Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KU Leuven)

The University of Leuven (KU Leuven) is the largest university in Belgium with 40.000 students, 1000 professors, a research budget of 365 million Euro, 625 doctoral degrees per year, and 98 spin-off companies. With 2000 beds and 8000 employees, the University Hospital of the KU Leuven is one of the major teaching hospitals in Europe. At the Laboratory of Clinical and Epidemiological Virology, four BSL-2, two BSL-3 laboratories, and a state-of-the-art molecular diagnostics laboratory are available. The KU Leuven hosts a sequencing core facility with ABI 9700 machines for Sanger sequencing, a Solid-system and different MiSeq Illumina-systems for next generation sequencing.

Web page: www.kuleuven.be/english

Key publications

  • Snoeck R., Van Ranst M., Andrei G., De Wit S., Poncin M., Clumeck N., and De Clercq E. Treatment of anogenital papillomavirus infections with an acyclic nucleoside phosphonate analogue. New England Journal of Medicine, 33:943-944, 1995.
  • Van Assche G., Van Ranst M., Sciot R., Dubois B., Vermeire S., Noman M., Verbeeck J., Geboes K., Robberecht W., and Rutgeerts P. Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy after natalizumab therapy for Crohn’s disease. New England Journal of Medicine, 353:362-368, 2005.
  • Meersseman W. Van Laethem K., Lagrou K., Wilms G., Sciot R., Van Ranst M., Vandamme A.M., Van Wijngaerden E. Fatal brain necrosis in primary HIV infection. The Lancet, 366:866, 2005.
  • Pitzer VE, Bilcke J, Heylen E, Crawford FW, Callens M, De Smet F, Van Ranst M, Zeller M, Matthijnssens J. Did Large-Scale Vaccination Drive Changes in the Circulating Rotavirus Population in Belgium? Sci Rep. 2015 Dec 21;5:18585

Staff involved in HONOURs

Prof dr. Marc Van Ranst, MD

       Marc Van Ranst_VIB_syringe

Prof dr. Marc Van Ranst, MD (WP6-leader) has its expertise in clinical virology, molecular laboratory diagnosis, molecular evolution and epidemiology, infectious disease outbreak management, science communication. Marc Van Ranst is chairman of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology of the University of Leuven. At the University Hospital he is director of the clinical department of laboratory medicine, and heads the clinical virology laboratory, the AIDS reference laboratory, and several national reference laboratories. Since 2007 he is responsible on the federal governmental level for influenza pandemic preparedness planning in Belgium, and he was responsible as interministerial commissary for the Belgian crisis-management during the Mexican flu pandemic in 2009-2010. Marc van Ranst will guide ESR-2 and ESR-15.


Host switching pathogens, infectious outbreaks and zoonosis; a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network.

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 721367.