Damien MERTZ

Damien MERTZ

Chargé de Recherche, Inorganic Materials Chemistry (DCMI)damien.mertz@ipcms.unistra.fr
Station: +33(0)3 88 10 71 90Office: 3004
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Research background

2018 : Habilitation for research direction (HDR), University of Strasbourg, France

Since 2013: CNRS researcher (Chargé de recherche) at IPCMS, University of Strasbourg, France

2011 – 2013: Postdoctoral fellowship, INSERM and IHU Strasbourg       

2009 – 2011 : Postdoctoral fellowship, University of Melbourne, Australia,

Academic background

2008 : PhD in Physical Chemistry, University of Strasbourg

2005 : M.Sc. in Polymers, Materials and Surfaces, University of Strasbourg

Current research

I develop my research activity at IPCMS, Strasbourg, CNRS UMR 7504, working on the synthesis and functionalization of nanoparticles for health applications. My research topics include:

  • Protein–based nanocarriers via mesoporous silica templating for drug delivery applications
  • Functional mesoporous nanosilica for bioimaging and biodepollution applications.
  • Magnetic core-shells for MRI, magnetic hyperthermia and drug delivery
  • NIR-light responsive mesoporous silica coated carbon-based materials for phototherapy and drug delivery


Peer-review book articles

  1. Besenhard, M; Panariello L.; Kiefer C.; LaGrow A.; Storozhuk L.; Perton, F.; Begin S., Mertz, D. Thanh, NTK; Gavriilidisa, A. “Small Iron Oxide Nanoparticles as MRI T1 Contrast Agent: Scalable Inexpensive Water-Based Synthesis Using a Flow Reactor”, Nanoscale, 2021, 13, 8795-8805.
  2. Adam A.; Parkhomenko K.; Duenas Ramirez P.; Nadal C., Cotin G., Zorn P.-E, Choquet P.; Bégin-Colin S.; Mertz D* “Orienting the Pore Morphology of Core-shell Magnetic Mesoporous Silica with the Sol-gel Temperature. Influence on MRI and Magnetic Hyperthermia Properties.” Molecules 2021, 26(4), 971. (*corresponding author).
  3. Katcko K., Urbain E., Ngassam F., Kandpal L., Chowrira B., Schleicher F., Halisdemir U., Wang D., Scherer T., Mertz D., Leconte B., Beyer N., Spor D., Panissod P., Boulard A., Arabski J., Kieber C., Sternitzky E., Da Costa V., Hehn M., Montaigne F., Bahouka A., Weber W., Beaurepaire E., Kübel C., Lacour D., Alouani M., Boukari S., Bowen M. ” Encoding Information on the Excited State of a Molecular Spin Chain.” Adv. Funct. Mater. 2021, 2009467.
  4. Bizeau J. and Mertz D*. “Design and Applications of Protein Delivery Systems in Nanomedicine and Tissue engineering”, Adv. Colloid and Interf. Science, 2021, 287, 102334. (*corresponding author).
  5. Cotin G., Perton F., Petit C., Sall S., Kiefer C., Begin V., Pichon B., Lefevre C., Mertz D., Greneche J.-M., Begin-Colin S., “Harnessing Composition of Iron Oxide Nanoparticle: Impact of Solvent-Mediated Ligand–Ligand Interaction and Competition between Oxidation and Growth Kinetics”, Chem. Mater. 2020, 32, 9245-9259.
  6. Kesse X., Adam A., Begin-Colin S., Mertz D., Larquet E., Gacoin T., Maurin I., Vichery C., Nedelec J.M., “Elaboration of Superparamagnetic and Bioactive Multicore–Shell Nanoparticles (γ-Fe2O3@SiO2-CaO): A Promising Material for Bone Cancer Treatment” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 2020, 12, 47820-47830.
