Born in Bruges (Belgium) in 1993, Robin Colpaert attended Ghent University where he first obtained a master’s in biochemistry in 2016. During his thesis he used Crispr/Cas9 genome editing to model human retinoblastoma cancer in Xenopus tropicalis in the lab of Prof. Kris Vleminckx. These eventually contributed to a paper in Scientific Reports (“CRISPR/Cas9 mediated knockout of rb1 and rbl1 leads to rapid and penetrant retinoblastoma development in Xenopus tropicalis”).
Subsequently, he pursued a master’s in bioinformatics with a focus on systems biology. During his first year he was involved in a project related to the statistical analysis of mass spectrometry-based identification of glycopeptides in the lab of professor Lieven Clement. Here he was able to sharpen his skills in both the R programming language as well as his statistical understanding.
Finally, during his thesis in the lab of Prof. Klaas Vandepoele he worked on a tool to identify new gene functions in plants through cross-species network biology. This gave him greater insight into tackling biological questions from a big data perspective and working in a Linux environment.
Currently he is investigating arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy in the lab of Prof. Leon de Windt under the supervision of Dr. Martina Calore. He is using both in vivo (mouse) and in vitro (as induced-pluripotent stem cells-derived cardiomyocytes) models to shed light on how the disease progresses and devise new therapeutic angles.