Pieter Goossens

Post doc

Dr Pieter Goossens graduated in 2012 at the Maastricht University, studying atherosclerotic plaque macrophage accumulation in the group of Prof. Menno de Winther (Department of Molecular Genetics ). He then joined the lab of Dr Toby Lawrence at the Centre d’Immunologie de Marseille-Luminy in Marseille (France) as a post-doctoral researcher, where he investigated the mechanisms through which tumor-associated macrophages obtain their characteristic phenotype. In 2016, he returned to the Maastricht University where, in the lab of Prof. Erik Biessen at the Department of Pathology, he studies macrophage phenotypical and functional heterogeneity in the atherosclerosis context.

Macrophages display a high degree of phenotypic heterogeneity that reflects the cells’ micro-environment. Pieter combines classical histology with transcriptomics, multi-label fluorescent microscopy and mass spectrometry imaging to study the spatial distribution of macrophage subsets in human and murine atherosclerotic plaques and the impact of local triggers on their phenotype and functions.


Department of Pathology
P. Debyelaan 25, 6229 HX Maastricht
Room number: 5.06
T: +31(0)43 387 46 30

  • 2024
    • Lu, C., Donners, M. M. P. C., de Baaij, J. B. J., Jin, H., Otten, J. J. T., Manca, M., van Zonneveld, A. J., Jukema, J. W., Kraaijeveld, A., Kuiper, J., Pasterkamp, G., Mees, B., Sluimer, J. C., Cavill, R., Karel, J. M. H., Goossens, P., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2024). Identification of a gene network driving the attenuated response to lipopolysaccharide of monocytes from hypertensive coronary artery disease patients. Frontiers in Immunology, 15. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2024.1286382
  • 2023
    • Wieland, E. B., Kempen, L. J. A. P., Lu, C., Donners, M. M. P. C., Biessen, E. A. L., & Goossens, P. (2023). Protocol for multispectral imaging on cryosections to map myeloid cell heterogeneity in its spatial context. STAR protocols, 4(4), Article 102601. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.xpro.2023.102601
    • Wieland, E. B., Kempen, L. J., Donners, M. M., Biessen, E. A., & Goossens, P. (2023). Macrophage heterogeneity in atherosclerosis: A matter of context. European journal of immunology, Article 2350464. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1002/eji.202350464
    • 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, 384, Article 117123. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2023.04.005
    • Nagenborg, J., Jin, H., Ruder, A. V., Temmerman, L., Mees, B., Schalkwijk, C., Müller-Klieser, D., Berg, T., Goossens, P., Donners, M. M. P. C., & Biessen, E. A. L. (2023). GM-CSF-activated STAT5A regulates macrophage functions and inflammation in atherosclerosis. Frontiers in Immunology, 14, Article 1165306. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2023.1165306
    • Ruder, A., Wetzels, S. M. W., Temmerman, L., Biessen, E. A. L., & Goossens, P. (2023). Monocyte heterogeneity in cardiovascular disease. Cardiovascular Research, 119(11), 2033-2045. https://doi.org/10.1093/cvr/cvad069
    • van Kuijk, K., McCracken, I. R., Tillie, R. J. H. A., Asselberghs, S. E. J., Kheder, D. A., Muitjens, S., Jin, H., Taylor, R. S., Schreur, R. W., Kuppe, C., Dobie, R., Ramachandran, P., Gijbels, M. J., Temmerman, L., Kirkwoord, P. M., Luyten, J., Li, Y. M., Noels, H., Goossens, P., ... Sluimer, J. C. (2023). Human and murine fibroblast single-cell transcriptomics reveals fibroblast clusters are differentially affected by ageing and serum cholesterol. Cardiovascular Research, 119(7), 1509-1523. https://doi.org/10.1093/cvr/cvad016
    • 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(1), Article 1078591. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2023.1078591
  • 2022
    • 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. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2022.06.012
    • 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), Article 1152. https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines10051152
  • 2021
    • Jin, H., Goossens, P., Juhasz, P., Eijgelaar, W.-J., Manca, M., Karel, J., Smirnov, E., Sikkink, C. J. J. M., Mees, B., Waring, O., van Kuijk, K., Fazzi, G., Gijbels, M., Kutmon, M., Evelo, C., Hedin, U., Daemen, M. J., Sluimer, J., Matic, L. P., & Biessen, E. (2021). Integrative multiomics analysis of human atherosclerosis reveals a serum response factor-driven network associated with intraplaque hemorrhage. Clinical and Translational Medicine, 11(6), Article e458. https://doi.org/10.1002/ctm2.458
    • Wilkinson, H., Leonard, H., Chen, D. X., Lawrence, T., Robson, M., Goossens, P., McVey, J. H., & Dorling, A. (2021). PAR-1 signaling on macrophages is required for effective in vivo delayed-type hypersensitivity responses. iScience, 24(1), Article 101981. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.101981
