GHoPat – GPCRs in homeostasis and pathology

Our research

G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) represent the largest family among membrane receptors. They play a major role in a variety of physiological and pathophysiological processes, and constitute the targets for 30% of the active compounds presently used as therapeutic agents. Our objective is to study new paradigms in activation, signaling and regulation of GPCRs and determine their contribution in pathophysiological processes using mice models.

The experimental approach involves cell and molecular biology, pharmacology, organoid culture technology and in vivo studies.

Group members


Principal investigators

Marie-Isabelle Garcia PhD,        Phone: + 32 2 555 4195, Email : —>Personal Web Page

Ingrid Langer PharmD, PhD ,     Phone: + 32 2 555 4129, Email :–>Personal Web Page

Jean-Yves Springael PhD,          Phone: + 32 2 555 4198, Email :–>Personal Web Page

Gilbert Vassart, MD,PhD,        Email :  —>Personal web page

Technical staff

Morgane Leprovots BA degree, Phone: + 32 2 555 6576, Email :

PhD students

Rami Abdo, MD, + 32 2 555 4990,

Giulia Agostini, + 32 2 555 4990, Email :

Jerôme Jendriens, + 32 2 555 4143,

Romane Meerts, + 32 2 555 4990, Email :

Alia Hadefi, MD, + 32 2 555 4990, Email :

Maryam Marefati, + 32 2 555 4990, Email :

Mohammed-Amine Mahdar, MD, + 32 2 555 4990,

Lilian Demolin, MD, + 32 2 555 4990,

Master students

Nathalie Tubez, + 32 2 555 4990,

Marie Ates, + 32 2 555 4990,


Publications from 2016


The olfactory receptor olfr78 promotes differentiation of enterochromaffin cells in the mouse colon Gilles Dinsart, Morgane Leprovots, Anne Lefort, Frederick Libert, Yannick Quesnel, Alex Veiten, Gilbert Vassart, Sandra Huysseune, Marc Parmentier,Marie-Isabelle Garcia,
EMBO reports, (2023);


The Atypical Chemerin Receptor GPR1 Displays Different Modes of Interaction with β-arrestins in Humans and Mice with Important Consequences on Subcellular Localization and Trafficking. Degroot, G-N, Lepage, V., Parmentier M. and Springael, J-Y (2022) Cells in press.

Signal Transduction by VIP and PACAP Receptors. I. Langer, J. Jeandriens, A. Couvineau, S. Sanmukh, D. Latek. Biomedicines (2022) 9;10(2):406. doi: 10.3390/biomedicines10020406.

Cold Atmospheric Plasma Differentially Affects Cell Renewal and Differentiation of Stem Cells and Apc-Deficient-Derived Tumor Cells in Intestinal Organoids. A. Hadefi, M. Leprovots, M. Thulliez, O. Bastin, A. Lefort, F. Libert, A. Nonclercq, A. Delchambre, F. Reniers, J. Deviere, MI Garcia. Cell Death Discovery (2022) 8:66 ;


Drug Repositioning For Allosteric Modulation of VIP and PACAP Receptors. Langer I, Latek D. Front Endocrinol. (2021) 18;12:711906. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2021.711906.

Involvement of chemerin and CMKLR1 in the progesterone decrease by PCOS granulosa cells. Estienne A, Mellouk N, Bongrani A, Plotton I, Langer I, Ramé C, Petit C, Guérif F, Froment P, Dupont J. Reproduction. (2021) 162(6):427-436. doi: 10.1530/REP-21-0265.

Interleukin-6 is an activator of pituitary stem cells upon local damage, a competence quenched in the aging gland. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2021, 118 (25). Vennekens A., Hermans F., Laporte E., Cox B., Modave E., Janiszewski, A., Nys C., Garcia M.I., Pasque V., Kobayashi H., Lambrechts D., Vankelecom H.

