A Personal Touch of Gerty Schreibelt

Schreibelt , Gerty

Please learn more about colleagues in our "Personal Touch" series setting employees in the spotlight. A light-hearted manner to learn about the colleagues you know and those you don't!.

This week: Gerty Schreibelt






1. Name & Nationality
Gerty Schreibelt, Dutch

2. When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to become either a teacher or a medical doctor.

3. What was your previous academic training, where did you study?

I studied Biology at the University of Groningen. After that I did a PhD at the VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam, which I completed in 2007. During my PhD I was a visiting scientist at the ForschungsInstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP) in Berlin.

4. What is your current function and what would you like to achieve?
As senior postdoc at the department of Tumor Immunology, I study the use of dendritic cells as anti-cancer vaccines. In our clinical studies we aim to induce tumor-specific immune responses in cancer patients. I supervise the preparation and quality control of dendritic cell vaccines and I am responsible for the quality of our clean room facility. In parallel, I do preclinical research focusing on primary human dendritic cells subsets. My aim is to understand the functional properties of these cells to establish their value for clinical vaccination of cancer.

5. The RIMLS motto is 'to understand molecular mechanisms of disease'. What does this mean for you?
Understanding the interplay between the tumor microenvironment and the immune system is crucial to improve anti-cancer immunotherapy. I believe that a better knowledge of the factors that determine the success or failure of anti-cancer vaccination, will lead to more potent and longer-lasting anti-tumor responses in more patients.

6. What is the biggest motivation in your work?
The patient. Being able to do something for patients that have no other treatment options, and seeing that, by the knowledge we obtained so far, clinical outcome after immunotherapy has improved, inspires me to keep on searching for leads for further development of cancer vaccines.

7. What is your dream for the future?
I hope that in the near future, anti-cancer vaccination can be applied in much earlier stage of disease or even before disease onset in people that are prone to develop cancer. By understanding the factors that determine the outcome of immunotherapy, a more personalized treatment can be offered to cancer patients.

8. Fun-facts. State an interesting/obscure fact about yourself together with two that are false? Correct answer will be revealed to readers in the subsequent edition.
A: I have German ancestors
B: After a break of 10 years, I recently started playing soccer again
C: After a break of 10 years, I recently started playing flute in an orchestra again


Correct answer of Florian Wimmers : B

State an interesting/obscure fact about yourself together with two that are false?
A: I love to eat fish.
B: During the 3 years I already live in Nijmegen, I never managed to do a tour on the Pannenkoekenboot.
C: On weekends I work as professional wrestler feared under the pseudonym "Killer T cell"


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