  7. Duenas-Ramirez P., Bertagnolli C., Müller R., Sartori K., Boos A., Elhabiri M., Bégin-Colin S., Mertz D.* “Highly Chelating Stellate Mesoporous Silica Nanoparticles for Specific Iron Removal from Biological Media” J. Colloid Interface Sci. 2020, 579, 140-151 (*corresponding author).
  8. Li B.; Harlepp S.; Gensbittel V.; Wells C. J. R.; Bringel O.; Goetz J. G.; Begin-Colin S.; Tasso M.; Begin D.; Mertz D.* “Near Infra-Red Light Responsive Carbon Nanotubes@Mesoporous Silica for Photothermia and Drug Delivery to Cancer cells”, Materials Today Chem. 2020, 17, 100308 (*corresponding author)
  9. Resges Orives J., Pichon B. P., Mertz D., Sartori K., Begin-Colin S., Viali W. R., Lima Ribeiro S. J., Nalin M. “Phosphate Glasses Containing Monodisperse Fe3−δO4@SiO2 Stellate Nanoparticles Obtained by Melt-Quenching Process”, Ceramics International, 2020, 46, 12120-12127.
  10. Mertz D.*, Harlepp S., Goetz, J., Bégin, S. Schlatter, G. Bégin-Colin S. and Hébraud A., “Nanocomposite Polymer Scaffolds Responding Under External Stimuli for Drug delivery and Tissue Engineering Applications”, Advanced Therapeutics, 2020, 3 (2), 1900143 (*corresponding author).
  11. Ferjaoui Z., Al Dine E. J., Jandayeva A., Bezdetnaya L., Chang C.S., Schneider R., Mutelet F., Mertz D., Begin S., Quilès F., Gaffet E. and Alem H.” Doxorubicin Loaded Thermo-Responsive Superparamagnetic Nanocarriers for Controlled Drug Delivery and Magnetic Hyperthermia Applications”, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2019, 11, 34, 30610-30620.
  12. Perton, F., Tasso, M.; Muñoz, G.A; Ménard, M.; Portiansky, E.; Blanco-Andujar, C.; Fernández van Raap, M.B.; Bégin, D.; Meyer, F.; Bégin-Colin, S; Mertz, D.*, “Fluorescent and Magnetic Stellate Mesoporous Silica for Bimodal Imaging and Magnetic Hyperthermia”, Appl. Mater. Today, 2019, 16, 301-314 (* corresponding author).
  13. Cotin G., Blanco Anjular C., Nguyen D.-V., Affolter C., Boutry S., Boos A., Ronot P, Uring-Lambert B., Choquet P., Zorn PE, Mertz D., Laurent, S. Muller R., Meyer F., Felder Flesch D. and Begin-Colin S., “Dendron Based Antifouling, MRI and Magnetic Hyperthermia Properties of Different Shaped Iron Oxide Nanoparticles” Nanotechnology 2019, 30 (37), 374002.
  14. Ménard M.; Meyer F.; Parkhomenko K., Duenas Ramirez P.; Bégin-Colin S.; Mertz D.*, “Design of Hybrid Protein-coated Magnetic Core-Mesoporous Silica Shell Nanocomposites for MRI and Drug Release Assessed in a 3D Tumor Cell Model” Nanotechnology 2019, 30 (17), 174001. (* corresponding author).
  15. Perton, F.; Harlepp, S.; Follain, G.; Goetz, J., Bégin-Colin S., Mertz, D.*, “Wrapped Stellate Mesoporous Silica Nanocomposites as Biocompatible Luminescent Nanoprobes Assessed in Vivo, J. Colloid Interface Sci. 2019, 542, 469(* corresponding author).  
  16. Wallyn, J.; Anton, N.; Mertz, D.; Begin-Colin, S.; Serra C.; Franconi F.; Lemaire, L.; Chiper M.; Libouban H.; Messadeq, N.; Anton H.; Vandamme T, “Magnetite and Iodine-Containing Nano-Emulsion as Dual Modal Contrast agent for X-Ray/MR imaging” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2019, 11, 403-416.
  17. Ménard, M.; Meyer, F.; Parkhomenko, K.; Leuvrey, C.; Francius, G.; Bégin-Colin, S; Mertz, D.*, Mesoporous Silica Templated Isobutyramide-albumin Nanoparticles with high Doxorubicin Loading for Drug delivery in 3-D Cancer Cell Models. Biochim. Biophys. Acta BBA – Gen. Subj. 2019, 1863, 332-341 (* corresponding author).
