Prof. dr. E.T. van Bavel

Main activities
Research, Teaching
Focus of research

The research of my group is devoted to the control of tone and remodeling of blood vessels, with a special interest in the role of physical factors (blood pressure and blood flow) in these processes and the biomechanics of the vascular wall. Our scientific objectives range from unraveling of basic mechanisms to understanding pathogenesis and consequences of notably vascular cognitive impairment, hypertension, atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease and intracranial aneurysms. We use a wide variety of approaches. These include clinical imaging modalities (in collaboration with Radiology), in vivo approaches such as rodent intracranial window, hypertension and flow restriction models, perfused arteries and arterioles of human and animal origin in organoid culture, cell-based experimental models, molecular techniques, and mathematical modeling and simulation. My group aims to combine biophysical and functional experiments with analysis of molecular parameters. Our philosophy is to perform integrative science and utilize a systems approach in order to correlate molecular mechanisms with structure and function of blood vessels and vascular networks in health and disease.

Key publications
  • Coutinho JM, van den Berg R, Zuurbier SM, VanBavel E, Troost D, Majoie CB, Stam J, Small juxtacortical hemorrhages in cerebral venous thrombosis. ANN NEUROL 2014;75 (6):908-916 [PubMed]
  • Di Russo J, Luik AL, Yousif L, Budny S, Oberleithner H, Hofschröer V, Klingauf J, van Bavel E, Bakker EN, Hellstrand P, Bhattachariya A, Albinsson S, Pincet F, Hallmann R, Sorokin LM, Endothelial basement membrane laminin 511 is essential for shear stress response. EMBO J 2017;36 (2):183-201 [PubMed]
  • Heijtel DFR, Mutsaerts HJMM, Bakker E, Schober P, Stevens MF, Petersen ET, van Berckel BNM, Majoie CBLM, Booij J, van Osch MJP, VanBavel E, Boellaard R, Lammertsma AA, Nederveen AJ, Accuracy and precision of pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling perfusion during baseline and hypercapnia: a head-to-head comparison with ¹⁵O H₂O positron emission tomography. NEUROIMAGE 2014;92:182-192 [PubMed]
  • Bakker ENTP, Groma G, Spijkers LJA, de Vos J, van Weert A, van Veen H, Everts V, Arribas SM, VanBavel E, Heterogeneity in arterial remodeling among sublines of spontaneously hypertensive rats. PLOS ONE 2014;9 (9):e107998 [PubMed]
  • VanBavel E, Tuna BG, Integrative modeling of small artery structure and function uncovers critical parameters for diameter regulation. PLOS ONE 2014;9 (1):e86901 [PubMed]
All Publications
Curriculum Vitae

A curriculum vitae is available upon request

Research programmes

Vascular Biophysics

I am coordinator of the FP7 European Union Research Training Network Small Artery Remodeling (‘SmArteR’, 2013-2017, Small arteries and arterioles form the major site of resistance for perfusion, and their function and structure are critical for tissue perfusion and regulation of blood pressure. The scientific objectives of SmArteR are 1) to better understand regulation of structure and function, with a focus on matrix and cell biology, mechanobiology and biomechanics; 2) to develop novel technology to study these blood vessels. This program should help early stage diagnosis and provide novel therapeutic options for adverse remodeling in among others hypertension.

We perform experimental work on vascular cognitive decline from two perspectives. In a first project, effects of micro-emboli on vascular and neuronal damage and repair are investigated. A second project addresses interstitial drainage and perivascular transport in relation to amyloid beta deposition. Experimental approaches include high resolution 3D imaging of vascular networks and transport processes, and rodent cranial window models.

We study structural changes of the vascular wall following sub-arachnoid hemorrhage, with purpose of understanding delayed cerebral ischemia. Experimental approaches include in vivo hemorrhage models and in vitro technology such as the cannulated vessel setup and so-called wire myograph.

Small arteries and arterioles form complex vascular networks. Regulation of arterial network structure and function is studied based on computer modeling, for the purpose of deciphering the critical vascular properties for control of perfusion. Input for such simulations is based on the large array of tests on individual vessels that we performed over the years, as well as on extensive datasets on vascular branching and (microsphere) flow that are being collected by the imaging cryomicrotome of Maria Siebes in our department.

In collaboration with the department of Radiology and funded from several sources, we established a research program on hemodynamic profiles in carotid and intracranial arteries, using novel phase contrast MRI approaches and computational techniques. The work aims to improve our understanding of the role of hemodynamics in vascular changes, and to provide tools for early diagnosis. Part of this work concerns risk of rupture models for intracranial aneurysms on the basis of local velocity and wall shear stress patterns. We also address wall shear stress in atherosclerosis. Furthermore we develop and validate new technology for cerebral perfusion based on ASL MRI. Also in collaboration with Radiology, we work on optimizing clinical image processing in among others stroke and Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation.

We employ a range of techniques for vascular biophysics and physiology. These include chronic in vivo flow diversion models, in vivo microscopy and cranial window models, isometric and isobaric functional tests on small arteries. Our methods for keeping isolated perfused blood vessels in culture and study in vitro remodeling have formed the base of much of our success. Likewise, we developed methods for the time-lapsed multiposition imaging of cells interaction with their surrounding matrix, and combine a range of optical techniques (side stream dark field imaging, FRAP, optical tweezers, OCT velocimetry) with in vivo microvascular imaging.



Prof. dr. E.T. van Bavel
Dr. E.N.T.P. Bakker

PhD Students
N. Arrarte Terreros
T. Georgakopoulou
Drs. F.A. Karamat MD
N. Lachkar MSc
M.G.J.T.B. van Lier MSc
D.M.P. Naessens MSc
H. Prasetya MEng
J.C.V. Schwarz MSc
L. Václavů MSc

Ing. J. de Vos BSc
A. van Weert BSc

Other research related activities
  • editorships, conference scient boards, scient soc councils, ...., many
Current research funding
  • AMC
  • Europese Unie
  • Stichting Alzheimer Nederland
  • Universiteit Twente