Gervaise Loirand
  • E-mail :[email]
  • Phone : +33 2 28 08 01 16
  • Location : Nantes, France
Last update 2019-08-08 16:02:56.311

Gervaise Loirand PhD, Vascular Biology

Course and current status

Titles and Certifications  

  • 1985   DEA, University of Bordeaux II
  • 1988   PhD, University of Bordeaux II
  • 2001   HDR, University of Nantes


Career Development

  • 1985-1988: PhD, University of Bordeaux II
  • 1988-1991:  Research engineer CNES, INSERM CJF 88-13, Bordeaux
  • 1991-1995:  Researcher -CR2 Inserm, INSERM CJF 88-13, Bordeaux
  • 1995-1998:  Researcher-CR1 Inserm - IPMC, UPR CNRS 411 (Pr. Lazdunski), Nice/Sophia-Antipolis
  • 1998-2002: CR1 Inserm - INSERM U-533 (Pr. D. Escande), Nantes.
  • Since 2002:  DR2 Inserm - Research manager/head of team - INSERM U-533, then U-915, Nantes
  • Since 2011:  DR1 Inserm - Research manager/head of team - UMR Inserm 1087/Cnrs 6291, Nantes
  • Since 2017:  DR1 Inserm - Research manager/head of team & Deputy director – UMR Inserm 1087/Cnrs 6291, Nantes

Scientific summary


Gervaise Loirand (PhD) is leading the team “Signalling in vascular and pulmonary physiopathology”of Inserm Unit 1087, Nantes, France. She has a strong expertise in the molecular mechanisms and intracellular signalling pathways regulating smooth muscle cell contractility and arterial tone. She has authored more than 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals. Her research projects are funded by the Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR), Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale, Fondation de France, and Horizon 2020 research grants. She was awarded the Jean-Paul Binet Prize from the Foundation for Medical Research in 2012. She chaired the Inserm Scientific committee “Physiology and Physiopathology of Cardiac, Vascular, Pulmonary, Renal and Muscular Systems” from 2012 to 2016.

GL is recognized as as a main contributor to the discovery of the role of Rho protein signaling in vascular biology and in the pathogenesis of vascular diseases. With her team, she has recently identified the molecular mechanisms coupling AT1 receptors to RhoA activation and RhoA dependent functions in vascular smooth muscle cells and the role of this signaling pathway in hypertension and atherosclerosis. She is also developping a new research axis on the pathophysiology of intracranial aneurysm.

Major contribution in vascular biology and pathophysiology 

  • Discovery of L-type calcium channel in vascular smooth muscle cells 
  • Determination of the major role of RhoA/Rho kinase pathway inhibition in the vasodilatory effect of the endothelium
  • Identification of the role of the RhoA/Rho kinase pathway in systemic and pulmonary hypertension and the molecular mechanisms responsible for its activation
  • Discovery of the exchange factor of RhoA Arhgef1 as a protein essential for angiotensin II- dependent hypertension and as a potential therapeutic target
  • Description of the activation of the Arhgef1/RhoA pathway by angiotensin II in humans
  • Demonstration of the role of leukocyte Arhgef1 in the development of atherosclerosis;
  • Identification of the involvement of an Angptl6 variant in intracranial aneurysms.


1. Bourcier R, ..., Loirand G*, Desal H*, Redon R*. Rare coding variants in ANGPTL6 are associated with familial forms of intracranial aneurysm. Am J Hum Genet. 2018, 102(1): 133-141 (IF=9.924)
2. Carbone ML, ..., Loirand G. Leukocyte RhoA exchange factor Arhgef1 mediates vascular inflammation and atherosclerosis. J Clin Invest. 2017,127(12):4516-452 (IF=12.28)
3. Loirand G, Sauzeau V, Pacaud P. Small G proteins in the cardiovascular system: Physiological and pathological aspects. Physiol Rev. 2013;93(4):1659-720 (IF=24.25) (85 citations)
4. Guilluy C, ...Loirand G. The Rho exchange factor Arhgef1 mediates the effects of angiotensin II on vascular tone and blood pressure. Nat Med, 2010; 16(2):189-190 (IF=30.64) (219 citations)
5. Loirand G, Pacaud P. The role of Rho protein signaling in hypertension. Nat Rev Cardiol, 2010; (11):637-47 (IF=17.42) (134 citations)
6. Guilluy C, ... Loirand G, Pacaud P. RhoA and Rho kinase activation in human pulmonary hypertension: role of 5-HT signaling. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2009;15;179(12):1151-8. (IF=16.494) (162 citations)
7. Loirand G, Guérin P, Pacaud P. Rho kinases in cardiovascular physiology and pathophysiology. Circ Res. 2006;98(3):322-34. (IF=15.862) (616 citations)
8. Mallat Z, ... Loirand G, Tedgui A. Rho-associated protein kinase contributes to early atherosclerotic lesion formation in mice. Circ Res. 2003, 93(9):884-888. (IF=15.862) (179 citations)
9. Sauzeau V, ... Loirand G. Human urotensin II-induced contraction and arterial smooth muscle cell proliferation are mediated by RhoA and Rho-kinase. Circ Res. 2001; 88:1102-1104 (IF=15.862) (325 citations)
10. Sauzeau V, ... Loirand G. Cyclic GMP-dependent protein kinase signaling pathway inhibits RhoA-induced Ca2+ sensitization of contraction in vascular smooth muscle. J Biol Chem, (2000) 275: 21722-21729 (IF=4.106) (644 citations)


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