dr. Bram De Laere (PhD)

CRIG member
Bram De Laere

Postdoctoral researcher – Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, UGent
Visiting postdoctoral researcher – Department of Medical Epidemiology and BioStatistics, Karolinska Institute
Board member, PSA Vlaanderen vzw
Member ComPerMed (The Personalised Medicine Commission Belgium) expert panel for Prostate Cancer
Principal investigator: prof. Piet Ost (MD, PhD)


Research focus

My research situates in the field of molecular diagnostics, biomarker discovery and tumor heterogeneity in patients with advanced solid tumours, using liquid biopsies as a real-time snapshot of the prevailing disease. Current research encompasses the molecular characterisation of liquid biopsies of advanced prostate cancer, e.g. circulating tumour cells and circulating cell-free DNA, with a focus on the clinical validity and utility. This is achieved in the context of multiple prospective, multicentre, (non-)interventional clinical studies and randomised clinical trials in close collaboration with other research groups and a multidisciplinary team of physicians and health care professionals. The ultimate goal of our research is to determine whether treatment decisions based on liquid biopsy-derived molecular profiles can significantly prolong response rates, which in turn would translate into improved overall survival. The identification of predictive biomarkers in a patient’s tumour will become a prerequisite of routine diagnostics to make therapy selection patient-tailored. This is important, because the identification of a subset of patients who would not benefit from a standard-of-care treatment would mean that these patients can be spared from the side effects of this treatment and would immediately be selected for a different and more appropriate treatment strategy. 


Positions and Employment

  • Laboratory Assistant, Laboratory Molecular Diagnostics, AZ Sint-Jan Brugge, Bruges (2008 – 2011)
  • Visiting Researcher, Department Tumour microenvironment and metastasis, Danish Cancer Society, Copenhagen (2012)
  • Research Scientist, Translational Cancer Research Unit, GZA Sint-Augustinus, Antwerp (2012 – 2014)
  • PhD student, Centre for Oncological Research, University of Antwerp (2014 – 2018)
  • Visiting Researcher, Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm (2017)
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm (2018 – ongoing)
  • Board Member PSA Vlaanderen, Bruges (2019 – ongoing)
  • Member ComPerMed expert panel for Prostate Cancer (2019 – ongoing)
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Human Structure and Repair, Ghent University, Ghent (2020 – ongoing)

Honours and awards

  • First Price for Scientific oral presentation at the Annual Meeting Belgian Society for Medical Oncology, Brussels (2017)
  • Participation expert panel meeting: Consensus Statement on Circulating Biomarkers for Advanced Prostate Cancer, The Royal College of Physicians, London (2017)
  • First Price for Scientific oral presentation at the Annual Meeting Belgian Society for Medical Oncology, Brussels (2018)
  • Faculty member during the sixth Global Congress on Prostate Cancer, Frankfurt (2018)
  • Co-promotor Kom Op Tegen Kanker project: ProBio (2019)

Key publications

  • Semiautomated isolation and molecular characterisation of single or highly purified tumour cells from CellSearch enriched blood samples using dielectrophoretic cell sorting. British Journal of Cancer, 2013. (PMID 23470469)
  • Brouwer A, De Laere B, Peeters D, Peeters M, Salgado R, Dirix L, Van Laere S. Evaluation and consequences of heterogeneity in the circulating tumor cell compartment. Oncotarget, 2016. (PMID: 26980749)
  • Comprehensive Profiling of the Androgen Receptor in Liquid Biopsies from Castration-resistant Prostate Cancer Reveals Novel Intra-AR Structural Variation and Splice Variant Expression Patterns. European Urology, 2017. (PMID: 28104311)
  • Differential impact of RB status on E2F1 reprogramming in human cancer. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2017. (PMID: 29202480)
  • Circulating Tumour Cells and Survival in Abiraterone- and Enzalutamide-treated Patients with Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. Prostate, 2018. (PMID: 29431193)
  • Consensus Statement on Circulating Biomarkers for Advanced Prostate Cancer. European Urology Oncology, 2018. (PMID: 31100240)
  • Cell-free DNA profiling of metastatic prostate cancer reveals microsatellite instability, structural rearrangements and clonal hematopoiesis. Genome Medicine, 2018. (PMID: 30458854)
  • TP53 outperforms other androgen receptor biomarkers to predict abiraterone or enzalutamide outcome in metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. Clinical Cancer Research, 2018. (PMID: 30209161)
  • Has the PROPHECY of AR-V7 Been Fulfilled? Journal of Clinical Oncology, 2019 (PMID: 31265360)
  • AR burden can identify poor responders to abiraterone or enzalutamide in TP53 wild-type metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. JAMA Oncology, 2019 (PMID: 31046065)

Contact & links

  • Lab address: Laboratory of Experimental Cancer Research, UZ Gent, ingang 97, 2RTP, Corneel Heymanslaan 10, 9000 Gent
  • Google Scholar 
  • X (former Twitter) 
  • LinkedIn 
  • ProBio 
  • Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden via PrIOMiC network
  • Bram De Laere is interested to receive invitations for presentations or talks