van den Boogaard

Lifecraft: training to manage your own happiness

Did you know that besides basic physical needs, such as sleeping and eating, you also have basic psychological needs? You will not die immediately if these psychological needs are not fulfilled, but it can make you very unhappy. Daphne van den Boogaard explains what these needs are and how you can train to manage your own happiness.

Can bacteria reduce electronic waste?

In 2012, scientists found interesting bacteria in the mud of the North Sea. Further investigation showed that these bacteria conduct electricity, just like power cables. But how exactly do these bacteria do this? And does this offer potential for more clean electronics? This is what Koen Wouters (UHasselt) and his colleagues are investigating.

Are electric vehicles safe with new semiconductors? Let digital twins decide

"As researchers, we are not lucky enough to have the budget to crash hundreds of vehicles to test a new technology." So how can researchers test whether a new tiny semiconductor is safe to use in electric vehicles? For this, Sajib Chakraborty (VUB) developed a digital twin. A what? Watch the video to find out more.

How microscopy unravels the secrets of drugs and their targets

Of the 100 potential drugs that companies develop, only a small fraction make it to your medicine cabinet. The majority are rejected after disappointing cell and animal tests. Stijn Dilissen (Uhasselt) is working on a method to find out more quickly and cheaply whether a drug will work or not.

Using stem cells to cure a heart attack

In a heart attack, certain heart cells are damaged and they will never recover. So a patient is forever left with a scar on his heart, which will reduce the heart's pumping power. Could stem cells be the solution? Lize Evens (Hasselt University) explains it to you in this video.

Oxytocin against dementia

What if you could help someone with dementia by giving them a big, old hug? Might sound crazy, but neuroscientist Philippos Koulousakis (UHasselt) explains why he looks at oxytocin, aka 'the hugging hormone', to boost the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease.

Cancer today, heart damage tomorrow?

Cancer patients often become heart patients. This is because chemotherapy affects not only cancer cells but also healthy cells, such as the heart muscle cells. In order to prevent heart damage after chemotherapy, we first need to know what factors increase the risk of heart damage. And that is what Sibren Haesen (Uhasselt) has made his mission. With his Ph.D., he wants to help ensure that today's cancer patients do not become tomorrow's heart patients.

How harmful is air pollution to your unborn child?

An unborn child is exposed to air pollution even before he or she breathes for the first time. This is shown by the research of Eva Bongaerts (UHasselt). She found soot particles in the placenta of women who were only 12 weeks into their pregnancy. Watch the video.

Better food thanks to better sealing

Did you ever enjoy a nicely packed fruit salad with an easy-peel lid? It's a beautiful display of packaging technology: the packaging is strong enough to protect your food, yet at the same time very easy for you to open once you want to dive in. Bram Bamps (UHasselt) explains how he optimizes heat-sealing packaging to keep our food safe and to ensure long shelf life.

How we teach your body to unmask cancer

Did you know that cancer cells are not so different from our healthy cells? This makes it difficult for T-cells, important immune cells in our body, to recognise and fight cancer cells. Cancer researcher Heleen Hanssens (VUB-FWO) wants to give T-cells a helping hand by equipping them with more sensitive receptors, or antennae, that are pre-programmed to unmask cancer cells. In the lab, she is looking for the perfect form for these CAR antennae, so that they become more stable and better at detecting cancer cells. 

What data protection can do for you

Ever wondered why your smartphone seems to know everything about you? You talk to a friend on Whatsapp about getting a new coffee machine and suddenly you see online ads about coffee machines everywhere. What is happening and what can we do about this? Laura Drechsler (VUB - FWO) tells you more about data & data protection law in this video.

Producing bioplastics with heat-loving bacteria

Did you know that some bacteria can be used to produce a kind of bioplastic? This biodegradable plastic could become a sustainable alternative for the current petroleum-based plastics, but at the moment the cost of the production of this bacterial bioplastic is still too high. Microbiologist Radwa Moanis (VUB) explains why turning to heat-loving bacteria might solve this problem 🦠 🌡