Hans Clevers

Hans Clevers is group leader at the Hubrecht Institute for Developmental Biology and Stem Cell Research and professor of Molecular Genetics at the University Medical Center Utrecht and Utrecht University. He is also Director Research of the Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology and Oncode Investigator.

The Clevers group studies the biology of Wnt signaling in tissue turnover and in cancer. The discovery of Lgr5 as a generic marker of Wnt-dependent stem cells within multiple adult tissues has led to the development of technology to grow these stem cells into ever-expanding epithelial organoids. These organoids recapitulate many aspects of their tissue of origin and allow the study of a multitude of  physiological and pathological processes. Patient-derived organoids hold promise to predict drug response in a personalized fashion and open up new avenues for regenerative medicine and, in combination with genome editing technology, for gene therapy.

Download his C.V. here (.pdf)

Contact: h.clevers(at)hubrecht.eu

Positions, memberships, prizes and awards

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Scientific Training/positions

1985 – 1989    Postdoctoral Fellow. Cox Terhorst Lab. Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston MA, USA

1989 – 1991    Universitair Docent, Department of Clinical Immunology, University of Utrecht

1991 – 2002    Professor and Chairman, Dept. of Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Utrecht

2002 – 2012    Director of the Hubrecht Institute, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences

2002 –             Professor in Molecular Genetics, University Medical Center Utrecht

2012-2015      President of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences

2015 –             Director Research of the Princess Máxima Center for pediatric oncology

2017 –             Oncode Investigator

 Prizes, awards

2000    Catharijne-prize for medical research

2001    Award from the European Society for Clinical Investigation

2001    Spinoza Award of the Netherlands Reserach Council (NWO)

2004    Louis-Jeantet Prize for Medicine, Geneva, Switzerland

2005    the Science and Society Prize, Amsterdam

2005    the French honor of “Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur”

2005    Katharine Berkan Judd Award, New York

2006    Rabbi Shai Shacknai Memorial Prize for Immunology and Cancer Research, Jerusalem

2008    Josephine Nefkens Prize for Cancer Research (Erasmus MC, Rotterdam)

2008    Meyenburg Cancer Research Award, Germany

2009    The Queen Wilhelmina Dutch Cancer Society Award, Amsterdam

2010    The United European Gastroenterology Federation (UEGF) Research Prize

2011    The Ernst Jung Medical Award, Germany

2011    Kolff prize, Amsterdam

2012    Association pour la Recherche sur le Cancer (ARC) Léopold Griffuel Prize, Paris

2012    William Beaumont prize of the American Gastroenterology Association

2012    The Heineken Prize for Medicine

2012    Knight in the Order of the Nederlands’ Lion

2013    The Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences

2014    Massachusetts General Hospital Award in Cancer Research

2014    TEFAF Oncology Chair 2014, Maastricht

2014    Fellow of the AACR Academy

2014    Struyvenberg European Society for Clinical Investigation (ESCI) medal

2014    National Icon of the Netherlands

2015    ISSCR-McEwen Award for Innovation

2016    the Academy Professor Prize of the Royal Netherlands Academy

2016    Kazemi Award for Research Excellence in Bio-Medicine

2016    The Körber European Science Prize, Germany

2016    Swammerdam medaille (Amsterdam)

2016    The Ilse & Helmut Wachter award, Hamburg, Germany

2017    Princess Takamatsu Award of Merit, Tokyo

Prize juries

2008 – 2015    Louis Jeantet Prize (Geneva)

2013 – 2015   Canada Gairdner Award         (Toronto)

2014 –             Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences (San Francisco)

2015               2015 Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award for Cancer Research

2015 –             Dr. Paul Janssen Award

2017               Francqui Prize 2017 (Bruxelles)

2017-              Shaw Prize (Hong Kong)

2017               Kovalenko Medal (National Academy of Sciences)

Honorary Professorships

2002 –             Central South University, Chang Sha, China

2014-2015     TEFAF Oncology Chair

2016 –             Distinguished Visiting Professor, University of Hong Kong

2015-2016     Visiting professor, Weizmann Institute, Rehovoth, Israel

2015               Visiting professor, University of Melbourne, Australia

Elected Memberships

1999               Member European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO)

2000               Member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences (KNAW)

2009               Member of the Academia Europaea

2012               Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

2012               Member of the ‘Koninklijke Hollandsche Maatschappij der Wetenschappen’ (Royal Netherlands Society of Sciences and Humanities)

2014               Member of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA

2016               Member of the Academie des Sciences de I ‘Institut de France

2017               Member of the Orden Pour le Mérite für Wissenschaften und Künste, Germany

Advisory Boards

2005 – 2015    Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research (ISREC, Lausanne)

2006 – 2008    President of the International Society of Differentiation (ISD)

2007 –             Member of the National Scientific Advisory Board NKI-AVL

2015 –             Member of the the Scientific Advisory Board of the Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP), Vienna

2016 –             Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Francis Crick Institute (London)

2016 –             Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Decibel Therapeutics, Boston.

2016 –             Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Surrozen, San Francisco

2016 –             Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Kallyope, New York

2017 – 2018   President of the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR)

Team membersClevers

Veerle Geurts


Veerle Geurts

Roksan Franko


Marrit Putker


Jens Puschhof

PhD student

Sigrid Kolders


Dymph Klay

PhD student

Florijn Dekkers


Florijn Dekkers

Talya Dayton


Georg Busslinger

PhD student

Jochem Bernink


Yotam Bar-Ephraim


Marie Bannier

PhD student

Marie Bannier

Kadi Lõhmussaar

PhD Student

Carola Ammerlaan


Yoshiyuki Tsukamoto


Tomohiro Mizutani


Evelien de Jongh


Georg Busslinger


Huili Hu


Joep Beumer

PhD student

Kim Boonekamp

PhD student

Lena Böttinger


Priyanca Asra


Jasper Mullenders


Yorick Post

PhD Students

Jeroen Korving

Lab Assistent

Else Driehuis

PhD Student

Angelos Papaspyropoulos


Devanjali Dutta


Oded Kopper


Kai Kretzschmar


Helmut Gehart


Else Driehuis

PhD student

Benedetta Artegiani


Anjali Balgobind


Benaissa El Haddouti


Karien Hamer


Maaike van den Born


Harry Begthel

Lab Assistant

Laura Zeinstra

Lab Assistant

Stieneke van den Brink

Lab Assistant

Wim de Lau

Senior Researcher

Wim de Lau

Johan van Es

Senior Researcher

Johan van Es

Hans Clevers

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Clevers: Lgr5 stem cells, Wnt signaling & cancer

Originally focused on T lymphocyte transcription factors, we cloned Tcf1 in 1991. With the discovery that Tcf factors are the final effectors of Wnt signaling, we changed our interests to the biology of Wnt signaling in intestinal self-renewal and cancer. We identified a series of adult tissue stem cells with the novel Lgr5 marker and technologies for long-term culture of these stem cells as epithelial organoids, currently our major focus of research

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Key publications

Drost, J, van Jaarsveld, R.H., Ponsioen, B., Zimberlin, C., van Boxtel, R., Buijs, A.,Sachs, N., Overmeer, R.M., Offerhaus, G.J., Begthel, H. Korving, J., van de Wetering, M., Schwank, G. Logtenberg, M., Cuppen, E., Snippert, H.J., Medema, J.P., Kops, G. J. P. L., Clevers, H. Sequential cancer mutations in cultured human intestinal stem cells. Nature 521: 43-47 (2015)

van de Wetering, M., Francies, H.E., Francis, J.M., Bounova, G., Iorio, F., Pronk, A., van Houdt, W., van Gorp, J., Taylor-Weiner, A., Kester, L., McLaren-Douglas, A., Blokker, J., Jaksani, S., Bartfeld, S., Volckman, R., van Sluis, P., Li, V.S.W., Seepo, S., Sekhar Pedamallu, C., Cibulskis, C., Carter, S.L., McKenna, A., Lawrence, M.S., Lichtenstein, L., Stewart, C., Koster, J., Versteeg, R., van Oudenaarden, A., Saez-Rodriguez, J., Vries, R.G.J., Getz, G., Wessels, L., Stratton, M.R., McDermott, U., Meyerson, M., Garnett, M.J., Clevers, H. Prospective derivation of a ‘Living Organoid Biobank’ of colorectal cancer patients.
Cell 161: 933-945 (2015)

Huch, M., Gehart, H., van Boxtel, R., Hamer, K., Blokzijl, F., Verstegen, M., Ellis, E., van Wenum, M., Fuchs, S., de Ligt, J., van de Wetering, M., Sasaki, N., Boers, S., Kemperman, H., de Jonge, J. IJzermans, J., Niewenhuis, E., Hoekstra, R., Strom, S., Vries, R., van der Laan, L., Cuppen, E., Clevers, H. Long-term culture of genome-stable bipotent stem cells from adult human live. Cell 160: 299-312 (2015)

