PhD S.R. de Rooij

Associate Professor
Main activities
Epidemiology; Early life stress; Mental health
Focus of research

My research work is focused on ‘A healthy brain throughout lifespan’, with the subtopics brain development, cognition, mental health and brain aging.

A first and major theme of my work focuses on Early life origins of brain aging and dementia. In 2019 I received an Aspasia fellowship dedicated to this theme. Two PhD students are currently working on this topic, one focusing on early life origins of dementia and the other focusing on early determinants of brain aging. For this project we perform systematic literature searches, collect new data in the Dutch famine birth cohort and use data from CBS and NIVEL. We  collaborate with many national and international investigators, amongst others as part of the EU project Longitools (funded in 2019) and with the group of dr. Aniko Korosi (funded by an Amsterdam Brain and Cognition Centre grant), with whom we aim to synthesize evidence from animal and human work on the early life origins of metabolic and mental health / dementia.

A second theme of my research is Antenatal mental health disorders and brain development of the offspring. I am working with the group of prof. Jeannette Milgrom from Australia where RCTs for treating depression in pregnancy are performed. Previous and future work of my group aims at stuyding neurobiological outcomes in offspring of mothers with antenatal depression (funded by a Brain&Behaviour Research grant).

A third theme centers on Early life stress, cognition and mental health. This work is mostly based on studies within the ABCD and HELIUS cohorts. A number of small projects in collaboration with AMC investigators Tanja Vrijkotte, Anja Lok, Mirjam van Zuiden and Jos Bosch are currently running under this theme. Also under this theme is the project Complexity of affective and addictive disorders among urban youth that is part of the UvA Urban Mental Health program.

Key publications
  • de Rooij Susanne R., Caan Matthan W. A., Swaab Dick F., Nederveen Aart J., Majoie Charles B., Schwab Matthias, Painter Rebecca C., Roseboom Tessa J. Prenatal famine exposure has sex-specific effects on brain size Brain 2016;139 (Part 8):2136-2142 [PubMed]
  • de Rooij Susanne R., Wouters Hans, Yonker Julie E., Painter Rebecca C., Roseboom Tessa J. Prenatal undernutrition and cognitive function in late adulthood Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2010;107 (39):16881-16886 [PubMed]
  • Huizink Anja C., de Rooij Susanne R. Prenatal stress and models explaining risk for psychopathology revisited: Generic vulnerability and divergent pathways Development and psychopathology 2018;30 (3):1041-1062 [PubMed]
  • Bleker Laura S., Milgrom Jeannette, Sexton-Oates Alexandra, Roseboom Tessa J., Gemmill Alan W., Holt Christopher J., Saffery Richard, Burger Huibert, de Rooij Susanne R. Exploring the effect of antenatal depression treatment on children's epigenetic profiles: Findings from a pilot randomized controlled trial Clinical epigenetics 2019;11 (1) [PubMed]
  • Bleker Laura S., Roseboom Tessa J., Vrijkotte Tanja G., Reynolds Rebecca M., de Rooij Susanne R. Determinants of cortisol during pregnancy - The ABCD cohort Psychoneuroendocrinology 2017;83:172-181 [PubMed]
All Publications
Curriculum Vitae

Title(s), initial(s), first name, surname:  dr. Susanne R. de Rooij

Male/female:                                        female

Date and place of birth:                       10-11-1976, Hilversum

Nationality:                                          Dutch

Master’s (Doctoraal)

University:                                           Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Date:                                                   15-05-2002

Main subject:                                       Psychology


University:                                           Universiteit van Amsterdam

Date:                                                    08-02-2007

Supervisors (co)promotores):              prof. dr. P.M.M. Bossuyt; prof. dr. O.P. Bleker; dr. T.J. Roseboom; dr. M.W.T. Tanck

Title of thesis:                                      Metabolic consequences of prenatal exposure to the Dutch famine

Additional Education

BKO certification (University Teaching Qualification), University of Amsterdam, 2013

BROK certification (Regulation and Organisation of Clinical Research), University of Amsterdam, 2012

Certificate Epidemiologist B, the Netherlands Epidemiological Society, 2007

Work experience

2019-.......        Associate professor  Department of Clinical Epidemiology Biostatistics and Bio informatics, Amsterdam UMC, location Academic Medical Centre

2014-2019      Assistant professor   Department of Clinical Epidemiology Biostatistics and Bio informatics, Academic Medical Centre

2015-2019      Senior researcher     Section Clinical Developmental Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

2008-2014      Postdoctoral researcher   Department of Clinical Epidemiology Biostatistics and Bio informatics, Academic Medical Centre

2007               Postdoctoral researcher   EMGO Research Institute, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

2003-2007     PhD student   Department of Clinical Epidemiology Biostatistics and Bio informatics, Academic Medical Centre

Current research funding
  • NWO