Christel Claes, PhD

Dr. Christel Claes received her PhD in 2018 from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium, where she studied the effect of TREM2 mutations on human stem cell (hPSC)-derived microglia in vitro under the supervision of Dr. Catherine Verfaillie, an expert in human stem cell modeling and Dr. Bart De Strooper, a renowned scientist in the field of Alzheimer’s disease. During her PhD Dr. Claes was awarded with an EMBO short-term fellowship to perform research abroad, at the DZNE in Munich, Germany, where she optimized the co-culture of hPSC-derived microglia on ex vivo brain slices containing amyloid plaques. She then began her post-doctoral training in the lab of Dr. Mathew Blurton-Jones at the University of California, Irvine (2018-current), one of the pioneers of human stem cell-derived microglia research, in order to study the effect of TREM2 mutations on human microglial biology and Alzheimer pathology in chimeric Alzheimer mice.