Preclinical tolerance evaluation of the addition of a cisplatin-based dry powder for inhalation to the conventional carboplatin-paclitaxel doublet for treatment of non-small cell lung cancer. Chraibi S, Rosière R, De Prez E, Gérard P, Antoine MH, Langer I, Nortier J, Remmelink M, Amighi K, Wauthoz N. Biomed Pharmacother. (2021) 139:111716. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2021.111716.

Pulmonary and renal tolerance of cisplatin-based regimens combining intravenous and endotracheal routes for lung cancer treatment in mice. Chraibi S, Rosière R, De Prez E, Antoine MH, Remmelink M, Langer I, Nortier J, Amighi K, Wauthoz N. Int J Pharm. (2021) 599:120425. doi: 10.1016/j.ijpharm.2021.120425.

TAFA4 relieves injury-induced mechanical hypersensitivity through LDL receptors and modulation of spinal A-type K + current. Yoo,S., Santos, C., Reynders, A., Marics, I., Malapert, P., Gaillard, S., Charron, A., Ugolini, S.,  Rossignol, R., El Khallouqi, A., Springael, JY, Parmentier, M.,  Saurin, A.,  Jean-Marc Goaillard, JM,  Castets, F., Clerc, N. and Moqrich, A. 2021 Cell Rep doi: 10.1016.


Chemerin added to endothelin-1 promotes rat pulmonary artery smooth muscle cell proliferation adn migration. Hanthazi A, Jespers P, Vegh G, Dubois C, Hubesch G, Springael JY, Dewachter L, Mc Entee K.Front. Physiol. (2020) doi: 10.3389/fphys.2020.00926.

Can BRET-based biosensors be used to characterize G-protein mediated signaling pathways of an insect GPCR, the Schistocerca gregaria CRF-related diuretic hormone receptor ?Lismont E., Verbaket L., Vogel E., Corbisier J., Degroot G., Verdonk R., Verlinder H., Marchal E., Springael J.Y. and Vanden Broeck J. Insect. Biochem. Mol. Biol. (2020) doi: 10.1016/j.ibmb.2020.103392.

LGR4 deficiency results in delayed puberty through impaired Wnt/β-catenin signaling. A. Mancini, S. R. Howard, F. Marelli, C. P. Cabrera, M.l R. Barnes, M.l J.E. Sternberg, M. Leprovots, I. Hadji, demetriou, Elena Monti, Al. David, K. Wehkalampi, R. Oleari, A. Lettieri, V. Vezzoli, G. Vassart, A. Cariboni, M. Bonomi, MI Garcia, L. Guasti, and L. Dunkel.JC I Insight. (2020);5(11):e133434.

Lgr5 controls extracellular matrix production by stem cells in the developing intestine. Fernandez-Vallone V., Leprovots M., Gerbier R., Ribatallada-Soriano D., Lefort A., Libert F., Vassart G., Garcia MI. EMBO Rep (2020) vol. 3, no. n/a, p. 038, May 2020.


Coexpression of CCR7 and CXCR4 During B Cell Development Controls CXCR4 Responsiveness and Bone Marrow Homing. Mcheik S, Van Eeckhout N, De Poorter C, Galés C, Parmentier M, Springael JY. Front Immunol. (2019) Dec 18;10:2970. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2019.02970. eCollection 2019. PMID: 31921208.

Chemerin influences endothelin- and serotonin-induced pulmonary artery vasoconstriction in rats. Hanthazi A., Jespers P., Vegh G., Degroot GN, Springael J.Y., Lybaert P., Dewachter L. and Entee KMC Life Sci. (2019) doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2019.116580.

A Molecular Dynamics Study of Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide Receptor 1 and the Basis of Its Therapeutic Antagonism. Latek, D., Langer, I., Krzysko, K., & Charzynski, L. International Journal of Molecular Sciences (2019) 20(18), 4348. doi:10.3390/ijms20184348.


Development by Genetic Immunization of Monovalent Antibodies Against Human Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide Receptor 1 (VPAC1), New Innovative, and Versatile Tools to Study VPAC1 Receptor Function. X. Peyrassol, T. Laeremans, V. Lahura, M. Debulpaep, H. El Hassan, J. Steyaert, M. Parmentier, I. Langer. Front Endocrinol (2018), 9:153 doi:10.3389/fendo.2018.00153.

