Colinda Scheele NKI Award

Cancer researcher has won the Antoni van Leeuwenhoek award 2020 for her extraordinary research into stem cells and the development of breast cancer.

Colinda started a research group at VIB last year: she will continue her work on stem cells and breast cancer development. “I love understanding things that others haven’t figured out yet. That doesn’t happen very often. I am working on several scientific puzzles. Once every few months you suddenly notice: hey, so this is how two of the pieces fit together! I never understood our observation of breast cancer cells growing in a wave pattern: the tumor cells would grow, then most of them would disappear. The piece of the puzzle finally fell into place when we found this same pattern in healthy stem cells and discovered that this coincided with the menstrual cycle. These tumor cells are really just displaying ‘normal’ behavior here.”

The Netherlands Cancer Institute awards the Antoni van Leeuwenhoek award every year to its most talented young researcher.