  18. Cotin, G. ; Kiefer C. ; Perton, F ; Ihiawakrim D. ; Blanco-Andujar C. ; Moldovan S.; Lefevre C.;  Ersen O., Pichon B. , Mertz D. , Sylvie Bégin-Colin, “Unravelling the Thermal Decomposition Parameters for the Synthesis of Anisotropic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles”, Nanomaterials 2018, 8, 881
  19. Cotin, G.; Kiefer, C.; Perton, F.; Boero, M.; Özdamar, B.; Bouzid, A.; Ori, G.; Massobrio, C.; Begin, D.; Pichon, B.; Mertz, D.; Begin-Colin, S., “Evaluating the Critical Roles of Precursor Nature and Water Content When Tailoring Magnetic Nanoparticles for Specific Applications ” ACS Appl. Nano Mater., 2018, 1, 4306–4316
  20. Gomes, D. S. B.; Paterno,L.G.; Santos,A. B. S.;  Garay, A. V.; Mertz, D. ; Freitas S. M.; Soler M. A. G.;  ”New Insights on the Formation of Gold Nanoparticles and Pluronic Nanocomposites: Kinetics and Thermodynamics Parameters”, J. Mol. Liq., 2018, 268, 181-189.
  21. Gelle, F; Chirita, R.; Mertz, D.; Rastei, M.; Dinia, A., Colis, S.; “Guideline to atomically flat TiO2 terminated SrTiO3(001) surfaces”, Surface Science 2018, 677, 39-45.
  22. Wells, C.; Vollin-Bringel, O.; Fiegel, V.; Harlepp, S.; Van der Schueren, B.; Bégin, S.; Bégin, D.; Mertz, D.*; “Engineering of Mesoporous Silica Coated Carbon‐Based Materials Optimized for an Ultrahigh Doxorubicin Payload and a Drug Release Activated by pH, T, and NIR‐light”, Adv. Funct. Mater. 2018, 28, 1706996. (* corresponding author)
  23. Fiegel, V.; Harlepp, S.; Bégin-Colin, S.; Bégin, D.; Mertz, D.*; “Design of Protein‐Coated Carbon Nanotubes Loaded with Hydrophobic Drugs through Sacrificial Templating of Mesoporous Silica Shells”, Chem. Eur. J. 2018, 24, 4662-4670. (* corresponding author)
  24. Mertz, D.*; Sandre, O.; Bégin−Colin, S.; “Drug Releasing Nanoplatforms Activated by Alternating Magnetic Fields”, Biochim. Biophys. Acta – Gen. Subj. 2017, 1861, 1617–1641. (* corresponding author)
  25. Wang, X., Mertz, D.*, Blanco-Andujar, C., Bora, A., Ménard, M., Meyer F., Giraudeau, C., Bégin-Colin, S. “Optimizing the silanization of thermally decomposed iron oxide nanoparticles for efficient aqueous phase transfer and MRI applications”, RSC Adv. 2016, 6, 93784−93793. (* corresponding author)
  26. Blanco-Andujar, C.; Walter, A.; Bordeianu, C.; Mertz, D.; Felder-Flesch, D.; Bégin-Colin, S. “Design of Iron Oxide−based Nanoparticles for MRI and Magnetic Hyperthermia, Nanomedecine, (Future Medecine) 2016, 11, 1889−1910.
  27. Hachani, R.; Lowdell, M.; Birchall, M., Hervault, A., Mertz, D.; Begin-Colin, S. and Thanh, N.K.T. “Polyol synthesis, functionalisation, and biocompatibility studies of superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles as potential MRI contrast agents”, Nanoscale 2016, 8, 3278-3287.
  28. Diana, M.; Halvax, P.; Mertz, D.; Legner, A.; Brulé, J.; Robinet, E.; Mutter, D. Pessaux, P.; Marescaux, J. Improving Echo-Guided Procedures Using an Ultrasound-CT Image Fusion System”, Surg. Innov. 2015, 22, 217-22.
  29. Mertz, D.*; Affolter-Zbaraszczuk, C.; Barthes, J.; Cui, J.; Caruso, F.;  Baumert, T. F.;  Voegel, J.-C.; Ogier, J. ; Meyer, F. “Templated Assembly of Albumin-based Nanoparticles for Simultaneous Gene silencing and Magnetic Resonance Imaging” Nanoscale2014, 6, 11676. (*corresponding author)
  30. Mertz, D.; Wu, H.; Wong, J.-S.; Cui, J.; Tan, P.; Alles, R.; Caruso, F. “Ultrathin, Bioresponsive and Drug-Functionalized Protein Capsules” J. Mater. Chem. 2012, 22, 21434
  31. Mertz, D.; Cui, J.; Yan, Y.; Devlin, G.; Chaubaroux, C.; Dochter, A.; Alles R.; Lavalle, P.; Voegel, J.-C.; Blencowe, A.; Auffinger, A.; Caruso, F. “Protein Capsules Assembled via Isobutyramide Grafts: Sequential Growth, Biofunctionalization, and Cellular Uptake.” ACS Nano 2012, 6, 7584. (Article featured in the Institute of Physics website Nanotechweb.org, 2012, September)
  32. Mertz, D.‡; Barthes, J.; Bach, C.; Metz-Boutigue, M.-H. ; Senger, B.; Voegel, J.-C., Schaaf, P., Lavalle P. “Stretch-Induced Biodegradation of Polyelectrolyte Multilayer Films for Drug Release”. Langmuir 2012, 28, 13550. (equal contribution)
  33. Vogt, C.; Mertz, D.; Benmlih, K.; Hemmerlé, J.; Voegel, J.-C.; Schaaf, P.; Lavalle, P. “Layer-by-Layer Enzymatic Platform for Stretched-Induced Reactive Release.” ACS Macro Letters 2012, 1, 797. (Cover article of the issue)
  34. Mertz, D.; Tan, P.; Wang, Y.; Goh, T. K.; Blencowe, A.; Caruso, F. “Bromoisobutyramide as an Intermolecular Surface Binder for the Preparation of Free-standing Biopolymer Assemblies.” Adv. Mater. 2011, 23, 5668.
  35. Mertz, D.; Ochs, C. J.; Zhu, Z. Y.; Lee, L.; Guntari, S. N.; Such, G. K.; Goh, T. K.; Connal, L. A.; Blencowe, A.; Qiao, G. G.; Caruso, F. “ATRP-Mediated Continuous Assembly of Polymers for the Preparation of Nanoscale Films.” Chem. Commun. 2011, 47, 12601.
  36. Goh, T. K.; Guntari, S. N.; Ochs, C. J.; Blencowe, A.; Mertz, D.; Connal, L. A.; Such, G. K.; Qiao, G. G.; Caruso, F. “Nanoengineered Films via Surface-Confined Continuous Assembly of Polymers.” Small 2011, 7, 2863.
  37. Mertz, D.; Vogt, C.; Hemmerlé, J.; Debry, C.; Voegel, J.-C.; Schaaf, P.; Lavalle, P. “Tailored Design of Mechanically Sensitive Biocatalytic Assemblies Based on Polyelectrolyte Multilayers.”J. Mater. Chem. 2011, 21, 8324.(Hot paper article of the Mechanoresponsive Materials themed issue)
  38. Mertz, D.; Vogt, C.; Hemmerlé, J.; Mutterer, J.; Ball, V; Voegel, J.-C.; Schaaf, P; Lavalle, P. “Mechanotransductive Surfaces for Reversible Biocatalysis Activation.” Nature Mater. 2009, 8, 731.(Article Featured in the Royal Society of Chemistry Magazine Chemistry World, 2009, August)
  39. Reisch, A.; Hemmerlé, J.; Voegel, J.-C.; Gonthier, E.; Decher, G.; Benkirane-Jessel, N.; Chassepot, A.; Mertz, D.; Lavalle, P.; Mésini, P.; Schaaf, P. “Polyelectrolyte Multilayer Coatings that Resist Protein Adsorption at Rest and under Stretching.” J. Mater. Chem. 2008, 18, 4242.
  40. Mertz, D.; Hemmerlé, J.; Boulmedais, F.; Voegel, J.-C.; Lavalle, P.; Schaaf, P. “Polyelectrolyte Multilayer Films under Mechanical Stretch.” Soft Matter 2007, 3, 1413. (Article featured in the Royal Society of Chemistry Magazine Chemical Technology, 2007, November)
  41. Mertz, D.; Hemmerlé, J.; Mutterer, J.; Ollivier, S.; Voegel, J.-C.; Schaaf, P; Lavalle, P. “Mechanically Responding Nanovalves Based on Polyelectrolyte Multilayers.” Nano Lett.2007, 7, 657.