Sato, T., Vries, R., Snippert, H., van de Wetering, M., Barker, N., Stange, D., van Es, J., Abo, A., Kujala, P., Peters, P., Clevers, H. Single lgr5 gut stem cells build crypt-villus structures in vitro without a stromal niche. Nature 459 : 262-265 (2009)

Barker, N., van Es, J.H., Kuipers, J., Kujala, P., van den Born, M., Cozijnsen, M., Korving, J., Begthel, H., Peters, P.C., Clevers, H. Identification of stem cells in small intestine and colon by a marker gene LGR5. Nature 449: 1003-1007 (2007)

All publications

Expansion of Adult Human Pancreatic Tissue Yields Organoids Harboring Progenitor Cells with Endocrine Differentiation Potential
2018 in21100248838

Cindy J MLoomans, NerysWilliams Giuliani, JeetindraBalak, Femke CRingnalda, Léonvan Gurp, MeritxellHuch, Sylvia FBoj, ToshiroSato, LennartKester, Susana M Chuvade Sousa Lopes, Matthias SRoost, SusanBonner-Weir, Marten AEngelse, Ton JRabelink, HarryHeimberg, Robert G JVries, Alexandervan Oudenaarden, FrançoiseCarlotti, HansClevers, Eelco J Pde Koning

Troy/TNFRSF19 marks epithelial progenitor cells during mouse kidney development that continue to contribute to turnover in adult kidney
2017 in21121

FransSchutgens, Maarten BRookmaaker, FrancisBlokzijl, Rubenvan Boxtel, Robert R GVries, EdwinCuppen, Marianne CVerhaar, HansClevers

A Single-Cell RNA Sequencing Study Reveals Cellular and Molecular Dynamics of the Hippocampal Neurogenic Niche
2017 in21100201068

BenedettaArtegiani, AnnaLyubimova, Mauro JMuraro, Johan Hvan Es, Alexandervan Oudenaarden, HansClevers

BRCA-deficient mouse mammary tumor organoids to study cancer-drug resistance
2017 in21100778827

Alexandra VivasDuarte, EwaGogola, NormanSachs, MarcoBarazas, StefanoAnnunziato, JulianR de Ruiter, ArnoVelds, SohviBlatter, Julia MHouthuijzen, Mariekevan der Ven, HansClevers, PietBorst, JosJonkers, SvenRottenberg

Distinct Cellular Basis for Early Cardiac Arrhythmias, the Cardinal Manifestation of Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy, and the Skin Phenotype of Cardiocutaneous Syndromes
2017 in23063

JenniferKarmouch, Qiong QZhou, Christina YMiyake, RaffaellaLombardi, KaiKretzschmar, MarieBannier-Hélaouët, HansClevers, Xander H TWehrens, James TWillerson, Ali JMarian

Syndecan-1 promotes Wnt/β-catenin signaling in multiple myeloma by presenting Wnts and R-spondins
2017 in25454

ZeminRen, Harmenvan Andel, Wimde Lau, Robin BHartholt, Madelon MMaurice, HansClevers, Marie JoséKersten, MarcelSpaargaren, Steven TPals

Science Forum
2017 in21100242814

AvivRegev, Sarah ATeichmann, Eric SLander, IdoAmit, ChristopheBenoist, EwanBirney, BerndBodenmiller, Peter JCampbell, PieroCarninci, MennaClatworthy, HansClevers, BartDeplancke, IanDunham, JamesEberwine, RolandEils, WolfgangEnard, Andrew D.Farmer, LarsFugger, BertholdGöttgens, NirHacohen, MuzlifahHaniffa, MartinHemberg, Seung KKim, PaulKlenerman, ArnoldKriegstein, EdLein, StenLinnarsson, EmmaLundberg, JoakimLundeberg, ParthaMajumder, John CMarioni, MiriamMerad, MusaMhlanga, MartijnNawijn, Mihai GNetea, GarryNolan, DanaPe'er, AnthonyPhillipakis, Chris PPonting, Stephen RQuake, WolfReik, OritRozenblatt-Rosen, Joshua RSanes, RahulSatija, Ton NSchumacher, Alex KShalek, EhudShapiro, PadmaneeSharma, Jay WShin, OliverStegle, Michael RStratton, Michael J TStubbington, Fabian JTheis, MatthiasUhlen, Alexandervan Oudenaarden, AllonWagner, Fiona MWatt, Jonathan SWeissman, Barbara JWold, Ramnik JXavier, NirYosef, Human Cell Atlas Meeting Participants

A Living Biobank of Breast Cancer Organoids Captures Disease Heterogeneity
2017 in18434

NormanSachs, Joepde Ligt, OdedKopper, EwaGogola, GerganaBounova, FleurWeeber, Anjali VanitaBalgobind, KarinWind, AnaGracanin, HarryBegthel, JeroenKorving, Rubenvan Boxtel, Alexandra AlvesDuarte, DaphneLelieveld, Arnevan Hoeck, Robert FransErnst, FrancisBlokzijl, Isaac JohannesNijman, MarlousHoogstraat, Mariekevan der Ven, David AnthonyEgan, VittoriaZinzalla, JurgenMoll, Sylvia FernandezBoj, Emile EugeneVoest, LodewykWessels, Paul Joannesvan Diest, SvenRottenberg, Robert Gerhardus JacobVries, EdwinCuppen, HansClevers

WNT signalling events near the cell membrane and their pharmacological targeting for the treatment of cancer
2017 in20084

ElseDriehuis, HansClevers

Mouse Model of Alagille Syndrome and Mechanisms of Jagged1 Missense Mutations
2017 in28330

Emma RAndersson, Indira VChivukula, SimonaHankeova, MarikaSjöqvist, Yat LongTsoi, DanielRamsköld, JanMasek, AimanElmansuri, AnitaHoogendoorn, ElenaeVazquez, HelenaStorvall, JulieNetušilová, MeritxellHuch, BjörnFischler, EwaEllis, AdrianaContreras, AntalNemeth, Kenneth CChien, HansClevers, RickardSandberg, VitezslavBryja, UrbanLendahl

2017 in15819

ZacharySteinhart, ZvezdanPavlovic, MeghaChandrashekhar, TraverHart, XiaoweiWang, XiaoyuZhang, MélanieRobitaille, Kevin RBrown, SrideviJaksani, René MOvermeer, Sylvia FBoj, JarrettAdams, JamesPan, HansClevers, SachdevSidhu, JasonMoffat, StéphaneAngers

Use of CRISPR-modified human stem cell organoids to study the origin of mutational signatures in cancer
2017 in23571

JarnoDrost, Rubenvan Boxtel, FrancisBlokzijl, TomohiroMizutani, NobuoSasaki, ValentinaSasselli, Joepde Ligt, SamBehjati, Judith EGrolleman, Tomvan Wezel, SerenaNik-Zainal, Roland PKuiper, EdwinCuppen, HansClevers

Cancer stem cells revisited
2017 in15819

EduardBatlle, HansClevers

Organoid culture systems to study host-pathogen interactions
2017 in18797

DevanjaliDutta, HansClevers

MET Signaling Mediates Intestinal Crypt-Villus Development, Regeneration, and Adenoma Formation and Is Promoted by Stem Cell CD44 Isoforms
2017 in28330

Sander P JJoosten, JurritZeilstra, Harmenvan Andel, R ClintonMijnals, JoostZaunbrecher, Annet A MDuivenvoorden, Marcvan de Wetering, HansClevers, MarcelSpaargaren, Steven TPals

Interrogating open issues in cancer medicine with patient-derived xenografts
2017 in12464

Annette TByrne, Denis GAlférez, FrédéricAmant, DanielaAnnibali, JoaquínArribas, Andrew VBiankin, AlejandraBruna, EvaBudinská, CarlosCaldas, David KChang, Robert BClarke, HansClevers, GeorgeCoukos, VirginieDangles-Marie, S GailEckhardt, EvaGonzalez-Suarez, ElsHermans, ManuelHidalgo, Monika AJarzabek, Stevende Jong, JosJonkers, KristelKemper, LuisaLanfrancone, Gunhild MariMælandsmo, ElisabettaMarangoni, Jean-ChristopheMarine, EnzoMedico, Jens HenrikNorum, Héctor GPalmer, Daniel SPeeper, Pier GiuseppePelicci, AlejandroPiris-Gimenez, SergioRoman-Roman, Oscar MRueda, JoanSeoane, VioletaSerra, LauraSoucek, DominiqueVanhecke, AlbertoVillanueva, EmilieVinolo, AndreaBertotti, LivioTrusolino

FANTOM5 CAGE profiles of human and mouse samples

ShuheiNoguchi, TakahiroArakawa, ShiroFukuda, MasaakiFuruno, AkiraHasegawa, FumiHori, SachiIshikawa-Kato, KaoruKaida, AiKaiho, MutsumiKanamori-Katayama, TsugumiKawashima, MikiKojima, AtsutakaKubosaki, Ri-ichirohManabe, MitsuyoshiMurata, SayakaNagao-Sato, KenichiNakazato, NorikoNinomiya, HiromiNishiyori-Sueki, ShoheiNoma, EriSaijyo, AkikoSaka, MizuhoSakai, ChristopheSimon, NaokoSuzuki, MichihiraTagami, ShokoWatanabe, ShigehiroYoshida, PeterArner, Richard AAxton, MagdaBabina, J KennethBaillie, Timothy CBarnett, Anthony GBeckhouse, AntjeBlumenthal, BeatriceBodega, AlessandroBonetti, JamesBriggs, FrankBrombacher, Ailsa JCarlisle, Hans CClevers, Carrie ADavis, MichaelDetmar, TaekoDohi, Albert S BEdge, MatthiasEdinger, AnnaEhrlund, KarlEkwall, MitsuhiroEndoh, HidekiEnomoto, AfsanehEslami, MichelaFagiolini, LynseyFairbairn, Mary CFarach-Carson, Geoffrey JFaulkner, CarmeloFerrai, Malcolm EFisher, Lesley MForrester, RieFujita, Jun-ichiFurusawa, Teunis BGeijtenbeek, ThomasGingeras, DanielGoldowitz, SvenGuhl, RetoGuler, StefanoGustincich, Thomas JHa, MasahideHamaguchi, MitsukoHara, YukiHasegawa, MeenhardHerlyn, PeterHeutink, Kelly JHitchens, David AHume, TomokatsuIkawa, YuriIshizu, ChiekoKai, HiroshiKawamoto, Yuki IKawamura, Judith SKempfle, Tony JKenna, JuhaKere, Levon MKhachigian, ToshioKitamura, SarahKlein, S PeterKlinken, Alan JKnox, SoichiKojima, HaruhikoKoseki, ShigeoKoyasu, WeonjuLee, AndreasLennartsson, AlanMackay-Sim, NiklasMejhert, YosukeMizuno, HiromasaMorikawa, MitsuruMorimoto, KazuyoMoro, Kelly JMorris, HozumiMotohashi, Christine LMummery, YutakaNakachi, FumioNakahara, ToshiyukiNakamura, YukioNakamura, TadasukeNozaki, SoichiOgishima, NaganariOhkura, HiroshiOhno, MitsuhiroOhshima, MarikoOkada-Hatakeyama, YasushiOkazaki, ValerioOrlando, Dmitry AOvchinnikov, RobertPassier, MargaretPatrikakis, AnaPombo, SwatiPradhan-Bhatt, Xian-YangQin, MichaelRehli, PatriziaRizzu, SugataRoy, AnttiSajantila, ShimonSakaguchi, HirokiSato, HironoriSatoh, SuzanaSavvi, AlkaSaxena, ChristianSchmidl, ClaudioSchneider, Gundula GSchulze-Tanzil, AnitaSchwegmann, GuojunSheng, Jay WShin, DaisukeSugiyama, TakaakiSugiyama, Kim MSummers, NaokoTakahashi, JunTakai, HiroshiTanaka, HidekiTatsukawa, AndruTomoiu, HirooToyoda, Marcvan de Wetering, Linda Mvan den Berg, RobertoVerardo, DiptiVijayan, Christine AWells, Louise NWinteringham, ErnstWolvetang, YokoYamaguchi, MasayukiYamamoto, ChiyoYanagi-Mizuochi, MisakoYoneda, YoheiYonekura, Peter GZhang, SilviaZucchelli, ImadAbugessaisa, ErikArner, JaysonHarshbarger, AtsushiKondo, TimoLassmann, MarinaLizio, SerkanSahin, ThierrySengstag, JessicaSeverin, HisashiShimoji, MasanoriSuzuki, HarukazuSuzuki, JunKawai, NaotoKondo, MasayoshiItoh, Carsten ODaub, TakeyaKasukawa, HideyaKawaji, PieroCarninci, Alistair R RForrest, YoshihideHayashizaki

Wnt/β-catenin signaling in adult mammalian epithelial stem cells
2017 in14536

KaiKretzschmar, HansClevers

Loss of the Wnt receptor frizzled 7 in the mouse gastric epithelium is deleterious and triggers rapid repopulation in vivo
2017 in19400157151

Dustin JFlanagan, NickBarker, Cameron JNowell, HansClevers, MatthiasErnst, Toby JPhesse, ElizabethVincan

Origins of lymphatic and distant metastases in human colorectal cancer
2017 in23571

KamilaNaxerova, Johannes GReiter, ElenaBrachtel, Jochen KLennerz, Marcvan de Wetering, AndrewRowan, TianxiCai, HansClevers, CharlesSwanton, Martin ANowak, Stephen JElledge, Rakesh KJain