Fields of expertise
Engineering of polymeric hydrogels for cell transplantation
Engineering of polymeric nanoparticles for gene delivery
Surface functionalization of nanomaterials
MissionSandrine Gerber is involved in the teaching of basic organic chemistry, both in practical sessions and in ex-cathedra courses, for the first year students in Biology (UNIL) and Pharmacy (UNIL). She also gives a Bachelor Course entitled "Asymmetric synthesis and Retrosynthesis", where the disconnection approach to multifunctional synthons is disclosed.
Her research activities are devoted to the development of new chemical entities for bio-applications. Her team is mainly interested in the design, synthesis and evaluation of functionalized nanomaterials and biomaterials for therapeutic applications as imaging probes and cells transplantation devices. In particular, cross-linked alginate-based hydrogels are developed and evaluated in collaboration with the University Hospitals of Geneva for the transplantation of neonatal pig islets and porcine hepatocytes. The surface of harmonic nanoparticles is modified with cancer targeting ligands and caged molecular cargos to develop new theranostic tools. Chitosan-based copolymers are engineered for the delivery of plasmid DNA in the context of liver metabolic disease.
Since 2007, Sandrine Gerber acts as Deputy to the Director of the Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering. In this role, she is in charge of the management of the ISIC Service Platforms who provide technical, scientific and logistic support to the activities of the research laboratories. She is involved in the coordination of infrastructure projects for the ISIC laboratories, in collaboration with the SB Infractructure Team.
Since 2007, Sandrine Gerber acts as representative for the teaching staff at the Council of the School of Basic Sciences. She is also member of the committee of the Doctoral Program of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering.
BiographySandrine Gerber studied chemistry at the "Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Paris" in France, where she obtained a diploma of chemical engineer in 1993. The same year she obtained a DEA (Master degree) of organic chemistry at the University Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI, France). From 1993 to 1996 she did a PhD in organic chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Jean-Pierre Genêt at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Paris. In 1996, she moved to University of Lausanne for a post-doctoral stay under the supervision of Prof. Pierre Vogel. In 1998, she was appointed Maître-Assistante at the Institute of Organic Chemistry in the University of Lausanne. In 2003, she obtained the habilitation to direct research from the University Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI, France). The same year, she was appointed scientific adjunct at the EPFL and senior scientist (Maître d'Enseignement et de Recherche) in 2006. In December 2014, she was promoted to titular professor.
Since September 2007, Sandrine Gerber is deputy to the director of the Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering (ISIC). She is also member of the Board of Directors of the Swiss Chemical Society. Since 2007, Sandrine Gerber is part-time lecturer at the university of Fribourg.
She was awarded the Prize Eugene Schueller in 1997, the Prize Dufour for prospective organic chemistry in 2005 and the Werner Prize 2010. She also received a special mention in recognition of exceptional quality of pedagogic competencies in the teaching of basic sciences, given by the Direction of the School of Biology and Medicine from the University of Lausanne, in 2013. In October 2018, she will receive the Prize for Excellence in Teaching from the section of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering.
PhD studentsLuca Szabó (started in 2016)
Laura Nicolle (started in 2018)
Adrian Gheata (started in 2020)
AlumniDr Raphaël De Matos (2015-2020)
Dr Jérémy Vuilleumier (2015-2019)
Dr François Noverraz (2014-2018)
Dr Solène Passemard (2010-2014)
Dr Davide Staedler (2010-2014)
Dr Christophe Bovigny (2010-2014)
Dr Françoise Borcard (2009-2013)
Dr Pascal Miéville (2009-2011)
Dr Sylvain Favre (2005-2009)
Dr Hélène Fiaux (2003-2007)
Dr Gérald Coste (2003-2007)
Dr Florence Popowycz (1999-2003)
Master studentsProf. Sandrine Gerber supervised more than 35 Master projects.
Academic year 2019-2020: Perrine Robin / Sara Garcia Pedrero
Semester projectsProf. Sandrine Gerber supervised 37 semester projects and internships
ApprenticesCurrently, David Vuagniaux and Elias Troxler are doing a practical internship in the group of Prof. Sandrine Gerber
Post-doctoral collaboratorsDr Céline Journot (2019-2020)
Dr Solène Passemard (2014-2015)
Dr Vladislav Semak (2013-2015)
Dr Lucia Ucnova (2012-2013)
Dr Horacio Comas Blanco (2009-2011)
Dr Ana T. Carmona (2004-2005)
|Rogov, A.; Irondelle, M.; Ramos-Gomes, F.; Bode, J.; Staedler, D.; Passemard, S.; Courvoisier, S.; Yamamoto, Y.;Waharte, F.; Ciepielewski, D.; Rideau, P.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Alves, F.; Salamero, J.; Bonacina, L.; Wolf, J.-P.
ACS Photonics, 2015, 2, 1416-1422
|Simultaneous Multi-Harmonic Imaging of Nanoparticles in Tissues for Increased Selectivity|
|Staedler, D.; Magouroux, T.; Passemard, S.; Schwung, S.; Dubled, M.; Schneiter, G. S.; Rytz, D.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Bonacina, L.; Wolf, J.-P.
Nanoscale, 2014, 6, 2929-2936
|Deep UV Generation and Direct DNA Photo-Interaction by Harmonic Nanoparticles in Labelled Samples|
|Glauser, M.; Metrailler, M.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Centeno, C.; Seghezzi, C.; Dunand, M.; Abid, K.; Herren, A.; Grouzmann, E.
Clinica Chim. Acta 2014, 430, 125-128
|Enzyme and Acid Deconjugation of Plasma Sulfated Metanephrines|
|Frei, R.; Raja, A.; Franke, R.; Sasse, F.; Staedler, D.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Waser, J.
