Professor Carl Figdor PhD is a professor of Immunology at the department of Tumor Immunology at the Radboudumc and froup leader in the Oncode Institute in Nijmegen. He obtained his Masters degree in biology in 1979 from the University of Utrecht and his PhD degree in medicine in 1982 from the University of Amsterdam working at the Netherlands Cancer Institute, where he got tenured in 1985 and started his own research group. In 1992 Carl Figdor became Professor in Cell Biophysics at the University of Twente, and in 1994 he moved to the Radboud University Medical Center in Nijmegen to start a new department on Tumor Immunology. Here he initiated a large translational program exploiting the immune system to fight cancer.
Until 2010, he was scientific director of the RIMLS, Radboud Institute for Molecular Life Sciences, a research institute within the domain of molecular mechanisms of disease that became internationally recognized during his leadership In 2006, he won the Spinoza Prize, which is also known as “the Dutch Nobel Prize”, for his groundbreaking research on the use of immune cells against cancer and for the translation of fundamental research into patient care. His research interests focus on the molecular mechanisms controlling antigen presenting cells, in particular dendritic cells. Carl Figdor was one of the first to use dendritic cell therapy in patients. He modified dendritic cells to ‘teach’ a patient’s immune system to recognize tumor cells.
Major current research projects include understanding of the tumor microenvironment and an extensive chemical immunology program including the engineering of synthetic dendritic cells. Professor Figdor received several prizes and honours including the Van Loghem Award (1999), Eijkman Medal (2000), Spinoza prize (2006), Dutch Cancer Foundation research award (2009), the ERC Advanced Grants (2011 and 2019) and the NWO Gravity Grant (2013). He is a member of the Academia Europea and the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences. He became a Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion in 2012.