The first objective of the Dutch Pharmacological Society is to facilitate Dutch research as well as the education in the field of pharmacology. The research covers the broad area from molecules, via cells, organs and organisms to populations. The Society wants to stimulate and facilitate national and international networks and collaborations in these areas. For that reason it develops activities that aim at exchanging knowledge and methodologies. Furthermore, it has the objective to promote the visibility of the discipline, both nationally and internationally.
Prof Dr Elizabeth de Lange has been trained as a chemist, with specialization in Biophysical Chemistry (Groningen University, Groningen, The Netherlands). She obtained her PhD in Pharmacology (Leiden- Academic Center for Drug Research (LACDR), Leiden University, The Netherlands). She currently is Professor on Predictive Pharmacology and the Principal Investigator of the Predictive Pharmacology Group in the Research Division of Systems Biomedicine & Pharmacology of the LACDR.
Elizabeth has a clearly visible and original personal line of research and is one of the few in the world that is able to perform and bridge advanced preclinical experiments, analytical techniques and mathematical modelling. This is a unique approach to build robust mathematical models for the prediction of (particularly CNS) drug effects in human, which is the ultimate aim of her research. Elizabeth underscores that there is still the need for using animals in drug research, but is very concerned about their inefficient and repeated use, and advocates the use of the Mastermind Research Approach (de Lange, 2013) by which knowledge obtained from animals can be stored in mathematical models, such that generic insight in pharmacology and disease is gained and the use of animals will be substantially reduced. A recent highlight is the CNS physiologically-based pharmacokinetic model that is able to predict the pharmacokinetics of a drug at multiple physiological compartments in the CNS, on the basis of drug properties and in vitro/in silico data only, without the need of animals (Yamamoto et al, 2018).
- De Lange ECM. The mastermind approach to CNS drug therapy: translational prediction of human brain distribution, target site kinetics, and therapeutic effects. Fluids and Barriers of the CNS 2013, 10:12.
- Yamamoto et al. Prediction of human CNS pharmacokinetics using a physiologically-based pharmacokinetic modeling approach. Eur J Pharm Sci. 2018 Jan 15;112:168-179
Rick Greupink is an Assistant Professor and member of staff at the department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, Radboud university medical center, Nijmegen. His research focuses on the mechanistic aspects of drug disposition and toxicity, in particular the pharmacological roles of drug-transporting membrane proteins, their impact on the clinical pharmacokinetics of drugs, involvement in drug-drug interactions, as well as roles in drug-induced toxicity. Current focus is on the placental disposition and effects of small and large molecule pharmaceuticals. Dr. Greupink obtained a MSc in pharmaceutical sciences and was trained as a pharmacist (PharmD) at the University of Groningen. He obtained a PhD in Pharmacokinetics and Drug Delivery from the same university and further specialized as a pharmacologist during postdoctoral fellowships in both clinical as well as pre-clinical settings in pharmaceutical industry and academia. He is a registered experimental pharmacologist with the Dutch Pharmacological Society. At Radboud university medical center, dr. Greupink is a member of the educational program committee of the Biomedical Sciences curriculum and he lectures in pharmacology and pharmacotherapy in the curricula for Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences.
Dr. W. Matthijs Blankesteijn studied Biology and Chemistry at the KU Nijmegen (now Radboud University). He obtained his PhD from the same University on a dissertation entitled ‘Beta-adrenergic receptor function and regulation in hypertension’. He currently is associate professor of Pharmacology and principal investigator at the Cardiovascular Research Institute Maastricht, Maastricht University, the Netherlands. His main research focus is on signaling mechanisms controlling the remodeling of the heart in response to a pathological stimulus such as pressure overload or ischemia. In this context he discovered the role of WNT signaling in processes associated with cardiac remodeling such as fibrosis and angiogenesis. With his co-workers, he has developed a collection of peptide fragments of WNT to act as inhibitors of the signaling pathway. Studies from his group and others have shown that pharmacological inhibition of WNT signaling has a beneficial effect on infarct healing, resulting in smaller infarcts and a better preservation of cardiac function. The activation of cardiomyocyte regeneration in the border zone has recently been proposed as a potential underlying mechanism, which would be in line with the well-established role for WNT signaling in the control of stem cell differentiation. A better understanding of the mechanisms of cardiomyocyte regeneration and the development of interventions that can stimulate this process has the potential to change the therapy of cardiac diseases form the current treatment of symptoms (‘care’) towards actually addressing the underlying problem (‘cure’). Other projects that are currently running in his group are on the role of WNT signaling in vascular calcification and on WNT signaling in the crosstalk between oligodendrocytes and endothelial cells in a context of cerebral small vessel disease.