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 13373-13376
|Total Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of Jeriantinine E|
|Grouzmann, E.; Gualtierotti, J.- B.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Abid, K.; Brakch, N.; Pedretti, A.; Testa, B.; Vistoli, G.
Chirality 2013, 25, 28-34
|Lack of Enantioselectivity in the SULT1A3-Catalyzed Sulfoconjugation of Normetanephrine Enantiomers: an in Vitro and Computational Study|
|Borcard, F.; Kong, P.; Journot, C.; Staedler, D.; Sturzenegger, P. N.; Krauss Juillerat, F., Gonzenbach, U. T.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.
Chimia 2013, 67, 213-217
|Surface modification of biomaterials for conjugation to human fetal osteoblasts|
|Passemard, S.; Staedler, D.; U??ov�, L.; Schneiter, G. S.; Kong, P.; Bonacina, L.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.
Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett. 2013, 23, 5006-5010
|Convenient synthesis of bifunctional azido and amino-silanized poly(ethylene glycol) suitable for the functionalization of iron oxide nanoparticles for biomedical applications|
|Krauss Juillerat, F.; Engeli, R.; Jerjen, I.; Sturzenegger, P. N.; Borcard, F.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Gauckler, L. J.; Gonzenbach, U. T.
J. Eur. Ceram. Soc. 2013, 2013, 33, 1497-1505
|Synthesis of bone-like structured foams|
|Krauss Juillerat, F.; Borcard, F.; Staedler, D.; Scaletta, C.; Applegate, L. A.; Comas, H.; Gauckler, L.J.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L; Gonzenbach, U.
Bioconjugate Chem. 2012, 23, 2278-2290
|Functionalization of microstructured open-porous bio-ceramic scaffolds with human fetal cells|
|Borcard, F.; Staedler, D.; Comas, H.; Krauss Juillerat, F.; Sturzenegger, P. N.; Heuberger, R. Gonzenbach, U. T.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.
J. Med. Chem. 2012, 55, 7988-7997
|Chemical functionalization of bio-ceramics to enhance endothelial cells adhesion for tissue engineering|
|Staedler, D.; Magouroux, T.; Hadli, R.; Joulaud, C.; Extermann, J.; Schwung, S.; Passemard, S.; Kasparian, C.; Clarke, G.; Gerrmann, M.; Le Dantec, R.; Mugnier, Y.; Rytz, D.; Ciepielewski, D.; Galez, C.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L.; Bonacina, L.; Wolf., J.-P.
ACS Nano 2012, 6, 2542-2549
|Harmonic Nanocrystals for Bio-Labeling: a Survey of Optical Properties and Biocompatibility|
|Comas, H.; Laporte, V.; Borcard, F.; Mi�ville, P.; Krauss Juillerat, F.; Caporini, M. A.; Gonzenbach, U. T.; Juillerat-Jeanneret, L.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.
ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2012, 4, 573-576
|Surface Functionalisation of Alumina Ceramic Foams with Organic Ligands|
|Simonin, J.; Gerber-Lemaire, S.; Centeno, C.; Seghezzi, C.; Iglesias, K.; Abid, K.; Grouzmann, E.
Clinica Chim. Acta, 2012, 413, 998-1003
|Synthetic calibrators for the analysis of total metanephrines in urine: hydrolysis conditions revisited|
Cancer imaging and diagnosisDevelopment of functionalized second harmonic nanoparticles for cancer diagnosis and imaging
In vivo imaging has huge potential as diagnostic and prognostic tools in human diseases. We are pursuing the development of a novel generation of multimodal nanodevices capable of acting simultaneously as contrast agents for different imaging techniques (optical microscopy, magnetic resonance) and of complementing these imaging capabilities with other functions such as drug delivery, electric and pH sensing, etc.
To achieve multi-modal probes for long-term imaging, we develop chemical functionalizations of Second Harmonic Generation nanoparticles (SHG-NPs) for the selective binding to human disease biomarkers (cancer biomarkers and cellular structures reporting the presence of tumour cells or tumour-associated cells with defined characteristics of the tumour environment). These nanomaterials are also designed to display the possibility to be internalized by tumour cells or tumour-associated cells, in order to report over time of the loss, or maintenance, of these cells in a defined location in response to a therapy. Several efficient synthetic routes have been implemented for the preparation of PEG-based coating polymers and their covalent conjugation to targeting for specific association with cancer cells biomarkers.In addition, we recently disclosed the possibility to use SHG-NPs as photo-therapeutic agents for in situ generation of UV. These results highlighted, for the first time, the use of up conversion NPs for on-demand and localized induction of direct damages on cancer cells nuclear DNA, paving the way for the development of theranostic devices based on SHG-NPs.
Cell therapy productsDevelopment of functionalized polymeric hydrogels for cell immobilization
The increasing incidence of age-related diseases and the low availability of human donor material to replace dysfunctional cells and damaged tissues in patients have prompted the search for alternative transplantation therapies. Hydrogels, presenting a three dimensional (3D) structure, can serve as scaffolds for tissue engineering and as carrier for cell encapsulation and drug delivery. The transplantation of encapsulated cells/tissues prevents adverse immunological response while allowing the crossing of oxygen, nutrients and secreted factors. Despite the highly promising studies that have been directed toward the development of hydrogel microcapsules for the treatment of human diseases including liver failure, diabetes mellitus, Parkinson's disease and anemia, routine clinical application of cell microcapsules still remains a challenge.
We develop synthetic routes for the production of PEG-grafted alginate hydrogels which are further conjugated to anti-inflammatory agents and drug scaffolds targeting fibrotic pathways to provide highly biocompatible materials for the encapsulation of islets and hepatocytes.
Teaching & PhD
Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Doctoral Program in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering