Dr. Martijn van den Heuvel

Martijn van den Heuvel is a multidisciplinary scientist with a background in Cognitive Artificial Intelligence (MSc, 2004) and psychiatric medical imaging  (PhD, 2009). His research focus is the network of connectivity of the human and animal brain, the connectome, with the aim to better understand the fundamental rules of wiring of nervous systems, and in particular how these rules of wiring are associated with brain function and disfunction in health and disease. His field of expertise includes structural and functional MR imaging combined with network science, bridging the field of mathematics, informatics, psychology and medicine. He heads the dutchconnectomelab.org at the Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, Utrecht, The Netherlands, an enthusiastic group of PostDocs and PhD students that all have the core aim to understand the underlying ‘rules of wiring’ of brain networks.

Martijn’s work includes the reconstruction and examination of structural and functional brain connectivity, and the application of network science tools to get better understanding of how disruptions of macroscale brain connectivity play a role in brain disorders, including neurodevelopment brain disorders, psychiatric brain disorders  and neurodegenerative disorders that affect white matter brain connectivity such as ALS. Martijn’s fundamental work includes the examination of the ‘rich-club organization’ of nervous systems, describing a central backbone of densely connected hub regions in the human and animal brain that form a central system in the brain. Martijn hypothesises the rich club to play an important role in neural brain communication and integration of information, and therewith to bring significant benefit to advanced brain function. Martijn is passionately involved in dissemination of connectomics to the public (e.g. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVN_dGXUzFs). He received a NWO VENI in 2011, a MQ fellowship in 2015 and a NWO VIDI in 2016, and was honoured to receive the Dutch Brain Trophy of the Dutch Brain Foundation in 2013.

Dr. Martijn van den Heuvel Grants