Erasmus logoErasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam was formed in 2002 from a merger of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences of Erasmus University Rotterdam and the Academic Hospital Rotterdam. It is the largest of the eight university medical centers in The Netherlands with over 12,000 employees, 2,000 medical students, and >1,300 researchers (Total assets > €1.2 billion). ERASMUS is globally significant for its research expertise in Virology, Endocrinology, Genetics, Aging and Stem Cell Biology. For exploitation, Erasmus MC has a Technology transfer Office and an Incubator for start-up companies, while an International Office will support seconded staff.
The two participating groups are:
1) The Calcium and Bone Metabolism group led by Professor Johannes van Leeuwen aims to develop better diagnostics and therapies for skeletal disorders and disturbances in calcium homeostasis by a combination of molecular, cellular, animal, epidemiological and eventually clinical studies. This encompasses integrated lines of research focusing on: characterisation of molecular mechanisms of bone cell differentiation and of bone formation and degradation using human bone cell models and bioinformatic tools; identification of risk determinants and drug targets for osteoporosis and osteoarthritis by genomics and proteomics approaches in combination with genetic epidemiological approaches; calcium homeostasis and skeletal metabolism in relation to ageing by analyses of experimental animal models, e.g. premature ageing mice, as well as human population research
2) The Connective Tissue Cells and Repair group led by Professor Gerjo van Osch aims to understand the mechanisms of degeneration or regeneration of connective tissues (mainly cartilage and tendon) by a combination of molecular, cellular and animal studies, leading to new cell or pharmacological therapies to repair CTDs. The group is tightly linked with clinical research and new imaging approaches for osteoarthritis and tendinopathy.
The 2 labs currently consist of 5 senior staff members, 5 post-docs, 10 PhD students and 6 technicians.

Participating staff
Bram van der Eerden (1), PhD, Assistant professor
Jeroen van de Peppel (1), PhD, Post doctoral fellow
Marjolein van Driel (1), PhD, F, Post doctoral fellow
Gerjo van Osch (2), PhD. Full professor Connective tissue regeneration at dept. Orthopaedics and Otorhinolaryngology
Robert-Jan de Vos (2), MD, PhD. Sports physician and Post doctoral fellow
Mathijs Suijkerbuijk, MD. PhD student.
Shuang Zhang, PhD student
Shaojun Shi, PhD candidate

Relevant publications
1. Morhayim J, van de Peppel J, Demmers JA, Kocer G, Nigg AL, van Driel M, Chiba H, van Leeuwen JP. Proteomic signatures of extracellular vesicles secreted by nonmineralizing and mineralizing human osteoblasts and stimulation of tumor cell growth. 2015. FASEB J. 29:274-85
2. van der Eerden BC, Oei L, Roschger P, Fratzl-Zelman N, Hoenderop JG, van Schoor NM, Pettersson-Kymmer U, Schreuders-Koedam M, Uitterlinden AG, Hofman A, Suzuki M, Klaushofer K, Ohlsson C, Lips PJ, Rivadeneira F, Bindels RJ, van Leeuwen JP. TRPV4 deficiency causes sexual dimorphism in bone metabolism and osteoporotic fracture risk. 2013. Bone. 57:443-54
3. Alves RD, Eijken M, Bezstarosti K, Demmers JA, van Leeuwen JP. Activin A suppresses osteoblast mineralization capacity by altering extracellular matrix (ECM) composition and impairing matrix vesicle (MV) production. 2013. Mol Cell Proteomics. 12:2890-900
4. Nicolaije C, van de Peppel J, van Leeuwen JP. Oxygen-induced transcriptional dynamics in human osteoblasts are most prominent at the onset of mineralization. 2013. J Cell Physiol. 228:1863-72
5. de Vos RJ, Weir A, van Schie HT, Bierma-Zeinstra SM, Verhaar JA, Weinans H, et al. Platelet-rich plasma injection for chronic Achilles tendinopathy: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA 2010;303(2):144-9.