1-2010 Appointed director of INSERM Unit 1013
9’ 2007 Appointed Professor of Immunology, Medical Faculty of University
Paris-Descartes, Department of immunology
1’ 2006 Appointed director of INSERM Unit 580
2006 Promoted DR1 (full professor equivalent, w/o teaching)
2000 Promoted “Directeur de recherche” (DR2; associated professor)
1998 Recruited as “Chargé de recherche” by INSERM
1993 – present: Group leader in the INSERM U580 (previously U25)
1990 - 1993 Postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Prof. McDevitt, Stanford
University, CA, USA
1986 - 1990 Postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Prof. Hämmerling, German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg
1985 - 1986 Thesis: Effect of low protein and low fat diets on the endocrine pancreas of streptozotocin-diabetic rats, University of Marburg
1983 - 1985 Residency, University Hospital of Marburg
I am an immunologist with a fairly wide range of interests that range from fundamental research in immunology with strong cell biological and biochemical aspects over development of diagnostic assays for insulin-dependent diabetes to research on novel immunotherapeutic strategies.
In fundamental immunology, I have been interested for many years in understanding how antigenic peptides presented by MHC molecules are produced intracellularly. In the context of this work I have been studying intracellular proteases, transporters and chaperones, using biochemical and more recently cell biological approaches. In the context of this work I have collaborated in several European networks aiming to develop rational vaccine design principles, and I have a good knowledge of recent vaccination strategies. My recent research has also led me to deal explore additional fields of research relevant to metabolic diseases such as the field of cellular responses to stress and that of the regulation of cellular growth in response to nutrients and hormones, a field relevant in the context of obesity and type 2 diabetes.
In the context of autoimmune diabetes, I have been interested in understanding how cellular responses recognize and destroy the pancreatic endocrine tissue. I have been studying both animal models and patient lymphocytes in this context. Currently my laboratory is active in developing a diagnostic assay suitable for early detection of lymphocytes capable of attacking the endocrine tissue. At the same time, I am developing a strategy in which islet cell proteins are targeted to specific lymphocyte populations that may be able to restore immune tolerance towards pancreatic beta cells and halt the disease process.
I am familiar with a wide range of technologies including the full range of immunological techniques as well as microscopy, molecular biology and biochemistry.