FCT grant for Paula da Costa Martins
Portugal (25-09-2015). Paula da Costa Martins of the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences of Maastricht University received a grant from the “Foundation of Science and Technology” (FCT), the main Portuguese national funding agency for science, research and technology. This grant allows Paula to make her recent affiliation and collaboration with the Department of Physiology and Cardiothoracic Surgery, Centro Hospitalar São João, University of Porto in Portugal more visible.
 
Paula da Costa Martins can add this grant to a track-record of previously received grants and fellowships from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), the Dutch Heart Foundation, the European Society of Cardiology and the Fondation Leducq. The FCT grant will allow her to recruit a PhD student at the University of Porto to further support her research on noncoding RNAs in vascular diseases.
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Vici grant awarded to Leon de Windt
THE HAGUE, The Netherlands (18-02-2013) - "Veni, Vidi, Vici" is a Latin phrase. It’s popular usage reportedly originates from a letter that Gaius Julius Caesar wrote to the Roman Senate around 46 BC, after achieving victory in his short war at the Battle of Zela. The phrase is used to refer to a swift, conclusive victory.
 
6 excellent biomedical scientists have received a Vici grant of 1.5 million euros from NWO. Leon de Windt of UM/Maastricht UMC+ receives for his research one of these prestigious grants. The funding will enable the laureates to do research for the next five years and to build up their own research group. http://www.zonmw.nl/nl/actueel/nieuws/detail/item/zes-keer-anderhalf-miljoen-euro-voor-vooraanstaande-medische-wetenschappers/
 
Vici is one of the largest grants for individual scientists in the Netherlands and is part of NWO's Talent Scheme, which consists of the Veni, Vidi and Vici grants. With this scheme NWO encourages scientific talent by offering scientists in various stages of their career the opportunity to do groundbreaking research. The Vici grant is a boost for the laureates and it also creates opportunities for a large number of young researchers who will work in the laureates’ research groups. 
 
Leon de Windt previously received a Veni grant (2001) and a Vidi grant (2007), making his Veni, Vidi, Vici Talent scheme cycle complete with the award of this most recent Vici grant. In his Vici proposal “EXPERT: EXploiting non-coding RNA Pathways for novel diagnostics and thERapeuTics in heart failure” Leon de Windt and coworkers will first establish the cause-effect relationship between biological mechanisms underlying one specific subtype of heart failure, discover new diagnostic tools in defined clinical cohorts and use antisense oligonucleotide technology to design fundamentally new classes of drugs aimed to ameliorate this subtype of heart failure.
 
For the execution of his Vici grant, Leon de Windt will closely collaborate with high profile research groups in Germany and Italy, as well as scientists in the recently established MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine (http://merln.maastrichtuniversity.nl/) and Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology (MaCSBio - http://macsbio.maastrichtuniversity.nl/).
 
For original press releases, click here at the NWO site, here for the press release of Maastricht University, and here for press releases in the popular press.

 
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Veni grant awarded to Ellen Dirkx
The Netherlands (29-07-2014). Ellen Dirkx of the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences of Maastricht University received a Veni grant from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). Veni is part of NWO’s Talent Scheme (Veni, Vidi and Vici) aimed at different career phases of scientists. A Veni grant is worth a maximum of 250,000 euros, made available by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and is one of the individual grants from NWO to promote scientific talent.  Veni researchers gained their PhD no more than three years ago. They are free to choose the subject of their research. With this approach, NWO and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science encourage curiosity-driven and innovative research. Veni enables researchers to take an important step in their scientific career.

Ellen Dirkx previously received fellowships from the Marie Skłodowska-Curie action of the European Union and an EMBO Long Term fellowship from the EMBO organization. In her Veni proposal “Targeting the miR-106b-25 cluster in pathological cardiac hypertrophy” Ellen Dirkx will focus on the communication between genes in chronic heart failure and develop strategies to adjust where failures occur.

