Camilla Jandus MD PhD
Tenure-track Assistant Professor
Camilla is from Bellinzona, the capital of Ticino: the most southerly and Italian speaking Canton in Switzerland. Her private and professional life is driven by a healthy curiosity and desire for innovation, taking inspiration from the phrase, “normal is boring.”
Camilla graduated in 2003 from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Bern, her medical degree included 6 months as a research fellow at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, and the attainment of a MD thesis from the Institute of Pathology in Bern. She completed her MD-PhD training at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in Lausanne, before returning to Bern for 2 years as a post-doctoral researcher at the Pharmacology Institute. In 2012, she was appointed as an Associate Investigator at the Ludwig Center for Cancer Research, University of Lausanne. She progressed on to become a group leader in the Department of Oncology at the University of Lausanne, supported by a prestigious Ambizione Fellowship from the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF). After a 1-year SNSF PRIMA Assistant Professorship in the same department, she was appointed as a Tenure-track Assistant Professor in Janaury 2020, in the Department of Pathology and Immunology, University of Geneva. Since 2019, she has also held the role of Adjunct Scientist at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Lausanne.
Camilla’s main scientific interest is in using cutting-edge technologies to study T cell- and Innate Lymphoid Cell (ILC)-mediated immune responses to human tumors, in order to develop next generation cancer immunotherapy.
Outside of the lab, she enjoys her family and children, she likes travelling, playing music, and cheering for her favourite hockey team, HC Ambrì Piotta.
Sara Trabanelli PhD
Born in Italy in 1980, Sara graduated in 2005 from the Faculty of Biology at the University of Insubria, where she discovered her passion for immunology. In 2006 she moved to Bologna where she made amazing friends and, one year later gained a PhD fellowship, thanks to her master’s degree in dendritic cell biology. In 2010 she was awarded her PhD in Clinical and Experimental Hematology and Hematopathology at the Institute of Hematology “L. & A. Seragnoli”, at the University of Bologna, which involved working on immunological aspects of acute myeloid leukemia. During her PhD, she gave birth to her first child, Mattia, in 2009, and her second child Zoe arrived in 2011 during her first postdoc.
In 2012, Sara moved to Lausanne to start working with Camilla Jandus on newly identified rare and potent cells: the Innate Lymphoid Cells (ILCs). Together with Camilla, Sara developed several projects focused on ILCs that have resulted in publications, grant awards, and ultimately in her coming to the realisation that she has found her scientific home at the right hand of Camilla.
To relax, Sara loves to play piano, to wander and to take pictures. Whilst in Italy she used to play volleyball and coach a volleyball team, whereas in Switzerland she skies and enjoys the thermal baths. Sara loves to travel, to discover new cultures and new places. She really likes to cook and is defined by her non-Italian friends as an “extremist” of Italian cuisine, simply because she is horrified when they want to put cream in the carbonara!
Alejandra Gomez Cadena MSc PhD
After completing her bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences at the Denis Diderot University in Paris, Alejandra decided to dive deeper into the field of immunology, and she obtained her master’s degree in this subject in 2011 from Paris-Est Créteil University. During the last six months of her master’s degree she had the opportunity to go back home to start her internship in the laboratory of Professor Susana Fiorentino in Colombia. She also completed her PhD in Biological Sciences here with a special interest in tumor immunology. During her Master’s and PhD theses she studied the mechanism of action and therapeutic potential of natural complex fractions in order to scientifically validate traditional knowledge and the use of herbal medicine by native communities. During her PhD thesis she once again had the opportunity to do a 1-year international internship that she completed in 2016 in the laboratory of Professor Pedro Romero at the University of Lausanne. Since then, she has joined the Jandus Lab where she has been working on the role of Innate Lymphoid Cells (ILCs) in different preclinical cancer models. Her professional background has allowed her to learn different languages, visit and live in different countries and meet people from around the world. In her spare time she likes to visit new places and always carries her camera with her. She enjoys watching a good football match with a beer at the weekend and, like any other Colombian, going out for a dance!
