Marine Guillot


PhD Student


HCI G-304


+41-1-633 4172


Marine Guillot



Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Paris (graduate school of chemistry)


Industrial internship at B.A.S.F. (Ludwigshafen-am-Rhein, Germany)


Unitech International exchange program at the ETH Zurich


Diploma thesis with Prof. F. Diederich


Management internship by Hoffmann-La Roche (Basel)


Ph.D. thesis with Prof. F. Diederich

Polycationic Dendritic Vectors for Gene Transfection:
Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationships.

Fig. 1 The first amphiphilic polycationic dendrimers 1-4 synthesized (left). Maximum transfection efficiency (TE) values of 1-4 and reference compounds PEI, DOTAP, and Superfect in the presence of serum (FBS) in HEK293 cell lines (right). Compound 2 is a promising transfection agent, and surpasses the performance of traditional medium-sized dendrimers.

This project is focused on polycationic amphiphilic dendrimers, in order to develop efficient synthetic vectors for gene transfection. In previous PhD work, D. Joester has defined and synthesized novel dendritic architectures. The small dendrimer 2 was indeed a promising transfection vector (Fig.1). The main objective here is to determine quantitative structure-activity relationships and to elucidate the biological issues by pharmaceutical and scanning probe microscopy studies.

Fig. 2 Fluorescence microscopy of a cell population after transfection assay with the vector 2. The cells successfully transfected express here the green fluorescent protein.

All biological investigations are led with the group of Prof. Merkle at the Institute of Pharmaceutical Science (ETH Zürich). As part of the Swiss "Nanoscale Science" NCCR program, additional collaborations have been established: with the CSEM in Neuchâtel for AFM and Langmuir films, and with the University of Basel for STM, DLS and fluorescence microscopy.