• Groene Loper, Building 15, Gemini-South (room 3.114)

    5612 AP Eindhoven


Organization profile

Introduction / mission

The human immune system is highly multifaceted and incredibly fascinating. Immune cells typically act in complex microenvironments which has important implications for immunotherapy. The high level of plasticity is achieved by a wide range of signalling molecules, cell types and specialized subtypes. Successful immunotherapy against cancer, auto-immune and infectious diseases is the result of a multitude of cellular interactions within the immune system.

The core challenge of my group is a systems immunology approach to develop and apply innovative engineering tools to study the immune system in health and disease, and to create new or improve existing therapies by enhancing or modulating immune responses.

Highlighted phrase

Innovative tools to study the immune system

Organisational profile

Much of the heterogeneity that we observe is thought to originate or at least be influenced by signals from the microenvironment. Measuring the influence of environmental factors on cellular heterogeneity and investigating regulatory strategies of cell populations, however, is difficult with traditional methods as they do not give much opportunity for the control or design of the microenvironment. We exploit and develop an innovative single cell technology toolbox to fill the technology gap by enabling the compartmentalization of single cells or small groups of cells in chambers or droplets. This allows for the design of minimal environments under the omission of most external factors that could influence cellular behaviour. Similarly, complex artificial microenvironments can be designed and created to assess the behaviour of single cells in response to e.g. soluble messengers or number of potential interaction partners. With this immune circuit engineering approach, we believe that probing cellular heterogeneity and decoding immune cell-cell or cell-pathogen interactions longitudinally and in great detail will revolutionise the fields of immunology and cellular immunotherapy. Studying immune interactions at the level of individual cells is the only way to unambiguously elucidate which cellular properties correlate with distinct functions to enable the development of improved cellular immunotherapeutic strategies to battle diseases.

Finally, together with the group of prof. Jan van Hest, in the context of Nanomedicine, we aim to boost the field of artificial immunotherapy. We try to design and synthesize artificial antigen presenting cells: vesicles or nanoparticles that carry antigens and can present these to the immune system like their natural counterparts, the DCs. Synthetic cells may prevent or reduce toxicity and side effects of immunotherapy and allow for precise control over cellular activation.

Our highly dynamic and multidisciplinary team combines expertise’s from; immunology, micro-engineering, single cell analysis, physical organic chemistry, immunoassay development and computational modelling.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Immunoengineering is active. These topic labels come from the works of this organisation's members. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.


    Photo of Nidhi Sinha

    Nidhi Sinha

    Person: Prom. : doctoral candidate (PhD)

    Photo of Nikita Subedi

    Nikita Subedi

    Person: Prom. : doctoral candidate (PhD)


    Research Output

    Programmable bivalent peptide-DNA locks for pH-based control of antibody activity

    Engelen, W., Zhu, K., Subedi, N., Idili, A., Ricci, F., Tel, J. & Merkx, M., 22 Jan 2020, In : ACS Central Science. 6, 1, p. 22-31 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    20 Downloads (Pure)

    An aptamer-based new method for competitive fluorescence detection of exosomes

    Yu, X., He, L., Pentok, M., Yang, H., Yang, Y., Li, Z., He, N., Deng, Y., Li, S., Liu, T., Chen, X. & Luo, H., 7 Sep 2019, In : Nanoscale. 11, 33, p. 15589-15595 7 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

  • 13 Citations (Scopus)
    1 Downloads (Pure)

    A pipette-tip based method for seeding cells to droplet microfluidic platforms

    Sinha, N., Subedi, N., Wimmers, F., Soennichsen, M. & Tel, J., 11 Feb 2019, In : Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE). 144, 10 p., e57848.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Open Access
  • 3 Citations (Scopus)
    45 Downloads (Pure)


    Decoding cellular interactions

    Tel, Jurjen (Recipient), 2018

    Prize: ERCStartingScientific

  • Press / Media

    Random fraction of specialized immune cells leads the charge in battling invaders

    J. Tel


    1 item of Media coverage

    Press/Media: Expert Comment

    Research areas

    Droplet-Based Microfluidics

    Jurjen Tel (Content manager), Lieke van Gorp (Content manager), Amy Broeders (Content manager) & Moniek Looijenga (Content manager)

    Impact: Research Topic/Theme (at group level)

    Valve-Based Microfluidics

    Jurjen Tel (Content manager), Lieke van Gorp (Content manager), Amy Broeders (Content manager) & Moniek Looijenga (Content manager)

    Impact: Research Topic/Theme (at group level)

    Student theses

    The effect of acidosis on osteoclastic bone resorption in 3D in vitro

    Author: Sleddens, M., 31 Aug 2017

    Supervisor: Ito, K. (Supervisor 1), Hofmann Boss, S. (Supervisor 2), Tel, J. (Supervisor 2) & Remmers, S. (Supervisor 2)

    Student thesis: Master

    The Warburg effect: a tissue scale phenomenon

    Author: Haakma, J., 20 Jun 2019

    Supervisor: Hilbers, P. (Supervisor 1), van Riel, N. (Supervisor 2) & Tel, J. (Supervisor 2)

    Student thesis: Master