For the execution of her Veni grant, Ellen Dirkx will closely collaborate with the ICGEB in Italy. For original press releases, click here at the NWO site and here for the press release of Maastricht University.
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Publication in Nature Cell Biology
LONDON, UK (01-10-2013) - Professor Leon de Windt (Maastricht University) and his team published in the prestigious, high impact journal Nature Cell Biology a new mechanism how genes are differentially regulated in heart failure. The team reported that increased calcineurin/Nfat signalling and decreased miR-25 expression integrate to re-express the basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor dHAND (also known as Hand2) in the diseased human and mouse myocardium. These results reveal that signalling cascades integrate with microRNAs to induce the expression of the bHLH transcription factor Hand2 in the postnatal mammalian myocardium with impact on embryonic gene programs in heart failure.
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Editorial Board International Journal of Cardiology, Heart and Vessels
PHILADELPHIA PA, USA (15-10-2013) - Leon de Windt has accepted an invitation from Dr. Michael Henein, incoming Editor-in-Chief, to become member of the editorial board of International Journal of Cardiology – Heart & Vessels. IJC Heart & Vessels is a new online-only, open-access journal dedicated to publishing original articles and reviews which report on structural and functional cardiovascular pathology, with an emphasis on imaging and disease pathophysiology. Besides being member of the editorial board of IJC Heart & Vessels, Leon de Windt also serves on the editorial board of Circulation Research, Journal of the Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, The European Journal of Heart Failure, Cardiovascular Research and he is Associate Editor of American Journal of Physiology – Heart & Circulatory Physiology.
For a list of the 2014 Editorial Board of IJC Heart & Vessels, click here.
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Publication in Cell Metabolism
CAMBRIDGE, MA, USA (01-09-2013) - Professor Leon de Windt (Maastricht University) and his team published in the international high impact journal Cell Metabolism how a microRNA cluster facilitate the switch from predominant reliance on fatty acid utilization in the healthy heart toward increased reliance on glucose metabolism at the onset of heart failure.
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Omschakeling in energiegebruik voorkomt hartfalen
MAASTRICHT,  04-09-2013 – Onderzoekers van het Maastricht UMC+ hebben in diermodellen een moleculaire oorzaak gevonden die bijdraagt aan het ontstaan van menselijk hartfalen. Naar aanleiding hiervan konden ze het falende hart laten omschakelen van een ‘ongezond’ naar een ‘gezond’ energiegebruik, met herstel van hartfunctie als gevolg. De Maastrichtse onderzoekers, onder leiding van prof. dr. Leon de Windt,  hoogleraar Moleculaire Cardiologie, publiceren de veelbelovende resultaten in het wetenschappelijke tijdschrift Cell Metabolism.
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Prestigious ERC grant for Leon de Windt
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM (01-09-2012) - Prof. Leon de Windt is the recipient of a prestigious grant of the European Research Council (ERC). ERC Consolidator Grants are designed to support researchers at the stage at which they are consolidating their own independent research team or program. The scheme will strengthen independent and excellent new individual research teams that have been recently created.
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CVON-ARENA awarded
UTRECHT, THE NETHERLANDS (15-12-2011) - Professor Leon de Windt (Maastricht University) and Professor Yigal Pinto (UvA) received confirmation of their successful CVON (Cardiovasculair Onderzoek Nederland) grant application entitled“Approaching Heart Failure By Translational Research Of RNA Mechanisms” (CVON-ARENA).
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Ellen Dirkx awarded ESC HFA Fellowship
SOPHIA ANTIPOLIS, FRANCE (01-12-2012) – Ellen Dirkx has been awarded a fellowship of € 30.000,- to conduct research on microRNA biology in heart failure. Research Fellowships of the Heart Failure Association of the ESC are a category of grant to provide an opportunity for research training in the field of heart failure in a country in Europe other than their own. Yearly only two awardees in Europe are appointed based upon the quality and innovative aspects of their research proposals.
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Cardiovascular Research Editorial Board
LOUVAIN, BELGIUM (30-11-2012) - Leon de Windt has accepted an invitation from Dr. Karin Sipido, incoming Editor-in-Chief, to become member of the editorial board of Cardiovascular Research, one of the leading scientific journal in basic cardiovascular research. Editorial board membership is viewed as an honorary position for contemporary leaders in the field.
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MEERVOUD grant Paula da Costa Martins
THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS (01-09-2012) - Paula da Costa Martins, Assistant Professor at the dept. of Cardiology received a grant of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) on her research proposal: “Post-transcriptional regulation of autophagy: MiR-216a as a cell death-regulating microRNA during myocardial repair”.


