Wageningen Universiteit - Wageningen

Wageningen University (WU) is an internationally leading education and research organization and is with more than 5,000 employees the largest organization focusing on life sciences in the Netherlands.

Some of the intestinal tract projects of MIB and HMI are part of larger projects within the Top Institute Food & Nutrition (TIFN, formerly WCFS). TIFN is a leading technological institute resulting from an alliance of industry and research organisations to strengthen the innovative position of the Dutch food industry.

WU and Research Centre have the mission to develop and apply top-level scientific expertise and technology to promote the production of healthy food, and sustain and improve the quality of the environment. Research is executed by several institutes and within the groups and departments of WU.

Teams involved




Research and Training Expertise

MIB research has skilful expertise on molecular mechanisms, genomics-driven approaches, and applications in food, non-food and environmental biotechnology, including metagenomics. It has contributed to the 1st crenarchaeotic genome, the 1st genome of lactobacilli and various other genome sequences of novel intestinal isolates. It has pioneered the 1st molecular methods to determine the human intestinal microbiota. MIB has within TIFN determined the in situ response of L. plantarum in the human intestine and its interactions with the host. Currently, it is engaged in the functional metagenomics analysis of the human ileum microbiota.

JW pioneered work on the use of lactic acid bacteria as live vaccine. The HMI group is focused on interactions of pathogens and probiotics with intestinal epithelial and immune cells. These 2 groups are linked to VLAG and WIAS, 2 graduate schools which have developed innovative teaching programmes that provide a strong knowledge base, enabling young scientists to meet the ambitious goals of top scientific excellence.

The HMI group is focused on interactions of pathogens and probiotics with intestinal epithelial and immune cells. Their research ranges from work on the molecular mechanisms of diseases caused by pathogenic bacteria to the interactions between and beneficial bacteria and their human or animal hosts. The group combines expertise in cell biology, immunology, microbiology and functional genomics to further the understanding of the molecular interactions occurring in the cross-talk between microbes and their hosts. 

Material Ressources

MIB has all equipment for molecular research, bioinformatics and has all facilities for anaerobic culturing and analysis. High throughput microbial diversity diagnostics array, Human Intestinal Tract (HIT) Chip was developed by MIB. It has access to a highly advanced Flow Cytometry unit. Current comparative and functional genomics projects of MIB are performed in collaboration with bioinformaticians and other experienced laboratories.

The HMI group uses facilities and equipment for histology, tissue culture, flow cytometry, confocal laser scanning microscopy and electron microscopy. It also has access to animal facilities for research on rodents and large animals such as minipigs, pigs. Gnotobiotic studies can be performed in pigs chickens and rodents.

In the framework of TIFN, access is provided to Affymetrix and Agilent DNA microarray analysis systems, and Agilent Lab-on-a-Chip technology.

WU has student accommodation facilities with no limit to length of stay.