Peer-review book chapters

  1. Freis B, Cotin G, Perton F, Mertz D, Begin-Colin S; Laurent S, Larbanoix L. ”Chapter – The Size, Shape and Composition Design of Iron Oxide Nanoparticles to Combine MRI, Magnetic Hyperthermia and Photothermia” in Magnetic Nanoparticles in Human Health and Medicine: Current Medical Applications and Alternative Therapy of Cancer , Ed: C. Caizer and M. Rai, Wiley Publishing 2021, 350-450.
  2. Cotin, G., Perton, F., Blanco-Andujar, C., Pichon, B., Mertz, D. and Bégin-Colin S. “Chapter 2 -Design of Anisotropic Iron-Oxide-Based Nanoparticles for Magnetic Hyperthermia“ in Nanomaterials for Magnetic and Optical Hyperthermia Applications, Ed. R.M. Fratila, J.M. De La Fuente, Elsevier, 2019, 41–60.
  3. Mertz, D.* and Begin-Colin, S. “Chapter 9 – Encapsulation and Release of Drugs from Magnetic Silica Nanocomposites” in Magnetic Nanoparticles: From Fabrication to Clinical Applications, Ed. N. T .K. Thanh, CRC Press, Taylor and Francis, Boca Raton London New York, 2018, 161. (* corresponding author)
  4. Cotin G., Piant S.; Mertz D., Felder-Flesch D., Begin-Colin S.,“Chapter 2 – Iron Oxide Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications: Synthesis, functionalization and application in Iron Oxide Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications, Eds. S. Laurent, M. Mahmoudi, Elsevier, 2018, 43-88.
  5. Felder-Flesch, D.; Mertz, D.; Parat, A. and Begin-Colin, S. “Chapter 4.3 – Coatings for Iron Oxide Nanoparticles” in Contrast Agents for MRI: Experimental Methods, Eds. V. Pierre, and M. Allen, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2018, 339-361.
  6. Cotin, G.; Mertz D; Grenèche J.-M.; Ersen, O.; Pichon, B.; Felder-Flesch, D.; Begin-Colin S. “Chapter 4.4 -Characterizing Functionalized Iron Oxide Nanoparticles” in Contrast Agents for MRI: Experimental Methods, Eds. V. Pierre, and M. Allen, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2018, 361-390.


  1. EP/PCT PATENT. P. Lavalle, J. Hemmerlé, D. Mertz, J.-C. Voegel, P. Schaaf, Mechanically Responsive Supported Polyelectrolyte Multilayer Films. Eur. Pat. Appl. 07290126.7 (2008), extended to PCT Int. Appl. 2008/000218 (2008).