Who are you, what is your background and how did you get involved in MDR?
My name is IJsbrand and did my bachelor and masters biomedical engineering in Groningen. My master project was related to the development of a stem cell therapy for the relief of radiation induced xerostomia. This triggered my fascination for (stem) cell culture and modelling organ function in vitro which prompted me apply for a PhD at the nephrology department of the UMCU.
Tell us a little bit more about the research you are planning to do within MDR.
My research will focus on modelling the proximal tubule of the nephron in vitro using electrospun PCL-BU scaffolds. This model would ideally include vasculature and the secretion/reabsorption mechanisms normally present in the proximal tubule.
Who is your biggest example in science and why?
Aristarchus of Samos is believed to be the first to place the sun at the centre of the known universe with the earth evolving around it. He even calculated the distance of other planets to the sun relatively accurately. For him to do this 2200 years ago is really impressive to me. It shows he was capable of difficult calculations with little technology, but was also not afraid to challenge generally accepted views.
What do you do in your free time and how can we recognize the typical Ijsbrand?
On a typical sunny day I love going for a ride on my motorcycle with some friends. At the end of the day were usually being overly competitive during board games.