CMET researchers study microbial communities & interactions to better understand and steer ecological processes with an ultimate aim of improving and enabling biotechnological applications

The Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET) is a part of the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering at Ghent University. CMET is specialized in the study and application of mixed microbial cultures or communities. A microbial community consists of several populations, which each represent a functional biological entity and thus a diverse metabolic capacity. The assemblage of these biological entities represents -when properly organized- a powerful resource. CMET researchers focus on the optimal management of these microbial resources. We define it as Microbial Resource Management (MRM), enabling us to develop novel products and (technological) processes to improve our environment or human health in the most sustainable way.

More specifically, CMET applies this approach in the fields of Abatement & prevention of bacterial diseases, Applied microbial ecology‬‬‬‬‬, Host-microbe interaction technology, Life support systems for space‬, Microbial electrocatalysis & electrochemical engineering, Resource recovery and valorization, and Water treatment and production.

The CMET research group is part of the Department of Biotechnology and comprises about 85 academics, technical and administrative staff. On this website you will find all information about CMET research, education and services. For more information, please do not hesitate to contact us or visit us on our LinkedIn page.




On 7 March 2017, ir. Jolien De Paepe of the center for microbial ecology and technology received the prestigious ‘Odissea’ prize for her study “Water recycling in Space: from urine to hygienic water” in the presence of jury president Viscount Dirk Frimout (Belgian astronaut and astrophysicist for ESA) and Christine Defraigne, President of the Belgian Senate.


CMET is proud to announce new and exciting expertise within the group of Prof. Tom Van de Wiele. A new lab was built to facilitate the cultivation of in vitro models of host tissue, and combine them with our existing models of the human microbiome.


N-genius, the nitrogen cluster of CMET, hosted Ségolène Guinard from Labex-ARTS H2H -Université Paris 8. They’ve spent an inspiring day philosophizing about human interactions with N-cycle bacteria in space.


Ir. Benjamin Buysschaert of the Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET, Faculty of Bioscience Engineering) received the 2016 Ernest du Bois prize for his research on flow cytometry.


BITS-Pilani K.K. Birla Goa campus and Ghent University have developed a novel technology relying just on electricity to disinfect wastewater and thus limit the risk to inhabitants around open drains.


During the Public Meeting of the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts, our Prof. Korneel Rabaey received the prestigious prize 'Laureates of the Academy' in the category ‘Technical Sciences'. Prof.


In domestic sewage, there are various organic substances, mainly from toilets and kitchens, containing lots of energy. Dr. Francis Meerburg of CMET developed a fast variation of the contact-stabilization process, in which he starves the bacteria periodically as a 'fasting regimen'.