prof. Hilde de Rooster (PhD)

CRIG group leader
Hilde De Rooster

Principal investigator - Soft tissue Surgery, Department of Small Animals (UGent)
Associate professor (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, UGent)


Research focus

Pet dogs with spontaneous cancer are good models for cancer research. Dogs share a similar histologic, biologic, and genetic cancer background significantly closer than the relationship between rodent and man, and the development and interaction between tumor, host and tumor microenvironment is comparable to those in humans. There are corresponding diagnostic and treatment options available for dogs and humans, while the progression of cancer in dogs is fast enough to obtain results within a reasonable period of time. Lastly, pet dogs have a broader access to clinical trials than humans, enabling extensive research opportunities.


As a soft tissue surgeon for small animals (cats and dogs) I am exposed to various types of solid cancer in privately owned animals. Not all of the cancers are obviously surgical resectable and some require pre- or postsurgical treatment. We have vast experience with performing clinical research and often collaborate with other complementary research groups.

Research team

  • prof. Hilde de Rooster - principal investigator, associate professor
  • Shana De Vos  - doctoral fellow 
  • Sophie Favril - doctoral fellow
  • Simone Janssen - doctoral fellow

Key publications

  • Power Doppler ultrasound and contrast-enhanced ultrasound demonstrate non-invasive tumour vascular response to anti-vascular therapy in canine cancer patients.  Abma E, Stock E, De Spiegelaere W, Van Brantegem L, Vanderperren K, Ni Y, Vynck M, Daminet S, De Clercq K, de Rooster H. Sci Rep. 2019 Jun 25;9(1):9262. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-45682-2.  (PMID: 31239493) [PubMed - in process] Free PMC Article
  • Sentinel lymph node mapping by near-infrared fluorescence imaging and contrast-enhanced ultrasound in healthy dogs.  Favril S, Stock E, Hernot S, Hesta M, Polis I, Vanderperren K, de Rooster H.  Vet Comp Oncol. 2019 Mar;17(1):89-98. doi: 10.1111/vco.12449. Epub 2018 Nov 26.  (PMID: 30311430)[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
  • A single dose of intravenous combretastatin A4-phosphate is reasonably well tolerated and significantly reduces tumour vascularization in canine spontaneous cancers.  Abma E, De Spiegelaere W, Vanderperren K, Stock E, Van Brantegem L, Cornelis I, Daminet S, Ni Y, Vynck M, Verstraete G, Smets P, de Rooster H.  Vet Comp Oncol. 2018 Dec;16(4):467-477. doi: 10.1111/vco.12402. Epub 2018 May 24.  (PMID: 29797763) [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
  • Clinical use of organic near-infrared fluorescent contrast agents in image-guided oncologic procedures and its potential in veterinary oncology.  Favril S, Abma E, Blasi F, Stock E, Devriendt N, Vanderperren K, de Rooster H.  Vet Rec. 2018 Sep 22;183(11):354. doi: 10.1136/vr.104851. Epub 2018 Apr 28. Review.  (PMID: 29705740) [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
  • Biodistribution and tolerance of intravenous iodine-131-labelled hypericin in healthy dogs.  Abma E, Peremans K, De Vos F, Bosmans T, Kitshoff AM, Daminet S, Ni Y, Dockx R, de Rooster H.  Vet Comp Oncol. 2018 Sep;16(3):318-323. doi: 10.1111/vco.12381. Epub 2018 Jan 4.  (PMID: 29314561) [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
  • Intratumoural interleukin 12 gene therapy stimulates the immune system and decreases angiogenesis in dogs with spontaneous cancer,Vet Comp Oncol. 2016 (PMID: 27506827)
  • Immunological and angiogenic markers during metronomic temozolomide and cyclophosphamide in canine cancer patients, Vet Comp Oncol. 2016 (PMID: 26961119) 
  • Can dendritic cells improve whole cancer cell vaccines based on immunogenically killed cancer cells?, Oncoimmunology. 2015 (PMID: 26587315)
  • Combretastatin A4-phosphate and its potential in veterinary oncology: a review.


Soft Tissue Surgery, Department of Small Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Salisburylaan 133, B-9820 Merelbeke