Young BSM

The Young Belgian Society for Microbiology is dedicated to taking Belgian microbiology out of the laboratory and into the world. The YBSM consists of 16 early career researchers, representing the three Belgian regions (Wallonia, Flanders & Brussels) and the wide range of microbiology research topics that are studies in Belgium.

In its first year, YBSM organized the Belgian event of the International Microorganism Day ( at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences in Brussels. More than 1000 people attended this event. This year, the ambition of YBSM grew, and with it, the list of activities the group is involved in. From lectures at festivals to our monthly contribution to Eos Magazine (, YBSM made it its mission to infect as many as possible with their passion for microorganisms and to let the world know about the cutting-edge science done by members of BSM.

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International Microorganism Day Brussels 2023

The 2nd edition of the International Microorganisms Day celebration in Belgium finally happened on the 16th of September 2023. Organized by the Board of Young Belgian Microbiology Society’s, the event was held at the Museum of Natural Sciences, Brussels and another 50 volunteers from universities across Belgium got together to bring this event. Over 600 people joined the event in the museum, even though it was a bright sunny Saturday.

Celebrated to commemorate the discovery of microbes by the Dutch merchant Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, IMD is celebrated in over 33 countries, and in the wake of a post-covid era that we are living in, it offers a great opportunity to spread awareness and generate curiosity about microbes in the young generations. On this day we had a slew of activities lined up for the kids. Other than the fun mascots of IMD, we had our own version of good bugs (Bifidobacterium longum) and Bad bugs (Salmonella) present on the day to greet the tiny friends. Microscopes had been put up to show the kids the abundant world of microbes that surround their everyday life, and what’s more, check out some fluorescent and photobacterium that would glow. At the General Microbiology booth, kids could build their own microbes, find out about the species that lived in the human body and other surfaces. Both our Kombucha stall and living (agar) art stalls had a comeback this year and we even organized a fun treasure hunt for kids to collect stickers at each booth.

Special thanks to Fien Stoffels (Insta @finestoffels) for the design of the costumes and to ScienceJewelry1824 and Somesault1824 (Insta @sciencejewelry1824 and @somersault1824) for the stunning necklace and the amazing boardgame. Another special mention is to Jake Robinson, the author of the book Invisible friends who offered a special prize to the event attendees. Finally, thanks also to the iGEM team from KU Leuven and CIRCLES for their participation during the event.

We presented at Nerdland Festival 2023!

On Sunday 28th of May 2023, YBSM gave a presentation at Nerdland Festival, the biggest open-air science festival in Belgium. The presentation aimed to teach kids about the invisible world of microbes. And it was a huge success: the tent with a capacity to fit 800 people was packed! The audience gaped at the interesting explanation of two scientists (Vincent Crabbe and Liselot Dewachter), and thanks to our costume designer Fine Stoffels, life-sized microbes joined in as well (impersonated by Charlotte van de Velde and Renske van Raaphorst). Check out the pictures below to relive the day!


Amir Hassan

Protein Research Unit (PRU), lab of Microbiology (LM-UGent), Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, UGent

Celia Álvarez Fernández

Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET), Ghent University

Nissem Abdeljelil

Proteomics and Microbiology Lab, Mons University / Microbiology Unit, SCK CEN

Mohamed Ashraf M. Mostafa

Research Group of Microbiology (MICR), Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Florent Bouchon

Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET), Ghent University

Hans Carolus

Laboratory of molecular cell biology, Department of biology, Faculty of science, KU Leuven

Vincent Crabbe 

Research Group of Microbiology (MICR), Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Emmelie De Ridder

Laboratory of Microbiology (LM-UGent), Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, UGent

Anne-Sofie De Rop 

Centre for Industrial Biotechnology and Biocatalysis (, Ghent University

Lena Depaz 

Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET), Ghent University

Tom Eilers

Lab of Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Bioscience Engineering Department, UAntwerp

Angel Estevez Alonso

Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET), Ghent University

Paria Rasouli 

Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, Louvain Drug Research Institute, UCLouvain

Aishwarya Saxena 

Hallez lab, Research Unit in Biology of Microorganisms, UNamur

Charlotte van de Velde

Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Transplantation, Rega Institute, KU Leuven

Josefien Van Landuyt 

Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET), UGent