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i am leading the Preclinical effort for thhbv, malaria and hiv-1 at gsk Vaccines. past research pursuits include anti-picornaviral and hiv elimination endeavors as groupleader (at the rega institute) and senior Scientist (at janssen Pharmaceuticals) respectively. as Postdoctoral Research associate i was co-leading multi-institutional and -disciplinary teams aimed at understanding the complex hiv-1 entry process (cornell University, yale University and columbia University) and creating new promising hiv vaccine platforms (rockefeller University and University of leiden). the combination of this scientific expertise and command of several languages (dutch, French, en- glish and italian) allowed me to thrive in international academic and industry settings. finally, all necessary project and people management skills were acquired while assuming roles with increasing responsibility over the years. specialties: vaccine design and development, viral Immunology and Molecular Virology & Biology work experience in academic as well as industry setting job expertise : early Discovery development Preclinical (In Vivo and In Vitro pharmacology) translational science external r&d and Innovation assets/capabilities : people management Project Management skills negotiating skills Analytical Skills bringing people together (facilitator) patience social skills big picture with an eye for detail (broad scientific background in virology/Immunology and vaccinology) curiosity, passion, creativity and imagination able to work in multicultural/multidisciplinary and international settings in industry and academia knowledge of different languages (dutch, French, English and italian)


Current Experience

  • preclinical lab head HIV-1/malaria and tHBV vaccines

    Since November 2013

Past Experience

  • senior scientist/Picornavirology Group Leader

    June 2013 --- October 2013
    - managing a dozen Research-oriented projects - acting as a liaison with Medicinal Chemistry groups - leading a relatively small group of Virology experts in identifying new and potent antivirals with a new mode of action against entero- and rhinoviruses - creating and fostering collaborations with academic institutions and small biotech

  • Senior Scientist

    January 2012 --- January 2013
    i am a highly motivated and creative Discovery senior Scientist working at janssen Infectious diseases bvba, johnson & johnson. i am currently : - exploring novel anti-tb targets - establishing of a cellular high-throughput counter screen assay for hiv-1 latency - developing of a highly complex ex vivo reactivation assay for hiv-1 latency - evaluating scientically unexplored targets to diversify the Discovery pipeline - Training and mentoring of technical staff and leveraging expertise - identifying novel technologies as a Member of the assay technology scouting team

  • Junior Scientist

    July 2006 --- December 2011
    design hiv vaccine platforms. i was able to create viral like particles expressing an immunostimulatory Molecule capable of enhancing the overall immune response. i was also able to create chimeric yellow fever viruses expressing hiv antigens. these vectors could, if successful, be used as new vaccine candidates in combatting aids

  • Wetenschappelijk medewerker

    January 2006 --- January 2011

  • research support specialist and PhD student

    January 2001 --- January 2006


Self Assessment :
Analytical thinkingAdaptabilityApproachabilityAttention to detailCollaborationCommunicativeCoordinationCreative thinkingCritical thinkingCuriosityEfficiencyFlexibilityIndependenceInnovative thinkingIndividualityInterest in knowledgeKindnessOptimismPerspectiveProactivityProblem solvingResult OrientedSelf-disciplineSociabilityStrategic thinkingWillingness to compromise


LinkedIn Assessment :
molecular biologyVirologyVaccinesImmunologypicornavirologyretrovirologyflavivirologyBiochemistryMonoclonal AntibodiesBioengineeringProtein Expressionprotein modelingCellIn VitroIn VivoDrug DiscoveryProtein chemistryELISAAssay developmentInfectious diseasesHigh Throughput ScreeningAntibodiesDNAFACSBiotechnologyCell biologyLifesciencesRT-PCRPCRFlow CytometryCell CultureAnimal ModelsProtein PurificationDrug DeliveryBiomarker DiscoveryTransfectionWestern BlottingBiomarkersImmunoassaysqPCRDrug DevelopmentTissue CultureImmunohistochemistryPurificationpharmacologyElispotSDS-PAGETranslational ResearchMolecular CloningRNA isolation

Skills and Expertise

Self Assessment :
Analytical skills Interpret data Receptor Pharmacology Technology research Use a confocal microscopy Write papers Write protocolsAttend steering committee Analyze dataAdvise on strategyAttend investigator meetingAttend seminars, courses and meetings within and outside the companyAttend seminarsbudgeting of R&D activitiescollaborate in research projects at universitiesCollaborate with medical teamCollaborate with PI and institution to respond to any audit findings and implement-approved recommendations.Communicate effectively on different company levelsCommunicate with investigatorCommunicate with sponsorCommunicationConduct literature searchesConduct research at universitiesCoordinate projectsCoordinate with the ethics commiteecoordinating research projectsCreates a collaborative team environmentDesign protocolsDesign scientific experimentsDesign scientific projects (in biology)Design studyDirect co-workersEstablish professional relationships with partnersEthics committee submissionsExecute scientific projectsFollow up projectsFollow up training programsGuide students


  • in from Utrecht University in 2015
  • in from Rockefeller University in 2011
  • Certificate Program in Clinical and Translational Science in from Rockefeller University in 2011
  • in from University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2007
  • PhD in molecular genetics and microbiology from Stony Brook University in 2006
  • Bachelor and Master's degree in pharmaceutical sciences from Vrije Universiteit Brussel in 2000
  • Bachelor's degree in clinical chemistry from Katholieke Hogeschool Leuven in 1995

Training and Certification

  • Developing Executive Presence in 0000 Certification
  • Leadership Fundamentals in 0000 Certification


BrightOwl Assessment:
Self Assessment:
Full Proficiency
Elementary Proficiency

Work Preferences

  • Notice Period:
    12 weeks
  • Positions I am interested in:
    R&D Director Study director Associate Director - Head of Preclinical Immunology - Bacterial Vaccines Associate Director Clinical Operations
  • Work From Home:
    Yes, 0 to 2 days per week
  • Work Regime:
    Permanent position :    80-100% FTE
  • International:

Area / Region

Leuven, Belgium


Driving License
  • Yes

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