Rubicon grant for Annemarie Boleij

Boleij, Annemarie

Annemarie Boleij from the research group of Harold Tjalsma (dept. Laboratory Medicine), has been awarded a 2 year NWO Rubicon grant for her project "Bacteroides fragilistoxin isotypes in colon carcinogenesis: host immune responses and epithelial cell signaling".

Infectious agents are increasingly being implicated in cancers of organs with a high exposure to microbiota.  Recently, the inflammatory responses elicited by theBacteroides fragilistoxin (BFT) have shown to induce the formation of colonic tumors. The proposed research investigates the effects of differentbftisotypes on tumor-promoting activity in murine models of colon cancer. This will be done by determining the concentrations and pathways that are required for immune stimulation and cell transformation. The epithelial cell responses will also be studied in anin vitromodel that measures the direct effects of BFT isoforms on cells of the colonic epithelium. This research will increase insight in bacterial toxin-mediated tumor formation and may provide leads for colon tumor prevention, diagnosis and treatment. 

Annemarie will visit the Johns Hopkins University - Division of Infectious Diseases, Gastroenterology and Tumor Immunology (USA) to perform this research. During her PhD research in Nijmegen, Annemarie has studied the interactions between another bacterium, "Streptococcus gallolyticus" and colorectal cancer cells.  She will defend her thesis on the latter work on January 10, 2012 (15:30).


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