VIB Metabolomics Core, UGent, BE


In 2000 I joined the research group of Prof. Wout Boerjan (Bio-energy and Bio-aromatics) at the Center for Plant Systems Biology. As an Engineer in Biochemistry (Master level) I was introduced in phenolic profiling of plants for several research projects. The main techniques involved were High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) and Mass Spectrometry (MS). As MS technology evolved fast, I further specialized in Ultra Performance Liquid Chromatography (UPLC) combined with Q-TOF based High Resolution Mass Spectrometry (HRMS) and statistical data analysis, and gradually evolved to a mass spectrometry expert. Due to the high demand for metabolic profiling, the development of a high throughput pipeline for untargeted metabolomics became a necessity, as well as the need for compound purification and identification of unknown metabolites. While doing so, I also engaged in the construction of an in-house library containing high value spectral information of secondary metabolites. Early 2016, the start-up of the Metabolomics Core Ghent (MCG) was realized, and one of my main responsibilities was the implementation of a new state-of-the-art Ion Mobility HRMS system and an LC-MS based Autopurification System for high throughput compound purification. In July 2018 I became an independent Expert Technologist (PI) at VIB and Im now heading the VIB-MCG. Besides managing responsibilities and following up on new collaborations, my major focus is on improving and further expanding the services of the MCG by the implementation of the latest technology, but also by the introduction of new and better software tools for data processing, compound identification and statistical analysis.