Ron Smits studied Biomedical Sciences at the University of Leiden, and performed his PhD study (1998-2002) and first postdoctoral experience (2002-2003) under Riccardo’s supervision at the Department of Human Genetics of the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC).

His thesis entitled “APC and cancer: It takes two to tango” was successfully defended in 2002 (cum laude).

Beginning of 2003, he joined Genentech Inc., South San Francisco, CA, as a research scientist to establish and characterize spontaneous intestinal tumor models. Here, he also developed a novel research on the cross-talk between receptor tyrosine kinases and ß-catenin signaling in cancer, for which he was awarded a Vidi (ZonMW) grant in 2004 when he was appointed as an assistant professor in the Dept. of Pathology of the Erasmus MC in Rotterdam.

Since January 2008, he is a staff member at the Dept. of Gastroenterology and Hepatology of the Erasmus MC, where he focuses on molecular mechanisms contributing to intestinal tumor formation and metastasis.

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