Marten Hofker (Auditorium 2)

, (1956-2016)

Marten Hofker was particularly known for his seminal work in dissecting molecular and genetic mechanisms underlying cardiometabolic diseases. He studied Biology at Leiden University, and early on in his career recognized the huge potential of Molecular Biology and Genetics for cardiovascular research. After his PhD on genetic markers for inherited diseases and a postdoctoral fellowship in Toronto, he returned to Leiden university in 1989 to bridge genetics, lipid metabolism, and cardiovascular research. With his great sense for innovation, he was the first to deploy transgenic technologies to study lipid metabolism in mice, generated amongst others the apolipoprotein-E3Leiden mice, carrying a dominant negative mutation that conferred familial dyslipidemia. This transgenic still is one of the most widely used mouse models for this disease. In 2000 Marten Hofker continued his career at the University of Maastricht (2000-2007), heading a large research group on inflammatory processes in atherosclerosis, obesity, and fatty liver disease, a systems biology vision, that again was well ahead of his time. In 2007, Marten Hofker was recruited by the Groningen University to lead a highly productive Molecular Genetics group studying metabolic syndrome, with several breakthrough papers in high-ranking journals.

Next to being a visionary and outspoken scientists, Marten was may be even more renown for his networking qualities, as witness the numerous Dutch and European coordinated networks he was leading or part of, including the European Lipoprotein Club, where he was president for 5 years.