Michael M. Lerch - a native of Switzerland - studied Interdisciplinary Sciences at ETH Zurich in his B.Sc. (2012) and M.Sc. (2014) focusing on organic synthesis and cellular biology. Further, he was a visiting student researcher at the University of Cambridge (2012) and the California Institute of Technology (2013/2014). Subsequently, he worked with Prof. Dr. Ben L. Feringa at the University of Groningen (The Netherlands) and completed his Ph.D. with distinction (cum laude). In Groningen, he employed photocontrolled small molecules to control the behavior of biological systems. In photopharmacology, he helped develop novel drug candidates that can be switched 'ON' and 'OFF' with light. More recently, he focused on unravelling the photoswitching mechanism of an emerging class of photoswitches, so-called donor-acceptor Stenhouse adducts, that included research visits to the University of Florence/LENS Laserlab Europe.
Since November 2018, Michael has been a postdoctoral fellow in the Aizenberg group, where he focuses on smart materials and combines his expertise in organic synthesis, supramolecular- and photochemistry with engineering approaches. His aim is to create novel responsive materials with exciting new functions.
Awards and Honors
The Swiss Study Foundation (2010-2018, www.studyfoundation.ch)
2018 Backer-KNCV Prize for the best organic chemistry Ph.D. thesis in the Netherlands
Office: Northwest, B146.50