After a Master’s degree in Biochemistry and Nutrition, Philippe Gérard obtained his PhD in Microbiology in 1999 from the University of Nancy (France). He spent two years in a postdoctoral position at the CEA in Grenoble before being appointed researcher at INRA (French National Institute for Agricultural Research) in 2001 where he carried out research on the role of intestinal bacteria using germ-free animal models, focusing primarily on the influence of these intestinal bacteria on metabolic diseases (obesity, diabetes, liver diseases).
In 2010, he became Head of the research team "Food, Gut Microbiota, Metabolic and Brain Diseases" (AMIPEM) at the MICALIS Institute (INRA, Jouy-en-Josas, France) and evolved to INRA Research Director rank in 2014. His team established that germ-free mice are resistant to diet induced obesity and insulin resistance and that gut microbiota plays a key role in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and contributes to alcoholic liver disease. His team also developed projects to decipher the influence of the gut microbiota on the gut-brain axis and the development of psychiatric disorders.
Since 2014, he has sat on the scientific advisory council of the French Nutrition Society and of the International Association for Gnotobiology. He has authored more than 50 publications and book chapters, and has given over 40 guest lectures on the role of the gut microbiota in health and disease.