Didier Letourneur Biomedical Engineer

Course and current status

Education

1980 - 1985    Material Engineer, University Paris 13 (UP13)

1984 - 1985    Graduate Degree in Bio-engineering; Specialty : Biomaterials

1988               Ph.D. in Chemistry, University Paris 13

1994               Specialization Degree "Experimentation on Animals", University Paris 6

1997               Habilitation (Ph.D. Direction), UP13

Situation

From 2002     Research Director CNRS - DR1 from 2011

From 2005     Head of Bio-Engineering team 3 INSERM U698 & Head of Research            

                     Technological team (ERTi). Head of the lab from 2014 (U 1148- LVTS)

From 2009     President of Biomat (French association for Biomaterials)

Scientific summary

Cardiovascular Bio-engineering Laboratory – INSERM U 1148

Headed by Didier Letourneur (research director at CNRS), this team belongs to INSERM Unit 1148 (Director D Letourneur). It was set up in 2002, and included now 22 permanent researchers/teachers and 4 technical staff members (from Inserm and University Paris 13) and several students (doctoral, post-doctoral and masters). As a multidisciplinary lab, it stands at the interface between chemistry, materials engineering, biology, biomedical imaging and cardiovascular research. The laboratory has also strong industrial partners and numerous patents (16 patents in the last 6 years).

One major objective of the laboratory is to develop biomaterials, based on natural and synthetic polymers, which can be used as prostheses or to reconstruct blood vessels. One direct application of this research is the development of 3D matrices for cardiovascular tissue engineering. A second program relates to local arterial gene/drug therapy, and involves developing biopolymers for functionalized stents (endovascular prostheses). A third program focus on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of atherosclerotic plaque, for which the team is developing specific new contrast agents to trigger a vascular accident, or to follow the cell therapy.

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