Campus Biotech is a new centre of excellence in biotechnology and life science research. It focuses on pure science and its translation into practical outcomes that have an impact on society and the world. Campus Biotech is expected to generate a vast range of opportunities, bringing impetus and investment to this vital economic and scientific sector.

About Us

Campus Biotech is a new initiative that aims to drive forward the biotechnology sector in the Lake Geneva region, creating new opportunities for scientists and entrepreneurs. Campus Biotech was formed following the announcement by Merck Serono in 2012 that it would be closing its Geneva site. Formerly the global headquarters of Serono, the biotechnology company built over three generations by the Bertarelli family, this site had been the hub for life sciences in the region.

Campus Biotech’s mission was to acquire the site from Merck Serono and to ensure that it could be utilised as a focal point for scientists and entrepreneurs in the life sciences sector, rather than be purchased for property development. That mission is now being realised, with, among others, the Human Brain Project and the Bertarelli Professorships in Translational Neuroscience located – or soon to be located – at the emerging hub.

Mission

 

Campus Biotech has converted the former Serono site in Sécheron, Geneva, into a multi- development facility to become a centre of excellence in biotechnology and life science research.

The Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) and the University of Geneva (UNIGE) will occupy 15,000m2 of the site. Half of this area will be utilised by research groups from the two universities and the other half by the new Wyss Center for Bio- and Neuro-Engineering – a model for innovation, collaboration and technology translation.

This Center will be created by The Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne and the University of Geneva following a donation of CHF100m from the Wyss Foundation. It will follow the same principles and model of the Wyss Center for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University.

The Bertarelli Foundation has contributed its two existing EPFL chairs to the new Campus project, as well as increasing its donation with two additional chairs at the Wyss Center.

As well as this substantial research activity, the rest of the Sécheron site will be given over to small start-ups and other related businesses and sectors that will benefit from this unique environment that blends both science and industry. It is this combination of academia and entrepreneurialism that defines the ethos of Campus Biotech.

The Consortium

The Consortium behind Campus Biotech was formed by individuals and institutions that shared one overarching goal: to ensure that the Lake Geneva region and Switzerland as a whole remains at the cutting edge in the fields of biotechnology and life science research.

 

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    The Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne is one of the two Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology and one of Europe’s leading scientific schools. Its main campus, situated on the shores of Lake Geneva, brings together other 11,000 people – students, researchers and staff, all attracted by the facilities, reputation, innovation and cosmopolitan nature of the university.

    EPFL has a longstanding relationship with the Bertarelli Foundation, with which it launched the Center for Neuroprosthetics in 2008. With ever progressing advances in biotechnology, microelectronics, and neural implants as well as unprecedented advances in our understanding of the brain and spinal cord, the Center’s mission is to define and establish a truly interdisciplinary area of study, merging neuroscience with engineering and medicine, and efficiently translating major breakthroughs from bioengineering and neuroscience to viable clinical applications.

    “Campus Biotech constitutes a unique opportunity to increase research and development in the Biotechnology sector of the Lake Geneva region and its related job creation.”

    Patrick Aebischer, President, EPFL

    > epfl.ch

The Building

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The building that has housed the former Merck Serono headquarters, and which is now home to Campus Biotech, was conceived as not only a hub for science and research, but also a place for people to meet and a place to be enjoyed.

The building is located in the old Industrial District of Sécheron near Lake Geneva. When Serono took the site over, its mission was to transform it into something advanced and contemporary – preserving the area’s identity and history, but combining it with the cutting edge.

The design process was led by Dona Bertarelli, from whose architectural competition Murphy/Jahn emerged victorious. Their scheme is a ‘lively campus of buildings’, which are varied but share the same stylistic characteristics. An arrangement of larger open and covered spaces brings the whole together, no more so than the visually stunning central forum.

Research Teams

Wyss Center for Bio- and Neuro- Engineering

    Haute école du paysage, d'ingénierie et d'architecture de Genève

      Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics

        News

        Open Day at Campus Biotech

        May 24, 2015

        On the 23rd of June, Campus Biotech opened its doors to the…

        Official opening of Campus Biotech

        May 22, 2015

        Today was the official opening of Campus Biotech. The press kits…

        Campus Media Day 04.11.2014

        Nov 07, 2014

        A media event took place at Campus Biotech on 4 November…

        Daring to interpret the brain

        Oct 29, 2014

        John Donoghue, chosen to lead the Wyss Center for bio and neuro-engineering…

        All News

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