Hugo Snippert Group

Hugo Snippert

Oncode Investigator at UMC Utrecht

My research

Hugo received his PhD (cum laude) in the lab of Hans Clevers (Hubrecht Institute) where he used advanced mouse genetics and microscopy to characterize (new) stem cell populations in the mouse intestine, skin and intestinal cancer. Moreover, he was closely involved in the establishment of the first organoid culture system (mini-organs in a dish).

After a brief postdoc at the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience (Delft University of Technology) on cutting edge microscopic technologies, he initiated his own research line in the MCR department of the UMC Utrecht to understand heterogeneity in (stem) cell behavior during tumor formation and cancer progression. In 2016, he became group leader in the MCR department, where his group exploits the unique combination of I) primary human cancer samples (tumor organoids), II) molecular genetics to engineer and manipulate human cancers and III) real-time imaging to monitor and quantify cellular behavior to study phenotypic heterogeneity between cancer cells, with the long term goal to understand and prevent therapy resistance in cancer.


  • 2015: Martinus van Marum Prize, Koninklijke Hollandsche Maatschappij der Wetenschappen
  • 2011: The Barri Hesp scholarship 2005 Weusman foundation prize

Key Publications

  1. Bruens, L., Ellenbroek, S. I., van Rheenen, J., & Snippert, H. J. (2017). In vivo imaging reveals existence of crypt fission and fusion in adult mouse intestine. Gastroenterology, 153(3), 674-677.
  2. Oost, K.C., van Voorthuijsen, L., Fumagalli, A., Lindeboom, R.G.H., Sprangers, J., Omerzu, M., Rodriguez-Colman, M.J., Heinz, M.C., Verlaan-Klink, I., Maurice, M.M., Burgering, B.M.T., van Rheenen, J., Vermeulen, M., Snippert, H.J. (2018). Specific labeling of stem cell activity in human colorectal organoids using an ASCL2-responsive minigene. Cell reports.
  3. Sato, T., Vries, R. G., Snippert, H. J., Van De Wetering, M., Barker, N., Stange, D. E., ... & Clevers, H. (2009). Single Lgr5 stem cells build crypt–villus structures in vitro without a mesenchymal niche. Nature, 459(7244), 262.
  4. Schepers, A. G., Snippert, H. J., Stange, D. E., van den Born, M., van Es, J. H., van de Wetering, M., & Clevers, H. (2012). Lineage tracing reveals Lgr5+ stem cell activity in mouse intestinal adenomas. Science, 337(6095), 730-735.
  5. Snippert, H. J., Van Der Flier, L. G., Sato, T., Van Es, J. H., Van Den Born, M., Kroon-Veenboer, C., ... & Clevers, H. (2010). Intestinal crypt homeostasis results from neutral competition between symmetrically dividing Lgr5 stem cells. Cell, 143(1), 134-144.
Contact Information
Hugo Snippert Oncode Investigator

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