Francis Combes

CRIG member
Francis Combes

Doctoral fellow (fwo) - Lab for Gene Therapy / Dept. of Nutrition, Genetics and Ethology / Faculty of Veterinary Medicine (UGent)
Principal investigator: prof. Niek Sanders (PhD)

Research focus

My research intends to find a way to use tumor-homing cells such as Myeloid-Derived Suppressor Cells (MDSCs) as vehicles for therapeutic genes. Initially, MDSCs will be isolated from mice, stained and tracked after systemically injecting them in tumor-bearing mice. When this can be achieved, the MDSCs will be loaded (transfected) with reporter genes on genetic constructs (pDNA, modified mRNA, replicons) and tracked. In a final stage, this model will be used to treat cancer by substituting the reporter genes with therapeutic genes such as the gene coding for IL-12.


  • Master in Audiovisual Arts, option 'Animation Film'
  • Employment in Animation Studio 'Walking The Dog'
  • Bachelor in Veterinary Science
  • Certificate of 'Top student' in Veterinary Science
  • Master in Veterinary Science (First of class option 'Research')
  • Doctoral fellow of the FWO

Contact & links