Willem van de Veen, PhD, SIAF
Willem van de Veen is employed at the Swiss Institute of Allergy and Asthma Research (SIAF) as head of the B Cell Immunology Group. He received his BSc in Biology from the Wageningen University (NL), his MSc in Biomedical Science from Utrecht University (NL) and his PhD from the university of Zurich (CH). His research is focused on the characterization of B cell responses in allergic and healthy individuals, with the aim to improve our understanding of the mechanisms that cause the development of allergies. This may pave the way for development of novel therapies for treatment of allergic diseases.
His research group performs in-depth analyses of different types of B-cells to assess their capacity to regulate the immune system through the production of cytokines, which are molecules that allow communication between cells. Moreover, the research group has developed tools to purify allergen-specific B cells from blood. They recently extended this method to many allergens/antigens and demonstrated that these B cells can be grown in a cell culture system for a long time while retaining many of their functional characteristics.