  • 2020
    • Cao, J., Goossens, P., Martin-Lorenzo, M., Dewez, F., Claes, B. S. R., Biessen, E. A. L., Heeren, R. M. A., & Balluff, B. (2020). Atheroma-Specific Lipids in ldlr(-/-) and apoe(-/-) Mice Using 2D and 3D Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Mass Spectrometry Imaging. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 31(9), 1825-1832. https://doi.org/10.1021/jasms.0c00070
    • Kerkhofs, D., van Hagen, B. T., Milanova, I. V., Schell, K. J., van Essen, H., Wijnands, E., Goossens, P., Blankesteijn, W. M., Unger, T., Prickaerts, J., Biessen, E. A., van Oostenbrugge, R. J., & Foulquier, S. (2020). Pharmacological depletion of microglia and perivascular macrophages prevents Vascular Cognitive Impairment in Ang II-induced hypertension. Theranostics, 10(21), 9512-9527. https://doi.org/10.7150/thno.44394
  • 2019
    • Voogdt-Pruis, H. R., Ras, T., van der Dussen, L., Benjaminsen, S., Goossens, P. H., Raats, I., Boss, G., van Hoef, E. F. M., Lindhout, M., Tjon-A-Tsien, M. R. S., & Vrijhoef, H. J. M. (2019). Improvement of shared decision making in integrated stroke care: a before and after evaluation using a questionnaire survey. BMC Health Services Research, 19(1), Article 936. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-019-4761-2
    • Goossens, P., Rodriguez-Vita, J., Etzerodt, A., Masse, M., Rastoin, O., Gouirand, V., Ulas, T., Papantonopoulou, O., Van Eck, M., Auphan-Anezin, N., Bebien, M., Verthuy, C., Thien Phong Vu Manh, Turner, M., Dalod, M., Schultze, J. L., & Lawrence, T. (2019). Membrane Cholesterol Efflux Drives Tumor-Associated Macrophage Reprogramming and Tumor Progression. Cell Metabolism, 29(6), 1376-1389.e4. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2019.02.016
  • 2017
    • Nagenborg, J., Goossens, P., Biessen, E. A. L., & Donners, M. M. P. C. (2017). Heterogeneity of atherosclerotic plaque macrophage origin, phenotype and functions: Implications for treatment. European Journal of Pharmacology, 816, 14-24. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejphar.2017.10.005
    • van der Vorst, E. P. C., Theodorou, K., Wu, Y., Hoeksema, M. A., Goossens, P., Bursill, C. A., Aliyev, T., Huitema, L. F. A., Tas, S. W., Wolfs, I. M. J., Kuijpers, M. J. E., Gijbels, M. J., Schalkwijk, C. G., Koonen, D. P. Y., Abdollahi-Roodsaz, S., McDaniels, K., Wang, C.-C., Leitges, M., Lawrence, T., ... Donners, M. M. P. C. (2017). High-Density Lipoproteins Exert Pro-inflammatory Effects on Macrophages via Passive Cholesterol Depletion and PKC-NF-kappa B/STAT1-IRF1 Signaling. Cell Metabolism, 25(1), 197-207. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2016.10.013
  • 2016
    • Stöger, L., Boshuizen, M. C. S., Brufau, G., Gijbels, M. J. J., Wolfe, I. M. J., van der Velden, S., Pottgens, C. C. H., Vergouwe, M. N., Wijnands, E., Beckers, L., Goossens, P., Kerksiek, A., Havinga, R., Muller, W., Luetjohann, D., Groen, A. K., & de Winther, M. P. J. (2016). Deleting myeloid IL-10 receptor signalling attenuates atherosclerosis in LDLR-/- mice by altering intestinal cholesterol fluxes. Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 116(3), 565-577. https://doi.org/10.1160/TH16-01-0043
  • 2014
    • Wolfs, I. M. J., Stoger, J. L., Goossens, P., Pottgens, C., Gijbels, M. J. J., Wijnands, E., van der Vorst, E. P. C., van Gorp, P., Beckers, L., Engel, D., Biessen, E. A. L., Kraal, G., van Die, I., Donners, M. M. P. C., & de Winther, M. P. J. (2014). Reprogramming macrophages to an anti-inflammatory phenotype by helminth antigens reduces murine atherosclerosis. Faseb Journal, 28(1), 288-299. https://doi.org/10.1096/fj.13-235911
  • 2011
    • Goossens, P., Vergouwe, M. N., Gijbels, M. J. J., Curfs, D. M. J., van Woezik, J. H. G., Hoeksema, M. A., Xanthouleas, S., Leenen, P. J. M., Rupec, R. A., Hofker, M. H., & de Winther, M. P. J. (2011). Myeloid I kappa B alpha Deficiency Promotes Atherogenesis by Enhancing Leukocyte Recruitment to the Plaques. PLOS ONE, 6(7), 8. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0022327
  • 2010
    • Lievens, D., Zernecke, A., Seijkens, T., Soehnlein, O., Beckers, L., Munnix, I. C. A., Wijnands, E., Goossens, P., van Kruchten, R., Thevissen, L., Boon, L., Flavell, R. A., Noelle, R. J., Gerdes, N., Biessen, E. A., Daemen, M. J. A. P., Heemskerk, J. M., Weber, C., & Lutgens, E. (2010). Platelet CD40L mediates thrombotic and inflammatory processes in atherosclerosis. Blood, 116(20), 4317-4327. https://doi.org/10.1182/blood-2010-01-261206
    • Stoger, J. L., Goossens, P., & de Winther, M. P. J. (2010). Macrophage Heterogeneity: Relevance and Functional Implications in Atherosclerosis. Current Vascular Pharmacology, 8(2), 233-248. https://doi.org/10.2174/157016110790886983