Cancer Research Center Groningen (CRCG) Healthier and longer lives of our cancer patients through improved detection, treatment and care. We are the UMCG Cancer Research Center. Institute
The Netherlands has one of the highest cancer survival rates in the world due to top clinical research and care. To cure more patients and minimize damage to create healthier lives after cancer, we want to unravel disease mechanisms and to improve early detection and treatment of cancer.

We perform high-quality, oncology-related research to improve detection, treatment and care of our cancer patients.

  • We study the molecular, cellular, and genetic defects of malignant cells.
  • We develop and apply new diagnostic techniques and treatment options.
  • We study unintended short-term and long-term side effects of treatment on normal tissues to improve the quality of life of former cancer patients.

Our research activities benefit our patients

Not all cancer treatments are as effective in all patients, and diagnostics are mainly based on morphology. We are changing this through our research on advanced imaging, genetics cellular and molecular therapies, and through the use of health data. 

Our research is aimed at the discovery of novel diagnostic tools and personalized treatment of specific cancer types.

  • We use novel diagnostic tools to build patient-specific profiles and to personalize our cancer care step by step.
  • We use state-of-the-art treatment facilities to minimize unintended side effects.
  • We share our findings to improve cancer care worldwide.
  • Proton therapy is an innovative form of radiation therapy in which healthy tissue in the vicinity of tumors receives a lower radiation and remains more intact. At the UMCG, we conduct research on this technique and since 2018  we offer treatment to patients. By using this technique and evaluating results, we hope to reduce unintended adverse side effects in normal tissue and improve quality of life.

    We are part of an existensive international collaboration to further develop and automate treatment methods. Within this project, we and our European partners will set up a training network for a new generation of proton therapy researchers.

  • We can learn a lot from our patients. That is why we ask them to join OncoLifeS. OncoLifeS is a UMCG biobank, in which data, bodily materials and quality of life assessments of cancer patients are stored and used for UMCG cancer research. Until October 2020, already over 5200 patients volunteered to join OncoLifeS.

    By linking routine clinical data with preserved biological specimens and quality of life assessments, our OncoLifeS researchers help develop better treatments for our cancer patients to have a better quality of life after cancer.

    OncoLifeS biobank

    Patient information (Dutch)

  • Results from our research are translated as quickly as possible into improvements in diagnostics and treatment. To prevent harmful effects of treatments, we are also performing research in cancer survivors. In this way specialist care in the cancer center is possible

    We collaborate intensively with national and international university medical centers in Europe, the US and Canada.

  • We improve patient selection and uncover mechanism of drug action.

  • New cellular therapies like CAR-T cells, CAR-NK cells, and CAR-macrophages are in full development. Furthermore, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is one of the cornerstones of leukemia treatment.


    Besides cellular therapies, targeted molecular therapy is an important focus area. Several small molecule inhibitors have emerged or are being developed. These compounds target directly mutations, downstream signaling networks, or cellular processes such as apoptosis, DNA repair, the epigenome or the metabolism of cancer cells.


Management team

Marcel van Vugt (Director)
​​​​​​J.J. Schuringa (Education)
Marco Demaria (Grants)
Schelto Kruijff (Community)
Michiel Hooiveld (Staff advisor/general support)


Evelyn Kuiper-Drenth

Visiting address

​​​​​​Ant. Deusinglaan 1,
Building 3217 ('de Brug'), Room 7.21,
9713 AV Groningen,
The Netherlands