How are complex tissues built and maintained?
This is the key question we address in our research, with a specific focus on the role and regulation of Wnt-signal transduction in mammary gland development and breast cancer.
Development of a multicellular animal requires tight control of cell proliferation, differentiation and polarized cell movements to ensure the correct assembly of cells into complex tissues. The same molecular mechanisms that normally guide these biological processes in the developing embryo, maintain tissue homeostasis in the adult. When disrupted, they are the underlying cause of degenerative diseases, tumor formation and, ultimately, aging.
We aim to close critical knowledge gaps in Wnt signalling and mammary gland biology through basic research. For this, we use a combination of model systems and experimental approaches, including lineage tracing analyses and primary three-dimensional organoid cultures.
We envision to translate fundamental principles from developmental and stem cell biology to cancer biology. As such, we operate at the exciting interface of regenerative medicine and cancer research.
Read more about our research (for scientists)
Read more about our research (for non-scientists, in English)
Lees meer over ons onderzoek en de aansluiting bij de Nationale Wetenschapsagenda (voor leken, in het Nederlands)
We enjoy talking about our research (or science in general) to a wide range of audiences. Whether it is kids, high school students or interested adults, we welcome opportunities to communicate our fascination for the human body (and what goes on inside it at the level of DNA, proteins and cells) to the general public.
Our work has received financial support from the following sources: