E.G.M. van Baarsen PhD


E.G.M. van Baarsen PhD

Associate Professor, Assistant Professor, Research Associate
Main activities
Genomics; Immunology; Translational Research; Celbiology; Rheumatology; Stromal cells; Autoimmunity
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
  • Karouzakis Emmanuel, Hähnlein Janine, Grasso Cristoforo, Semmelink Johanna F., Tak Paul P., Gerlag Danielle M., Gay Steffen, Ospelt Caroline, van Baarsen Lisa G. M. Molecular characterization of human lymph node stromal cells during the earliest phases of rheumatoid arthritis Frontiers in immunology 2019;10 (AUG) [PubMed]
  • Rodríguez-Carrio Javier, Hähnlein Janine S., Ramwadhdoebe Tamara H., Semmelink Johanna F., Choi Ivy Y., van Lienden Krijn P., Maas Mario, Gerlag Danielle M., Tak Paul P., Geijtenbeek Teunis B. H., van Baarsen Lisa G. M. 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 & rheumatology (Hoboken, N.J.) 2017;69 (1):70-76 [PubMed]
  • Ramwadhdoebe Tamara H., Hähnlein Janine, Maijer Karen I., van Boven Leonard J., Gerlag Danielle M., Tak Paul P., van Baarsen Lisa G. M. Lymph node biopsy analysis reveals an altered immunoregulatory balance already during the at-risk phase of autoantibody positive rheumatoid arthritis European journal of immunology 2016;46 (12):2812-2821 [PubMed]
  • van Baarsen L. G. M., de Hair M. J. H., Ramwadhdoebe T. H., Zijlstra I. J. A. J., Maas M., Gerlag D. M., Tak P. P. The cellular composition of lymph nodes in the earliest phase of inflammatory arthritis Annals of the rheumatic diseases 2013;72 (8):1420-1424 [PubMed]
  • Gerlag Danielle M., Raza Karim, van Baarsen Lisa G. M., Brouwer Elisabeth, Buckley Christopher D., Burmester Gerd R., Gabay Cem, Catrina Anca I., Cope Andrew P., Cornelis François, Dahlqvist Solbritt Rantapää, Emery Paul, Eyre Stephen, Finckh Axel, Gay Steffen, Hazes Johanna M., van der Helm-van Mil Annette, Huizinga Tom W. J., Klareskog Lars, Kvien Tore K., Lewis Cathryn, Machold Klaus P., Rönnelid Johan, van Schaardenburg Dirkjan, Schett Georg, Smolen Josef S., Thomas Sue, Worthington Jane, Tak Paul P. EULAR recommendations for terminology and research in individuals at risk of rheumatoid arthritis: report from the Study Group for Risk Factors for Rheumatoid Arthritis Annals of the rheumatic diseases 2012;71 (5):638-641 [PubMed]
All Publications
Curriculum Vitae




Current position:

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)



Professional experience:

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; Copromotor: 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



Research grants and fellowships:

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; personal grant, highly competitive, success rate 15%)

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 (€750k) including AMC tenure track (highly prestigious; only 1/year)

2014  Dutch Arthritis Foundation project (€230k; PhD student Reza Nadafi), as co-applicant

2011  VENI award, (€250k ZonMw; personal grant, highly competitive, success rate 15%)

2011  Dutch Arthritis Foundation project 11-1-308 (€230k; technician Hannelie Semmelink)

2011  AMC PhD grant (€205k awarded by AMC to VENI laureates; PhD student: Janine Hähnlein)

2010  Jan Dekker and dr. Ludgardine Bouwman Foundation (€10k, bench fee)



Supervision of bachelor, master and PhD students:

Current PhD students:  Janne Bolt (AMC, 2023), Maria Catarina da Graca (VUMC, 2023),

(PhD expected)            Cristoforo Grasso (AMC, 2022), Tineke de Jong (AMC, 2022), Reza Nadafi (VUMC, 2019) and Tamara Ramwadhdoebe (AMC, 2020)

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)

On a regular basis I supervise bachelor and master students in the field of life sciences or medicine during their internship or thesis within my research group (10 students in the last 10 years).




2018: University Teaching Qualification (BKO)

Since 2017 Lecturer 2nd year medical students (Epicurus AMC)

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)



Organisation of scientific meetings:

2019 - 2020          Member of the scientific committee for the European Workshop for Rheumatology Research (EWRR) in Leuven, Belgium (http://www.ewrr.org/ ~350 participants)

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 EWRR in Amsterdam, the Netherlands


International Memberships:

2011 – Present    Member of the ESCIR (EULAR Standing Committee on Investigative Rheumatology) Study Group for Risk Factors for RA

2010 – Present    Member of EUMENET, a 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)


International work visits:

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: http://www.nwo.nl/onderzoek-en-resultaten/onderzoeksprojecten/i/49/2849.html


(inter)national research projects:

Since 2018           Work package leader in Target to B!, a Dutch B-cell consortium funded by SGF and Health~Holland and linked to the www.bcellnetwork.nl

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).


Invited speaker/CHAIR at international meetings:

2017    Session chair at International Forum for RA (Sweden)

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)


Oral presentation at international conferences (abstract selection):

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)


open access and travel grants, scholarships, prizes and nominations:

2018    EULAR travel grant for EULAR2018 in Amsterdam

2016    NWO Open Access Publication Grant (€ 2.000)

2015    EULAR travel grant (€500) for the 35th EWRR conference in Budapest (Hungary)

2014    Dutch Arthritis Foundation travel grant (€1.400) for the 34th EWRR conference in Lisbon Portugal

2013    NWO Open Access Publication Grant (€ 2.400)

2012    Invited membership for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

2012    EULAR travel grant (€500) for the 32nd EWRR conference in Stockholm (Sweden)

2008    Nominated for the Abbott ACR Award

2008    Poster prize (€500) at the VUMC Science Day

2008    Winner of the ServiceXS-Fluidigm application challenge: free ServiceXS Service for my Fluidigm Project using the BioMark™ quantitative real-time PCR system

2008    Travel grant (€1082) from the Dutch Arthritis Foundation for the EWRR in Toulouse (France)

2008    Travel grant (€500) from EULAR for the EWRR in Toulouse (France)

2006    Du Pré Grant (£4000) from MSIF for my work visit in Michigan (USA)

2006    Travel Grant (€1875) from NWO for my work visit in Michigan (USA)



Reviewer for:

Since 2017: Associate Editor for BMC Rheumatology

Scientific journals including Annals of Rheumatic Diseases, Arthritis & Rheumatism, Arthritis Research Therapy, Journal of Rheumatology, Plos One, Journal of Molecular Medicine, Immunology Letters.

Research grants including Foundation for Scientific Research Belgium (FWO), Dutch Arthritis Foundation, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, the Health Research Board (HRB, Ireland) and Fonds National Suisse (FNSNF).


Additional activities

Since 2019 Chairwoman of the gymnastics club St. Mauritius Volendam (~900 members)

Research programmes

E.G.M. van Baarsen PhD (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.

PhD Students
R. Nadafi MSc
M.C. Veloso Gago da Graça MSc

J.F. Semmelink MSc

Medewerkers buiten research programmes van afdeling Exp. Immunologie

Current research funding
  • AMC
  • AMC (Vrijgesteld)
  • NWO
  • ZonMw