More space for curiosity shows profit

18 oktober 2016

Societal needs set the research agenda more and more. Nevertheless, history teaches us that great scientific discoveries are often unpredictable outcomes of curiosity-driven research. Marjolein van Egmond, Professor in ‘Oncology and Inflammation’ at the VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, directed her research at IgA as a putative anti-cancer agent. During this research, she discovered its crucial role in chronic inflammation, and the potential to target its receptor for therapy in disease.

Scientists should have the freedom to follow their curiosity, even if these lines seem to be side paths. Out of these paths, unexpected fundamental breakthroughs can happen. Marjolein van Egmond was awarded prestigous personal grants for her research: in 2003 VENI, 2007 VIDI, 2008 Aspasia, and in 2014 a VICI grant for ‘Keeping the balance between protection and inflammation in the gut.’

At FederaDag, Van Egmond will discuss how scientists can gain support for a good balance between social responsibility and freedom of research.

Listen to Professor Van Egmond, November 11th, Nijmegen.

Registration FederaDag and

Programme - Professor Van Egmond and 10 other experts on Healt(y) Science: increasing value, reducing waste. New insights and challenges

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