Amalia Dolga is an Associate Professor and a Rosalind Franklin Fellow at the University of Groningen, Department of Molecular Pharmacology. Dr. Dolga earned her Ph.D. (cum laude) at the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen in The Netherlands. She worked on TNF neuroprotective pathways in the central nervous system in the laboratory of Prof. Ulrich Eisel and Prof. Paul Luiten. Her postdoctoral training was performed in the laboratory of Prof. Carsten Culmsee at the University of Marburg, Germany, where she identified potassium channels in mitochondria; moreover, she demonstrated the functional relevance of these potassium channels in several models of oxidative stress and ischaemia. In 2013, she began the ‘Habilitation’ programme, which she completed in less than two years, receiving the right of ‘ius promovendi’. Also, she was awarded a DFG grant; and an innovation award to study optogenetics at the University of Marburg. In 2015 Dr Dolga received the prestigious Rosalind Franklin fellowship, allowing her to start her own research group in neuroscience at the Groningen Research Institute of Pharmacy in Groningen (GRIP), the Netherlands. Currently, together with her group, she investigates how modulation of potassium channels and mitochondrial function affect the pathological markers of Alzheimer and Parkinson disease. These projects are funded by Alzheimer Nederland and ParkinsonFonds.
The research program of her group is focused on the following themes:
- Understanding the molecular mechanisms that link mitochondrial dysfunction with ageing and neurodegeneration.
- Applying this knowledge in order to develop new and relevant human model systems (iPSC-derived neurons/microglia; brain-on-a-chip) for neurodegenerative diseases
- Using these novel platforms for drug development and screening for potential therapies for diseases associated with mitochondrial dysfunction and aging.
Anton Roks is known for his pharmacological and experimental intervention studies in the field of vasomotor disturbances, hypertension, vascular hypertrophy and related phenotypes. He initially investigated the cardiovascular function of the peptide hormone angiotensin-(1-7). Since 2008 he started working on vascular aging, which has now become his main topic. His work has resulted in several patents for experimental interventions in age-related cardiovascular disease. Based on genetic modifications that induce a vascular-specific DNA damage response in mice, he has generated models to selectively study accelerated cardiovascular ageing. This offers opportunities to follow the vascular aging process without bias of confounding factors, such as atherosclerosis. The relation of non-atherosclerotic vascular aging to cardiac and renal ischemia (INOCA, HFpEF, acute kidney injury) is his main health problem-related interest. His pharmacological expertise mainly concerns the nitric oxide – cGMP signaling pathway and other vasodilator pathways, and he is building up a new research line exploring the effects of the DNA damage response and aging on function of perivascular adipose tissue and mitochondrial function. For translational studies he has access to human coronary artery of individuals of all possible ages up until 70 years, and he is developing a 3D in vitro model of human vascular aging. His expert techniques are organ bath and in vivo vasomotor function studies, stiffness measurement, blood pressure measurements (tail cuff and telemetry), hemodynamic measurement (echo and PV loop catheter), and renal function. He has collaborations with companies with whom he works on several experimental therapies against vascular aging. In addition, he is closely working together with the renowned Dept. of Epidemiology, thus having access to large databases with (epi)genetic, transcriptomic, metabol(om)ic, and cardiovascular trait information of human populations such as the Rotterdam Study population.
Former members of the board
Board member (2015-2021): Antoinette Maassen van den Brink (Professor of Pharmacology, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam)
Her research focuses on the neurovascular aspects ofmigraine, with a special interest in the role of sex hormones.
FIGON Dutch medicine Days representatives
Prof. dr. Amalia Dolga
Prof. dr. Martina Schmidt
NVF Spring Meeting Organizing Committee
Dr. Tom Schirris
Dr. Astrid Hogenkamp
Dr. Ben Janssen
Dr. Nshunge Musheshe
Dr. Anton Roks
Dr. Henry Vischer
Dr. Laura Heitman
Ariens Award Committee
Prof. dr Elizabeth CM de Lange
Dr. Rick Greupink
Prof. dr. Amalia Dolga
Prof. dr. Matthijs Blankesteijn
Prof. dr. Antoinette Maassen van den Brink
Van Zwieten PhD thesis Award Committee
Prof. dr Martina Schmidt (Chairman)
Prof. dr Martine Smit
Prof. dr Harald Schmidt
Committee for Pharmacological training supervision and assessment
(Commissie Toezicht en Beoordeling: CTB)
Dr Cees Korstanje
Prof. R. Adan
Prof. Rob Henning
Prof. dr. E.J. Ariëns (1918-2002)
Prof. dr. D de Wied (1925-2004)
Prof. dr. P.A. van Zwieten (1937 -2014)
Prof. dr. H. Timmerman
Prof. dr. F. Nijkamp