Our current PhD students

Margherita Springer
NIHS (Metabolic Phenotyping) and TUM.

Supporting Weight Maintenance with Bioactives

"Obesity is the major risk factor for the development of type 2 diabetes and it affects millions of people globally. One of the huge obstacles in its treatment isn’t weight loss itself, but the strong tendency for people to eventually regain the weight they lose."

"My research aims to understand what factors differentiate those who can maintain a normal body weight from those who cannot and how nutritional bioactives can be used to improve responses for the latter. Hopefully, we can apply the results to help those struggling to maintain weight loss."

"Working as part of a multi-disciplinary team is an excellent chance to learn new skills. Being part of the Nestlé PhD programme is a unique opportunity to work within a highly dynamic environment while conducting research that can have a direct impact on human nutrition."


Omid Mashinchian (on the right)
NIHS (Muscle Health) and EPFL

Generation of Uncommitted Human IPSC-Derived Muscle Stem Cells for Therapeutic Applications

"I am developing a novel derivation system for muscle stem cells from induced pluripotent stem cells. The availability of such a cell type would tremendously advance the options for high-throughput screening of natural bioactives to stimulate muscle regeneration, and open up new possibilities for life-long genetic correction in areas such as stem cell-based therapy for skeletal muscle diseases."

"Having such an opportunity to improve people’s health is both satisfying and motivating. I’ve also been very impressed by the way the research programmes at NIHS address biomedical problems at different levels – both laboratory- and industry-based – giving me hope that I can apply my science both at the academic level (through high-profile academic papers) and within the industrial setting."


Caterina Collodet
NIHS (Functional Genomics and
Metabolic Energy Balance) and EPFL

AMPK-dependent gene expression profiles in response to small molecule AMPK activators

"AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a major regulator of cellular energy homeostasis that coordinates metabolic pathways to balance nutrient supply with energy demand. Our project sets out to discover how AMPK-activation impacts gene regulation and modulates metabolic adaptation. This work will help us develop targeted nutritional solutions for modulating metabolic disorders like diabetes and obesity."

"I love being part of this project because it gives me a great sense of purpose, as we’re generating knowledge to improve one of today's major health issues. Being part of Nestlé’s PhD programme is satisfying my scientific curiosity while providing invaluable work experience in one of the world’s largest companies."


Isabelle Chareyron
NIHS (Mitochondrial Function) and EPFL

Mitochondrial function in donor-derived human pancreatic beta-cells during Type 2 diabetes progression

"Type 2 diabetes has become a worldwide epidemic in the last decade. It’s a complex and multifactorial disease, and we still don’t fully understand how it develops in patients."

"Through our research, we hope to better understand how mitochondria – the cell’s energy factories – are affected or play a role in the development of this disease. Hopefully, this could one day lead to new strategies to prevent or treat Type 2 diabetes."

"Being part of the Nestlé PhD programme has given me the opportunity to work at the crossroad between academia and industry, mixing basic science with more business-oriented projects – a great opportunity to see how scientific knowledge can be industrialised to produce the type of products that change people’s lives around the world."


Contact us for more information about our PhD students.