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Mr P.L. Hordijk (1963) has been named Professor by Special Appointment of Molecular Cell Biology of Cell Migration at the University of Amsterdam’s (UvA) Faculty of Science. The chair was designated on behalf of the Sanquin Foundation ('Stichting Physica').

Mr P.L. Hordijk (1963) has been named Professor by Special Appointment of Molecular Cell Biology of Cell Migration at the University of Amsterdam’s (UvA) Faculty of Science. The chair was designated on behalf of the Sanquin Foundation (Stichting Physica).

Peter Hordijk’s research focuses mainly on endothelial cells: cells that cover all the body’s blood vessels and form an essential barrier between the blood and the tissues. Hordijk is specialised in the movement of white blood cells from the blood, over the endothelial cells, to the tissues. This ‘trans-endothelial migration’ of, for example, neutrophilic granulocytes (short-lived white blood cells) is an important part of the body’s reaction against acute infections. Moreover, this process plays a role in the early development of chronic inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and atherosclerosis. In the past few years, Hordijk and his research group have demonstrated that the endothelium, and consequently the vessel wall, plays an active role in this process. Studying the underlying molecular processes is therefore currently an important part of the research work. Furthermore, the endothelium is essential to the processes of blood coagulation and blood transfusion. Hordijk’s department is therefore also studying interactions between red blood cells and the endothelium of human blood vessels.

Hordijk has been working at Sanquin since 1997, first as a staff member of the Experimental Immuno-Hematology Department and as head of the Molecular Cell Biology Department since 2005. From 2003 to 2004, he was visiting researcher at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, USA. Prior to that, Hordijk worked in the Cellular Biochemistry and Cell Biology Departments of the Netherlands Cancer Institute. Hordijk is a reviewer for a number of journals and has published articles in numerous scientific journals including Science, Nature Medicine and Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology.