Scientific papers

In accordance with its mission to support high level research in Belgium, the University Foundation provides financial support towards the publication in high level international journals of scientific papers which report on research in Belgian research groups. Financial support may be granted to partially cover the costs due by the author for illustrations, for page charges and for article processing fees, and for linguuistic control. 

Because the possible support is restricted to Belgian research groups, the regulations and application procedures are only available in French  and in Dutch.

Articles subsidized by the University Foundation

What follows is a list of articles that were subsidized recently by the University Foundation. The titles are ordered by year of publication and by title.

S De Groef, D Renmans, Y Cai, G Leuckx, S Roels, W Staels, G Gradwohl, L Baeyens, Y Heremans, GA Martens, N De Leu, M Sojoodi, M Van de Casteele and H Heimberg

De Groef S. et al. (2016) STAT3 modulates β-cell cycling in injured mouse pancreas and protects against DNA damage. Cell Death and Disease 7, e2272.

Partial pancreatic duct ligation (PDL) of mouse pancreas induces a doubling of the β-cell mass mainly through proliferation of preexisting and newly formed β-cells. The molecular mechanism governing this process is still largely unknown. Given the inflammatory nature of PDL and inflammation-induced signaling via the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), the activation and the role of STAT3 in PDL-induced β-cell proliferation were investigated.

Dominique Engel

Engel, D. (2016) Subcellular Patch-clamp Recordings from the Somatodendritic Domain of Nigral Dopamine Neurons. J. Vis. Exp. (117), e54601, doi:10.3791/54601.

Dendrites of dopaminergic neurons receive and convey synaptic input, support action potential back-propagation and neurotransmitter release. Understanding these fundamental functions will shed light on the information transfer in these neurons. Dendritic patch-clamp recordings provide the possibility to directly examine the electrical properties of dendrites and underlying voltage-gated ion channels. However, these fine structures are not easily accessible to patch pipettes because of their small diameter.


C.A. MIDDLETON, C. THOMAS, A. DE WIT and J.-L. TISON, Visualizing brine channel development and convective processes during artificial sea-ice growth using Schlieren optical methods, Journal of Glaciology, vol 62, Issue 231, Feb. 2016, pp. 1 - 17

Two non-invasive optical Schlieren methods have been adapted to visualize brine channel development and convective processes in experimentally grown sea ice obtained when a NaCl aqueous solution is cooled from above in a quasi-two-dimensional Hele–Shaw cell. The two different visualization methods, i.e. traditional and synthetic Schlieren optical imaging, produce high spatial resolution images of transport processes during ice growth, without any external perturbation.

Alexandre Heeren, Chris Baeken, Marie-Anne Vanderhasselt, Pierre Philippot, Rudi de Raedt

Heeren A, Baeken C, Vanderhasselt M-A, Philippot P, de Raedt R (2015) Impact of Anodal and Cathodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation over the Left Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex during Attention Bias Modification: An Eye-Tracking StudyPLOS ONE 10(4): e0124182. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0124182

People with anxiety disorders show an attentional bias for threat (AB), and Attention Bias Modification (ABM) procedures have been found to reduce this bias. However, the underlying processes accounting for this effect remain poorly understood. One explanation suggests that ABM requires the modification of attention control, driven by the recruitment of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). In the present double-blind study, we examined whether modifying left DLPFC activation influences the effect of ABM on AB.

Elke Van Lierde, Kobe Desender, Eva Van den Bussche

Van Lierde, E., Desender, K. & Van den Bussche, E. (2015) Is conflict adaptation triggered by feature repetitions? An unexpected finding. Frontiers in Psychology, vol. 5, number 01358

For decades, cognitive adaptation to response conflict has been considered to be the hallmark of cognitive control. Notwithstanding a vast amount of evidence ruling out lowlevel interpretations of these findings, disbelief still exists with regard to the underlying cause of the observed effects. Especially when considering cognitive adaptation to unconscious conflict, it is still a matter of debate whether repetitions of features between trials might explain this intriguing finding rather than the involvement of unconscious control.

Andrei Turtoi et al.

TURTOI, A. et al. (2015) Organized proteomic heterogeneity in colorectal cancer liver metastases and implications for therapiesHepatology, vol 59, issue 3, pp. 924–934.

Tumor heterogeneity is a major obstacle for developing effective anticancer treatments. Recent studies have pointed to large stochastic genetic heterogeneity within cancer lesions, where no pattern seems to exist that would enable a more structured targeted therapy approach.


BELLEFLAMME, A., FETTWEIS, X. & ERPICUM, M. (2015)  Recent summer Arctic atmospheric circulation anomalies in a historical perspectiveThe Cryosphere, 9, 53–64.

A significant increase in the summertime occurrence of a high pressure area over the Beaufort Sea, the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, and Greenland has been observed since the beginning of the 2000s, and particularly between 2007 and 2012. These circulation anomalies are likely partly responsible for the enhanced Greenland ice sheet melt as well as the Arctic sea ice loss observed since 2007. Therefore, it is interesting to analyse whether similar conditions might have happened since the late 19th century over the Arctic region.

Jinheng Wang, Kim De Veirman, Nathan De Beule, Ken Maes, Elke De Bruyne, Els Van Valckenborgh, Karin Vanderkerken, Eline Menu

WANG, J. et al. (2015) The bone marrow microenvironment enhances multiple myeloma progression by exosome-mediated activation of myeloid-derived suppressor cells. Oncotarget vol. 6, n° 41, pp. 43992-44004.

