Meet Petra Dittrich, Professor

Petra is Professor for Bioanalytics at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering, ETH Zürich. She develops microfluidic devices for bioanalytical and diagnostic applications. These devices are hand size chips with channels or chambers were fluids and gases can flow at a very small scale, in the range of micro- or nanometers.

Because chambers are so small, the microfluidic devices are extremely sensitive to dust and need to be produced in a special room called a “Cleanroom”. In Petra’s lab these devices are used to study single cells and conduct chemical experiments or, for the AntiResist Project, to observe the interaction of antibiotics on bacteria.

More about Petra Dittrich

Petra was born and raised in Lingen (Ems), a small town in the Northwest of Germany. She studied Chemistry at Bielefeld University (Germany) and Universidad de Salamanca (Spain) in 1997. She earned her PhD degree at the Max Planck-Institute for Biophysical Chemistry (MPI Göttingen, Germany) in 2003, followed by a postdoc time at the Institute for Analytical Sciences (ISAS Dortmund, Germany). Always eager to learn from leading scientists around the world, Petra visited Cornell University (Ithaca, USA, in 2002) and the University of Tokyo (Japan, in 2005) for postdoc stays. In 2008, she became Assistant Professor at the Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences (ETH Zurich). Petra has been awarded both a Starting Grant from the European Research Council (ERC) as well as the ERC Consolidator Grant.

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