Philippe Froguel is MD and PhD. He passed his Medical Degree in 1986 (Paris 6 University, St Antoine Medical School), and he obtained a PhD in 1991 (Paris 7 University). At this time he was head of the diabetes laboratory at CEPH (Human Polymorphism Study Centre, Paris, chaired by Pr Jean Dausset, Nobel prize winner. He served as CEPH Secretary general and was member of the board of the French Genethon genomic centre. In 1995, he accepted a position of Head of Human Genetics at the CNRS Institute of Biology, Pasteur Institute, Lille, France. He is now Professor of Endocrinology-Diabetes at Lille University Hospital and Chair of the CNRS-Lille 2 University-Pasteur unit “genomics and metabolic diseases”. He is also Professor of Genomic Medicine at Imperial College London where he chairs the Department of Genomics of Common Disease in the School of Public Health.

Philippe Froguel scientific carrier is focused on the genetics of complex traits in human, especially in diabetes (most referred world wide scientific author 1991-2001 in the diabetes field and one of the most cited since), and in obesity and on their vascular complications. He published more than 500 publications so far. He has developed original candidate gene and whole genome approaches in the “diabesity” field which have lead to major discoveries: Philippe Froguel identified many genes responsible for monogenic T2D (glucokinase, HNF1, ABCC8/SUR1…) and obesity (LEP-R, MC4R…), as well as genes increasing risk for common T2D (including KCNJ11/KIR 6.2 in 1997) or for obesity (including FTO in 2007). In 2007, he published the first Genome Wide Association Study (GWAS) in T2D (“Breakthrough of the year” according to the journal Science, and most referred paper in T2D field since this date). In 2010 he showed that rare Copy Number Variants (CNVs) can cause highly penetrant severe obesity and in 2010 that gene dosage due to CNV can cause either obesity or extreme leanness. In 2012 he showed that rare mutations with major functional effects may contribute to T2D (Melatonin receptor 2) or to obesity (lipid sensor GPR120).

Philippe Froguel current research is mainly focused on the identification and functional analysis of rare mutations associated with T2D or obesity, on the impact of genome structure variation in metabolic diseases, on the role of epigenetic phenomena in T2D and obesity and on post GWAS meta-analysis of these diseases.

Selected recent publications:

  1. Ichimura A et al. Dysfunction of lipid sensor GPR120 leads to obesity in both mouse and human. Nature. 2012 Feb 19 doi: 10.1038/nature10798. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 22343897
  2. Bonnefond A et al. Rare MTNR1B variants impairing melatonin receptor 1B function contribute to type 2 diabetes. Nat Genet. 2012 Jan 29. doi: 10.1038/ng.1053. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 22286214.
  3. Jacquemont S et al. Mirror extreme BMI phenotypes associated with gene dosage at the chromosome 16p11.2 locus. Nature. 2011 Aug 31;478(7367):97-102.
  4. Walters R et al. A new highly penetrant form of obesity due  to deletions on chromosome 16p11.2. Nature. 2010 Feb 4;463(7281):671-5


Email : philippe.froguel[chez]good.ibl[point]fr


Bart Staels, PhD., is professor at the University of Lille, Lille, France. He is director of the Inserm Unit UMR 1011 with laboratories on the campus of the Institut Pasteur de Lille and the Research Pole of the University of Lille.

B. Staels earned his doctorate at the Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Leuven, Belgium. He completed postdoctoral work at the Metabolic Research Unit, University of California, San Francisco and was postdoctoral research fellow of the Reverse Cholesterol Transport/Atherosclerosis Project, BioAvenir, Vitry sur Seine, France.

B. Staels is a member of learned societies such as the European Atherosclerosis Society, the International Atherosclerosis Society (Distinguished Fellow), the Nouvelle Société Française d’Athérosclérose, the Société Française de Diabète, the American Heart Association (Premium Professional Silver Heart Member), the American Diabetes Association and European Association for the Study of Diabetes. He is past-president of the Nouvelle Société Française d’Athérosclérose (NSFA; 2009-2011).

B. Staels is also co-founder of the biopharmaceutical company Genfit SA, and president of its Scientific Advisory Board. He is co-founder and board member of the European Genomic Institute for Diabetes (EGID). He was appointed European corresponding member of the National Academy of Pharmacy in June 2011; Senior Member of the Institut Universitaire de France in October 2011 and received the International Francqui Professor Chair in 2013.

B. Staels has been awarded the Young Investigator Award of the European Atherosclerosis Society, the Bronze Medal of the CNRS and the Lifetime Achievement Award of the British Atherosclerosis Society, the pharmaceutical “Barré” 2007 prize from the Faculté de Pharmacie of Montreal, and the French “JP Binet” prize from the Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale, Paris, in 2011. He is also recipient of the 2012 “Distinguished Leader in Insulin Resistance” award from the International Committee for Insulin Resistance (ICIR).

B. Staels’ research focuses on molecular pharmacology of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, including dyslipidemia and type 2 diabetes. He particularly studies the role of nuclear receptors (such as the PPARs, FXR, Rev-erbα and RORα) in the control of inflammation and lipid and glucose homeostasis as well as the transcriptional mechanisms involved. B. Staels was among the first to identify a crucial role for the nuclear receptor PPARα in the control of lipid and glucose metabolism as well as cardiovascular function in humans. He elucidated the action mechanism of the fibrate class of drugs that are currently used in the treatment of lipid disorders and worked also on the action mechanism of the glitazones, a class of anti-diabetic drugs. His work has identified the PPAR transcription factors as potential drug targets for the treatment of diabetes, dyslipidemia, cardiovascular disease and NAFLD, which contributed to the development of several novel therapeutic compounds, one of them is currently in phase IIb of clinical development.

To date, B. Staels has published more than 560 publications, >195 review articles and contributed to several book chapters. He received the ISI citations award (citation number of 39040; h-index factor of 106 and average citation of 55/article). Based on the French 2007 Necker Institute dossier, B.Staels was between 2000-2005 among the 35 french researchers with the highest publication volume.

B. Staels is also reviewer for numerous international journals and has been invited speaker at many prestigious international meetings, including the IAS, AHA, ADA and IDF. He contributed to the organization of congresses such as the “International Symposia on PPARs”, the NSFA annual congress and was chairman the 2007 and 2012 Keystone Symposia on “Metabolic Syndrome” and “Genetic and Molecular Basis of Obesity and Body Weight Regulation”.