Ing. L.G.M. van Baarsen PhD

Associate professor (UHD)
Main activities
Genomics; Immunology; Translational Research; Celbiology; Rheumatology; Stromal cells
Focus of research

To ultimately cure or prevent rheumatoid arthritis, it is critical to understand the earliest changes in the immune system that cause RA. Starting from a genome-wide expression profiling approach, this research will delineate the role of stromal cells in bone marrow, lymph node and synovial tissue in arthritis development. Results from these studies will provide innovative drug targets for preventive intervention in pre-clinical RA and identify the immunological processes that initiate RA and possibly other related chronic inflammatory diseases. In addition, molecular profiling of biomaterials is used to identify biomarkers for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment response.

Key publications
  • Hähnlein JS, Ramwadhdoebe TH, Semmelink JF, Choi IY, Berger FH, Maas M, Gerlag DM, Tak PP, Geijtenbeek TBH, van Baarsen LGM, Distinctive expression of T cell guiding molecules in human autoimmune lymph node stromal cells upon TLR3 triggering. SCI REP-UK 2018;8 (1):1736 [PubMed]
  • Rodríguez-Carrio J, Hähnlein JS, Ramwadhdoebe TH, Semmelink JF, Choi IY, van Lienden KP, Maas M, Gerlag DM, Tak PP, Geijtenbeek TBH, van Baarsen LGM, Brief Report: Altered Innate Lymphoid Cell Subsets in Human Lymph Node Biopsy Specimens Obtained During the At-Risk and Earliest Phases of Rheumatoid Arthritis. ARTHRITIS RHEUMATOL 2017;69 (1):70-76 [PubMed]
  • Ramwadhdoebe TH, Hähnlein J, Maijer KI, van Boven LJ, Gerlag DM, Tak PP, van Baarsen LGM, Lymph node biopsy analysis reveals an altered immunoregulatory balance already during the at-risk phase of autoantibody positive rheumatoid arthritis. EUR J IMMUNOL 2016;46 (12):2812-2821 [PubMed]
  • van Baarsen LGM, de Hair MJH, Ramwadhdoebe TH, Zijlstra IJAJ, Maas M, Gerlag DM, Tak PP, The cellular composition of lymph nodes in the earliest phase of inflammatory arthritis. ANN RHEUM DIS 2013;72 (8):1420-1424 [PubMed]
  • Gerlag DM, Raza K, van Baarsen LGM, Brouwer E, Buckley CD, Burmester GR, Gabay C, Catrina AI, Cope AP, Cornelis F, Dahlqvist SR, Emery P, Eyre S, Finckh A, Gay S, Hazes JM, van der Helm-van Mil A, Huizinga TWJ, Klareskog L, Kvien TK, Lewis C, Machold KP, Rönnelid J, van Schaardenburg D, Schett G, Smolen JS, Thomas S, Worthington J, Tak PP, EULAR recommendations for terminology and research in individuals at risk of rheumatoid arthritis: report from the Study Group for Risk Factors for Rheumatoid Arthritis. ANN RHEUM DIS 2012;71 (5):638-641 [PubMed]
All Publications
Curriculum Vitae

• Researcher ID : N-3646-2015 Profile URL:


Since 1-4-2019: Associate Professor/AMC Tenure Track, AMC/UvA, Amsterdam
Since 1-5-2015: Principal Investigator (PI) at the AMC
Since 1-9-2011: Research group leader at the division of Clinical Immunology & Rheumatology and the department of Experimental Immunology (AMC); 1.0 fte, fixed-term

01-05-2010: Postdoc at the division of Clinical Immunology & Rheumatology (AMC) under supervision of Prof. dr. P.P. Tak; 1.0 fte
2009 - 2010 Postdoc at the division of Clinical Immunology & Rheumatology (AMC) under supervision of Prof. dr. P.P. Tak; 0.5 fte
                       Team leader of the Biomarker Discovery Lab at the division of Clinical Immunology & Rheumatology (AMC); supervision of 8 research technicians and managing clinical research studies, 0.5 fte
2004 – 2008 PhD student at the Department of Molecular Cell Biology & Immunology and the Department of Pathology, VU University Medical Center (VUMC), Amsterdam; 1.0 fte
2001 - 2004 Research technician at the Department of Molecular Cell Biology & Immunology, VUMC, Amsterdam; 1.0 fte

2004 – 2008 PhD, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
                        Promotor: Prof. Dr. C.L. Verweij; Co-promotor: Dr. T.C.T.M. van der Pouw Kraan
                        Title thesis: Heterogenomics of autoimmunity; Towards personalized medicine
                        Obtained doctorate: 01-10-2009
1997 – 2001 Bachelor Medical Biology, HvU, Utrecht, Netherlands
                        Obtained degree: 30-6-2001

2019 H2020-MSCA-COFUND grant (2.1M€ from EU), as co-applicant
2018 NWO Aspasia award (€100k; for female VIDI laureates)
2018 VIDI award, Dutch Organization for Health Research and Development (€800k ZonMw)
2018 AMC flex grant (€216k awarded by AMC to VIDI laureates)
2018 ZonMw TOP grant (€675k), as co-applicant
2016 Innovation grant AMC (€200k), as co-applicant
2016 AMC fellowship award including AMC tenure track 
2011 VENI award, Dutch Organization for Health Research and Development (ZonMw)
2011 Dutch Arthritis Foundation project 11-1-308 (technician Hannelie Semmelink)
2011 AMC PhD grant (awarded by AMC to VENI laureates; PhD student: Janine Hähnlein)
2010 Jan Dekker and dr. Ludgardine Bouwman Foundation (bench fee)

