The project

The ProCure project runs from January 2016 till December 2019 and explores whether probiotics (beneficial microbes) can reduce infections of the ear-nose-throat cavity (ENT). ProCure is a large research project in which research groups of UAntwerpen, KU Leuven and UGent participate.

Together we design:

  • platforms for the isolation and selection of novel probiotic strains,
  • innovative processes for the formulation, upscaling and application of these novel strains in pharmaceutical formulations, food and feed, and other forms
  • innovative assays based on cellular assays, more complex microbial models and microbiome analyses for the ENT cavity, which allow the assessment of the impact of probiotics, but also other food- and pharma related compounds on the ENT microbiome

This project is supported by theĀ  VLAIO (Vlaams Agentschap voor Innovatie en Ondernemen), through the channel for strategic basis research (SBO).


  1. Generate knowledge about the ENT microbiome in healthy and diseased individuals with chronic rhinosinusitis (adults) and otitis media (children)
  2. Select and characterize potential probiotic strains after isolation from ENT cavities
  3. Design a dynamic model system for mechanistic research on host-microbe interactions in the upper respiratory tract and ENT cavities
  4. Design novel methods for the formulation and upscaling of probiotics for the upper respiratory tract
  5. Investigate the impact of probiotic interventions on the ENT microbiome