Thursday, 28 February, 2013
Dr. Julien Polleux joins CeNS as Extraordinary Member
Julien Polleux studied "Physical Chemistry" at the University of Bordeaux and received his Diploma degree in 2002 for his work on the synthesis of Au@SiO2 core-shell nanoparticles. He subsequently started his PhD studies at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in the group of Prof. Antonietti and Prof. Niederberger, where he studied the formation and the assembly of metal oxide nanoparticles mediated by small polydentate ligands in nonaqueous solvents. He showed how to control the assembly of functionalized anatase nanoparticles into nanowires via "oriented attachment" and elaborated fast one-step approaches to synthesize WO3-x ordered nanostructures. In 2005, he decided to interface cell biology and moved to Prof. Dunn's group at UCLA, where he worked on the differentiation of pluripotent stem cells through the formation of embryoid bodies on hydrophobic self-assembled monolayers, in close collaboration with Prof. Wu. After a short stay in Prof. Spatz's lab, he moved in 2008 to Prof. Fässler's group at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry near Munich to focus on integrin-mediated adhesion. Over the last years, he developed several micro/nanofabrication techniques to design functional culture substrates, which have the ability to 1) simultaneously engage different classes of cell surface receptors for cross-talk studies by using binary nanoarrays and 2) reversibly manipulate integrin binding with the help of thermoplasmonics. By combining these approaches, he aims at dynamically controlling the interactions between the extracellular matrix and various transmembrane receptors in order to investigate reciprocal signaling circuits with high-resolution live-cell imaging.