Francis Vercammen

After a career of almost 25 years in Antwerp ZOO and Planckendael ZOO, veterinarian Francis Vercammen is now retired. Veterinarian Jonas Spruyt follows in his footsteps.

Research themes

Different key clinical veterinary domains: infectious diseases, pathology, nutrition, reproduction.


Coordinator of zoo veterinary science

Research Interests

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Clinical pathology
  • Clinical nutrition
  • Reproduction.

Most attention is paid to diagnoses, treatments and preventative measures for the individual as well as for the group.

Brief Biography

I graduated at Ghent University in 1986 as Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. From 1987 till 2001 I worked at a private veterinary practice for companion animals in Antwerp city and at the Veterinary Department at the Institute of Tropical Medicine of Antwerp (clinical and research work in import pathology, infectious diseases, laboratory and exotic animals). From 1998 till 2001 I was also part-time veterinarian at Antwerp ZOO and Planckendael ZOO, where I became the head of the Veterinary Department in 2001.

Extra activities

I am a member of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians and the European Association of Zoo and Wildlife Veterinarians, and a Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine in Zoo Health Management.

Key Publications

Vercammen F, Bosseler L, Tignon M, Cay AB. (2017). Encephalomyocarditis virus in a captive Malayan tapir (Tapirus indicus). Open Veterinary Journal 7 (2): 100-103.

Ayouba A, Michem A, Peeters M, Vercammen F. (2017). Full-genome characterization of simian T-cell leukemia virus type 1 subtype b from a wild-born captive Gorilla gorilla gorilla with T-cell lymphoma. Genome Announcements 5: e01117-17. A.01117-17

Reddy VRAP, Vercammen F, Trus I, Nauwynck HJ (2017). Contemporary outbreaks of different avipoxviruses in Humboldt penguins of wild animal park Planckendael and in chickens of commercial poultry farms in Belgium. Vlaams Diergeneeskundig Tijdschrift 86: 40-46.

Blooi M, Pasmans F, Rouffaer L, Haesebrouck F, Vercammen F, Martel A. (2015). Successful treatment of Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans infections in salamanders requires synergy between voriconazole, polymyxin E and temperature. Scientific Reports 5, 11788; doi: 10.1038/srep1178!.

Levecke B, Dorny P, Vercammen F, Visser L, Van Esbroeck M, Vercruysse J, Verweij J. (2015). Transmission of Entamoeba nuttalli and Trichuris trichiura from Nonhuman Primates to Humans. Emerging Infectious Diseases 21 (10): 1871-1872

Vercammen F, Brandt J, Van Brantegem L, Bosseler L, Ducatelle R. (2015). Haemangiosarcoma in a captive Asiatic lion (Panthera leo persica). Open Veterinary Journal 5 (1): 52-55.

Vercammen F, Stas L, Bauwens L, De Deken R, Brandt J. (2014). Long-term assessment of glucosuria in captive okapi (Okapia johnstoni) after a dietary change. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 45 (3): 632-634.

Bauwens L, Vercammen F, Hendrickx F, Pasmans F, Martel A. (2014). Prevalence of Devriesea agamarum in the lizard collection of The Royal Zoological Society of Antwerp. Journal of Zoo and Aquarium Research 2 (3): 88-91.

Blooi M, Pasmans F, Longcore J, Spitzen van der Sluijs A, Vercammen F, Martel A. (2013). Duplex real-time PCR for rapid simultaneous detection of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis and B. salamandrivorans in amphibian samples. Journal of Clinical Microbiology 51 (12): 4173-4177.

Vercammen F, Bauwens L, De Deken R, Brandt J. (2012). Prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in mammals of the Royal Zoological Society of Antwerp. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 43 (1): 159-161.

Authored book chapters

Vercammen F., De Meurichy W., De Deken R., Brandt J., Kumar V., Geerts S. Helminths of Wildlife. Chemotherapy. Eds.: Chowdhury N., Aguirre A.A., Science Publishers, 2001, 51-62

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