Pericardial Adipose Tissue Regulates Granulopoiesis, Fibrosis and Cardiac Function After Myocardial Infarction. Horckmans M, Bianchini M, Santovito D, Megens RTA, Springael J.Y., Negri I, Vacca M, Di Eusanio M, Moschetta A, Weber C, Duchene J, Steffens S Circulation (2018) 137: 948-960.


Partial agonist and biased signaling properties of the synthetic enantiomers J113863/UCB35625 at chemokine receptors CCR2 and CCR5. Corbisier, J., Galès, C., Huszagh, A., Parmentier M. and Springael J.Y. J. Biol. Chem. (2017) 292: 575-584.

LGRs receptors as peculiar GPCRs involved in cancer (Review). Garcia MI. J Stem Cell Res Med (2017), doi: 10.15761/JSCRM.1000116.

Ex vivo culture of gastric spheroids. Fernandez Vallone V., Leprovots M., Vassart G and Garcia MI. Bio-protocols. (2017). DOI 10.21769/2089.

Ex vivo culture of adult antral glands. Fernandez Vallone V., Leprovots M., Vassart G and Garcia MI. Bio-protocols. (2017). DOI 10.21769/2088.


Trop2 marks transient gastric fetal epithelium and adult regenerating cells after epithelial damage: Fernandez Vallone V, Leprovots M, Strollo S, Vasile G, Lefort A, Libert F, Vassart G, Garcia MI.
Development. (2016) May 1;143(9):1452-63. doi: 10.1242/dev.131490. Epub 2016 Mar 17.

Development by Genetic Immunization of Monovalent Antibodies (Nanobodies) Behaving as Antagonists of the Human ChemR23 Receptor. X. Peyrassol, T. Laeremans, M. Gouwy, V. Lahura, M. Debulpaep, J. Van Damme, J. Steyaert, M. Parmentier, I. Langer. J Immunol (2016), 196(6):2893-901.

Signaling properties of chemerin receptors CMKLR1, GPR1 and CCRL2. De henau, O., Degroot, G.N., Imbault, V., Robert, V., De Poorter, C., Mcheik, S., Galés, C., Parmentier, M. and Springael, J.Y. PLoSONE (2016) 11:e0164179.L

LGR4 and LGR5 Regulate Hair Cell Differentiation in the Sensory Epithelium of the Developing Mouse Cochlea. Zak, M.; Van Oort, T.; Hendriksen, F.G; Garcia MI; Vassart, G; Grolman, W. Front Cell Neurosci. (2016); 10: 186. doi: 10.3389/fncel.2016.00186 PMCID: PMC4988241

Stem Cells in Adult Homeostasis, Regeneration and Tissue Development of the Digestive Tract Epithelium. V. Fernandez-Vallone and MI. Garcia. Int J Stem Cell Res Ther (2016), 3:038 Volume 3 | Issue 2 ISSN: 2469-570X

Building and rebuilding gastric epithelium: Trop2 as a common denominator. V. Fernandez-Vallone and MI. Garcia. Atlas of Science, another view on science. Published online August 15th, 2016.

Modular Integrated Secretory System Engineering in Pichia pastoris To Enhance G-Protein Coupled Receptor Expression. Claes, K., Vandewalle, K., Laukens, B., Laeremans, T., Vosters, O., Langer, I., Parmentier, M., Steyaert, J., & Callewaert, N. ACS synthetic biology (2016). doi:10.1021/acssynbio.6b00032

Development and evaluation of well-tolerated and tumor-penetrating polymeric micelle-based dry powders for inhaled anti-cancer chemotherapy. Rosiere, R., Van Woensel, M., Mathieu, V., Langer, I., Mathivet, T., Vermeersch, M., Amighi, K., & Wauthoz, N. International journal of pharmaceutics (2016). doi:10.1016/j.ijpharm.2016.01.073.