lab_members

Group leader


Prof. Dr. Jan Tavernier
Prof. Dr. Jan Tavernier

Jan Tavernier founded the CRL in 1996. He obtained his PhD in 1984 in the early days of recombinant DNA on the cloning of several interferon and interleukin genes. In the same year he moved to industry, first Biogen, later Roche, where he continued research on cytokines and cytokine receptors. He became full professor at Ghent University in 1996 and currently heads the CRL as part of the VIB Department of Medical Protein Research.

 


Staff scientists


Prof. Dr. Frank Peelman
Prof. Dr. Frank Peelman

After graduating as a biologist in 1993, Frank Peelman obtained his PhD in 1999 on the structure-function relationships of lecithin:cholesterolacyltransferase at the Biochemistry department of Ghent University. In 2002, he joined the CRL on a project investigating the properties of leptin binding to its receptor. In 2006 he became a full professor at Ghent University, and his current research focuses on the molecular dissection of protein-protein interactions by combining MAPPIT and molecular modeling.

 


Prof. Dr. Sven Eyckerman
Prof. Dr. Sven Eyckerman

Sven Eyckerman started his career in the group working on leptin receptor signaling and on the MAPPIT platform. After his PhD he went for a postdoc at ISREC in Lausanne where he worked on components of the Wnt pathway and their role in colon cancer. He then joined Pronota, a spin-off company of the department, to support and manage different biomarker discovery programs. He returned to the department to work on the interface between CRL and the proteomics group headed by Kris Gevaert (www.proteomics.be). He is now focusing on novel technologies for signal transduction research.


Prof. Dr. Karolien De Bosscher
Prof. Dr. Karolien De Bosscher

Karolien De Bosscher has a long-standing focus on nuclear receptors in the context of anti-inflammatory action mechanisms (GR, PPARs). She obtained her PhD at UGent on the molecular mechanisms of glucocorticoids in 2000, after which she went to Cancer Research UK in London with an EMBO long-term fellowship to study TGFβ-signaling pathways. From 2003 to 2010 she coordinated nuclear receptor research at the UGent LEGEST lab, supported by an FWO postdoctoral fellowship. In 2007, she won the PFIZER Prize and in 2012 she received not only the Prize of the Academy for Fundamental Research in Medicine but was also honored with the Belgian Endocrine Society Lecture Award, sponsored by NOVO NORDISK, for outstanding achievements in the field of endocrinology. She currently guides the Nuclear Receptor Signaling Unit at the UGent-VIB departments of biochemistry and medical protein research and holds a full professorship (BOF-ZAP) at the medicine faculty of UGent.


Prof. Dr. Sarah Gerlo
Prof. Dr. Sarah Gerlo

Sarah Gerlo obtained her PhD in 2005 at the Lab of Neuroendocrine Immune Interactions of the Free University of Brussels (VUB), with a study on the regulation of prolactin expression in leukocytes. After her PhD, she moved to Gent, where she obtained an FWO postdoctoral fellowhip at the UGent LEGEST lab to study molecular crosstalk between GPCR signals and the NF-κB cascade. Since the 1st of February 2011, Sarah has been appointed in a tenure track position at the CRL, where she will start a new research line on the connection between endoplasmic reticulum stress, inflammation and metabolic disease. This project is embedded within the framework of the UGent GROUP-ID (Ghent Researchers on Unfolded Proteins in Inflammatory Disease) consortium.


Postdoctoral researchers


Dr. Irma Lemmens
Dr. Irma Lemmens

Irma Lemmens graduated as a chemist with specialisms biochemistry and human genetics at the University of Nijmegen in 1995. In 2000 she obtained a PhD in Medical Science on the identification of the MEN1 gene by positional cloning and the characterization of its protein product menin by identifying binding partners using the yeast two-hybrid method, at the Center of Human Genetics of the University of Leuven. In 2000 she joined the CRL to participate in the development of the MAPPIT technology platform and the study of cytokine receptor signalisation. As an FWO funded post-doc she is currently involved in the validation of interactome maps (in close collaboration with the CCSB, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston) and the study of cytokine receptor signalling.

