IMaNema is organised by the Nematology Coordination Office, headed by the director. There is an Educational Committee and an Examination Committee. All lecturers and key staff are members of these Committees. Students are also represented in the Educational Committee.
The lecturing staff consists of lecturers from Ghent University, visiting professors and assisting staff.

Nematology Coordination office

Lecturers Ghent University

Visiting Lecturers

Assisting Staff


Nematology Coordination Office


Prof. Wim Bert  Director: Prof. Dr. Wim Bert



Tenure track lecturer at the Faculty of Sciences - Dept. Biology - Head of Nematology Research Unit
Chairman Nematology Educational Committee
Lecturer of the courses: Nematological Techniques, Nematode Systematics and Evolution, Soil Biodiversity, Professional Internship, Summer Course: Networking & Seminars
Co-lecturer of the courses: Diversity of Plant-parasitic Nematodes, Datamining, Processing and Communication

His main research interests include evolution of plant-parasitism, nematode morphology (light and electron microscopy), taxonomy and phylogeny of Tylenchomorphadiversity, succession of compost nematodes, and cryptic biodiversity. A key objective of his research is an integrative combination of morphology and sequences to assess nematode biodiversity: he wants to optimise nematode taxonomy combining (digital) morphological vouchers, DNA-based species delimitation, and all other relevant information using comprehensive databanks.
He supervises several PhD students, several MSc students, and author of more than 60 refereed publications.

Prof. Lieve Gheysen  Vice-director: Prof. Dr. Lieve  Gheysen



Tenured academic staff at the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, Dept. of Molecular Biotechnology, UGent.
Lecturer of the course Molecular Aspects of Plant Nematode Relationships

Her expertise includes plant transformation, analysis of genetic diversity, DNA markers, molecular biology techniques (cloning, molecular analyses), and plant-nematode interactions.


Inge Dehennin  Coordinator: Inge Dehennin 




She manages the administration and logistics of the IMaNema master programme, supports lecturers in the organisation of their course units and assists students during their study career in the programme. She is driver of several applications for educational projects. She is member of the Nematology Educational Committee and represents the master programme on the Facultary Commission Internationalisation.


Profile  Assistant Coordinator: Dora Scott



She is the Assistant Coordinator of the IMaNema master programme. She offers staff and students administrative and logistical support and follows up on various educational projects and activities. She has experience in the administration of higher education and research projects.


Lecturers Ghent University

  Prof. Dr. Bart BraeckmanProf. Bart Braeckman 



Tenured academic staff at the Faculty of Sciences - Dept. Biology - Research Group for Aging Physiology and Molecular Evolution 

Chair Nematology Examination Committee
Lecturer Nematodes as Model Organism

His research focuses on the biochemistry and physiology of the aging process in C. elegans. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has been used extensively as a model system to study the genetic underpinnings of a wide range of biological processes in multicellular organisms (among them development, neurobiology, behavior and aging). He is researching the biochemistry and physiology of the aging process in C. elegans. The multitude of molecular and genetic tools available for this model allow to study the biology of longevity at molecular detail. Energy metabolism, protein turnover, caloric restriction, mitochondrial and radical biology are subfields of aging research that currently attract his attention.

Prof. Wilfrida Decraemer

  Prof. Dr. Wilfrida Decraemer 




Former Director of the International MSc in Agro- and Environmental Nematology
Lecturer for the course Nematode Morphology

Former Senior Scientist at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences

Her research focuses on the systematics (based on microscopy and molecular data), morphology (light microscopy and ultrastructure), phylogeny, zoogeography of plant-parasitic nematodes, more specifically of the virus vector families Trichodoridae and Longidoridae. She also studies the taxonomy, morphology, and phylogeny of free-living nematodes, more specifically of marine nematode taxa, such as Desmoscolecida, Epsilonematidae and Draconematidae. She is author of a book on Trichodoridae and author/co-author of 10 book chapters and more than 140 refereed papers in scientific journals.


