MD, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Antwerp. Until 2014, Prof Colebunders was Head the Clinical HIV/STD Unit at the Antwerp Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM). He worked in Algeria (1974-76, primary health care and public Health), the Democratic of Congo (1985-87, Kinshasa, Projet SIDA), US (1988, CDC, Atlanta) and Uganda (2003-4, Infectious Diseases Institute, Makerere University). His main expertise and research interest is in HIV, tuberculosis and hemorrhagic fever. He initiated the international network for the study of HIV related immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (INSHI). He was a member of the international team that investigated the Kikwit Ebola and the Durba Marburg outbreak. During his career, Prof Colebunders published over 500 articles in peer-reviewed journals. Currently, his academic focus is on research to identify the cause of the nodding syndrome and river epilepsy in onchocerciasis endemic regions.
Jean-Pierre Van geertruyden
MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Antwerp. Prof Van geertruyden has worked over a decade as a clinician and manager in humanitarian and disease control projects of the World Health Organization and Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), mainly in Sub Saharan Africa. His academic career started at ITM Antwerp in 2003, where he was involved in malaria and HIV research. Since 2009, he works at the University of Antwerp where he mainly works on malaria and human papilloma virus (HPV) research. His main expertise lies in operational research, capacity building for global health research, designing and implementing quantitative research, and conducting clinical trials in resource limited settings.
Annelies Van Rie
MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Antwerp, and Professor, Department of Epidemiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prof Van Rie obtained her PhD at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa. She has worked for almost 20 years on clinical, epidemiological and molecular epidemiological research of tuberculosis, with an emphasis on tuberculosis in Sub-Saharan Africa, the link between TB and HIV, and drug resistant tuberculosis. Her research has resulted in 150 articles published in peer reviewed journals. She has vast expertise in infectious disease epidemiology methods, capacity building in resource limited countries, translational research, and design of implementation research.
Prof. Infectious diseases, Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Antwerp. Head of Infectious diseases and Tropical Medicine at UZA. Her main interests include the epidemiology of antibiotic resistance and other emerging infectious diseases problems, and the development of contextualised and effective interventions to contain these problems, with a particular focus on low resources settings. During the 2014-2015 Ebola crisis, Erika acted as the National coordinator for Ebola preparedness in Belgium, setting up and implementing multi-sector guidelines for the response to potentially infected persons within the country. This experience gave her a unique experience in the multiple aspects of emergency preparedness at national level. In the aftermath of this large epidemic, Erika realised there is a broad interface in the preparedness for acute epidemics e.g. viral haemorrhagic fever and those for slow and silent epidemics such as antibiotic resistance. Common denominators include the improvement of medical education and the diagnostic capacity (which both may increase awareness) and the improvement of infections control practices in health care settings around the world, which is the single key intervention to avoid or control nosocomial multiplication of emerging infectious diseases problems. These three aspects remain therefore the core of her scientific interest.
Steven Abrams (PhD) is a professor at the department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine of the University of Antwerp and a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Statistics, a division of the Interuniversity Institute for Biostatistics and statistical Bioinformatics (I-BioStat) at Hasselt University (UHasselt).
Prof. Abrams holds a bachelor degree in mathematics (2009), a master degree in statistics (Epidemiology and Public Health Methodology) (2011) and a PhD degree in statistics (2015) from Hasselt University. He has worked on modelling individual heterogeneity in the acquisition of infectious diseases using frailty models. His primary research interest is in the quantification of unobserved heterogeneity in susceptibility to infection, infectiousness upon infection and social contact behavior, sources which are all relevant for the spread of infectious diseases and the control of emerging infections. Furthermore, his research interests include the statistical analysis of (serial-) serological survey data, outbreak risk assessment in highly vaccinated populations (including but not limited to measles, mumps and rubella), development of novel statistical methodology for the estimation of epidemiological parameters with regard to malaria infection and the application and integration of survival data techniques in infectious disease epidemiology. Prof. Abrams teaches introductory topics in statistics and mathematical modeling in the Bachelor of Mathematics and Biomedical Sciences at Hasselt University, in the Bachelor of Medicine at the University of Antwerp and to master students in Biomedical Sciences at Hasselt University. He also gives advanced statistical courses and statistical consultancy training in the Master of Statistics at Hasselt University and the Master of Epidemiology at the University of Antwerp.
Prof Jacquemyn is the Head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He is a co-investigator on a technical assistance project to the University of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, aimed at improving maternal health care (PI Prof Van geertruyden).