Coen Stehouwer (Rotterdam, 1960) obtained an MD at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam (1985; cum laude); registered as internist in 1990; and obtained a PhD in 1992 (Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam). He did postgraduate training in epidemiology and molecular biology.
In 2000, he was appointed Professor of Internal Medicine at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. In 2004, he accepted a position as Professor of Internal Medicine and Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands.
In 2019, 463 million people had diabetes worldwide, at stupendous personal, health-care and societal costs. In 2010, ~10% of global health-care expenditure was spent on treatment of diabetes. Prof. Stehouwer has devoted his career to systematically deciphering the pathophysiology of diabetes and its cardiovascular complications.
Since 1990, the work of Professor Stehouwer and his group has led to 87 completed PhD theses and more than 800 peer-reviewed papers in international journals.
Prof. Stehouwer’s work is well-recognized as shown by a Hirsh index of 121 (Web of Science); >72,000 citations; and several awards, notably the Dr. F. Gerritzen Award for excellent diabetes research (Dutch Diabetes Research Foundation, 1993); the Castelli-Pedroli Award for excellent research into the complications of diabetes (European Association for the Study of Diabetes, 2005); the Dutch Society of Vascular Medicine Career Award (2007); membership of the Faculty of 1000 (2009); Fellowship of the European Society of Cardiology (2009); the Ruitenga Van Swieten honorary professorship of the University of Amsterdam (2009); the Ruysch Lecture Award (Academic Medical Centre - University of Amsterdam (2010); the Donald McDonald Award of Artery Society (2017); and the Clarivate / Web of Science Highly Cited Researcher Award in recognition of exceptional research performance demonstrated by production of multiple highly cited papers that rank in the top 1% for field and year (2020).
He has given Invited Lectures at meetings of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes; European Society of Cardiology; European Council for Cardiovascular Research; European Society of Hypertension; European Association for the Study of Obesity; European Society for Microcirculation; European Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation; European College of Sports Science; Euretina Congress; International Society of Nephrology; International Society of Atherosclerosis; Danish Academy of Science; Danish Diabetes Association; Swedish Diabetes Association; Karolinska Institute; Finnish Diabetes Association; Collège de France; INSERM at Paris Descartes University; Diabetes UK; American Diabetes Association; American Heart Association; German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Bonn; and World Congress for Microcirculation.
Prof. Stehouwer is highly regarded by young researchers for his scientific originality, rigour and integrity; accessibility; coaching and mentoring skills; and rapidity and thoroughness of providing comments on draft papers. He has supervised four theses that have been awarded a ‘cum laude’ judgement. Five former PhD students have advanced to full professorships and eight to associate professorships. His interest in teaching is shown also by his serving as Editor-in-Chief of the Dutch Textbook of Internal Medicine (1996-current; 12th-15th edition).
His research programme focuses on the elucidation of how metabolic and microvascular changes in (pre)diabetes cause micro- and macrovascular disease. A key element of the programme is to combine epidemiology, clinical physiology and experimental approaches. He obtained national and European funding M€16) for, and is the initiator and Scientific Director of, the Maastricht Study (started 2011), which uses very detailed phenotyping (with a focus on microcirculatory, large artery and cardiac function and structure) in 7000 individuals without and 2000 with type 2 diabetes to elucidate how diabetes leads not only to classic complications but also to so-called emerging complications such as cognitive dysfunction, mood disorders, liver disease, musculoskeletal disease, pulmonary disease, sleep-disordered breathing, and infectious diseases. National and international grants (2007-current) awarded to Prof. Stehouwer amount to the sum of 30.2 M€.