The ERC has announced the awarding of the Consolidator grants that go to 329 top researchers across Europe. The funding, part of the EU's Horizon 2020 programme, is worth in total €630 million and will give them a chance to have far-reaching impact on science and beyond.We are very proud to announce that Michiel Vermeulen, theme Cancer development and immune defense, has been awarded a prestigious ERC Consolidator grant
(€ 2 million) with his project entitled: A systems biology approach to investigate cell fate switches in intestinal organoids. The research of Michiel Vermeulen focuses on stem cells in the intestine.
Every day, our intestines produce over 200 grams of new cells. This large amount of cells is produced by so called adult stem cell, present in the walls of our intestines. These stem cells divide every day, but also differentiate into different cell types involved in processes, such as absorbing nutrients and excreting hormones and slime. When bowel cancer develops, the balance between cell division and cell differentiation is disturbed. The cancer stem cells can now divide uncontrollably and without differentiating. Recently, the possibility to culture different cells from the intestine, so called organoids, became available. Using these intestinal organoids, Vermeulen and his team will research this delicate balance between cell division and cell differentiation in detail.
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