Heleen obtained her BSc. Biomedical laboratory research at Saxion University of Applied Sciences in Enschede. Her BSc. thesis was performed at the University of Iowa (US) and was focussed on measuring the in vivo effects of a new anti-cancer compound. Her MSc. in Health Sciences was obtained at the University of Twente, where her Master thesis was focussed on the possibility of improving the drug development process using Organs-on-Chips. After graduating, she started at AST as a researcher where she combined both her research programmes and incorporated MCDA models in the development of a thrombosis-on-a-chip model.
Her current project is the collaborative TURBO project together with the Radboud University Medical Center and involves differentiating cells in a microfluidic platform with the intention to develop a blood-brain-barrier-on-a-chip model.