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About us Practical matters How to find us prof. dr. M.J.H. (Martien) Kas

Research interests

Research
The development of treatments for neuropsychiatric conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Schizophrenia, Autism Spectrum Disorders and Major Depressive Disorder, forms one of the major challenges of our time in public health. My research aims to develop a quantitative, transdiagnostic neurobiological approach to the understanding of neuropsychiatric disorders in order to accelerate the discovery and development of better treatments for patients with those disorders. The ability to precisely link neuropsychiatric symptoms to underlying neurobiology will not only facilitate the development of better treatments, it will also allow physicians to provide patients with a better understanding of the complexities and management of their illness. To realise this ambition, I have introduced a paradigm shift that is needed to raise awareness and to build an understanding of how neuropsychiatric diagnoses can be based on quantitative biological parameters. As project coordinator of the PRISM1 and PRISM2 EU funded projects, we are implementing this innovative transdiagnostic strategy that also allows for back translation of human quantitative findings to animals to test for causality, to expand our knowledge of the underlying neurobiological mechanism, and to facilitate the drug discovery process. Novel technologies have been implemented to stimulate this novel approach, including a smartphone application to assess real world daily social functioning (https://www.behapp.com/).

Recently, I have been appointed as President of the European College of NeuroPsychopharmacology (ECNP), the largest European organisation for neuroscience applied research. ECNP provides a platform for interactions between scientists, patients and their families, pharmaceutical industry and regulators for optimizing the treatment of brain disorders, and organizes many activities, including an annual congress with 4500-6000 participants.

 

Teaching
Inspired by my interdisciplinary research, my education and teaching activities cross curricular boundaries, such as in biology, digital innovation, medicine, data sciences, biomedical research and career development. I very much enjoy the active discussions with students during my lectures and during the courses that I currently coordinate, including the Neurobiology of Psychiatric Disorders course (Biomedical Sciences), and the Career related topic course for students of the Top Master Behavioural and Cognitive Neuroscience (BCN). With a sizeable research group, I am supervising yearly a considerable number of Bachelor and Master research projects, such as in Biology, BCN, Biomedical Sciences, and the Science, Business and Policy program. I am a mentor in the FSE PhD mentoring program, allowing me to help and stimulate a cohort of PhD students during their projects. As executive board member of national and international scientific organizations, I have always prioritized early career scientists events. For example, I have chaired the program committee for the annual ECNP workshop where 100 early career European scientists meet to discuss the latest scientific developments and their career development plans.

 

Key publications:
1: Lanooij SD, Eisel ULM, Drinkenburg WHIM, van der Zee EA, Kas MJ. Influencing cognitive performance via social interactions: a novel therapeutic approach for brain disorders based on neuroanatomical mapping? Molecular Psychiatry, 2022

2: Bruining H, Matsui A, Oguro-Ando A, Kahn RS, Van't Spijker HM, Akkermans G, Stiedl O, van Engeland H, Koopmans B, van Lith HA, Oppelaar H, Tieland L, Nonkes LJ, Yagi T, Kaneko R, Burbach JP, Yamamoto N, Kas MJ.  Genetic Mapping in Mice Reveals the Involvement of Pcdh9 in Long-Term Social and Object Recognition and Sensorimotor Development. Biological Psychiatry,  2015, 78(7):485-95

3: Jongs N, Jagesar R, van Haren NEM, Penninx BWJH, Reus L, Visser PJ, van der Wee NJA, Koning IM, Arango C, Sommer IEC, Eijkemans MJC, Vorstman JA, Kas MJ.  A framework for assessing neuropsychiatric phenotypes by using smartphone-based location data.  Translational Psychiatry 2020 Jul 1;10(1):211.

4: Schughart K, Libert C, and Kas MJ. Human disease: strength to strength for mouse models. Nature, 2012, 492, 41

5: Kas MJ, Kahn RS, Collier DA, Waddington JL, Ekelund J, Porteous DJ, Schughart K, Hovatta I. Translational neuroscience of schizophrenia: seeking a meeting of minds between mouse and man. Science Translational Medicine, 2011, 3(102):102mr3.

 

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Publications

Digital behavioural signatures reveal trans-diagnostic clusters of schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease patients

It’s All About Timing: Exploring Different Temporal Resolutions for Analyzing Digital-Phenotyping Data

Practical solutions for including sex as a biological variable (SABV) in preclinical neuropsychopharmacological research

Predicting Mood Based on the Social Context Measured Through the Experience Sampling Method, Digital Phenotyping, and Social Networks

A study on REM sleep homeostasis in the day-active tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri): Cold-induced suppression of REM sleep is not followed by a rebound

Capturing the dynamics of the social environment through experience sampling methods, passive sensing, and egocentric networks: Scoping Review

Influencing cognitive performance via social interactions: A novel therapeutic approach for brain disorders based on neuroanatomical mapping?

Models and methods: A perspective of the impact of six IMI translational data-centric initiatives for Alzheimer's disease and other neuropsychiatric disorders

Personal preferences for treatment and care during and after a First Episode Psychosis: A qualitative study

Recovering object-location memories after sleep deprivation-induced amnesia

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Press/media

Message from the ECNP President

If only night wouldn't fall (Als de nacht maar niet valt)

The road ahead for ECNP - Interview with: Martien Kas, ECNP President

Human-approved medication brings back ‘lost’ memories in mice

Interview on the achievements of the EBRA cluster on predictive model systems (PREMOS)

Onderzoek via Behapp smartphone app naar hersenziekten en sociaal gedrag

PRISM2 information flyer released

Closing in on biomarkers – interview with PRISM’s Martien Kas

Tackling the replication crisis in neuroscience

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