After a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Fribourg, she obtained a master’s degree in Medical Biology at the University of Lausanne. Internships during both degrees were spent working on cancer related projects, confirming her interest in this field. To continue pursuing this line of research, she joined the Jandus Lab for her PhD, where she worked on ILC2 functional manipulation in the context of bladder cancer, looking to potentially develop new immunotherapeutic approaches. When not working, she spends the majority of her free time hiking, running or ski touring in the mountains, and when she has the opportunity, she enjoys travelling and discovering new people and places.
Mara is from Crespi d’Adda, a northern Italian village which is part of the UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites. Many movies and advertisements were shot there, including the recent movie “18 Presents” in which Mara was an extra. Cinema, however, is not the goal of her career but she does like to be involved in many different activities. She completed her master’s degree in Molecular Biotechnology and Bioinformatics at the University of Milan, where she was the student representative. During this time, she had the opportunity to spend 6 months at the University of Oslo for an Erasmus project and 12 months at the National Institute of Molecular Genetics in Milan completing her master’s thesis. The time spent in Milan confirmed her interest in studying the human immune system and how it can be modulated to create successful immunotherapies. She therefore joined the Jandus group where she works on single cell CD4 T cell profiling in cancer patients. When not at work Mara likes to volunteer, in fact she is the treasurer of the blood donation volunteer association of her native city.
After being awarded a technical degree in Biotechnology in 2015, Margaux went on to complete a bachelor’s degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology in 2016 and a master’s degree in Pharmacology in 2018 at the University of Strasbourg. As part of her study, she had the opportunity to do three internships. The first internship involved a project preventing gene interference and optimizing levels of expression of constitutive TCR/CAR through inducible 6xNFAT mediated expression. The second internship was completed during her master’s degree, in the laboratory of Biophotonics and Pharmacology at the University of Strasbourg, which entailed studying the role of FAK protein in tumor invasion in human melanoma cells. The third internship in 2018, allowed Margaux to develop a high-throughput pMHC multimer synthesis for high dimensional CD8 and CD4 T cell specificity readouts including: miniaturization of the peptide-MHC refolding reaction, improvement of combinatorial staining by flow cytometry, and high-throughput peptide-MHC binding analysis. In May 2019, she started her PhD in the ‘Jandus Lab’ where she works on innovative cancer immunotherapy, harnessing quasi-universal tumor antigen-specific CD4 T cells. When she’s not working, Margaux likes hiking in the Swiss mountains, cooking for her friends and playing the piano.
Anthony has always been fascinated by biology and has a real passion for the technical skills used by research laboratories in academia. As the development and optimization of experimental protocols requires great rigor and a good dose of creativity, he is well suited to this role. He was convinced at the very young age of 16, to take the CFC Biology Laboratory training course at the University of Geneva, which he successfully completed in 2011. Always in search of new knowledge and challenges, he was pursuing his career in different Academic and Federal laboratories until, in 2017, he found a place in the laboratory of the TCSL Group where the team spirit and desire to overcome many challenges are never lacking.
Tania Wyss Lozano Hoyos PhD
Tania originally trained as a molecular biologist in Switzerland. She went on to do a PhD about the interactions between plants and micro-organisms by running field experiments under the hot Florida sun in the USA. Back in Switzerland, but this time in the wet lab, she held a postdoc position investigating the genetics of fungi and learned to analyze data generated by next generation sequencing techniques. She enjoyed learning about bioinformatics so much that a new career path opened up. Having discovered the power of combining biology with methods of data analysis, Tania is now discovering the new world of immunology and the endless possibilities that exist to advance research in this amazing field. She is currently analyzing the genomics data generated by the group of Camilla Jandus.
Hajar El Ahanidi PhD
Hajar obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Rabat, Morocco, where she lived and studied until the second year of her PhD. Then, she was awarded a Fulbright Joint Supervision scholarship to work with Pr. Steven Fiering group at Geisel School of Medicine at Datmouth college for one year, and shortly after, for another 12-month Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship to accomplish part of her PhD thesis in Prof. Jandus’ lab.
