Dr Barentsz is MD since 1980 and received his research PhD in 1990. He is a Professor of Radiology since 1998 and currently the Chair of the Radboudumc Prostate MR-Reference Center.

His research led to the implementation of    PI-RADS in 2012, which became the world-standard for prostate MRI. The '4M' paper from his group and other articles were the basis for the change of the European and Dutch prostate cancer guidelines. Now it is recommended to use prostate-MRI before a biopsy.

His work resulted also in the 'rebirth' of ferumoxtran-10 MRI, using dextran-coated iron nano-particles as an MRI-contrast agent to detect 2 mm lymph node micro-metastases. A marketing-approval trial in Germany, Switzerland and The Netherlands has started in early 2020.


Dr Barentsz' research focuses on the following aims: 

1. Implementation of PSA + prostate-MRI for early detection of prostate cancer. Use of artificial intelligence for quality control of prostate MR-image-acquisition and -interpretation.

2. Providing international virtual interactive, hands-on education to help radiologists to become prostate-MRI experts. To achieve this, he is also working to implement quality control through accreditation and certification, and he is estabishing an (inter)national prostate-MRI excellence network. 

3. Enable global marketing-approval of ferumoxtran-10 as MR-contrast agent and implement nano-MRI as guidance for focal radiotherapy to treat nodal micro-metastases.

He is a bit stubborn, when everybody goes right, he goes left when he thinks that that is the best way to go. He is determined in this choice, but is open to every good idea. E.g. urologists were opposed to the idea to use MRI to detect clinically significant prostate cancer. But, he never gave up. Now he is awarded by the European urologists with the '2020 EAU Innovators in Urology Award', and by invitation, he is Imaging Editor of the Executive Editorial Board of European Urology. In this latter position, he tries to promote imaging tools that help patients. To achieve these goals, he can be pretty impatient. But is due to his devotion and passion. He sometimes forgets that changes in medical health care can take quite some time. He is frequently consulted as a member of the Advisory Board of the Prostate Cancer Patient Society and helps many patients, even after-hours when they need his (imaging) support.

For this purpose, together with his colleague-experts, he founded the: Radboudumc Global Prostate (MRI) Expert Centre. In this centre patients can have the newest imaging techniques: mpMRI, bpMRI, nano-MRI, 18F- and 68Ga-PSMA PET-CT. Also, patients can have theranostics with Ac- or Lu-PSMA and MR-guided focal (radio)therapy treatments. They can consult experts of this centre with questions about prostate MRI, PET-CT, theranostics, and focal therapy.

He is the senior author of more than 300 papers, 7 in the last 2 years with a high-impact factor (>15). With this, he stimulated many enthusiastic young researchers to write excellent articles.


- Royal Decoration: Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion

- 2020 EAU Innovators in Urology Award

- Honorary Member Japanese Radiological Society (2019)

- Honorary Member Polish Medical Radiological Society (2019)

- Dutch Radiology Wertheim-Salomonson Medal

- SAR Lifetime Achievement Award

- Queen Wilhelmina Research Award (€2,000,000)

- Best Scientific Paper European Urology 2017

- 3x SCBTMR Lauterbur Award


He is very active on social media: he has more than 1200 expert-prostate followers on Twitter and more than 700 followers on LinkedIn.

He enjoys presenting and educating, see it yourself: "TEDx 2012 yes we scan". This was quite a provocative talk for urologists).

"I have dreams; I forget all the reasons they won't come true, and believe the one reason that they will." 

1. Global prostate cancer early detection using PSA + MRI

2. Universal approval and use of nano-(Ferrotran)-MRI

3. Global prostate-MRI cloud-network for Artificial Intelligence.


Honorary Membership Japanese Radiological Society, April 2019

Honorary Membership Polish Medical Society of Radiology, June 2019

Best Clinical Paper European Urology 2017

Dr. Barentsz is since 2019 in the Editorial Board of European Urology as Imaging Editor. 

Combidex-MRI detects small nodal metastases, and improves treatment

This video show the experience of 2 patients with prostate cancer and Combidex MRI

PI-RADS v2.1 paper (for download below)

PI-RADS v2.1

Full PI-RADS v2.1 paper by ACR PI-RADS Steering Committee


'4M' Study

4M Study: Prospective, multicenter, powered, comparative effectiveness study included 626 biopsy-naïve patients.

Drost et al 2019 Cochrane Review Prostate MRI

256 pages document: "A MUST for all of us who deal with Prostate Cancer!"

PI-RADS v2.1

ACR Steering Committee PI-RADS v2.1

PI-RADS v2 Update and Future Directions

PI-RADS Implementation Editorial


Synopsis PI-RADS v2

Ferrotran nano-MRI movie

This video shows the working mechanism of Ferrotran for nano-MRI