Reading a paper on the moon

In Body
Wednesday, 15 January 2014 08:45

Peter Peters rides his tractor from his father’s farm to his grandfather’s farm. His grandfather is also called Peter, as are many of the eldest sons in the Peters family. With fitting pride, this Peter shows off his ancestral land in Hunsel, Central Limburg. Well into his teens, it seemed that he, like his forefathers, would spend his life on this land. Until he was bitten by the research bug, that is. Now a professor of Nanobiology, he is one of the world’s leading experts in nanomolecular research on the immune system. “Quite the contrast, isn’t it?”, he says from his oldtimer. Peters recently became Maastricht University’s first ‘university professor’.


Cystic Fibrosis (CF) can be detected in the Netherlands by taking a neonatal heel prick several days after birth. Paediatrician Annette Vernooij-Van Langen (37) conducted doctoral research on the benefits, consequences and cost-effectiveness of two new CF screening methods. The results of her research changed how neonatal heel pricks are performed in the Netherlands. Since 1 May 2011, all newborns are screened for CF. 

It’s a man’s world – but not for long

In Society
Friday, 01 November 2013 07:58
Cardiovascular diseases manifest differently in men than in women – this is now reasonably well known within and beyond medical science. Yet the male bias in science is still widespread. The traditional test subjects are male rats and, in later research stages, men. “But scientific research that doesn’t take account of sex and gender differences is poor research”, says Dr Ineke Klinge, associate professor of Gender Medicine at Maastricht University. At the request of the European Commission, she led the project Gendered Innovations, which encourages researchers to give sex and gender the place in scientific research they deserve.


Keep an ear out for Elia Formisano

In Mind
Wednesday, 23 October 2013 08:37
By the time this interview with Italian-born Elia Formisano, extraordinary professor of Neural Signal Analysis, takes place, it has been raining for days. We start with the obvious: would he not rather live and work in his home country? But Formisano feels at home in Maastricht, and the reason why becomes clear soon enough. "This is what keeps us here", he laughs, pointing at the 9.4 Tesla scanner – an enormous machine that would not be out of place in a science-fiction movie. In real life, however, this machine helps scientific dreams come true.

PhD dissertation Jing Liu

Environmental pollution and devastation accompanying rapid economic development have created not only alarming losses to human beings and property but also astonishing damage to the environment itself. The difficulties in assessment and the special legal status of natural resources make traditional tort law an insufficient solution for the protection and compensation of this so called ecological damage.

The LPZ is an annual snapshot of healthcare problems, focusing on the treatment of pressure ulcers, malnutrition, incontinence and other issues. For 15 years, it has been an indispensable monitor of quality improvements for institutions. Dr Ruud Halfens, the Maastricht creator and project leader of the LPZ monitor, is now fielding increasing interest from abroad.

Understanding the human brain

In Mind
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 00:00

"Our brain is a universe, and that universe I want to understand", says Rainer Goebel, professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the Maastricht Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience. Recently, the chances of his dream coming true have significantly increased. The reason? A green light and hence a €500 million grant for the Human Brain Project, which was announced last January as one of only two Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) Flagship projects funded by the European Commission. The aim of the project is to unravel the secrets of the brain, and it is up to Goebel to represent Maastricht University in the endeavour.


Turning the spotlight on excellence

In Society
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 00:00
Who would nowadays dare to claim that science is still a man's world? It is, after all, 2013. Yet on closer inspection, you don’t have to be a rampant feminist to make this claim. Women continue to be underrepresented in academic leadership – across the European Union, only 18% of full professors are women. There is some good news though. In the online databaseAcademiaNet, excellent female researchers are deliberately put in the spotlight. Because in addition to a lack of women leaders, we are wanting in the tools necessary to identify outstanding women academics. AcademiaNet strives to fill that void.

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