School for Oncology and Developmental Biology - GROW
Research institutes

GROW - School for Oncology and Reproduction

To all of our (scientific) staff and (external) PhD's: please note that our GROW Community is our main communication channel.

GROW focuses on research and teaching of genetic and cellular mechanisms, as well as environmental and life-style factors that underlie normal (embryonic and fetal) and abnormal (cancer) growth. The emphasis is on basic and translational research, aiming at innovative approaches for individualizing prevention, patient diagnosis, and treatment for genetically determined diseases and cancer.

GROW researcher Lizza Hendriks appointed member of The Young Academy

Lizza Hendriks

In 2021, Lizza Hendriks, Assistant Professor at research institute GROW, School for Oncology and Reproduction of Maastricht University will join The Young Academy. This is a platform of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences, where young top scientists from different disciplines work together in the field of research and science policy.

About Lizza Hendriks

Dr Lizza Hendriks (1981) has worked at Maastricht UMC + as a lung specialist since 2012. Her focus area is thoracic oncology, in particular prevention and optimal treatment of brain metastases in lung cancer. In 2016, she earned her PhD on this topic. To gain in-depth knowledge of both research and medical oncology, she worked one year as a postdoc at the Gustave Roussy Institute in France.

Since 2019, Dr Hendriks has coordinated the clinical lung cancer research of the lung diseases department in Maastricht. She does this in addition to her clinical tasks and teaching. Currently, Dr Hendriks supervises six PhD students. Her research ambition is to develop personalised therapy (in terms of biomarkers and psychosocial and cognitive capacity) with a focus on prevention/optimal treatment of brain metastases, while preserving neurocognition. To achieve this, immunotherapy, targeted therapy and radiotherapy are applied, including the use of advanced imaging analysis techniques such as radiomics.

Dr Hendriks received several abstract awards as well as the Dirkje Postma Talent Award (incentive subsidy for her own research line) in 2019. She is (co-)author of more than 80 peer-reviewed articles.

The Young Academy

The Young Academy consists of talented researchers who share a broad interest in scientific practice, science policy and science communication. The Young Academy (De Jonge Akademie) is an independent body within the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences. Membership lasts for five years. Within De Jonge Akademie, Lizza Hendriks is particularly committed to early career policy, getting young people interested in and motivated for research. She will also contribute to the new Recognition and Rewards policy, with a focus on policy for physician researchers.


GROW research activities in the areas of oncology and reproductive medicine are closely interrelated, revolving around the same basic concepts and research techniques. Scientists at GROW collaborate intensively with clinicians at the Maastricht Comprehensive Cancer Centre and the Centre for Genetics, Reproduction and Child Health.

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An important aim within GROW is training master's and PhD students in the fields of modern medicine and molecular life sciences.

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  • Our liver is a special organ: if you cut away part of it, in most cases a new piece of liver will grow back. If someone has cancer in the liver, the affected part of the liver can be surgically removed. But you can only do this if at least 30% of the liver remains. For many patients whose remaining liver is too small, this means that they cannot undergo surgery. But thanks to international research from Maastricht UMC+, the treatment options for cancer in the liver have now been significantly expanded.

  • The UM research institute GROW and the Maastricht UMC+ Oncology Centre and have together been accredited as a Comprehensive Cancer Centre by the Organisation of European Cancer Institutes (OECI).

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Logo Maastricht UMC+ Comprehensive Cancer Center

The research institute GROW as a whole works in close cooperation with the Maastricht University Medical Center+ (MUMC+). MUMC+ is known both nationally and internationally for its focus on prevention and taking an integrated approach to health care: from prevention, promotion of good health, and basic care, to top-level clinical diagnostics and treatment. Patient safety is our top priority in all of our endeavours. MUMC+ is part of The Netherlands Federation of University Medical Centres.

GROW Oncology is part of the Maastricht UMC+ Comprehensive Cancer Center (MCCC). The MCCC is a collaboration between Maastricht UMC+ Oncology Center (OC) and the Oncology division of GROW, of the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences of Maastricht University. It is recognized by the Organisation of European Cancer Institutes (OECI) as one of the two top institutes in the Netherlands that offer oncological care, scientific research and education at an excellent level, working with partners inside and outside Maastricht UMC+. This places us among the best institutes not only nationally, but also internationally. 

We provide patient-oriented, multidisciplinary care for oncology patients and study ways to improve the outcome of oncological (pre-)care along the continuum of prevention, diagnostics, treatment, nursing and care, and rehabilitation/post-care with a strong focus on ‘survival with preservation of function’.