Amanda Foks obtained her PhD on “Regulation of immune responses in atherosclerosis’ under supervision of Prof. Dr. J. Kuiper and Dr. G.H.M van Puijvelde in 2013. Her doctoral work involved modulation of costimulatory and coinhibitory pathways of T cell activation and inhibition of proatherogenic immune cells through induction of regulatory T cells and myeloid-derived suppressor cells. Following her PhD she did a post-doctoral fellowship at the Department of Pathology at Harvard Medical School and the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, USA, under supervision of Prof. Dr. A. Lichtman, investigating the PD-1/PD-L1 pathway and TIM proteins in atherosclerosis and ischemia/reperfusion injury. In 2014, she received a Brigham and Women’s Hospital Research of Excellence award for her research on the role of TIM proteins involved in recognition of dead cells in early atherosclerosis development. In 2016, she was awarded a Dr. E. Dekker junior Postdoc grant from the Dutch Heart Foundation to determine whether promotion of efferocytosis can induce regression of atherosclerosis. Currently, she focusses on age-associated immune mechanisms in atherosclerosis and received a Dr. E. Dekker senior Postdoc grant from the Dutch Heart Foundation in January 2019.
Project: Age-associated immunosenescence in atherosclerosis
Aging is one of the most dominant driver of cardiovascular disease and is a complex process that involves gradual functional decline of many cells and organs, causing impaired responsiveness to stress and maintenance of homeostasis. Up to date, there is virtually no information available on age-associated (dysfunctional) immunity during atherosclerosis. In this research line, we aim to investigate the effect of age on the immune system during atherosclerosis and explore strategies to eliminate aged immune cells to prevent progression of atherosclerosis.
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