Prof. Van Zwieten Award

Home Awards Prof. Van Zwieten Award

Dutch Pharmacological Society awards the Prof. Van Zwieten Award for the best PhD thesis defended in the Netherlands in the field of pharmacology. The award will be received at the Spring NVF meeting.

Nomination deadline

Year 2023: 1st of January 2024

Please send a thesis and a support letter to

Selection criteria are:

  • the scientific quality of the PhD thesis
  • the focus on pharmacology
  • member of NVF

2022: Dr. Amer Jamalpoor (The Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences) (year 2021)

Title: Investigating the pathophysiology and potential therapeutic approaches for nephropathic cystinosis


Nephropathic cystinosis is an autosomal recessive monogenic kidney disorder characterized by lysosomal accumulation of cystine throughout the body, causing organ damage, particularly the kidneys. This is due to pathogenic mutations in the CTNS gene, which encodes for the lysosomal cystine transporter cystinosin, transporting cystine from the lysosome into the cytoplasm.

Patients with nephropathic cystinosis usually develop symptoms of renal Fanconi syndrome, and if not treated, progress to end stage renal disease within the first 12 years of life. The mainstay for cystinosis treatment is life-long therapy with cysteamine, a cystine depleting agent. Although cysteamine efficiently lowers lysosomal cystine levels and improves some clinical outcomes, it does not reverse the established renal Fanconi syndrome and cannot prevent the loss in renal function. This suggests involvement of complex pathophysiological processes in disease progression that may not be directly related to cystine overload.

Therefore, this thesis aimed to investigate the disease pathophysiology and to find new potential therapeutic interventions that could replace or compliment cysteamine therapy for patients with cystinosis.


Previous awardees:

2021: Dr. Emilie Hitzerd (Erasmus MC) (year 2020)

Title: Towards novel therapies for preeclampsia – restoring vascular dysfunction

2021: Dr. Haoxiao Zuo (University of Groningen) (year 2019)

Thesis title: Compartmentalized cAMP signaling in COPD. Focus on phosphodiesterases and A-kinase anchoring proteins

2019: Dr. Miloš Mihajlović (Utrecht University) (year 2018)

Thesis title: A next step towards bioartificial kidney: preclinical safety evaluation









2018: Dr. Birgit Honrath (University of Groningen) (year 2017)

Thesis title: Mitochondrial dysfunction in oxidative stress: On the impact of neuronal KCa channels & calcium signaling in neurodegeneration.


2017: Dr. Tom Schirris (year 2016)

Thesis title: Identifying on- and off-target mitochondrial drug effects by systems medicine