I’ve always been fascinated by animals, even the tiniest ones. I remember as a kid, I used to catch flies, bees, butterflies and other arthropods, just to watch them move and to see what they were up to. I guess that’s where it all went wrong…
After my bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology in Belgium, I went to the UK to finish my master in Molecular Biology of Parasites and Disease Vectors at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, where I gained a breadth of knowledge in vector borne diseases and vector biology.
My PhD project focusses on vector competence studies of Culex pipiens and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes in changing scenario’s in the Netherlands. Therefore, I will have a closer look at the effect of different climate conditions on these mosquito species and their ability to transmit (for the Netherlands) important arboviruses, such as Usutu virus, West Nile virus, Japanese Encephalitis virus, Yellow Fever virus and Dengue virus.
Since I not only work with mosquitoes but also with viruses, I work in close collaboration with the Laboratory of Virology group at the Wageningen University and Research.