 


Dr. Lennart Zabeau
Dr. Lennart Zabeau

After finishing his biotechnology studies at Ghent University in 1998, Lennart Zabeau joined the CRL to study the mechanisms underlying cytokine receptor clustering and activation. He started to work on the interleukin-5 receptor, but later on the leptin receptor became his main research interest. He obtained a PhD in 2004. With an FWO fellowship he is currently involved in the design and evaluation of leptin and leptin receptor antagonists in vitro and in mouse models for certain autoimmune diseases.

 


Dr. Joris Wauman
Dr. Joris Wauman

After doing his undergraduate thesis at the CRL in the last year of his biomedical sciences studies, Joris Wauman stayed attached to the CRL to start an FWO-funded PhD in 2004 on leptin signalling and leptin resistance. He obtained his PhD in 2011.

 


Dr. Virginie Vauthier

Virginie Vauthier obtained her PhD in 2011 at the Paris XI University. During her PhD she studied endospanins, a new protein family interacting with the leptin receptor. She analyzed the effect of these proteins on leptin receptor functions, especially on leptin signaling pathways and in vivo on obesity and diabetes.
In March 2013 she joined the CRL through the VIB international postdoc program. Her project will be to define the interactome of leptin and MC4 receptors with using MAPPIT high-throughput screening techniques. This interactome analysis will provide new information about the protein machinery regulating intracellular trafficking of these two key receptors involved in the control of energy homeostasis.

 


Dr. Leentje De Ceuninck
Dr. Leentje De Ceuninck

Leentje De Ceuninck graduated in biomedical sciences at Ghent University in 2005 and started an FWO funded PhD at the CRL the same year. She is involved in the analysis of leptin receptor interacting proteins.

 


Predoctoral researchers


Sofie Desmet
Sofie Desmet

Sofie Desmet graduated in Biomedical Sciences at Ghent University in 2012 and joined the group of Prof. Karolien De Bosscher to start an FWO funded PhD. During this project she will study the transcriptional cross-talk between PPARα and other nuclear receptors.

 

 


Laurens Vyncke
Laurens Vyncke

Laurens Vyncke graduated in industrial engineering biochemistry at HOWEST in Kortrijk in 2012. His PhD project aims at gaining a better understanding of the TLR4 pathway, mainly by finding the interaction sites of the TLR4-MAL-MyD88 complex and the TLR4-TRAM-TRIF complex by using random mutagenesis and MAPPIT.

 

 


Tim Van Acker
Tim Van Acker

After graduating as Master in Biomedical Sciences (UGent, 2007), Tim Van Acker obtained an additional degree as Master in Molecular Biotechnology (UGent, 2008). In 2008, he started an IWT-funded PhD at the CRL investigating Toll-like Receptor and integrin signaling.

  • tel: +32 (0) 9 264 93 47

Nadia Bougarne

 

 

 


Krzysztof Kolmus
Krzysztof Kolmus

Krzysztof Kolmus graduated the Interfaculty Study of Biotechnology at the Warsaw University of Life Science in 2008. His thesis was focused on the characterization of the molecular interaction between secondary structures of polymerase DNA β mRNA and Hax-1, an RNA-binding protein. In 2008, he was awarded a BOF scholarship and joined group of Sarah Gerlo in LEGEST at the University of Gent to study nuclear crosstalk events between GPCR-mediated signals and the classical NF-kappaB cascade. In 2010, he obtained an FWO-scholarship and in 2011 moved together with Sarah Gerlo to CRL to study the connection between endoplasmic reticulum stress and inflammation.


Julie Deckers
Julie Deckers

Julie Deckers graduated in 2011 at KULeuven where she studied Biomedical Sciences. In August 2011, she joined the group of Prof. Dr. Karolien De Bosscher to start a PhD. During her project she will investigate the immune regulating role of PPAR- and GR-agonists in the house dust mite model of asthma through collaboration with the Department of Respiratory Diseases, under supervision of Prof. Dr. Hamida Hammad.


