Research institutes

Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology

Launched in 2015, the Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology (MaCSBio) aims to develop a set of computational and mathematical models, applicable in science and clinic, that will advance our understanding of biological systems, and predict progression and treatment of complex diseases over time. 

Systems Biology

Technology is advancing fast. It gives us insights in the human body on both a large and miniscule scale. We can peek into the brain, without opening the skull. Our heartbeat can be measured using an app on our iPhone. The entire human genome is available as one large roadmap, and more and more knowledge about molecules in health and disease becomes available every day.

What if all of the available human data could be combined and deciphered by computers to create a “virtual physiological human”? Welcome to the world of Systems Biology.

MaCSBio is one of Maastricht University’s newest research centres. Driven by technology, MaCSBio aims to understand and predict the complex nature of biological systems. The centre is dedicated to achieve this goal by working in a highly integrated fashion:


MaCSBio is a joint initiative of the Faculty of Psychology and NeuroscienceFaculty of Health, Medicine and Life Science and the Faculty of Science and Engineering. To achieve scientific breakthroughs that could not be achieved in individual labs, the centre brings together the expertise of physicians, biologists, mathematicians and computer scientists.

    • A recently published article that involved a MaCSBio employee, described results of DNA methylation (DNAm) quantitative trait locus analyses on 32,851 participants, identifying genetic variants associated with DNAm at 420,509 sites in blood;

      2 weeks 3 days ago
    • Photo by MaCSBio

      For the #PREVENTOMICS consortium, read this new blog post to learn more about the role of circulating biomarkers in #PersonalisedNutrition and #health. This is written as a joint effort from colleagues of MaCSBio and WUR. Here is the article link:

      4 weeks 4 hours ago
    • Photo by MaCSBio

      A recently published article that involved a MaCSBio employee, Mike Gerards, reported a novel C1QBP deletion variant that is associated with progressive external ophthalmoplegia and multiple mtDNA deletions. Please see the link here for the full article:

      1 month 1 week ago


  • Amrapali Zaveri and Anna Schueth

    Anna Schueth and Ilja Arts win Amrapali Zaveri Award

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021
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  • Shauna O'Donovan sucessfully defends thesis

    Shauna O'Donovan successfully defends thesis

    Monday, September 28, 2020

    In her thesis: 'Modelling the Dynamics in Time Series of Metabolomics and Transcriptomics Data' O'Donovan focused on a range of computational approaches that allow multivariate time series of biological data to be integrated, analysed, and interpreted.

    Read more
  • Adipose tissue

    Publication in Nature Research

    Friday, July 24, 2020

    The framework of this research allows tissue cell type composition to emerge as a potential marker measuring homeostasis that can be utilized in prospective studies in regenerative medicine.

    Read more
  • Molecular processes of coronavirus identified

    Wednesday, May 13, 2020

    Scientists of Maastricht UMC+ and Maastricht University are closely involved in describing the molecular mechanism of the coronavirus.

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  • Samar Tareen

    Samar Tareen successfully defends thesis

    Thursday, April 30, 2020

    Former PhD student Samar H.K. Tareen has successfully defended his thesis entitled 'Modelling molecular processes in weight loss: Regulation of metabolic flexibility'.

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  • MaCSBio PhD student Chaitra Sarathy publishes first paper

    Thursday, February 13, 2020

    The paper: "EFMviz: A COBRA Toolbox extension to visualize Elementary Flux Modes in Genome-Scale Metabolic Models."

    Read more
  • Balasz Erdos wins poster award

    Balazs Erdos wins poster award

    Monday, December 9, 2019

    140 researchers came together for the EMBO Workshop: Precision Health: Molecular Basis, Technology and Digital Health to present and discuss the promises and challenges of precision health and the molecular insights necessary to enable a maintenance of wellness and prevention of disease.

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  • Felix Taschbach wins the MaCSBio Master Thesis Award

    Systems Biology graduate wins MaCSBio Master Thesis Award

    Thursday, July 11, 2019

    During the ceremony, Dr. Mike Gerards handed out the MaCSBio Thesis Award to graduate Felix Taschbach for his research.

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  • MaCSBio - Ilja Arts

    Ilja Arts appointed board member NWO Science Domain

    Thursday, April 25, 2019

    Prof. dr. Ilja Arts, scientific director of the Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology was appointed as board member of NWO's Science Domain.

