Joris De Wit

°1974, Nederlander

Werkte aan:University of California San Diego (UCSD)

Nieuwe thuishaven: KU Leuven

Titel project: Unraveling the molecular mechanisms that specify synaptic connectivity in neural circuits.

Uit het juryrapport:

Dr. Joris De Wit is an outstanding candidate for the Odysseus program and Katholieke Universiteit Leuven would be very lucky to recruit him. He addresses a long-standing problem in developmental neurobiology--how do neurons make synapses with specific partners--using the most cutting edge technology. His publication record is outstanding; in particular, his publications from the lab of Dr. Anirvan Ghosh have all been in Neuron, one of the top journals dedicated to neurobiological research. His research has been seminal in identifying proteins that are involved in synaptic connectivity. This field is highly competitive, but the Ghosh lab, and in particular, Dr. De Wit has been able to successfully compete with large labs in identifying relevant proteins.

In addition to being an outstanding scientist, Dr. De Wit also has been the de facto leader in the Ghosh lab since Dr. Ghosh decamped to Roche. Hence, Dr. De Wit has supervised the remaining lab members while maintaining the high quality of work and being competitive with other labs. Dr. De Wit has demonstrated excellent research leadership and scientific independence. Both of his evaluators raved about his scientific creativity and leadership abilities.

Dr. De Wit has already established several collaborations, which will continue in his new position. For instance, he collaborated with Dr. John Yates for much of the mass spectrometry work that was in his publications. He has received conditional knockout mice from Prof. Alan Attie and is collaborating with several other scientists who have the mice strains he needs to test some of his hypotheses. Dr. De Wit has shown that he is willing to establish whatever collaborations are necessary to receive reagents or strains that are necessary for his work.