Michael M. Welling, Ph.D.

Michael Welling, Ph.D.

Department of Radiology, Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC), Leiden,  The Netherlands

  • Biography
  • Research Interests
  • Publications

Dr. Mick Welling graduated with a B.Sc. from the HLO Van Leeuwenhoek Institute Delft in 1984, he worked for 13 years at the Gaubius Institute-TNO and the Nuclear Medicine Department of the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC). In this context, he worked on the development of molecular imaging tracers for imaging vascular diseases and bacterial infections. In 1997, he obtained his Ph.D. degree at the University of Leiden and continued his research in molecular imaging as a postdoctoral fellow at the Radiology department of the LUMC. In 2009, he moved to the LUMC neuro-imaging group where he developed tracers for imaging of neuro-inflammatory diseases. To fulfil his interest in the design of specific hybrid tracers and multimodality imaging in 2013 he joined the Interventional Molecular Imaging laboratory (LUMC) as a PI, where he dedicates his efforts in the development of hybrid tracers for the specific imaging of bacterial infections designed for various clinical settings including orthopaedics, surgery, and the CNS. In the latter case he is highly committed to the development of tracers to image brain infections and studying the relation to early developments in AD, where he combines his experience in tracer development and molecular imaging of (neuronal) infections, tumours, and neurological networks.


Selection of publications:

Infection imaging

  1. Welling MM, Hiemstra PS, van den Barselaar MT, Paulusma-Annema A, Nibbering PH, Pauwels EKJ, and Calame W. Antibacterial activity of human neutrophil defensins in experimental infections in mice is accompanied by increased leukocyte accumulation. J Clin Invest. 1998. 102: 1583-1590.
  2. Welling MM, Nibbering PH, Paulusma-Annema A, Hiemstra PS, Pauwels EKJ, and Calame W. Imaging of bacterial infections with 99mTc-labeled human neutrophil peptide-1. J Nucl Med. 1999. 40: 2073-2080.
  3. Welling MM, Paulusma-Annema A, Balter HS, Pauwels EKJ, and Nibbering PH. Technetium-99m labelled antimicrobial peptides discriminate between bacterial infections and sterile inflammations. Eur J Nucl Med. 2000. 27: 292-301.
  4. Welling MM, Lupetti A, Balter HS, Lanzzeri S, Souto B, Rey AM, Savio EO, Paulusma-Annema A, Pauwels EKJ, and Nibbering PH. 99mTc-labeled antimicrobial peptides for detection of bacterial and Candida albicans infections. J Nucl Med. 2001. 42: 788-794.
  5. Van Berkel PH, Welling MM, Geerts M, van Veen HA, Ravensbergen B, Salaheddine M, Pauwels EKJ, Pieper F, Nuijens JH, and Nibbering PH. Large scale production of recombinant human lactoferrin in the milk of transgenic cows. Nat Biotechnol. 2002. 20: 484-487.
  6. Welling MM, Visentin R, Feitsma RIJ., Lupetti A, Pauwels EKJ., and Nibbering PH. Infection detection in mice using 99mTc-labelled HYNIC or N2S2– chelate conjugated to the antimicrobial peptide UBI 29-41. Nucl Med Biol. 2004. 31: 503-509. (IF 2.5)
  7. Welling MM, Brouwer CPJM, van ’t Hof W, Veerman ECI, Nieuw Amerongen AV. Histatin-derived monomeric and dimeric synthetic peptides show strong bactericidal activity towards (multi-drug resistant) Staphylococcus aureus. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2007. 51: 3416-3419. (IF 4.6)
  8. Brouwer CPJM, Welling MM. Scintigraphy with 99mTc-labeled lactoferrin antimicrobial peptide hLF 1-11 enables after various routes of administration monitoring and effective killing of multidrug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections in mice. Peptides. 2008. 29: 1190-1117. (IF 2.5)

Alzheimer imaging research

  1. Rob J. A. Nabuurs, Kim S. Rutgers, Mick M. Welling, Athanasios Metaxas, Maaike E. de Backer, Maarten Rotman, Brian J. Bacskai, Mark A. van Buchem, Silvère M. van der Maarel, Louise van der Weerd. In vivo detection of amyloid-b deposits using heavy chain antibody fragments in a transgenic mouse model for Alzheimer’s disease. PlosOne 2012; 7(6):e38284.
  2. Rob J.A. Nabuurs, Varsha V. Kapoerchan, Athanasios Metaxas, Sanne de Jongh, Maaike de Backer, Mick M. Welling, Wim Jiskoot, Albert D. Windhorst, Herman S. Overkleeft, Mark A. van Buchem, Mark Overhand, Louise van der Weerd. Polyfluorinated bis-styrylbenzene β-amyloid plaque binding ligands. Bioorg Med Chem 2014, 22;2469-2481.
  3. Mick M. Welling, Rob J. A. Nabuurs, Louise van der Weerd. Pathogens in chronic brain infections and amyloid deposits as a potential target for detecting early events in Alzheimer’s disease. Perspective In press in: Alzheimer’s & Dementia.


  1. Lupetti A, Nibbering PH, Welling MM, and Pauwels EKJ. Radiopharmaceuticals: new antimicrobial agents. Trends Biotechnol. 2003. 21: 70-73.
  2. Lupetti A, Welling MM, Pauwels EKJ, and Nibbering PH. Radiolabelled antimicrobial peptides for infection detection. The Lancet Infectious Diseases 2003. 3: 223-229.
  3. Brouwer CPJM, Wulferink M, Welling MM. The pharmacology of radiolabeled cationic antimicrobial peptides for specific targeting of infections. J Pharm Sci. 2008. 97: 1633-1651.
  4. Filip Gemmel, Nicolas Dumarey, Mick Welling. Future Diagnostic Agents. Semin Nucl Med. 2009; 39: 11-26.
  5. Carlo P.J.M. Brouwer, Mahfuzur Rahman, Mick M. Welling. Discovery and development of a synthetic peptide derived from lactoferrin for clinical use. Peptides 2011. 32:1953-1963.
  6. Filip Gemmel, Charito Love, M.M. Welling, Paul Gemmel, and Christopher J. Palestro. Prosthetic Joint Infections: Radionuclide state-of-the-art imaging. Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging 2012; 39:892–909.
  7. Bunschoten A, Welling MM, Termaat MF, Sathekge M, van Leeuwen FW. Development and prospects of dedicated tracers for the (molecular) imaging of bacterial infections. Bioconjugate Chem 2013, 24;1971-1989.