Home » Featured Articles » Interview: Little is known about fungal infections

Interview: Little is known about fungal infections

This is the third interview with the PhD students of the Metagenomics projects in a series of 8 background articles. Keep following this website for the next interview in this series.

Interview with Nico Janssen, PhD student of the project ‘Immunological, microbiological and pharmacological aspects of invasive fungal infections’.

“I have always been interested in fungal infections. After I finished my specialization as an internist/infectiologist in 2016, I wanted to continue doing research in this field. Invasive fungal infections are a growing problem. Everyone has heard about resistant bacteria, but we are also seeing an increase in resistant fungal infections. This increase is due to more patients using immunosuppressive medication or fungal infections occurring in combination with HIV infection, among other causes. For me this is an interesting problem, especially because little is known about fungal infections.

Part of my research concerns patients in the intensive care unit with a severe influenza infection who also contract a fungal infection. I want to know if we can prevent these infections. This research will not lead immediately to new drugs to treat fungal infections, but preventing such infections is obviously important. In the more fundamental component of my research, I am addressing the question of why some people get fungal infections, while others do not. Hopefully we can find defects in the immune system, which we might be able to repair with new medication.

I actually have two roles. As a doctor I see patients who are being treated for infections. And as a researcher I can take their blood to the lab and do interesting experiments with it. I want to continue combining these two roles in the future, because I can then use my experience with patients in the research. And hopefully the other way around. This is something I really enjoy. I also enjoy discussing the research results with my patients. Sometimes this has no direct consequence for healthcare, but people often like to hear about our research.

Our field of research is relatively small. I think the added value of NCOH is that you can easily meet other researchers. If you have overlapping interests, this can lead to further collaboration.”

PhD project: Immunological, microbiological and pharmacological aspects of invasive fungal infections.

More News

A new NCOH magazine is out – edition #2 – 2019

The second edition of the NCOH Magazine has been published at the Annual Scientific Meeting at Radboudumc 17 may. Here is your chance to look at the digital version.


Disease X is not science fiction

Will we be able to respond adequately when an unknown virus with pandemic potential emerges? The recent outbreak of MERS in the Middle East was an interesting testcase. Martine van Roode and Carolina dos Santos Ribeiro analysed the factors that hampered, or enabled, the flow of information, in Qatar and the wider Arabian peninsula.


Erasmus MC professor elected as KNAW member

Erasmus MC professor Marion Koopmans, head of the Viroscience department at Erasmus MC and scientific director of the NCOH, has been chosen by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) as a new member.


Kick off Young NCOH network

Young NCOH is the network for PhD students and post-docs from the NCOH research groups. Aim of the network is sharing knowledge and expertise in One Health related disciplines, which can lead to new collaborations in research. The kick off of the network takes place at the Annual Scientific Meeting, 17 May 2019 (ASM2019).