Delphine Masschaele
Delphine Masschaele

Delphine graduated in biomedical sciences at Ghent University in 2010. Her PhD project focuses on the function of the ring finger RNF41 on receptor signalling, degradation and shedding.


Eleonora Billi
Eleonora Billi

Eleonora Billi graduated in 2008 in Medical Biotechnology at the University of Perugia (Italy), with a thesis focused on the role of GILZ (glucocorticoid induced leucine-zipper) in the Raf/MEK/ERK signaling pathway. After a short period in the Department of Genetics of the Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham (UK), she moved to Belgium in 2009 to join the VIB international PhD program. Her project aims at finding and characterizing interaction partners of the family of delta- protocadherins in a collaboration between the CRL and the group of Prof. Frans Van Roy at the VIB/UGent Department for Molecular Biomedical Research.


Raffaele Mori
Raffaele Mori

After graduating in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology in 2008 at the University of Perugia (Italy), Raffaele Mori was enrolled at the Research Preparatory Course in Cell and Molecular Biology at the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology at the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm (Sweden) from September 2009 till July 2010. In that period he has been working on how nuclear actin and myosin mediate the crosstalk between RNA polymerase and chromatin structure modifications during gene transcription. From November 2010 on he joined the CRL as PhD student. He is involved in a project studying the JAK/STAT signaling pathway, particularly focusing on the mechanisms controlling the regulation of STAT3 transcription and the modulation of the protein's activity.


Ioanna Petta
Ioanna Petta

Ioanna Petta is a VIB International PhD student from Greece. She obtained a master degree in Biotechnology from the University of Patras in 2010. During her PhD she will be studying the identification and the functional analysis of molecular interaction partners of the Glucocorticoid Receptor in inflammation and cancer, through a collaboration between the Department for Molecular Biomedical Research (DMBR) and the CRL, under the supervision of Prof. C. Libert and Prof. J. Tavernier.


Dariusz Ratman
Dariusz Ratman

Dariusz Ratman did a master thesis on the interplay between estrogen receptor α and β at Wageningen University (The Netherlands) and graduated in Biotechnology at Warsaw University of Life Sciences in 2008. After a short internship in the R&D department of Procter&Gamble in Italy, he joinded the group of Karolien De Bosscher and obtained an IWT scholarship in 2009. His PhD project is focused on unraveling the molecular mechanism and cofactor proteins involved in the cross-talk between glucocorticoid- and PPAR-receptors in inflammation.


Kevin Titeca
Kevin Titeca

Kevin Titeca completed his master thesis at the UGent LEGEST lab. With an IWT scholarship he currently is developing new protein interaction technologies based on virus biology.


Technical staff


Felien Geldhof
Felien Geldhof

Felien Geldhof joined the CRL in 2013 after graduating as a bachelor in pharmaceutical / biological lab technician as well as a medical lab technician in 2012. She is mainly involved in an industrial project on therapeutic interference with protein-protein interactions.

 

 


Jonathan Thommis
Jonathan Thommis

Jonathan Thommis graduated as a Bachelor in Biomedical Lab Technology in 2009. After working for a year at the Centrum voor Moleculaire Diagnostiek at the Jessa Ziekenhuis in Hasselt, he moved to the city of Ghent. Before recently joining the group of Karolien De Bosscher at the Cytokine Receptor Lab, he worked for two years at the lab of LEGEST at the UGent. When not indulging in a small comic book addiction he likes to enjoy the small things in life with his friends.

 

 


Steffi De Rouck
Steffi De Rouck

Steffi De Rouck joined the CRL after obtaining a degree of Bachelor in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology in 2011. She is involved in supporting the MAPPIT-based large-scale interactomics projects.


Thomas Van Speybroeck
Thomas Van Speybroeck

Thomas Van Speybroeck graduated as a Bachelor in Biochemistry in 2011 and started his first job at the CRL. He is mainly involved in the drug discovery projects set up in the lab.