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Outstanding Achievement Award 2012
MUNICH, GERMANY (27-08-2012) - On Sunday August 26, prof. Barbara Casadei, President of the ESC Council on Basic Cardiovascular Science, will hand over the Outstanding Achievement Award 2012 to Professor Leon de Windt (Maastricht University).
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Galenus Research Prize 2012
Press report Galenus research prize 2012:

“Leon de Windt is the example of a young promising scientist. He is only 42 years of age, studies Biology in Utrecht and graduated in cardiovascular physiology at the Faculty of Medicine."
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Career Development Award for Paula da Costa Martins
PARIS, FRANCE (01-01-2011) - Dr. da Costa Martins is a junior group leader at the Cardiovascular Research Institute Maastricht, where her work is embedded in the research group of Dr. Leon de Windt, member of the MicroRNAs as therapeutic targets in heart failure network.
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American Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology - Editorial Board
BETHESDA MD, UNITED STATES (04-08-2010) - Leon de Windt has accepted an invitation to serve as associate editor on the editorial board of American Journal of Physiology – Heart & Circulatory Physiology, a leading scientific journal in cardiovascular physiology. Editorial board membership is viewed as an honorary position for contemporary leaders in the field. Leon de Windt is currently the only Dutch scientist serving on the board of this international journal.
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Dutch Heart Foundation Grant to Paula da Costa Martins
THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS (21-07-2010) - Paula da Costa Martins, Assistant Professor at the dept. of Cardiology received a grant of the Dutch Heart Foundation (NHS) on her research proposal: “The embryonic transcription factor HAND2 (dHAND) regulates left and right ventricular remodeling towards dilated cardiomyopathy”.
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Circulation Research Editorial Board
DALLAS TX, UNITED STATES (01-01-2010) - Leon de Windt has accepted an invitation to become a member of the editorial board of Circulation Research, the leading scientific journal in basic cardiovascular research. Editorial board membership is viewed as an honorary position for contemporary leaders in the field.
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Editorial Board membership Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology
SAN DIEGO CA, UNITED STATES (25-09-2009) - Leon de Windt has accepted an invitation from new Editor-in-Chief Dr. David Eisner to become member of the editorial board of the Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, a leading scientific journal in basic cardiovascular research. Editorial board membership is viewed as an honorary position for contemporary leaders in the field. Leon de Windt is currently one of four Dutch scientists serving on the board of this international journal.
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Young Investigator Award
LES DIABLERETS, SWITZERLAND (31-01-09) -  The 2009 Young Investigator Award of the Heart Failure Winter Research Meeting was won by Kanita Salic from the laboratory of Leon de Windt (NL) for a presentation entitled “MicroRNA – 199b promotes cardiac hypertrophy by targeting the nuclear kinase, Dyrk1A”. In absence of her supervisor Paula da Costa Martins, Kanita presented Paula’s work, and obtained the highest price for the open competition of young investigators during this meeting.
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De Windt laboratory awarded Fondation Leducq Transatlantic Network of Excellence Grant
PARIS, FRANCE (18-06-2008) - An international research network, which include the participation of UMC Utrecht and the Hubrecht Institute, have been awarded a grant of six million dollars over a period of five years to perform molecular and genetic research into heart failure. Five scientists, including Dr. Leon de Windt from Utrecht (the youngest awardee in Dutch history), aim to increase our understanding of the mechanism that causes heart failure in order to develop a targeted treatment therapy.
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Paula da Costa Martins awarded ESC HFA Fellowship
UTRECHT, THE NETHERLANDS (01-12-07) - Paula da Costa Martins has been awarded a fellowship of € 50.000,- to conduct research on microRNA biology in heart failure. Research Fellowships of the Heart Failure Association of the ESC are a category of grant to provide an opportunity for research training in the field of heart failure in a country in Europe other than their own. Yearly only two awardees in Europe are appointed based upon their the quality and innovative aspects of their research proposals.
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