Dr G.E.E. Boeckxstaens (b. 1963) has been appointed professor of neurogastroenterology at the Faculty of Medicine of the Universiteit van Amsterdam (AMC-UvA).
Guy Boeckxstaens is mainly involved in research on the neuromuscular function of the gastrointestinal tract; in particular the mechanisms giving rise to stomach complaints or disturbed intestinal motility (agility of the intestine). He focuses on diseases such as ileus (inhibited intestinal canal), reflux disease, achalasia (failure of the valve between the gullet and stomach to open to allow food to pass through), functional dyspepsia (discomfort in the upper abdomen), constipation and irritable bowel syndrome. The research is aimed at nerves of the intestinal tract; Boeckxstaens studies which matters are freed by neurons and which nerve bundels are involved in generating stomach complaints. He furthermore focuses on the interaction between neurons and the immune systems, with a key role for inflammations with the development of ache complaints in patients with stomach complaints or with deviations in intestinal motility. Using recently developed animal models the disease mechanisms in question are studied in detail, with the aim of discovering and intervening new methods. The insights resulting from this research are adapted for clinical practice in which new drugs or treatment methods for patients are tested.
Boeckxstaens has been working at the division of Gastroenterology of the Academic Medical Center (AMC-UvA) as head of the Motility Centre. He is furthermore, among other things, member of the editorial board of the journal Neurogastroenterology and Motility, member of the scientific committee of the European Digestive Motility Center and president of the division of Neurogastroenterologie of the Dutch Society of Neurogastroenterology and Motility.