Throughout the time she spent in different labs, in addition to fundamental and technical knowledge, Hajar experienced different know-how and developed her transferable skills. Just before defending her thesis, Hajar was awarded the ‘Women in Science’ prize in the ‘Young Talent’ category as recognition for her scientific ambitions.
Hajar re-joined the Jandus lab for a post-doctoral journey where she will continue working on her PhD topic, in the optic of improving the therapy and the quality of life of bladder cancer patients.
Besides her lab life, Hajar loves to meet people from different cultures and backgrounds and is a huge fan of world’s gastronomy (tasting more than cooking). The perfect combo for her would be a tasty dinner followed by movies’ night.
Julien comes from a small village near Lugano, a beautiful city in the italian speaking region of Switzerland. He was trained as a lab technician in the “Laboratorio cantonale” in Bellinzona, where he mainly worked with bacterial cultures. After passing the complementary federal exams to pursue his studies in higher education schools he worked for half a year in a laboratory at the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich (DE). He then moved to Geneva, where he obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degree in Biochemistry. Because of his great interest for immunology, he carried out three internships in three different laboratories of the department of Pathology and Immunology of the University of Geneva. During his last project he studied the impact of the lymphatic system on tumor progression in Professor Stéphanie Hugues laboratory. He is now working on the development of anticancer therapeutic bispecific antibodies under the joint lead of Professor Camilla Jandus and Dr. Limin Shang, director of Pharmacology at Light Chain Bioscience SA.
In his spare time, Julien enjoys sports, outdoor activities, travelling and cooking. He is particularly passionate about climbing, skiing, hiking and mountaineering.
Benedetta Fiordi Msc
Benedetta is from a small city near the Alps, Sondrio, Italy. Her curiosity in biology and medicine grew thanks to an exchange experience in the United States during high school. To deepen these interests, she attended Vita-Salute San Raffaele University in Milan, graduating in Medical Biotechnology. In her master thesis internship, she studied intrinsic and extrinsic properties of leukemic cells to understand how these exploit mechano-transduction pathways to translate bio-mechanical signals derived from the microenvironment, all of this with the intent of identifying new therapeutic and prognostic targets. Throughout the university years, she got keen on lab work especially thanks to researchers met in the way, who have always shown her the beauty of this job. She had the opportunity to learn fundamental laboratory practices but also more specific techniques like 3D models cultured in rotary bioreactors, flow cytometry, confocal microscopy and also basic animal models manipulation. She enjoys learning languages, watching movies or series and, like all Italians, loves cooking for herself but mostly for others: being around a table chatting with cared ones is her favorite thing in the world
Ziyang Su Msc
Ziyang is from China. He obtained a master degree in Immunology at Capital Medical University. His project in China was mainly about epigenetic regulation of the development and function of NK cells in the mouse, during which he was trained for wet lab tech and learned dry lab tech by himself. Utilizing human samples, Jandus lab is focusing on all ILC subsets and their interaction with the adaptive immune system. It is the perfect place where Ziyang could develop his career in Medical Science during his PhD thesis. Switzerland is new for him, so he is trying to explore the city of Geneva and learn French in his spare time.
Hajer Fritah PhD
Hajer is Algerian. She was born in Senegal but grew up in different countries since her father is a diplomat. Her love for immunology started at high school in Damascus (Syria) when she had the opportunity to work on nanotechnologies as a way for brain cancer treatment. After graduating from High school in 2010 she moved to Lausanne where she did her bachelor and master’s in medical biology. Then, she continued her path with a PhD in immuno-oncology in the group of Prof. Lana Kandalaft where she worked on personalized cancer vaccines in various cancer models. During her PhD she gave birth to Jad, a little boy who became her joy and changed her entire world! In 2023 she finally fulfilled one of her "dreams" by joining the TCSL group working on an innovative project on virtual reality-based neuroimmune modulation in healthy individuals (and later in cancer patients).
When she is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her family and child. She hopes to finally visit all Switzerland corners, now that she is not a student anymore. She likes cooking (and eating of course!) various specialties as well as practicing her theatrical skills as she is an excellent imitator.