Dr. Ineke Dhondt   Dr. Ineke Dhondt




Post-doctoral researcher at the Faculty of Sciences – Dept. Biology – Research Group for Aging Physiology and Molecular Evolution 

Lecturer Datamining, Processing and Communication

Caenorhabditis elegans is a powerful model organism in aging research. Among its many advantages for study are its short life cycle, compact genome, and availability of long living mutants. Currently, she is studying aging in roundworms, with a new focus on the quality of health the worms exhibit into old age. Firstly, the molecular mechanisms are studied that possibly support improved healthspan: which pathways do healthspan-affecting genes and/or compounds funnel down to? Secondly, she focuses on the phenotypical consequences on muscle integrity of genes and chemical compounds selected as healthspan promoting candidates: do healthspan-promoting genes and chemical compounds delay sarcopenia in C. elegans?

Prof. Tina Kyndt  Prof. Dr. Tina Kyndt




Tenured academic staff at the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, Dept. of Molecular Biotechnology
Lecturer of the course: Molecular Toolbox, co-lecturer of the course Nematological Techniques

She has worked on the application of molecular markers and DNA sequencing to study genetic diversity, phylogenetic relationships and population genetics of different tropical tree species. Her postdoctoral research project started in October 2006 and focused on the analysis of parasitism genes in different plant-parasitic nematodes, both sedentary and migratory species. The aim of this project was to investigate their evolution and to optimize RNAi conditions and evaluate the effect of gene silencing of different target genes.

From October 2009 on, she has been working as FWO postdoctoral fellow on a project that studies the plant response in rice upon nematode infection. An ultramodern transcriptome profiling method called RNA seq will therefor be applied. Rice, a model organism for monocots and a very important crop, is infected with both the sedentary root knot nematode Meloidogyne graminicola and the migratory nematode Hirschmanniella oryzae. Gene expression after infection with these two nematodes will be thoroughly studied, both locally and systemically. The results will provide important insights into the metabolic and regulatory pathways that may play intrinsic roles in nematode parasitism and plant defense. This understanding is essential for developing novel plant resistance against nematodes.


Prof. Tom Moens  Prof. Dr. Tom Moens




Tenured academic staff at the Faculty of Sciences - Dept. of Biology - Research Group Marine Biology
Lecturer of the course: General Nematode Biology and Interactions and Biomonitoring

His main research topics are feeding ecology of aquatic nematodes, benthic food web structure and dynamics, stable isotope ecology (using both natural and experimentally enriched isotope abundances of C and N), population ecology of aquatic nematodes, community ecology, population genetics, cryptic diversity and phylogeography of aquatic nematodes.

Nic Smol

  Nic Smol 



Former programme coordinator, voluntary scientific co-worker
Lecturer in the courses: Diversity of Freeliving Aquatic Nematodes
(workshop: Identifcation Course Aquatic Nematodes, part marine nematodes)
Editor for the Nemys database.

She started working as a meiobenthologist, specialising on nematodes in 1973 at the Marine Biology Section of Ghent University. Her research dealt with the taxonomy, ecology and population dynamics of free-living marine and brackish water nematodes. She investigated habitats such as a brackish water pond in Belgium, the Oosterschelde in the Netherlands and a TiO2-dumpingsite in the North Sea.
In 1992, she became the first coordinator of the Postgraduate International Nematology Course (PINC) and became involved in teaching nematological techniques and Enoplia and leading the practical exercises of different subjects.
She was co-promoter of the VLIR-OI-project IMABE
which investigates the benthos of the CanGio mangrove in Vietnam.

  Prof. Dr. Laura Cortada-GonzalezLaura Cortada




Secretary of the Nematology Educational Committee and Nematology Examination Committee
Lecturer of the course: Nematology Didactics & Capacity Building

