prof. Jo Vandesompele (PhD)

CRIG group leader
Jo Vandesompele


  • Principal investigator - OncoRNALab, Center for Medical Genetics (UGent)
  • Full professor (Department of Biomolecular Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, UGent)
  • Co-founder pxlence
  • Co-founder and Director Scientific Initiatives at Biogazelle, now a CellCarta company 
  • Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer at InActiv Blue 


Research focus

The lab’s research aims to exploit RNA for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. The various research lines converge on studying the role of non-coding RNA (long non-coding RNA and circular RNA) in cancer and on the utility of extracellular RNA in liquid biopsies. Apart from providing novel fundamental insights, the research also results in putative clinical applications. Through a combination of high-throughput (functional) genomics technologies and bio-informatics tools, we seek to answer various fundamental and translational research questions.  


Jo Vandesompele obtained a Master of Science in Bioscience Engineering (1997) and a PhD in Medical Genetics (2002). Since 2007, he is professor in Functional Cancer Genomics and Applied Bioinformatics at Ghent University. He is author of more than 250 scientific articles in international journals, including some pioneering publications in the domain of RNA quantification and non-coding RNA. His H-index is 71, with over 40,000 citations (Web of Science, May 2021). Jo is a frequently invited speaker at international conferences and symposia. Jo was one of the CRIG co-founders and chairman of the first steering committee (2016-2019).

Research team

Key publications

  • Unequivocal delineation of clinicogenetic subgroups and development of a new model for improved outcome prediction in neuroblastoma. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 2005
  • Antitumor activity of the selective MDM2 antagonist nutlin-3 in a chemoresistant model of neuroblastoma. Journal of the Nat Cancer Institute, 2009
  • Predicting outcomes for children with neuroblastoma using a multigene-expression signature: a retrospective SIOPEN/COG/GPOH study. Lancet Oncology, 2009 
  • The miR-17-92 microRNA cluster regulates multiple components of the TGF-beta pathway in neuroblastoma. Molecular Cell, 2010 
  • miRNA expression profiling enables risk stratification in archived and fresh neuroblastoma tumor samples. Clinical Cancer Research, 2011 
  • Melanoma addiction to the long noncoding RNA SAMMSON. Nature, 2016
  • Circulating microRNA biomarkers for metastatic disease in neuroblastoma patients. JCI Insight, 2018
  • Charting Extracellular Transcriptomes in The Human Biofluid RNA Atlas. Cell Reports, 2020.

Contact & links