So, why are you moving to Belgium?

 You can imagine that I get this question a lot, as everybody has their favorite place in Europe, and is curious how we would choose Belgium.

The reason is that I am working for a Belgian company, in its US office.   At the time I started, it was thought that more activity would be established in the US, but for one reason or another, this has not happened.  In fact, the opposite has:  we have added people and locations in Europe and, as it now stands, almost everyone I am responsible for is in Europe.

So, what is it that I do?  I am responsible for the projects and lab operations for OncoMethylome Sciences.  We are a small (~55 people), young (since 2003) biotech start-up working on diagnostic tests for cancer.  We are making better ways to see if you have cancer, if it has re-appeared, how aggressive it might be, and what is the best way to treat it.  We do this by looking for patterns of chemical modification of DNA, which it turns out may have an even bigger role in how our bodies work than the better known mutation of DNA.  You can see more about the company and our technology at www.oncomethylome.com.

Alright, why Liège?  This was not the only choice; we have labs in Liège, Leuven (another city in Belgium) and Amsterdam, in the Netherlands.  Many people might say they would rather live in Amsterdam, but we are not city people really, and would rather live in a beautiful village on the edge of the Ardennes than in a big city.  Our biggest lab, and the official headquarters is in Liège, and so we are going there, although I will be spending plenty of time at the other sites as well.