She holds a BSc in Biology (Autonomous University of Barcelona-UAB), a BSc in Agronomy in Crop and Livestock Management (Technical University of Catalonia- UPC), and a MSc in Biotechnology and Sustainability (UPC). From 2005 to 2010 she pursued her PhD studies at the Plant Pathology Department of the Institute for Research and Technology, Food and Agriculture (IRTA) (Spain), where her main research focus was on the biological control of plant parasitic nematodes for sustainable intensification in horticultural and citrus crops, combining the use of rootstocks, resistant-germplasm, and bioprotectants. She is now a Senior Scientific Officer at VIB-IPBO where she works on the development of projects and scientific networks to promote the cooperation between European and African research and educational institutions to build up the technical capacity of scientists and enable scientific advances in agriculture for food security. Previously she was an associate scientist at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) (2016-2020), based in Kenya but involved in a whole range of activities across the African continent. While at IITA her work was focused on developing sustainable options for plant parasitic nematode management, primarily in smallholder systems towards improving food security in Africa. Capacity building features prominently in all of Laura’s activities and is heavily involved in developing the next generation of soil health scientists in Africa and is Visiting Professor at UGhent University for the International MSc in Nematology. Laura has lived in East Africa from 2011 until 2020, providing advisory services to small-scale farmers, through public and private organizations, including the Somalia Program of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN.

Prof. Ann Vanreusel  Prof. Dr. Ann Vanreusel




Tenured academic staff at the Faculty of Sciences - Dept. of Biology and head of the Research Group Marine Biology
Lecturer of the course: Biostatistics

 Since her PhD (1984-1989) and postdoc research, she became an expert in benthos research with a focus on meiofauna (nematodes). She has focused her most recent research on the ecology of extreme marine environments including abyssal ecosystems including poly-metallic nodule areas, submarine canyons, cold water corals, cold seeps, polar deep-sea and Antarctic coastal systems.

Visiting Lecturers


Prof. Thomas Been  Prof. Dr. Thomas Been




Researcher at Plant Research International at Wageningen University
Lecturer of the course: Quantitative Plant Nematology, co-lecturer of the courses: Nematological Techniques and Management of Plant Parasitic Nematodes
Computers and Internet, Plant Parasitic Nematodes, Integrated Control, Chemical Control, Geographical information systems, Modeling, Nematoda, Decision support systems, Risk assessment, Spatial distribution, Computer software, Nematicides, Nematology, Programming.  Population dynamics, yield estimation, (partial) resistance, sampling methods and control measures combined into Decision Support Methods

Prof. Ron de Goede  Prof. Dr. Ron de Goede  



Assistent Professor at Wageningen University - Dept. of Soil Quality
Lecturer of the course: Soil Biodiversity and Nematodes as Bio-indicators of Soil Health

He is a soil ecologist and did his PhD on a thesis entitled ‘Terrestrial Nematodes in a changing environment’. In this work the application of nematodes as bioindicators was investigated. During these days he was involved in the development of the nematode Maturity Index and related issues, like e.g. cp triangles and soil food-web diagnostics.

At the Department of Soil Quality his research focuses on biomonitoring of soil quality, on soil biodiversity, and on nutrient dynamics in agricultural soils. This research includes studies on the ecology of nematodes, mainly free-living terrestrial species, and their use as bioindicators. However, also other soil fauna, like earthworms and enchytraeids, are included. Among others, he participates in the Dutch Soil Quality Monitoring Programme.

Prof. Eduardo de la Peña  Prof. Dr. Eduardo de la Peña 




Researcher at the Spanish National Research Council (IHSM-UMA-CSIC)
Lecturer of the course: Strategies for Research
Plant-herbivore interactions, Crop protection, Multitrophic interactions, Community Ecology


Prof. Ralf Ehlers  Prof. Dr. Ralf-Udo Ehlers





Managing director of the company E~Nema

Chair: European Society Nematologists
Lecturer of the courses: Entomopathogenic Nematodes: Taxonomy, Biology and Biocontrol and Entomopathogenic Nematodes: Biotechnology and Use in Biological Control.
His scientific interests are the biology of entomopathogenic nematodes (Heterorhabditiae and Steinernematidae) and their bacterial symbionts and the use of microbial antagonists in biological control of invertebrate pests and plant diseases. Major focus of his activities is the development of liquid culture technology for mass production of biocontrol agents and the development of IPM systems. The technology was transferred to the agro-biotech company E~Nema, which is specialized in the mass production and marketing of nematodes and microorganisms for biocontrol applications.

