Dr. Ilze Bot is an Assistant Professor at the Division of BioTherapeutics.
Ilze Bot obtained her PhD on “Modulation of Atherothrombotic Factors: Novel Strategies for Plaque Stabilization” under supervision of Prof. Dr. E.A.L. Biessen and Prof. Dr. Th. J.C. van Berkel in 2005. In March 2008 she started working as a Post-doctoral researcher on mast cells and atherosclerosis (VENI grant “Cardiovascular Diseases: A Central Role for Mast Cells?”) at the division of Biopharmaceutics of the Leiden Academic Centre for Drug Research. Since then, she expanded her research line on mast cells in cardiovascular diseases by obtaining two research grants from the Dutch Heart Foundation to investigate the contribution of the mast cell to stress-induced acute cardiovascular syndromes, and effects of mast cell activation in vein graft disease. In 2012, she was awarded a Dr. E. Dekker senior Postdoc grant from the Dutch Heart Foundation to determine how mast cells can be activated during hypercholesterolemia. In December 2019, Ilze received the Established Investigator grant from the Dutch Heart Foundation for her project "Mast cells as effectors in advanced atherosclerosis". She has published her research in high impact journal such as Circulation, Circulation Research and Annals of Surgery, and frequently invited to give lectures at international conferences. She focusses her research on mast cell recruitment and activation pathways and on the characterization of mast cells phenotypes in atherosclerosis.
Project: Mast cells in cardiovascular diseases
Pathology studies have shown that the mast cell, a potent immune effector cell type mainly recognized for its role in allergy and asthma, accumulates in the atherosclerotic plaque during atherosclerotic plaque progression. Previously, we have demonstrated that perivascular mast cells contribute to atherosclerotic plaque progression and destabilization and recent data show that intraplaque mast cell numbers are of predictive value for future cardiovascular events in patients. In this research line, we aim to determine how mast cells contribute to the development of atherosclerosis, how these cells are activated and how we can prevent atherosclerotic plaque destabilization by targeting the mast cell.