Dr. K. (Karin) Strijbis

Dr. K. (Karin) Strijbis

Universitair hoofddocent
Infectiebiologie
030 253 4755
k.strijbis@uu.nl

We know more and more about the identity of the microbiota communities in our body, but the next step is to understand how individual bacteria affect health and disease. We investigate how commensal and pathogenic bacteria interact with the intestinal, respiratory and vaginal mucosal surfaces. Mucosal surfaces harbor a complex defense system that consists of secreted mucins, defense proteins and transmembrane mucins. Transmembrane mucins such as MUC1, MUC3, MUC4, MUC13 and MUC17 are expressed on the apical surface of epithelial cells and contain a large glycosylated extracellular domain and a cytoplasmic tail with signaling capacity. Important processes such as immune responses, proliferation and apoptosis, cellular migration, wound healing and epithelial barrier function are regulated by transmembrane mucins. Transmembrane mucins are also highly overexpressed in different adenocarcinomas (e.g. colorectal cancer, breast cancer and pancreatic cancer). In my group, we are investigating how commensal and pathogenic bacteria interact with the mucus layer in healthy and dysbiotic conditions. The goal of our research is to elucidate the molecular interactions between bacteria and mucins and how these interactions impact health and disease.
 
Our research is centered around the following topics:
 
-       Commensal and pathogenic intestinal, respiratory and vaginal bacteria
-       Mucin glycosylation and bacterial adhesins
-       Epithelial models to study soluble and transmembrane mucins
-       Inflammatory diseases including IBD and vaginal dysbiosis
-       Targeting mucins during carcinogenesis

 

www.uu.nl/infectionbiology

http://www.infectionbiology.nl