Stroke is a severe neurological disorder defined by loss of brain function caused by interrupted or severely impaired blood flow. Worldwide, stroke is classified as the second leading cause of death and is a major cause of permanent disability. Despite the high prevalence and devastating outcome, there are only few treatment options for ischemic stroke which are only available for a small subset of patients, highlighting the urgent need for new stroke therapies.
The focus of my research group is to explore two possible new therapeutic strategies and investigate their mode of action. One strategy is to use genetically engineered dental pulp stem cells to enhance angiogenesis and neurogenesis, two important endogenous repair mechanisms of the brain. In another project we explore magnetic stimulation (MS) as a therapy for ischemic stroke. We hope that the insights obtained of these projects lead to new effective therapies against ischemic stroke.
Besides stroke, my lab has also a main interest in using (dental) stem cells for tissue regeneration, thereby focussing on enhancing blood vessel growth, which is key for successful tissue growth.