Erik Biessen


Prof. Erik Biessen graduated with specialisations in Physical and Bio-Chemistry at Wageningen University. After a series of post-doctoral fellowships at Leiden University, in the labs of Prof. Van Boom (Organic Chemistry; glycolipid synthesis) and Prof. Van Berkel (Biopharmaceutics; drug/gene targeting), he was in 1994, selected as one of 6 post-docs the Molecular Cardiology programme (a competitive 12 year career development track of the Netherlands Heart Foundation. In 2001, he received the NWO innovative research premium incentive (Vidi) and in 2003 the NHS Established Investigator award, to be appointed Professor of Therapeutic Gene Modulation in 2005. In 2007, he moved to Maastricht University to lead the Experimental Vascular Pathology group. Prof Biessen has a part time appointment at the Institute for Molecular Cardiovascular Research, RWTH Aachen.

Erik Biessen’s current passion is to deploy systems medicine approaches, to understand and define critical innate immune pathways in human atherosclerosis and cardiometabolic comorbidities and to validate the relevance of these processes for disease progression by intervention studies in in vitro and in vivo models. Hereto, the group has developed a new high content microscopy based functionomics platform to measure macrophage functional profile at unprecedented resolution and speed and a technology pipeline for spatial mapping of macrophage phenotype and molecular context. Keywords of his research: systems medicine, bioinformatics, multispectral analysis, macrophage biology. Dr Biessen is partner of several H2020-ITN (EvolUtion, INTRICARE, CareSyan), and two Interreg programmes and is coordinator of H2020/ERA-CVD project (AtheroMacHete).

Department of Pathology
Verheylaan 10, 6229 HX Maastricht
Room number: 5M01.032
T: +31(0)43 387 46 35

  • 2023
    • Lu, C., Donners, M. M. P. C., Karel, J., de Boer, H., van Zonneveld, A. J., den Ruijter, H., Jukema, J. W., Kraaijeveld, A., Kuiper, J., Pasterkamp, G., Cavill, R., Perales-Patón, J., Ferrannini, E., Goossens, P., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2023). Sex-specific differences in cytokine signaling pathways in circulating monocytes of cardiovascular disease patients. Atherosclerosis.
    • Ruder, A. V., Temmerman, L., van Dommelen, J. M. A., Nagenborg, J., Lu, C., Sluimer, J. C., Goossens, P., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2023). Culture density influences the functional phenotype of human macrophages. Frontiers in Immunology, 14, [1078591].
    • van der Vorst, E. P. C., Maas, S. L., Theodorou, K., Peters, L. J. F., Jin, H., Rademakers, T., Gijbels, M. J., Rousch, M., Jansen, Y., Weber, C., Lehrke, M., Lebherz, C., Yildiz, D., Ludwig, A., Bentzon, J. F., Biessen, E. A. L., & Donners, M. M. P. C. (2023). Endothelial ADAM10 controls cellular response to oxLDL and its deficiency exacerbates atherosclerosis with intraplaque hemorrhage and neovascularization in mice. Frontiers in cardiovascular medicine, 10, [974918].
    • Fontaine, M. A. C., Jin, H., Gagliardi, M., Rousch, M., Wijnands, E., Stoll, M., Li, X., Schurgers, L., Reutelingsperger, C., Schalkwijk, C., van den Akker, N. M. S., Molin, D. G. M., Gullestad, L., Eritsland, J., Hoffman, P., Skjelland, M., Andersen, G. Ø., Aukrust, P., Karel, J., ... Biessen, E. A. L. (2023). Blood Milieu in Acute Myocardial Infarction Reprograms Human Macrophages for Trauma Repair. Advanced Science, 10(5), [2203053].
  • 2022
    • Maas, S. L., Jin, H., Lu, C., Nagenborg, J., Karel, J. M. H., Cavill, R., Sikkink, C. J. J. M., Nadeau, S., Gijbels, M., Mees, B. M. E., Smirnov, E., Sluimer, J. C., Martins, G. A., Van der Vorst, E. P. C., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2022). Identification of a PRDM1-regulated T cell network to regulate T cell driving plaque inflammation in human and mouse atherosclerosis. European Heart Journal, 43, 3049-3049.
    • Wollenhaupt, J., Frisch, J., Harlacher, E., Wong, D. W. L., Jin, H., Schulte, C., Vondenhoff, S., Moellmann, J., Klinkhammer, B. M., Zhang, L., Baleanu-Curaj, A., Liehn, E. A., Speer, T., Kazakov, A., Werner, C., van der Vorst, E. P. C., Selejan, S-R., Hohl, M., Böhm, M., ... Noels, H. (2022). Pro-oxidative priming but maintained cardiac function in a broad spectrum of murine models of chronic kidney disease. Redox Biology, 56, [102459].
    • Goossens, P., Lu, C., Cao, J., Gijbels, M. J., Karel, J. M. H., Wijnands, E., Claes, B. S. R., Fazzi, G. E., Hendriks, T. F. E., Wouters, K., Smirnov, E., van Zandvoort, M. J. M., Balluff, B., Cuypers, E., Donners, M. M. P. C., Heeren, R. M. A., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2022). Integrating multiplex immunofluorescent and mass spectrometry imaging to map myeloid heterogeneity in its metabolic and cellular context. Cell Metabolism, 34(8), 1214-1225.e6.
    • Jin, H., Maas, S. L., Lu, C., Nagenborg, J., Manca, M., Karel, J. M. H., Cavill, R., Waring, O., Sikkink, C. J. J. M., Mees, B. M. E., Daemen, M. J. A. P., Smirnov, E., Sluimer, J., Van der Vorst, E., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2022). Identification Of Cd8+T Cell Prdm1 In High-Risk Human Plaques And Its Regulatory Role In Murine Lesion Development. Atherosclerosis, 355, E9-E9.
    • Maas, S. L., Jin, H., Lu, C., Nagenborg, J., Manca, M., Karel, J. M. H., Cavill, R., Waring, O., Sikkink, C. J. J. M., Mees, B. M. E., Daemen, M. J. A. P., Smirnov, E., Sluimer, J., van der Vorst, E. P. C., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2022). Identification of CD8+T cell PRDM1 in high-risk human plaques and its regulatory role in murine lesion development. Cardiovascular Research, 118(SUPPL 1).
    • Christ, A., Goossens, P. G., Wijnands, E., Jin, H., Legein, B., Oth, T., Isaacs, A., Stoll, M., Vanderlocht, J., Lutgens, E., Daemen, M. J. A. P., Zenke, M., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2022). Low Density Lipoprotein Exposure of Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cells Blunts Toll-like Receptor 7/9 Signaling via NUR77. Biomedicines, 10(5), [1152].