Lode De Cauwer
Lode De Cauwer

Lode De Cauwer started at CRL in September 2010. Before he has worked at the Department of Molecular Biomedical Research in the lab of Molecular Pathophysiology and Experimental Therapy led by Prof. Peter Brouckaert.

 


Anne-Sophie De Smet
Anne-Sophie De Smet

Anne-Sophie De Smet joined the CRL in 2005, after graduating as a lab technician. She is mainly supporting the various MAPPIT-based interactomics projects ongoing in the lab.

 


Annick Verhee
Annick Verhee

After getting a degree as a lab technician in 1989, Annick Verhee worked at Roche Research Ghent for 7 years. She joined the CRL at its startup in 1996. She is involved in many different projects ongoing at the CRL, currently focusing on the application of MAPPIT in a collaboration project on virology.

 


José Van der Heyden
José Van der Heyden

José Van der Heyden's carreer started in 1972 as a technician in the laboratory of Molecular Biology headed by Walter Fiers at Ghent University. He moved to Biogen (later Roche) in 1981. In 1998, he joined the CRL. From 2003 until 2006 he stayed in Montpellier (France) at the Département Défenses Antivirales et Antitumorales of the CNRS.

 


Dominiek Catteeuw
Dominiek Catteeuw

Dominiek Catteeuw obtained his degree as a lab technician in 2001 and started working at the CRL the same year. Currently, he mainly supports the research programs on leptin and leptin receptor antagonism.

 


Nele Vanderroost
Nele Vanderroost

Nele Vanderroost obtained a technical bachelor in biotechnology in 2005 and joined the CRL the same year. She supports the development of the MAPPIT technology platform.

 


Elien Ruyssinck
Elien Ruyssinck

Elien Ruyssinck joined the CRL after graduating as a technical bachelor in biomedical sciences in 2008. She is mainly involved in supporting the development of the MAPPIT platform.

  • tel: +32 (0) 9 264 93 19

Dieter Defever
Dieter Defever

Dieter Defever graduated in 2001. He gained experience in several labs at Ghent University both at the Faculty of Medicine (Prof. Anne De Paepe), the Veterinary Faculty (Prof. Hans Nauwynck) and the Faculty of Sciences (the VIB team of Dr. Chris Marine). He joined the CRL in 2009 where he is mainly involved in expanding the MAPPIT platform.


Previous members of CRL


Mieke Delvaeye - inspector blood & human body material at FAGG (Brussels)

Celia Bovijn - post-doc at the University of California (San Francisco, US)

Dany Broekaert - professor at the Department of Medical Protein Research of Ghent University/VIB, retired

Jennyfer Bultinck - scenior scientist at Oxyrane (Ghent)

Delphine Defeau - lab technician, left the science field

Gertie De Neve - lab technician, left the science field

Viola Gesellchen - scientist at Complix (Ghent)

Laura Icardi - post-doc at Ospedale San Raffaele (Milan, Italy)

Hannes Iserentant - invention analyst at VIB (Ghent)

Delphine Lavens - R&D manager at Biover-Omega Pharma (Nazareth)

Sam Lievens - principal scientist at Orionis Biosciences (Ghent)

Margarida Maia - scientific editor at Cactus Communications (Porto, Portugal)

Tony Montoye - marketing manager at Trinean (Ghent)

Els Pattyn - clinical programmer at Ablynx (Ghent)

Julie Piessevaux - associate manager medical affairs at Gilead Sciences (Diegem)

Sylvie Seeuws - associate project manager at BARC Global Central Laboratory (Ghent)

Liesbeth Schauvliege - oncologist at the City Hospital of Roeselare

Peter Ulrichts - principal scientist at arGEN-X (Ghent)

Isabel Uyttendaele - site compliance network member at Pfizer (Puurs)

Veronique Vandevoorde - staff employee at the Department for Molecular Biomedical Research of Ghent University/VIB

Xaveer Van Ostade - professor at the department of Biomedical Sciences of the University of Antwerp

Els Vertenten - lab technician at Ablynx (Ghent)

Wim Waelput - pathologist at the University Hospital of Antwerp