WELBIO is an inter-university life sciences research institute based in Wallonia, Belgium. WELBIO is funded by the Walloon Region. Our mission is to support strategic fundamental research through carefully selected projects from universities in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation, with a view to transforming their discoveries into industrial applications in all fields of biotechnology.
The Francqui Foundation aims at “furthering the development of higher education and scientific research in Belgium". On the proposal of Universities, the Foundation grants each year a number of “Francqui Chairs” for inviting a Professor from another Belgian University to provide 10 h of specialized teaching. Prof. Cédric Blanpain, WELBIO investigator at the Université libre de Bruxelles, Director of the Laboratory Stem Cell and Cancer, will be holding the Collen - Francqui Chair 2018-2019 at the Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB). The inaugural lecture will take place on 22 February 2019. It will focus on Mechanisms regulating pluripotent stem cells.
In a study published in Nature Chemical Biology Abel Garcia-Pino WELBIO investigator at the Université libre de Bruxelles and colleagues from the Cellular and Molecular Microbiology team from the ULB provided for the first time experimental evidence to a long held hypothesis on small bacterial operons encoding a toxin and a corresponding neutralizing antitoxin, so-called toxin-antitoxins (TA) modules: antitoxins act as chaperones that can trap toxins while they are produced by the ribosome.
A research, started in 2010 and financed by the WELBIO-FNRS, the Fonds Baillet-Latour and an ERC, has just been published in Nature Communications. Prof. Patrice Cani (WELBIO investigator at Louvain Drug Research Institute, UCLouvain) and his team, in association with Canadian, Italian, French and Dutch researchers, were able to target a dysfunctional enzyme in overweight or obese subjects, therefore the message “I am not hungry anymore” is no more transmitted to the brain.