Prof. dr. F. Van Immerseel

Filip Van Immerseel received a Master in Bio-engineering Sciences at the Catholic University of Leuven (KUL) in 1999, and a Master in Laboratory Animal Sciences at Ghent University in 2004. He received a PhD in Veterinary Medical Sciences at Ghent University in 2004, studying intestinal immune cell infiltration after Salmonella infection of chickens, and environmental triggers in the gut that influence Salmonella invasion. After a post-doc period, he was appointed as Research Professor by Ghent University in 2008. Currently he is Professor at the Department of Pathobiology, Pharmacology and Zoological Medicine of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at Ghent University in Belgium and is head of a research group that studies host-bacterium interactions. Filip Van Immerseel currently has more than 240 scientific papers in international peer-reviewed journals, has written book chapters and edited books on Salmonella and Clostridium perfringens and is a well-known speaker at international events. He is editor of the journal Avian Pathology and involved in many international collaborative research networks. He also holds a dozen of patents and is involved in valorization activities to bring novel developments to the market.

The research group of Filip Van Immerseel currently focuses on different topics, being:

  • Mechanisms of oviduct colonization and egg contamination by Salmonella Enteritidis, and intestinal colonization by Salmonella
  • Pathogenesis of diseases caused by Clostridium perfringens in cattle, poultry and pigs
  • Microbiota and how this influences disease resistance and performance, including microbial modulation to improve gut health
  • Dysbiosis in production animals and effects of dietary factors that steer the gut microbiota composition towards a healthy gut ecosystem
  • Biomarkers for intestinal health

The general approach

The general approach is always to study host-pathogen or host-bacterium interactions and to collect scientific data on mechanisms of a) the pathogenesis of diseases or b) the protective effects of bacterial strains and bacterial metabolites on gut homeostasis. These data can then be used for rational development of control measures to control pathogen colonization or intestinal disease, including vaccines, feed additives and diagnostic tools.