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  • Thomas Cleij

    Thomas Cleij appointed as new Dean of the Faculty of Science and Engineering

    Thursday, February 28, 2019

    The Executive Board of Maastricht University (UM) has appointed Prof. dr. Thomas Cleij as the new dean of the Faculty of Science & Engineering.

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  • ralf peeters

    The art of doing maths

    Friday, August 24, 2018

    A portrait of Ralf Peeters, professor of Mathematics. Without him, the Department of Data Science and Knowledge Engineering, which offers one of UM’s most successful study programmes, would have been swallowed up by another faculty long ago. Not that he’d ever say as much himself. Read on for portrait of a bridge builder, a puzzler, an art lover and, above all, a scientist.

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  • Systems Biology Graduation 2018S

    Master Thesis Award for Systems Biology graduate

    Thursday, July 19, 2018

    At the graduation ceremony on 10 July, four graduates received their well-deserved diplomas for the master’s programme in Systems Biology. This was the second batch of Systems Biology graduates ever at Maastricht University.

    Read more
  • Systems Biology - Graduates

    First students graduated at UM in Systems Biology

    Friday, July 21, 2017

    Last week, the first graduation ceremony ever for the master’s programme Systems Biology took place. After two years of hard work, the first batch of students received their well-deserved master diplomas.

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  • Rubicon Grants

    MaCSBio involved in two research proposals granted by NWO Complexity

    Friday, July 7, 2017

    These questions will be answered in four consortia that have been awarded a NWO-Complexity grant. MaCSBio is involved in two of these consortia and will carry out research regarding complex systems in the field of health and nutrition.

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  • MaCSBio Science Day 2016

    Michelle Moerel 2nd Science Talent 2017

    Friday, June 23, 2017

    Michelle Moerel, assistant professor and researcher at the Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology (MaCSBio), has reached a second place in the 2017 New Scientist Science Talent contest. 

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  • MaCSBio - Science Day

    MaCSBio Science Day 2017: a big success!

    Tuesday, June 13, 2017

    The second MaCSBio Science Day was organized on 9 June 2017 at Maastricht University. This time the theme of the Science Day was: Extending Networks and was focused on fostering and expanding MaCSBio’s networks at Maastricht University and beyond.

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  • Michelle Moerel

    Michelle Moerel nominated for New Scientist Science Talent 2017

    Tuesday, May 23, 2017

    Maastricht University is proud of the nomination of Dr. Michelle Moerel, assistant professor and researcher at the Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology (MaCSBio), for New Scientist Talent 2017. 

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  • brain umc+

    Research group headed by Elia Formisano reveals the human brain computations underlying real-life listening

    Tuesday, April 18, 2017

    New study published in this week’s issue of PNAS reveals the human brain computations underlying real-life listening.

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  • Embryonic Stem Cell

    Interdisciplinary team with Gökhan Ertaylan of MaCSBio publishes paper in PLOS Genetics on stem cell cycle

    Tuesday, April 11, 2017

    In this work, the interdisciplinary team with Gökhan Ertaylan of MaCSBio, uncovers genes that are responsible for the pluripotency and proliferation of embryonic stem cells.

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  • MaCSBio receives NWO-TIFN-TKI grant

    MaCSBio receives NWO-TIFN-TKI-grant

    Friday, January 13, 2017

    MaCSBio successfully attracted funding as part of a large NWO-TIFN-TKI project which aims to determine how dietary food intake and physical activity influence plasma glucose control, and how differences in plasma glucose concentrations, in turn, affect the mental and physical performance as well as the well-being.

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MaCSBio - Research

MaCSBio strives to perform cutting edge research in areas that are highly relevant for society. Research projects at MaCSBio are arranged into two main research lines:

  • Systems Medicine of Chronic Disease
  • Computational Biology of Neural and Genetic Systems

Find more information here


MaCSBio - Education

Teaching takes place in the two-year master's programme Systems Biology, which combines theory and practical skills necessary for unraveling the complex interplay between biological systems.

The unique merge of disciplines such as biology, computer science and applied mathematics, will enable you to translate and integrate large datasets into biologically relevant information and prepare you for developing novel strategies to address scientific challenges.

The Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology (MaCSBio) is a joint initiative of the Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) and the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience (FPN).

The centre’s primary aim is to facilitate the integration of biological data coming from several empirical domains using mathematical multi-scale modelling approaches.

Provincie Limburg

The Maastricht Centre for Systems Biology (MaCSBio) has been founded with support of the Province of Limburg.