My research focuses on the interface of cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, with a strong emphasis on imaging. Specifically, I aim to obtain relevant biomarkers for improved understanding and prediction of these diseases, and to identify potential targets for intervention strategies.
Against this background, I have gained broad experience in the application and acquisition of multi-modal imaging on the population-level, and performed important pioneering-work on the identification and quantification of specific imaging-based biomarkers of vascular disease. Specifically, my work on intracranial carotid artery calcification as important risk factor for stroke and dementia has had considerable impact, and has also led to an extension of my research horizon towards clinical studies on the value of carotid artery calcification in stroke patients. I currently lead a research team consisting of one PhD student, five MSc students, and one research staff member.
The multidisciplinary aspect of my research allowed me to establish close collaborations with the departments of Biomedical Engineering, Cardiology and Neurology within the Erasmus Medical College during the past years. I have also extended my collaborations outside of Erasmus to the University of Valladolid (Prof. Arenillas), the AsIA-Barcelona Study in Spain (Prof. Davalos), the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (Prof. Barreto), and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (Prof. Hofman), which allow a wide utilization of my research.
During the past years I was awarded the Best Scientific Paper Award of the Dutch Society of Radiology (2011), the Van Leersum Fellowship of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Science (2015), and the Lourens Penning Prize of the Dutch Society of Radiology (2016).