Meet the faces behind the science

The Diether Lambrechts Lab can only thrive thanks to the dedication and commitment of its people, no matter what their function or seniority. Meet the team members who contributed to our breakthrough science.



Lab members

  • Hui Zhao, Post-Doc (2011-2019; FWO funding); First authorship in Elife. 2014 Aug 1;3:e02725. Current position: Senior Bioinformatics Analyst position in Cancer Research UK.
  • Flora d'Anna, PhD (2014-2018): ‘The Two-Way Interaction Between Tumour Hypoxia And DNA Methylation’; Shared first authorship in Nature. 2016 Sep 1;537(7618):63-68. Current position: Research Data Manager at ELIXIR.
  • Xiaowen Chen (Feb 2018): ‘The Role of Mevalonate Metabolism and Blood Flow in Developmental Angiogenesis’.
  • Bernard Thienpont, Post-Doc (2012-2017; FWO-funding). First authorship in Nature. 2016 Sep 1;537(7618):63-68. Current position: Professor Laboratory for Functional Epigenetics; Department of Human Genetics
  • Dominiek Smeets, PhD (2009-2019): ‘Tumor heterogeneity in relapsed or metastatic breast, ovarian and colorectal cancer’; First authorship in Nat Commun. 2018 Oct 5;9(1):4112. Current position: Field Application Scientist at Illumina. 
  • Jeroen Depreeuw, PhD (2013-2017): ‘New molecular insights based on genetic alterations in gynecological cancers’; First authorship in Clin Cancer Res. 2017 Dec 1;23(23):7232-7241. Current position: data scientist at Biocartis.
  • Els Wauters (Dec 2015; FWO funding): ‘Exploring the common genetic and epigenetic basis for COPD, emphysema and lung cancer’; First authorship in Eur. Heart J. 2013 Apr;34(13):993-1001. Current position: Staff member UZ Leuven, pneumo-oncologist and assistant professor KU Leuven.
  • Matthieu Moisse, PhD (Nov 2015; FWO funding); ‘Next generation sequencing: a tool to reveal the genetic origin of human diseases’; First authorship in Human Molecular Genetics 1;21(11):2412-9; 2012. Current position: post-doc KU Leuven.
  • Betül Tuba Yesilyurt, PhD (2008-2013); ‘Functional validation of recurrent mutations in microsatellite instable endometrial tumors’.
  • Bart Claes, PhD (2008-2012; IWT funding): ‘Identification and functional study of a VEGFR-1 locus predicting bevacizumab treatment outcome’; First authorship in Lancet Oncology, 13(7)724-33, 2012. Current position: Project manager R&D at Biocartis, Mechelen, Belgium. 
  • Joke Reumers, Post-Doc (2009-2012; FWO funding); ‘A pipeline for the analysis of full cancer genomes’; First authorship in Nature Biotechnology, 30(1)61-8, 2011. Current position: Team Lead Computational Biology at Janssen Pharmaceutics, J&J, Beerse, Belgium.
  • Joke Dhondt, PhD (2007-2011; IWT funding); ‘The protective effect of VEGF-B and its receptor FLT1 in peripheral neuropathy’; First authorship in the FASEB J, 25(5)1461-73, 2011. Current position: Sr Site Management Coordinator at IQVIA.
  • An Verheyen, PhD (2007-2011; IWT funding); ‘The role of VEGF in paclitaxel - induced peripheral neuropathy’ ‘; First authorship in Brain, 135 (Pt 9): 2629-41, 2012. Current position: Senior Medical Writer at Janssen Pharmaceutics, J&J, Beerse, Belgium 
  • Ian Buysschaert, PhD (2006-2010; IWT funding); ‘Phenotypic Dissection of the Chromosome 9p21.3 Locus in Atherosclerosis and Ischemic Heart Disease’; First authorship in Eur Heart J, 31(9)1132-41, 2010. Current position: cardiologist in UZA, Antwerp, Belgium.

Alumni PhD students (Co-promotor)

  • Adriaan Vanderstichele (Jan 2019): ‘Liquid biopsies in ovarian cancer: clinical applications of cell-free DNA analysis’; First authorship in Clin Cancer Res. 2017 May 1;23(9):2223-2231. Current position: Staff member UZ Leuven, Gynaecologist-Oncologist. 
  • Line Heylen (Sept 2017): ‘Ischemia in kidney transplantation: clinical risk factor and epigenetic modifier’; First authorship in Kidney Int. 2019 Nov;96(5):1195-1204. Current position: nephrologist at ZOL Hospital Genk, Belgium. 
  • Michael Olvedy (Jun 2017): ‘Integrative and comparative genomics identifies novel melanoma tumor-suppressor genes’; First authorship in J Clin Invest. 2017 Jun 1;127(6):2310-2325. Current position: Junior Policy Officer - Blue Book trainee at ERCEA.
  • Tine Cuppens (Jun 2017): ‘Identification of novel potential therapeutic targets in uterine sarcomas - From human sample analysis to preclinical validation’; First authorship in Int J Cancer. 2018 Mar 15;142(6):1230-1243. Current position: Medical Science Liaison Oncology at AstraZenica. 
  • Barbara Brouwers (Jun 2016): ‘Study on tumor biology and the aging effect of chemotherapeutic treatment in older breast cancer patients’; First authorship in Breast Cancer Res. 2017 Jul 3;19(1):78. Current position: oncologist AZ Sint-Jan Hospital, Bruges, Belgium. 
  • Evelyn Despierre (Dec 2015): ‘Role of genomic alterations as prognostic and predictive factors in epithelial ovarian cancer’; First authorship in Target Oncol. 2015 Dec;10(4):583-96. Current position: gynaecologist at OLV Hospital Aalst, Belgium. 
  • Sandrina Lambrechts (Nov 2015): ‘Genetic alterations guiding ovarian cancer therapy’; First authorship in Eur J Cancer. 2016 Jan;53:51-64. Current position: gynaecologist-oncologist at Maastricht UMC+. 
  • Stefanie Schrauwen (Apr 2015): ‘Establishment of preclinical endometrial carcinoma models and evaluation of new treatment options’; First authorship in Gynecol Oncol. 2015 Jul;138(1):165-73. Current position: Protocol Manager at Bristol-Myers Squibb. 
  • Diego Andrés García Dios (Jun 2013): ‘Somatic mutations and copy number alterations as prognostic markers for primary endometrial cancer’; First authorship in Gynecol Oncol. 2013 Feb;128(2):327-34.