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Maria Yazdanbakhsh

Afdelingshoofd afdeling parasitologie LUMC

Name
Prof.dr. M. Yazdanbakhsh
Telephone
+31 71 526 5067
E-mail
m.yazdanbakhsh@lumc.nl

Maria Yazdanbakhsh is professor in cellular immunology of parasitic infections and is the head of the department of Parasitology at LUMC. She holds visiting professorships at the University of Indonesia in Jakarta and University of Hasanudding in Makassar, Indonesia. She is the president of Dutch Society for Parasitology. She is the scientific coordinator of the Leiden Controlled Human Infection Center and the chair of the internationalisation committee of LUMC.

More information about Maria Yazdanbakhsh

Maria Yazdanbakhsh is professor in cellular immunology of parasitic infections and is the  head of the department of Parasitology at LUMC.  She holds visiting professorships at the University of Indonesia in Jakarta and University of Hasanudding in Makassar, Indonesia. She is the president of Dutch Society for Parasitology. She is the scientific coordinator of the Leiden Controlled Human Infection Center and the chair of the internationalisation committee of LUMC.

Cellular immunology of parasitic infections

The interaction between the human immune system and parasites is fascinating  and exciting. Parasites are master of immune regulation and studying  their interaction with the human host  unravels new immunological pathways as well as novel immune modulatory molecules. This allows the development of vaccines against parasitic infections that affect more than 2 billion people living in low to middle income countries. It also enables the development of new strategies to prevent inflammatory diseases that are highly prevalent in affluent countries like ours.

Combining clinical trials and field studies in Africa and Asia, with in depth molecular and cellular studies  in LUMC, the immunological basis of the hygiene hypothesis was challenged and the relation between parasitic infections and non-communicable diseases is being studied.

Recently, a center for controlled human infections has been created at the LUMC where volunteers are intentionally infected with malaria, schistosome or hookworms, adhering to procedures for absolute safety. This is a highly innovative approach for studying the host-parasite interaction at clinical, cellular and molecular level.  Such controlled infections, speed up vaccine and drug testing and thereby serving population health worldwide.

These research lines are aligned with NWA Sustainable Development Goals;  Health Research: prevention and treatment; Personalised Medicine.

Academic career

Maria Yazdanbakhsh obtained her BSc from King’s College London, and her MSc from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She did her PhD “Immunobioloy of Eosinophils”at University of Amsterdam in 1987 and a post-doctoral fellowship at Imperial College London. Thereafter, she became a researcher at Leiden University, and moved along the academic line of assistant, then associate professor. In 2005, she was appointed as a professor at Leiden University Medical Center and her inaugural lecture was entitled “Normen, wormen en waarden” (Worms and their value).

In 2017, she was invited lecturer on Dies Natalis with a lecture entitled “Van parasitisme naar mutualisme” (From parasitism to mutualism).

Prizes and honourable appointments

  • Visiting professorship University of Indonesia
  • Visiting professorship Univesity of Hasanuddin
  • MSD-AWARD for Human Parasitology

Follow M. Yazdanbakhsh:

ResearchGate| CHI website 

Afdelingshoofd afdeling parasitologie LUMC

  • Faculteit Geneeskunde
  • Divisie 4
  • Infectious Diseases

Work address

LUMC Main Building
Albinusdreef 2
2333 ZA Leiden
Room number P4-39

Contact

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