Exosomes, extracellular nanovesicles secreted by various cell types, modulate the bone marrow (BM) microenvironment by regulating angiogenesis, cytokine release, immune response, inflammation, and metastasis. Interactions between bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) and multiple myeloma (MM) cells play crucial roles in MM development. We previously reported that BMSC-derived exosomes directly promote MM cell growth, whereas the other possible mechanisms for supporting MM progression by these exosomes are still not clear.

Ronny Merken, Evelien Deboelpaep, Joachim Teunen, Santiago Saura, Nico Koedam

Merken R, Deboelpaep E, Teunen J, Saura S, Koedam N (2015) Wetland Suitability and Connectivity for Trans-Saharan Migratory Waterbirds. PLoS ONE 10(8): e0135445. doi:10.1371/journal.

To complete their life cycle waterbirds rely on patchily distributed and often ephemeral wetlands along their migration route in a vast unsuitable matrix. However, further loss and degradation of remaining wetland habitats might lead to a configuration and size of stopovers that is no longer sufficient to ensure long-term survival of waterbird populations.

Laloy, Julie, Lozano, Omar, Alpan, Lüfiye, Mejia, Jorge, Toussaint, Olivier, Masereel, Bernard, Dogné, Jean-Michel, Lucas, Stéphane

LALOY, J. et al., (2014) Can TiC nanoparticles produce toxicity in oral administration to rats? Toxicology Reports, vol. 1, pp. 172-187 

For decades, cognitive adaptation to response conflict has been considered to be the hallmark of cognitive control. Notwithstanding a vast amount of evidence ruling out lowlevel interpretations of these findings, disbelief still exists with regard to the underlying cause of the observed effects. Especially when considering cognitive adaptation to unconscious conflict, it is still a matter of debate whether repetitions of features between trials might explain this intriguing finding rather than the involvement of unconscious control.

Ken Maes, Eva De Smedt, Alboukadel Kassambara, Dirk Hose, Anja Seckinger, Els Van Valckenborgh, Eline Menu, Bernard Klein, Karin Vanderkerken, Jérôme Moreaux, and Elke De Bruyne

MAES, K. et al(2014) In vivo treatment with epigenetic modulating agents induces transcriptional alterations associated with prognosis and immunomodulation in multiple myeloma, Oncotarget, 6(5), 3319-3334.

Histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi) and DNA methyltransferase inhibitors (DNMTi) are in early clinical development for multiple myeloma (MM) therapy. Despite all encouraging pre-clinical data, clinical activity of HDACi and DNMTi is mostly lacking. To optimize the trials, characterization of the in vivo response towards HDACi and DNMTi will be crucial. Therefore, we investigated the transcriptional response after in vivo treatment with the HDACi quisinostat or DNMTi decitabine using the murine 5T33MM model.

Cecilia Paredes

PAREDES, C. (2014) The Confusion of the Battlefield. A New Perspective on the Tapestries of the Battle of Pavia (c. 1525-1531) RIHA Journa0102 (28 December 2014)

This contribution is devoted to the tapestry cycle of the Battle of Pavia conserved at the Museo Capodimonte in Naples. Seven tapestries compose this prestigious tapestry set that commemorates the first military success of Charles V: the battle held in Pavia on 24 February 1525. Up to now the tapestries have been interpreted as independent panels representing different episodes of the battle. In this contribution we will show that the seven panels actually originated in one single design, which we rediscovered by assembling them in a different sequence.

Vanderelst D, Speybroeck N

VANDERELST D., SPEYBROECK N. (2013) An adjusted bed net coverage indicator with estimations for 23 African countries.  Malaria Journal 12:457 

Background: Many studies have assessed the level of bed net coverage in populations at risk of malaria infection. These revealed large variations in bed net use across countries, regions and social strata. Such studies are often aimed at identifying populations with low access to bed nets that should be prioritized in future interventions. However, often spatial differences in malaria endemicity are not taken into account.

Van Goethem D, De Smedt S, Valcke R, Potters G, Samson R

VAN GOETHEM D, DE SMEDT S, VALCKE R, POTTERS G, SAMSON R (2013) Seasonal, Diurnal and Vertical Variation of Chlorophyll Fluorescence on Phyllostachys humilis in IrelandPLoS ONE 8(8): e72145.  Correction: PLoS ONE 8(11): 10.1371.


In recent years, temperate bamboo species have been introduced in Europe not only as an ornamental plant, but also as a new biomass crop. To measure adaptation stress of bamboo to the climate of Western Europe, chlorophyll fluorescence was measured on a diurnal and seasonal basis in Ballyboughal, Co. Dublin, Ireland. Measurements were attained on the leaves of each node of Phyllostachys humilis. The most frequently used parameter in chlorophyll fluorescence is the photosynthetic efficiency (Fv/Fm).

S.Jusseret, C. Langohr & M. Sintubin

JUSSERET S., LANGOHR C., SINTUBIN M. (2013). Tracking earthquake archaeological evidence in Late Minoan IIIB (~1300-1200 B.C.) Crete (Greece): A proof of concept. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 103, 3026-3043.

Late Minoan (LM) IIIB (∼1300–1200 B.C.) represents a crucial period in the history of Bronze Age Crete, heralding the transition to the Iron Age through a wave of site destruction and abandonment. According to the traditional view, earthquakes may have played a significant role in these events. A new archaeoseismological approach is proposed to test this hypothesis and to attribute destruction and abandonment to earthquakes. Potential earthquake archaeological effects (PEAEs) are defined and documented at LM IIIB sites.