Prof. Annemie Elsen Prof. Dr. Annemie Elsen




Researcher at Soil Service Belgium
Lecturer of the course: Tropical Plant Nematology and co-lecturer Soil Biodiversity and Nematodes as Bio-indicators of Soil Health
Dr. Annemie Elsen obtained her PhD on ‘Study of the interaction between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and plant-parasitic nematodes in Musa spp.’ (2002) at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (K.U.Leuven). She was a FWO post-doctoral fellow at the Laboratory of Tropical Crop Improvement, Division Crop Bio-engineering, at K.U.Leuven. She was heading the Tropical Nematology research unit. This unit is focussing on sustainable and affordable management strategies to control plant-parasitic nematodes in the tropics, with a special emphasis on small scale farming systems. Training and education in nematology of researchers in the tropics is an important objective.
Dr. Elsen is specialised in the bioprotection of plants through the application of endophytes. She is and has been involved in research projects in the tropics financed by Flemish, Belgian and multilateral donors.

Prof. Ann Vanreusel  Dr. Misghina Goitom Teklu




Dr. Misghina Goitom Teklu, EUMAINE alumnus, has now a permanant position at Wageningen University and Research where he obtained his PhD. He assists in teaching quantitative nematology. Misghina's current research focuses on the applied aspects of nematology which can be used by farmers to manage plant-parasitic nematodes. These incluse, a.o., Evaluation of host status, Population dynamics models, Resistance testing, Yield and damage threshold models, Intensive greenhouse experiments, Intensive field validation experiment, Sampling, extraction and assessing field population densities, Developing advisory services (Decision Support Systems)


Prof. John Jones Prof. Dr. John Jones




Researcher at James Hutton Institute and the University of St Andrews, UK
Lecturer of the course: Molecular Aspects of Plant Nematode Relationships
John Jones is a research scientist based at James Hutton Institute in Scotland. John is also a Guest Professor at Ghent university. John teaches Plant Nematology at the University of Dundee and also contributes to the "molecular aspects of plant-nematode relationships" module that is part of the PINC and EUMAINE MSc courses. John has over 15 years experience in working with plant parasitic nematodes. His main research interests are in molecular analysis of host parasite interactions of Globodera pallida (potato cyst nematode). John also has an interest in genomics of G. pallida and horizontal gene transfer in nematodes.

Further details can be found at

Prof. Gerrit Karssen  Prof. Dr. Gerrit Karssen 





Researcher at the National Plant Protection Organisation, Wageningen, The Netherlands
Lecturer of the course: Diversity of Plant-parasitic Nematodes

Prof. Gerrit Karssen has been working since 1991 as a full time nematode taxonomist at the National Plant Protection Organization, Wageningen, The Netherlands. He studied Biology at University Utrecht and received a PhD in Biology (cum laude) at Ghent University on a taxonomical revision of the European root-knot nematodes. At present, his job includes identification and alpha taxonomical research on plant-parasitic nematodes and he is curator at the Wageningen Nematode Collection (WaNeCo). Gerrit teaches on the identification of plant-parasitic nematodes at Wageningen University and lectures on the Tylenchomorpha taxonomy at Ghent University. He is also editorial board member of the journals: Journal of Nematode Morphology and Systematics, ZooKeys, Russian Journal of Nematology, Nematologia Mediterranea and Redi


Prof. Giovanni Paiva dos Santos  Prof. Dr. Giovanni Paiva dos Santos




Scientist at Federal University of Pernambuco-Brazil (UFPE), Zoology Department. Invited lecturer in the course General Nematode Biology and Interactions.
Giovanni dos Santos is a full professor at UFPE and coordinator of LACIMME (Laboratory of Marine Meiofauna and Ecotoxicology), where he gives lectures to undergraduate students on Marine Biology, Zoology of Invertebrates and Ecology. Prof. dos Santos obtained his PhD on nematode populations and assemblages controls, and their effect on benthic ecosystem functioning (2009) at Ghent University.  His main research interests are: functional ecology of free-living marine nematodes, benthic ecosystem diversity, nematode population and community ecology, biomonitoring, ecosystem functioning, ecological interactions, micro/mesocosm experiments, environmental changes and toxicology. He also acts as promotor/co-promotor for master theses of the International MSc in Agro- and Environmental Nematology.

