Prof. van der Poel graduated in Veterinary Medicine in 1988 and completed his PhD in veterinary virology at the Utrecht University in 1995. He is currently senior scientist at the Central Veterinary Institute of Wageningen University and Research Centre, The Netherlands.
His research activities focus on veterinary virology, emerging and zoonotic viruses and foodborne viruses. He is coordinator of the EPIZONE European Research Group, the network focusing on epizootic animal diseases research and a registered specialist in veterinary microbiology within the Netherlands Royal Veterinary Association. He is a registered research worker in medical microbiology within the Netherlands Royal Microbiology Association and member of various scientific committees, boards and professional bodies in the field of veterinary virology. Throughout his career he has been involved in many national and international research projects on viruses in animals and foodstuffs and published a large number of scientific papers and reviews in this area. In February 2009 he has accepted an honorary visiting chair on Emerging and Zoonotic Viruses at the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom.