Cees Vermeer

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Assoc. Professor Dr. Cees Vermeer (born December 14, 1946), studied biochemistry at the University of Leiden, where he defended in 1973 his thesis entitled "The role of the initiation factor IF3 in the initiation of protein synthesis in Escherichia coli". After a two-year post-doctoral position at the Central Lab of the Dutch Red Cross Blood transfusion Center in Amsterdam, Vermeer was appointed in 1975 as Associate Professor of Biochemistry at the newly formed Maastricht University, where he founded his renowned Division on Vitamin K Research. Vermeer discovered the pivotal importance of vitamin K2 for bone and cardiovascular health and the major diagnostic importance of Matrix Gla-Protein (MGP) as a biomarker for cardiovascular disease and mortality. He invented the MGP technology by which circulating MGP can be quantified and used to estimate cardiovascular disease risk and arterial calcification.

Since 1988 Assoc. Professor DR. Cees Vermeer is one of the Principal Investigators in the Cardiovascular Research Institute Maastricht (CARIM), the largest Research School of the Maastricht University. In 2001 Cees Vermeer founded VitaK Innovation in Life Science, a Maastricht University spin-off, and from January 2014 he is a member of the Scientific Board of the International Cardiovascular Research Group. Until 2013 Cees Vermeer was both CEO and CSO of VitaK Innovation in Life Science (Being world’s largest research and knowledge center in the vitamin K area and MGP); Since 2013 Drs. Mehrdad Omidvar has taken over the CEO position.

Dr. Vermeer belongs to the world’s top-2½ % of scientists, received an Honorary Doctorate (in 2001) at the Iuliu Hatieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy in Cluj Napoca, Romania, is a Visiting Professor at the American University and has been a temporary advisor of the World Health Organization.

Dr. Vermeer’s current research activities include molecular biology, biochemistry, animal and human nutrition, pharmacology, and clinical trials in arteriosclerosis and osteoporosis. He has held a wide variety of administrative positions within the Maastricht University, including Chairman of the Department of Biochemistry and Member of Medical Faculty Board (portfolio R&D). He has supervised 17 PhD students, is author of over 420 international scientific publications and inventor of 17 patents and patent applications.

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