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Cirion Foundation

the impact of infectious diseases

SEMESTER studies

SEMESTER studies on the epidemiology, clinical aspects and pathogenesis of Meningo-Encefalitis and Guillain Barre Syndrome in Suriname, Trinidad and in Indonesia.

Meningitis is an acute inflammation of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord, and encephalitis is inflammation of the brain itself. This inflammation can be caused by viruses, bacteria, or other microorganisms. Meningitis and encephalitis can be life-threatening diseases and prompt initiating of treatment is warranted. Despite availability of antibiotics, antiviral medication and adjunctive dexamethasone mortality and morbidity rates are still substantial. 

The SEMESTER-study is an extension of a fruitful, long existing collaboration between Indonesian, Surinamese and Dutch research institutes. With our joint experience in recognizing new and emerging diseases the ultimate objective is to create adequate diagnostic facilities and procedures in Surabaya and Paramaribo with the aim to facilitate the Java region as a diagnostic reference center for tropical viruses. An important task for a reference center is to continuously monitor the epidemiology of emerging pathogens by surveillance, for which validated diagnostic procedures are conditional. One of the most important requirements of adequate diagnostics is the knowledge of circulating pathogens and their associated clinical symptoms. Therefore a prospective clinical surveillance study, like the SEMESTER study, is required.

Research team:

  • Prof. Eric C.M. van Gorp
  • Dr. Marco Goeijenbier MD Msc
  • Wesley De Jong MD
  • Thomas Langerak MD
  • Laura Doornekamp MD
  • Dr. Kirsten Adriani MD