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Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam


Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam is committed to a healthy population and excellence in healthcare  through  research  and  education  ( It  is  in  the  top ten  of  best medical institutes in Europe (QS World University Ranking 2014) and excels in various research fields, studying  fundamental  and clinical  domains  as  well  as  public  health  and  prevention  with  an  annual research budget of around €139.7 million. Bibliometric indicators place Erasmus MC in the top 20 of clinical  medicine  worldwide;  its  publications  are  cited 1.75  times  the  world  average.  In  addition  to scientific research, patient care and education are core tasks of Erasmus MC. It is the top referral centre for  a  region  of  about  five  million  inhabitants.  ErasmusMC  is  also  the  largest  medical school  in  the Netherlands, with ~3,100 medical students and 234 PhD graduations in 2013. Together, the students and almost 11,000 employees at Erasmus MC improve the individual patient care and public health of tomorrow.

The Department of Biomedical Engineering (Laboratory of Experimental Echocardiography) started in 1968 and is part of the Thorax Centre of the Erasmus Medical Centre located in Rotterdam. The main goal  of the research group is to develop new methodologies in the diagnostic ultrasound field to be used by clinicians (cardiologists, radiologists) in order to improve the diagnostic quality. Through the years, the group has expanded to more than 25 people.

The group has excellent expertise in visualisation of ultrasound contrast agent behaviour in an acoustic field  using  their  unique  fast  framing  camera  (Brandaris,  capable  to  acquire  25  million  frames  per second) for acoustic characterisation of UCAs.

Nico de Jong

Nico  de  Jong  (1954) graduated  from  Delft  University  of Technology,  The  Netherlands,  in 1978.  He received  his  M.Sc.  in  physics  specialising  in  the  field  of  pattern  recognition.  Since  1980,  he  is  staff member of the thorax center of the Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam. In 1993 he received his Ph.D. for "Acoustic properties of ultrasound contrast agents." In 2003 he became part-time professor at the University of Twente in the group Physics of Fluids headed by Detlef Lohse (Spinoza-winner 2005). He is  organiser  of  the annual  European  Symposium  on Ultrasound Contrast  Imaging,  held  in  Rotterdam and attended by approximately 175 scientists from universities and industries all over the world. He is on  the safety  committee  of  WFUMB (World  Federation  of  Ultrasound  in  Medicine  and  Biology), associate editor of UMB and has been guest editor for special issues of different journals. Over the last 5 years he has given more than 30 invited lectures and has given numerous scientific presentations for international  industries.  He  teaches  on Technical  Universities  and  the Erasmus  MC.  He  has  been Promotor of 15 PhD students and is currently supervising 9 PhD students. Since 1 October 2011 he is professor in Molecular Ultrasonic Imaging and Therapy at the Erasmus MC and the Technical University of Delft. He has published more than 220 peer reviewed articles and has a H-index of 41.

Rik Vos

Gonzalo Collado Lara

Tasks and Tools

Functional  UCA  Characterisation: The  lab  will  perform  assessment  of  UCA  behaviour  in  an  exciting acoustic field,  with  a focus  on  the  influence  of  ionising  radiation.  The  group  will  apply  and – when required – extent models  relating  UCA  behaviour  to  (radiation-dependent)  physical  UCA  properties. Regarding  these  physical  (and the  underlying  chemical)  properties,  the  lab  will  collaborate  with Physical Chemistry of Macromolecules lab of Tor Vergata and the Organic and (Bio)-Polymer Chemistry of IMEC.

Acoustic Characterisation of UCA Populations: In close collaboration with the Laboratory of Non-Linear Wave Spectroscopy of KU Leuven, the lab will actively contribute to the acoustic characterisation and modelling  of UCA  populations,  with a focus  on the  influence  of  ionising  radiation and  measurement conditions  (WP3).  The lab  will  assess  the  UCA  functional  behaviour  in  various  conditions,  and  will actively contribute to the formulation and evaluation of mathematical/physical models describing UCA acoustic behaviour.

The group has excellent facilities in visualisation of ultrasound contrast agent behaviour in an acoustic field by their unique fast framing camera (Brandaris, capable to acquire 25 million frames per second), for acoustic characterisation of contrast agents and has access to animal facilities (pigs, mice). Multi frequency laser, confocal microscopes etc.. Further, new imaging methodologies of ultrasound contrast  agent are  developed.  The  group  has  high  end  diagnostic  ultrasound  machine  (Phlips  IU22, Supersonics) as well as up to date research ultrasound machines (256 channel Verasonics, Ultrasonix with DAQ).

AMPHORA aims to develop a non-invasive in-situ dosimetry system for radiation therapy with the potential of on-line dose assessment by casting ultrasound contrast agents (UCAs) into dose sensing theranostic devices.