GROW research should lead to a more accurate diagnosis, higher survival rates, better quality of life and maintenance of optimal functional abilities for patients with malignant disease, hereditary disorders and developmental problems. This includes the study of preventive measures that can be offered to the general population or individuals at risk of developing these disorders. Our researchers work in an environment where reliable and reproducible research is the gold standard, and where young researchers are being trained to become independent and critical professionals. We have the ambition to be an internationally recognised leader in translational research in the field of malignant disease and hereditary disorders.


GROW provides high quality multidisciplinary research and teaching aimed at improving knowledge in the area of oncology and reproductive and developmental medicine, with an emphasis on translational research. This means that we are focused on addressing basic biological questions, but always pose these questions with forethought of their potential clinical applications for human health. As a result, the major mission for scientists and clinicians within GROW is to implement basic knowledge for individualising prevention, patient diagnostics, treatment, aftercare and reintegration of cancer patients and patients with hereditary and developmental disorders.


  • Generate more knowledge on (epi)genetic, cellular and (micro)environmental factors that underlie normal (embryonic and foetal) and abnormal (cancer) development.
  • Focus on translational research: from bench to bedside (the first ‘translational gap’) and vice-versa, including the development and fine-tuning of an ethical framework for the potential implementation of these research applications into routine care (the second ‘translational gap’).
  • Implement innovative approaches for individualised prevention, patient diagnostics, treatment, and reintegration as an integrated care chain. In this approach also the patient’s environment is taken into account.
  • Provide training to develop PhD candidates and postdocs into highly skilled and qualified researchers, possessing transferable skills and competences, as well as a broad academic view. The senior staff members act as a role model and promote research ethics and integrity among their students and junior staff.
  • Accurately manage research data from the planning phase onward up to and including data archiving and evaluation, to ensure their verification, reproducibility and possibilities for retrieval, sharing, and storage. As such, GROW supports the FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable) principles for its data management.