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The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.
-Malcolm Forbes
The chief function of the body is to carry the brain around.
-Albert Einstein
Brain: an apparatus with which we think we think.
-Ambrose Bierce
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Research - Psychiatry

Mission statement

Our mission is to innovate and optimise the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of severe mental health disorders in a medical context. The research conducted herein comprises applied, clinical and translational studies.



3D MICrobrains maken medicijntesten in humane hersencellen mogelijk

Posted by Admin on December 2021

opgekweekte hersenorganoïde, 3D MICrobrains Een opgekweekte hersenorganoïde: in lichtblauw de neuronen en in rood de microglia. Beeld: Mark van der Kroeg en Sakshi Bansal

Neurobiologen Femke de Vrij en Steven Kushner hebben 1 miljoen euro subsidie gekregen voor de ontwikkeling van doelmatige humane hersenorganoïden. Met het geld gaan ze de komende 5 jaar humane 3D MICrobrains ontwikkelen én wetenschappelijk aantonen dat er betrouwbare medicijntests op kunnen worden uitgevoerd.

De medicijnwaakhonden FDA (Verenigde Staten) en EMA (Europa) eisen vrijwel altijd eerst resultaten van proefdieronderzoek voordat een nieuw geneesmiddel bij mensen mag worden getest. Diermodellen zijn echter niet altijd voldoende voorspellend voor de fysiologie van de mens. De hersenorganoïden hebben de potentie om een betrouwbaar en beter voorspellend alternatief te worden voor proefdieronderzoek naar nieuwe medicatie voor neurologische en psychiatrische ziekten.

Lees meer: Amazing Erasmus MC

Wetenschappelijk onderzoek, Afdeling Psychiatrie, Erasmus MC

Posted by Admin on November 2021

Erasmus MC building

Het wetenschappelijk onderzoek van de afdeling Psychiatrie bestaat uit toegepast onderzoek en translationeel onderzoek naar psychotische- en stemmingsstoornissen.

Het toegepaste onderzoek beoogt concrete antwoorden te geven op vragen over ... picture_as_pdf Lees meer

'Making big data meaningful for a promising start in the first 1000 days of life'.

Posted by Admin on July 2021

stem cell research

Mijke Lambregtse-van den Berg is one of the work package leaders of a consortium led by Tanja Houweling from Public Health that has been awarded 1,3M euro from the NWO research agenda ‘Promising start for children with the help of big data.

All children deserve a promising start. Most children are doing fine. But some need extra support, because of problems during pregnancy, or because they grow up in disadvantaged circumstances, e.g. due to poverty or parental addiction or mental health problems. In this multidisciplinary project, we study how relevant datasets, among others of Statistics Netherlands, can be used to support these children and (expectant) parents. By ensuring more timely referral to services that meet their needs. And by tailoring municipal polities to the needs of vulnerable children and (expectant) parents. We collaborate with parents, practitioners and municipalities to ensure our research meets their priorities. This collaborative project includes partners from the Department of Public Health (Erasmus MC), the Departments of Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry/Psychology (Erasmus MC), the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science, the City of Rotterdam, and a broad range of societal partners.

Mijke will lead the work package that focusses on consultation and participation of involved families, practitioners and policy makers to ensure the project meets their needs and concerns. In this work package also prognostic models from other work packages will be used to develop and test a dynamic tool for identification that can be integrated in existing online screening tools and digital personal health environments to guide (expectant) parents and their towards tailored interventions.

Major ZonMw investment for stem cell research into neuropsychiatric disorders.

Posted by Admin on July 2021

stem cell research

The Departments of Psychiatry and Clinical Genetics at Erasmus MC lead a consortium project recently funded by ZonMw's PSIDER program using human pluripotent stem cells to develop an innovative platform of therapeutic discovery for hereditary neurodevelopmental disorders.

Steven Kushner of the Department of Psychiatry and Ype Elgersma of the Department of Clinical Genetics, lead the project Towards a human iPSC neuronal platform for neurodevelopmental disorder therapeutic discovery, which was awarded 4 million euros. Femke de Vrij (Psychiatry) and Marjon van Slegtenhorst (Clinical Genetics) of Erasmus MC also participate in the consortium.

The project will identify patients who have a severe cognitive developmental disorder due to a genetic mutation. If the mutation is suitable for correction with so-called antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) therapy, stem cells are generated from blood cells of the patient. These stem cells will be differentiated into brain cells, on which the mutation-specific ASO will be tested for therapeutic rescue of disease-associated molecular and cellular phenotypes. The researchers expect this research to be the prelude to routinely developing personalized therapies for a large group of rare neuropsychiatric disorders that are currently untreatable.

The ZonMw program Pluripotent Stem cells for Inherited Diseases and Embryonic Research (PSIDER) is intended for biomedical research with induced pluripotent stem cells. Within the program, ethical, legal and social issues are a strong focus

Lunch meeting Psychiatry
Monday, May 23, 2022
at 12 h

At location!

Department of Psychiatry
Colloquiumroom 1 (CQ1), DP-building

SeminarsQuote Open Access Publishing – Why and how?

Presenter: Maarten Engel


Kushner lab Biology of mental illness
Kushner Lab


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