Prof. Roland Perry  Prof. Dr. Roland Perry





Scientist at the University of Hertsfordshire,UK.
Co-lecturer of the course Life Cycle Biology, Physiology and Behaviour of Plant-parasitic Nematodes and
Strategies for Research
Professor Perry obtained a BSc (honours) degree in Zoology and a PhD in Nematology, both from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, England. After a year's post-doctoral research in Newcastle, he moved to the Dept of Biology at the University of Keele,England and for three years undertook research on aspects of nematode physiology andlectured to undergraduate students on parasitology, with an emphasis on plant-parasiticnematology. Subsequently, he was appointed as a research scientist to Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, England. His research interests have centred primarily on plant-parasitic nematodes, especially focusing on nematode hatching, sensory perception,behaviour and survival physiology. His research attracted considerable support from funding agencies, providing grants for PhD and post-doctoral students and facilitating productive collaborative research projects. Professor Perry has supervised 16 PhD students and several of his past PhD and post-doctoral students are currently involved innematology research.
He co-edited The Physiology and Biochemistry of Free-living andPlant-parasitic Nematodes and co-edited the student textbook, Plant Nematology. He is author or co-author of over 40 book chapters and refereed reviews and over 110 refereedresearch papers. He is Editor-in-Chief of Nematology and Chief Editor of the Russian Journal of Nematology and series co-editor of Nematode Monographs and Perspectives. In2001, he was elected Fellow of the Society of Nematologists (USA) in recognition of his research achievements. He is a Visiting Professor at the University of Ghent, Belgium, where he lectures on nematode biology, and also gives regular lectures to MSc courses at the Imperial College, London and Reading University, and has presented invited research seminars to several Universities and Research Institutes worldwide. 

Prof. Cornelia Schomaker Prof. Dr. Cornelia Schomaker



Researcher at Plant Research International at Wageningen University
Lecturer of the course: Quantitative Plant Nematology, co-lecturer of the courses: Nematological Techniques and Management of Plant Parasitic Nematodes



Prof. Nicle Viaene  Prof. Dr. Nicole Viaene




Researcher at the Institute of Agricultural and Fisheries Research, Merelbeke Belgium (ILVO) - Dept. Crop Protection - Nematology
Lecturer of the course: Management of Plant-parasitic Nematodes

Detailed info on ILVO website

Prof. Wim Wesemael  Prof. Dr. Wim Wesemael




Researcher at the Institute of Agricultural and Fisheries Research, Merelbeke Belgium (ILVO) - Dept. Crop Protection - Nematology

Lecturer of the courses: Life Cycle Biology, Physiology and Behaviour of Plant-parasitic Nematodes
Detailed info on ILVO website



Assisting Staff

The master's programme practical classes are given by the following staff members (subject to changes):

dr. Luana da Costa Monteiro   Dr. Luana da Costa Monteiro




Biological oceanographer, Nematologist & Ecotoxicologist.

Scientific Researcher with focus on ecotoxicology and benthic ecology, including biodiversity studies of meiofauna and taxonomic identification; design and performance of    lab experiments; cultivation of nematodes and bacteria.

Main research topics: oil and heavy-metal pollution; pollution effects on free-living nematodes; taxis-to-food nematode behavior; cryptic-species ecology; species intra- and interspecific interactions; nematode identification.

Anna Maria VafeiadouDr. Anna-Maria Vafeiadou




Anna-Maria Vafeiadou is a postdoctoral researcher at the Marine Biology Research Group of Ghent University. She obtained her joint-PhD in Marine Sciences at Ghent University and in Biology at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (2019) on species coexistence of marine nematodes. Her research work focuses on climate change effects on meiofauna and free-living nematodes, food-web ecology, population dynamics and species interactions, using experimental approaches.


Rolish Pougeishangbam
PhD student - Nematology Research Unit - Ghent University

Rodgee Mae Guden
PhD student - Marine Biology Department - Ghent University

Marjolein Couvreur
Lab Technician - Nematology Research Group - Ghent University

Myriam Claeys
Lab Technician - Nematology Research Group - Ghent University

Nancy De Sutter
Lab manager at the Institute for Agriculture and Fisheries Research (ILVO), Merelbeke