Iris van de Sandt obtained her masters in Bio-Pharmaceutical Sciences, specialization Drug & Target Discovery, at Leiden University. During her masters she did a major research internship (9 months) at the Leiden Academic Center for Drug Research (LACDR) in the group of Prof. dr. Bob van de Water. For her minor research internship, she stayed in the lab of Dr. Fiona Pixley at the University of Western Australia for six months. During these internships, which both focused on metastasis formation in breast cancer, her interest in cancer biology and the tumor microenvironment was sparked.
In September 2018 Iris joined the Den Boer group as a PhD student. Under supervision of Prof. Monique den Boer and Dr. Cesca van de Ven, Iris focuses her research on the effect of the hypoxic bone marrow microenvironment on B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (BCP-ALL). Iris characterizes the alterations that occur in BCP-ALL cells in response to hypoxia and whether these alterations alter the sensitivity to (chemo)therapy and the interaction of leukemic cells with mesenchymal stromal cells.