Marcel Thalen, CEO. Marcel has 33 years of experience in process development, GMP manufacturing, and drug development of vaccines and other (live) biologicals. Marcel is an expert in the physiology of bacterial pathogens, exploiting this knowledge to increase the productivity and consistency of manufacturing and thereby the quality of the resulting products. Marcel started his career at the RIVM/Netherlands Vaccine Institute where he had increasing responsibilities, advancing to Department Head of Process Development. Subsequently, Marcel became Scientific Officer for the CDMO SynCo Bio Partners (now Wacker) where he managed process development and GMP manufacturing projects involving live biologicals including lyophilization development. More recently, Marcel has held VP positions in drug development for Qu Biologicals and GT Biologics (now 4D Pharma). Marcel received his PhD in Biotechnology from Wageningen University, where he published his thesis on “Whooping Cough vaccines: production of virulent biomass”.

Liesbeth Vercruyssen, COO. Making the switch from Academia to Industry in 2016, Liesbeth brings 8 years of experience as Project Leader in the CDMO business. Starting at Q-Biologicals with 25 employees, she guided biologicals projects from the developmental phase to the clinical stages. Liesbeth was responsible for GMP upstream and downstream manufacturing, coordinating with Quality assurance and Quality control and was the first point of contact for clients. She contributed to the successful expansion of a start-up company to a company with over 100 employees as Q-Biologicals was acquired by Amatsigroup and subsequently by Eurofins. Liesbeth received her PhD in Biotechnology in 2012 from Ghent University, Belgium, for her work on molecular mechanisms that govern plant growth at the Flanders Institute of Biotechnology (VIB), where she continued her research as a Post-Doc.

Mattias De Coster, Head of Fermentation and Lyophilization. Mattias has 8 years hands-on fermentation experience in an R&D and scale up setting. Mattias started his career at Inbiose as fermentation engineer, tasked with the optimization of fed batch fermentations for the production of human milk oligosaccharides. Gradually gaining experience, Mattias became responsible for scale up from lab to pilot scale, guiding the process both practically and on paper, documenting the process and finalizing tech transfer documentation. Mattias performed his Masters thesis at Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant in Ghent, Belgium on scaled up production and Downstream Processing of specialty carbohydrates and has a MSc in biochemical engineering from the KU Leuven.

Lizie Fraeyman, Head of BioLyo’s GMP certified QC laboratories. Lizie has 12 years experience in various roles in Quality Control, starting as a QC technician and gradually taking on more managerial and validation responsibilities. Due to her diverse experience Lizie has a very pragmatic approach to QC, both from a GMP and ISO perspective. At BioLyo, Lizie has set up the QC laboratory and managed to achieve GMP certification within a year. The QC lab is capable of carrying out GMP stability studies, release testing for IMPs as well developing more complicated (cell based) assays. 

Process and Product Development (PPD)

Lukasz Wajda – PPD Scientist

Łukasz Wajda obtained his PhD in Food Technology and Nutrition, followed by a 1 year post graduate position in molecular biology. Łukasz has 6 years of experience in R&D of probiotics, including developing of qPCR assays. Łukasz has experience in writing grant applications for development and the implementation of ISO9001 in a diagnostics setting. At BioLyo, Łukasz is one of our experts on statistics and fermentation.

Adam Ostrowski – PPD Technician

Adam Ostrowski has a Master’s degree in Biotechnology and brings 2 years of experience in fermentations and research on probiotics and the impact of human milk oligosaccharides on the gut microbiome. Additionally, Adam also worked in the diagnostics field on PCR analyses for 2 years. At BioLyo, Adam focusses mostly on fermentation optimization.

Joran Bauwens – PPD Technician

Joran Bauwens holds a Master of Bioscience Engineering and started to work at BioLyo a year ago. Joran rapidly developed an interest in fermentation, statistics and especially lyophilization.

Laura De Clercq – PPD Technician

Laura De Clercq has a Bachelor’s degree in Biological and Pharmaceutical Laboratory Sciences and gained 4 years of experience as a lab technician working in research centres, performing many techniques including PCR and cell culturing and transfection. Additionally, Laura also has half a year of experience as a QA engineer in a pharmaceutical company. For the last 2 years at BioLyo Laura has been working on fermentations, tangential flow filtration and lyophilization.

Quality Control

Sarah Van Camp – QC Technician

Sarah van Camp has a Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical and pharmaceutical techniques.  She brings over seven years of hands-on experience to her role as QC technician. Her experience spans a wide range of QC disciplines, including microbiology, PCR and residual moisture determination.

Julie Valcke – QC Technician

Julie Valcke joined BioLyo after graduating from her bachelor’s education in Biomedical and pharmaceutical techniques. During her internship, she expanded her knowledge with various lab techniques such as PCR and HPLC.