Marcel Heinrich, MSc

Position: PhD Student    
Education: MSc Biomedical Engineering             
In the Lab since: 2017
Main Research: Targeting the Glioblastoma Microenvironment
Research Interests:  - 3D Bioprinting of multi-cellular constructs
                                   - Modulation of the tumor stroma 
                                   - Bioactive lipid mediators 
                                   - Hydrogels
My Personal Goal: "Combining biology and chemistry with engineering strategies to develop novel models and create innovative treatments for

Location: ZH 253

My research

I am currently working on the (targeted) modulation of the glioblastoma microenvironment. Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is the most common type of brain cancer with a devastating survival time of approx. 1.5 years after diagnosis. Currently, the only effective treatment of GBM is the resection of the tumor. However, a full resection of the tumor is nearly impossible as the tumor can reach deep into the brain and a healthy brain tissue might be harmed during the surgery.
The approach taken in this project is to implant radiation therapy and chemotherapeutic agents locally in the brain after tumor resection and create a micro-environment that attacks remaining tumor cells and prevents tumor proliferation and recurrence.

About me

In 2011, I started my study Biomedical Technologies at the University of Twente, where I obtained my Bachelors degree in 2014. Afterwards I continued the Master Biomedical Engineering in Twente, with special focus on Bionanotechnology & Advanced Biomanufacturing. During that time I developed a particular interest in nanomedicine and targeted therapeutics.
In 2016, I obtained my Masters degree cum laude with an average grade of 9.1/10. My final assigment was performed in the group of Jai Prakash under supervision of Jonas Schnittert and had the title "Lipoxin A4 as potential agent to inhibit the tumor-promoting effects of pancreatic stellate cells in the tumor microenvironment". The final grade for my thesis was a 10/10.
For my Master thesis I was awarded the KNCV Golden Master Award 2016 from the Royal Netherlands Chemical Society for the best Master thesis in a (bio)chemistry related field in the Netherlands.  Furthermore I achieved the 2nd place in the Twente Graduate School Award for excellent Master students at the University of Twente.

During an internship in 2015/2016, performed in the Khademhosseini Lab at the Harvard Medical School/ Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston, MA, USA, I was able to gain great experience in the field of 3D Bioprinting for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. The internship (as part of my Master program) was eventually graded a 10/10.

I started my PhD project in the group of Jai Prakash in 2017. The NWO-KWF funded project is performed together with the group of Prof. Dr. Raymond Schiffelers at the University Medical Center (UMC) Utrecht.

Honors & Awards

- Winner Jan Feijen Poster Award at the European Symposium for Controlled Drug Delivery 2018.

- 1st price/ winner KNCV Golden Master Award 2016 awarded from the Royal Netherlands Chemistry Society for the best Master thesis in a (bio)chemistry related field.

- 2nd place for the Twente Graduate School Award for excellent and promising Master student at the University of Twente.

- “Laboratory Animal Science” course and received article 9 license to perform experiments on animals from Utrecht University, the Netherlands.


Schnittert J., Heinrich MA., Kuninty PR., Storm G., Prakash J.
''Reprogramming tumor stroma using an endogenous lipid lipoxin A4 to treat pancreatic cancer''
Cancer Lett. 2018 Apr 28;420:247-258. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2018.01.072. Epub 2018 Feb 21.
PMID: 29408203


Rocca M., Fragasso A., Liu W., Heinrich MA., Zhang YS.
''Embedded Multimaterial Extrusion Bioprinting.''
SLAS Technol. 2017 Nov 1:2472630317742071. doi: 10.1177/2472630317742071. [Epub ahead of print]
PMID: 29132232

Liu W., Heinrich MA., Zhou Y., Akpek A., Hu N., Liu X., Guan X., Zhong Z., Jin X., Khademhosseini A., Zhang YS.
''Extrusion Bioprinting of Shear-Thinning Gelatin Methacryloyl Bioinks.''
Adv Healthc Mater. 2017 Jun;6(12). doi: 10.1002/adhm.201601451. Epub 2017 May 2.
PMID: 28464555

Liu W., Zhang YS., Heinrich MA., De Ferrari F., Jang HL., Bakht SM., Alvarez MM., Yang J., Li Y.C., Trujillo-de Santiago G., Miri AK., Zhu K., Khoshakhlagh P., Prakash G., Cheng H., Guan X., Zhong Z., Ju J., Zhu GH., Jin X., Shin SR., Dokmeci MR., Khademhosseini A.
"Rapid Continuous Multimaterial Extrusion Bioprinting."
Adv Mater. 2017 Jan;29(3). doi: 10.1002/adma.201604630. Epub 2016 Nov 17.
PMID: 27859710