Professor, Department of Biotechnology and Biosafety, Institute of Public Health
Katia Pauwels obtained her PhD in Applied Biological Sciences in 2003 at the Free University of Brussels. She joined the Biosafety and Biotechnology Unit of the Scientific Institute of Public Health in the same year and started her activities mainly with the risk evaluation of biosafety regulatory dossiers and the elaboration of recommendations related to the contained use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and pathogens. While providing scientific support to the Belgian Biosafety Advisory Council, the Belgian Competent Authorities and EU working groups, her activities have been broadened to the risk evaluation of application dossiers for the deliberate release into the environment, the placing on the market and the transboundary movement of genetically modified organisms. She contributed to several peer-reviewed publications, guidelines and recommendations and she had a major role in the organization of an international Symposium aiming at gathering experts involved in risk assessment/evaluation of GMOs and scientists involved in basic or applied research.
1. Epigenetics: a view on how data generated in this domain actually contribute to a better risk assessment of GMOs?
2. ‘Omics’: a view on how the abundance of information generated could raise challenges as regards the extraction of information with discernable biological meaning that could contribute to the risk assessment of genetically modified organisms.
3. Zinc finger nucleases, TALE nucleases and homing endonucleases; the approach of nuclease based genetic modification may offer a new perspective in the field of genetic engineering of organisms. How the legal status of this approach could be considered in the light of the current GM regulatory framework ?
4. Synthetic biology: does the risk assessment methodology for GMOs suit the risk assessment of organisms/products obtained by approaches of synthetic biology.
5. Risk assessment of animal cell cultures
6. Risk assessment of lentiviral vectors for research purposes
7. Reesearch areas related to the risk evaluation of regulatory dossiers within the framework of the EU Directive 2009/41/EC on the contained use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) (regional competence including the regulation on the contained use of pathogenic organisms)
8. Research areas related to the risk evaluation of regulatory dossiers within the framework of the EU Directive 2001/18/EC and the EU Regulation 1829/2003 related respectively to the deliberate release of genetically modified organisms into the environment and placing on the market.