Current PhD students (PhD expected): Janne Bolt (AMC, 2023), Maria Catarina da Graca (VUMC, 2023), Cristoforo Grasso (AMC, 2022), Tineke de Jong (AMC, 2022), Reza Nadafi (VUMC, 2019) and Tamara Ramwadhdoebe (AMC, 2019)
2018: Janine Hähnlein (AMC)
2015 Hosting Javier Rodríguez-Carrio, University of Oviedo, Asturias, Spain (3 months research fellow through the EFIS/IL fellowship program)
2013: Marjolein de Hair, MD (AMC, obtained PhD in 2013)
On a regular basis I supervise bachelor and master students in the field of life sciences or medicine during their internship within my research group 

2018: University Teaching Qualification (BKO)
Annual elective “Clinical and Experimental Immunology” rheumatology week (AMC):
- Since 2015: week coordinator and teacher
- Since 2010: teacher
2005 – 2008: Assistant/teacher during practical and genomics courses organised by the department of Molecular Cell Biology and Immunology (VUMC)


2018 Organization of a public day of the Departments focussed on chronic inflammatory diseases (~160 participants). Discussed patient participation.
2016 Organization of the annual retreat of the Department of Experimental Immunology (~100 participants)
2010 – 2011 Local organizing committee and member of the scientific committee of the 31st European Workshop for Rheumatology Research in Amsterdam, the Netherlands ( ~350 participants)

2011 – Present Member of the ESCIR (EULAR Standing Committee on Investigative Rheumatology) Study Group for Risk Factors for RA
2012 – Present Member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
2010 – Present Member of EUMENET, an EULAR working group of young researchers in rheumatology
2006 – Present Member of the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation (MSIF)
2001 – Present Member of the Dutch Society for Immunology (NVVI)

2008 Work visit at Zeptosens (Switzerland) to set-up a proteomics study
2006 Work visit at the Van Andel Research Institute, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA. In the proteomics lab of Dr. Brian Haab I was trained in antibody-array technology, see website NWO:

Since 2018 Work package leader in Target to B!, a Dutch B-cell consortium funded by SGF and Health~Holland.
2011 – 2017 Project leader in BeTheCure (115142), an EU project funded by the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI).
2012 – 2016 Project leader in Euro-TEAM (FP7 EU funded research project 305549)
2013 – 2016 Project partner in Eurostars TripleA-TP (lead by Arthrogen; €150k)
2006 – 2011 Researcher in AutoCure (FP6 EU funded integrated research project).

2013 Invited Session speaker at 33rd EWRR in Prague (Czech Republic)
2012 Invited Session speaker at EULAR 2012 in Berlin (Germany)
2010 Invited by Prof. Lories to give a genomics lecture at the University of Leuven (Belgium)
2008 Invited by Serono Symposia International Foundation as Guest Speaker at “Genetics of Autoimmune diseases” conference in Barcelona (Spain)

2018 EULAR 2018 in Amsterdam (Netherlands)
2018 38th EWRR in Geneva (Switzerland)
2017 EULAR 2017 in Madrid (Spain)
2015 35th EWRR in Budapest (Hungary)
2014 34rd EWRR in Lisbon (Portugal)
2012 32nd EWRR in Stockholm (Sweden)
2008 Annual meeting of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) in San Francisco (USA)
2008 The 28th EWRR in Toulouse (France).
2006 The 8th International congress on Neuroimmunology (ISNI) in Nagoya (Japan)

Research programmes

Delineating the immunological processes leading to inflammatory autoimmunity

Dr. van Baarsen has extensive experience in translational research focused on personalized medicine, biomarker discovery and lymphoid immunobiology. The research group of Dr. van Baarsen is focused on lymphoid immunobiology and combines high throughput molecular and cellular technologies with unique patient biomaterials to ultimately unravel the biological processes leading to inflammatory autoimmune disease. The collaboration with several rheumatologists within the ARC enables the use of biomaterials from patients with different stages and types of autoimmune diseases. The ARC has extensive experience in recruiting specific study populations in the Amsterdam network. This multidisciplinary approach will aid the discovery of inflammatory processes involved in various stages of autoimmunity and the translation of this knowledge into novel therapeutic approaches.

Ing. L.G.M. van Baarsen PhD

PhD Students
J.W. Bolt MD MSc
C. Grasso
T.A. de Jong
T.H. Ramwadhdoebe
R. Nadafi MSc (VU Medical Center/Vrije Universiteit)
M.C. Veloso Gago da Graça MSc (VUMC/VU University)

J.F. Semmelink MSc

Other research related activities
  • Membership of medical or scientific committee, European League Against Rheumatism, ESCIR (EULAR Standing Committee on Investigative Rheumatology) Study Group for Risk Factors for RA
  • Membership of medical or scientific committee, Netherlands Society for Immunology (NVVI)
  • reviewer, Scientific journals including Annals of Rheumatic Diseases, Arthritis & Rheumatism, Arthritis Research Therapy, Journal of Rheumatology, Plos One and Journal of Molecular Medicine
  • reviewer, Foundation for Scientific Research Belgium (FWO), Dutch Arthritis Foundation, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation and The Health Research Board (HRB, Ireland)
Current research funding
  • AMC
  • AMC (Vrijgesteld)
  • University Hospital Regensburg
  • ZonMw