Division of Infection and Immunity


IIT Seminar | Dr Femke van Wijk

18 March 2021, 12:00 pm–1:00 pm

'Targeting type-2 disease: the benefits and side effects of IL-4R blockade in human'

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Dr Anne Pesenacker

Dr Femke van Wijk (Infection & Immunity, Utrecht University) will be speaking at the UCL Institute of Immunity and Transplantation Seminar Series on Thursday 18 March.

All are welcome to attend. Please contact Fran Jackson (f.jackson@ucl.ac.uk) if you would like to join the seminar, or meet the speaker.

About the speaker

Femke van Wijk is Professor Tissue Immunology at the Center for Translational Immunology at the University Medical Centre Utrecht (UMCU) in the Netherlands. Dr van Wijk obtained her PhD on mechanisms of oral tolerance and allergic sensitization to peanut at the Utrecht University in 2006. After her first postdoctoral training in human immunology in the lab of Prof. B. Prakken at the UMCU she obtained a KNAW fellowship for a two-year postdoc in the lab of Professor H. Cheroutre in the La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology in San Diego to work on tissue T cell adaptation. After being awarded a VENI personal fellowship, she moved to the UMCU to start her own research group.

For her research on how antigen-presenting cells sabotage T cell regulation in local inflammation van Wijk was awarded a VIDI career development grant (2014). Her research program aims to elucidate tissue T cell responses in health and inflammation and to translate these insights into tools for (pre-clinical) disease monitoring and therapeutic targeting in chronic inflammatory diseases. She takes a disease-overarching approach to decipher common and specific pathogenic processes underlying different inflammatory conditions and one of her specific interests is early imprinting of disease. Diseases her group is working on include atopic dermatitis, inflammatory bowel disease, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, and juvenile dermatomyositis.

Dr van Wijk is the author of 75 publications in leading peer-reviewed journals and is participating in several international networks including T_CELL_CONNECT_EUROPE, Eureka Institute for Translational Medicine, and Understanding Childhood Arthritis Worldwide Network that are aimed at (international) exchanges and training of young scientists, knowledge sharing, and enhancing reproducibility of human data. In 2017 Dr van Wijk received the PhD supervisor of the year award by the Utrecht University Graduate School of Life Sciences. She is a member of the Center for Translational Immunology leadership-team, Utrecht Life Sciences (ULS) Program Board, and Scientific Director FOCIS (Federation of Clinical Immunology Societies) Center of Excellence.

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