E.R. (Ron) de Kloet

Academy professor of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, 

(em) professor of Medical Pharmacology

LACDR / LUMC, Leiden University 



Ron de Kloet is known for his discoveries in the science of stress and the brain.

For half a century I am fascinated by the question how stress hormones, that are critical for life, can change their action in the brain from protective to harmful, while enhancing vulnerability to stress-related disorders. We demonstrated that this switch from a resilient to a vulnerable brain depends on the balance between activation and suppression of stress reactions which is under control of one single hormone: cortisol. This discovery has provided leads towards biomarkers and a novel treatment strategy of stress-related mental disorders aimed to promote a mechanism of resilience still present in the diseased brain.

The results have been published in more than 600 scientific articles. My research received international recognition by the Geoffrey Harris Award of the European Federation of Endocrine Societies (2005), the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Award (2007), and the Lifetime Achievement Award of the International Society of Psychoneuroendocrinology (2008) and the Golden Emil Kraepelin Medal (2014) for the impact of our basic research on the diagnosis and treatment of depression.  August 25, 2010 the Queen of The Netherlands has been pleased to appoint me Knight of the Order of the Dutch Lion.

From 1990 I was professor of Medical Pharmacology at Leiden University/Medical  Centern, reaching recently the emeritus status. The Department of Medical Pharmacology at the Leiden Academic Center for Drug Research with an outstanding research group )*  skilled in experiments from gene to behaviour with a translational perspective for application in drug development and medicine . From 2004 I am appointed Academy Professor of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences at the LACDR, Leiden University and the Department of Endocrinology & Metabolism, LUMC.

Key publications

  • De Kloet ER (2014) From Receptor Balance to Rational Glucocorticoid Therapy. Endocrinology 155: 2754-2769.

  • De Kloet ER; Joëls M; Holsboer F (2005) Stress and the brain: From adaptation to disease Nature Reviews Neuroscience 6: 6, 463-475.

  • De Kloet ER, Oitzl MS; Joëls M  (1999) Stress and cognition: are corticosteroids good or bad guys?  Trends in Neurosciences 22: 10, 422-426

Spin-out:  Dynacorts Therapeutics BV          <http://www.dynacorts.com>

Publication record:                                         <http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=Eao7yZIAAAAJ>


)* Department of Medical Pharmacology              <http://medicalpharmacology.leidenuniv.nl>

The site contains a description of the history of Pharmacology in The Netherlands & Leiden by Erik L. Noach and includes the publication record of the Leiden Department of Medical Pharmacology (1904 - 2014) containing more than 2000 titles. The last professors/chairs were  Samuel de Jong (1898-1976), Eric Noach (1921-2008) & Peter van Rees(1928-2012) and finally Ron de Kloe (1944- ). The Leiden signature always has been in the endocrinology and neurosciences.  For curiosity also the research agenda, list of personnel and alumni is given as of 2012. With courtesy of Wout Meelis who kept the site up to date until 2014.

Contact:    <erdekloet@gmail.com>  e.kloet@lacdr.leidenuniv.nl> E.R.de_Kloet.ENDO@lumc.nl