be a member of the Research Council of the Erasmus MC.
From the letter of the Dean: 'On 19th February, the Board of Directors approved a proposal for setting-up a new Research Council as an independent advisory committee to the Dean.
The Research Council will have the responsibility for closely following internal and external research (policy) developments and advising on their opportunities and possible consequences for Erasmus MC.
Discussion topics within the Research Council include: 1) (inter)national and novel developments in science, 2) funding of research, 3) organization and evaluation of research, 4) research infrastructure, 5) local, national and international strategic research alliances, and 6) opportunities for increasing societal impact of research.'
Steven will represent ‘Thema Hersenen & Zintuigen’ in the Research Council.

'Human iPSC models of rare familial depression'

Femke de Vrij

We are pleased to inform you that Femke de Vrij has been granted an Erasmus MC Human Disease Model Award (HDMA) for her project entitled 'Human iPSC models of rare familial depression'.

Project summary: The project is a collaboration with co-applicant Najaf Amin of the department of Epidemiology. The award grants 250.000 euro to further study a depression-linked genetic variant in the RCL1 gene based on Femke’s recent paper in Molecular Psychiatry, using induced pluripotent stem cell technology. By focusing on rare familial depression, Femke hopes that this approach will lead to novel insights in the underlying biology of RCL1-associated depression.

Ideaal om nieuwe behandelingen te testen, maar ook ethisch beladen: wetenschappers kweken stukje mensenbrein in muizenhoofd

Steven Kushner

Voor hersenwetenschappers vormen de muis-mensbreintjes een langverwachte doorbraak

Het is een experiment om je toch even bij achter de oren te krabben. Amerikaanse onderzoekers zijn erin geslaagd een stukje mensenbrein te kweken in het hoofd van een muis, gekoppeld aan het brein van het knaagdier. Ideaal om hersenziektes te bestuderen en nieuwe behandelingen te testen - maar ook ethisch beladen, want wat zou zo'n stukje mensenbrein opgesloten in een muizenhoofd er zelf eigenlijk van vinden?

Veel hogere gedachten verwachten experts vooralsnog niet van de stukjes mensenbrein, per stuk niet groter dan een haar dik. 'Alles wijst erop dat dit weefsel nog maar heel losjes is verbonden met het muizenweefsel. Maar we moeten het wel in de gaten houden', reageert hoogleraar neurobiologische psychiatrie Steven Kushner (Erasmus MC), zelf niet betrokken bij de Amerikaanse proef. Kushner pleit voor vervolgonderzoek: 'Licht het menselijke weefsel bijvoorbeeld op als de muis iets ervaart? Dan wordt het toch een wat ander verhaal.'

More Meer (de Volkskrant)

Desiderius Consolidator Research Fellowship for Steven Kushner

Steven Kushner

It is with great pleasure to announce that Steven Kushner has been awarded the Desiderius Consolidator Research Fellowship by our dean (Hans van Leeuwen) on behalf of the Board of Directors of the Erasmus MC. The grant of 400.000 Euro is for the project ′The pathophysiology of neuropsychiatric disorders resulting from increased UBE3A gene dosage′.

In the letter to Steven, the dean used the following formulation:
′The committee was highly impressed by your vision on advancing the understanding and treatment of neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders. Your continued successes in obtaining extramural funding will undoubtedly lead to a string of top publications. Your recent publication in Molecular Psychiatry on candidate CSPG4 mutations in familial schizophrenia is an illustration of your pioneering work. The committee noted that you have many fruitful collaborations within Erasmus MC, and your work is well connected with several ACEs within Erasmus MC. This makes you a suitable candidate for the Desiderius grant. In line with the mission of Desiderius, I hope this award will give you the opportunity to expand your research ideas further and build a strong scientific future at Erasmus MC.′

We are very proud for this recognition of the work of Steven and his research group, and congratulate him with this achievement!