Disc 4 All Winter School

University of Bern, Switzerland


 Conference Hosts

Prof. Dr. Benjamin Gantenbein, University of Bern

Dr. Jérôme Noailly, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona


Organizing Committee

Aneta Antonova, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona

Paola Bermudez-Lekerika, University of Bern

Katherine Crump, University of Bern

Andreas S. Croft, University of Bern

Event Management

Julia Spyra


Monday, 21 February
2 pm – 6 pm
Consortium Meeting
Tuesday, 22 February
9 am – 6.30 pm
Consortium Meeting
Wednesday, 23 February
8 am – 11 am
Individual Discussions Meeting
3.30 pm 8.30 pm
Social Event
Thursday, 24 February
9 am – 6.30 pm
Public Open Seminars
Friday, 25 February
Public Open Seminars
9 am – 11:30 am

Keynote Speakers

University of Bern, Experimental Animal Center

Alessandra Bergadano is a veterinarian by training, and received her PhD degree in comparative models of nociception, pain diagnosis, and analgesia from the University of Aalborg in Denmark and the University of Bern in Switzerland. She is a European specialist in both veterinary anesthesia and analgesia, as well as laboratory animal medicine. For over 15 years, she has been fully dedicated to lab animal medicine and since April 2020 she has been the head of the Experimental Animal Center of  the University of Bern. She has authored and co-authored over 30 peer reviewed papers. Her present work focuses on developing the “culture of care” at the University of Bern and in Switzerland. Currently, she is a board member of the exam ECLAM committee, and serves as ad hoc Consultant for AAALAC International,


Alessandra Bergadano

University of Bern, ARTORG Center

Philippe Büchler obtained his MSc in physics from the école polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, where he completed a PhD in biomechanics on the numerical analysis of total shoulder replacements. After briefly working as a research scientist at the University Hospital in Geneva, he joined the University of Bern in 2004, where he is now associate professor leading the Computational Bioengineering group. His research focuses on the development of patient-specific models, combined with the in-vivo characterization of the mechanical behavior of soft tissues.

Philippe Büchler

University of Bern, ARTORG Center / CAIM

Raphael Sznitman is the director of the ARTORG Center for Biomedical Engineering Research and the director for the Center of Artificial Intelligence in Medicine at the University of Bern. After receiving a BSc in Cognitive Science from the University of British Columbia (Canada) and a PhD in Computer Science from Johns Hopkins University (USA), he spent time as a postdoctoral fellow at the EPFL (Switzerland) and then joined the medical faculty at the University of Bern in 2015. Today, he leads the Artificial Intelligence in Medical Imaging laboratory, where his research focuses on developing novel approaches in computer vision and machine learning for healthcare.

Raphael Sznitman

University of Bern, ARTORG Center

Philippe Zysset obtained a diploma in engineering physics and a PhD in biomechanics at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) in 1987 and 1994 respectively. After a postdoc in orthopedic research at the University of Michigan, he became an assistant professor in biomechanics at EPFL. In 2003, he was appointed professor of biomechanics at the Vienna University of Technology, where he founded a laboratory for nano- and micromechanics of biological tissues and promoted novel research activities in computational biomechanics. Since 2011 he has been a professor of biomechanics at the University of Bern, continues his research in multiscale bone mechanics and heads a master’s program in biomedical engineering.

Philippe Zysset

University Hospital Bern, Inselspital

Lorin Benneker works as a spine and trauma surgeon in Bern, Switzerland. His clinical work focuses on degenerative conditions of the spine, tumor and adult deformity as well as traumatic injuries of the spine and pelvis. He is an active researcher with more than 150 publications; basic research is focused on the regeneration of intervertebral discs, the clinical focus is the optimization of the surgical treatment in adult deformity, trauma and tumor patients. Prof Benneker is co-founder of Impedia which is a not-for profit platform with the goal to improve education of surgeons and increase safety in surgery by adapting non-technical skills from aviation. He is involved in many international orthopedic and spine surgery societies, member of the expert group spine of Swiss orthopedics, current chair of AOSpine Europe, steering committee member of the AOS knowledge forum trauma and president of the Institute for Medical Education.

Lorin Benneker

University of Bern, ARTORG Center

Stavroula Mougiakakou is an associate professor affiliated with the Faculty of Medicine, University of Bern and holds a Ph.D. degree in electrical and computer engineering from the National Technical University of Athens. She is currently leading the AI in Health and Nutrition laboratory at the ARTORG Center for Biomedical Engineering Research Bern, Switzerland. Her research interests include artificial intelligence, machine learning, computer vision and their application in prevention, diagnosis, and treatment optimization of acute and chronic diseases. Over the last years she successfully involved herself and her research group in many competitive national, European, and internationally funded R&D projects, resulting in numerous publications, a number of patents and several technology transfer activities.

Stavroula Mougiakakou

Schulthess Clinic Zurich, Switzerland

Anne Mannion is the Head of Spine Research at the Schulthess Klinik Zürich. After receiving her BSc (Hons) in Physiology and Zoology from the University of Sheffield (UK) and PhD in Muscle Physiology/Biochemistry from the University of Salford (UK), she had various postdoc positions at the University of Birmingham, School of Sport and Exercise Science (UK), the University of Bristol, Comparative Orthopaedic Research Unit (UK), and Queen’s University, Dept Engineering (Kingston, Canada) before joining the Schulthess Klinik in 1996 and remaining there until the present day. In 2001 she was awarded the Venia Legendi (Privatdozentin) title from the University of Zürich, Faculty of Medicine (Rheumatology and Physical Medicine). She has 201 publications currently listed in Pubmed and an H-index of 56.

Anne Mannion

University of Nantes, France

Catherine Le Visage is a Research Director and the Deputy Director of the Regenerative Medicine and Skeleton (RMeS) laboratory at the University of Nantes, France (www.rmes.univ-nantes.fr). She was trained as a Pharmacist, received her PhD in Pharmaceutical Technologies in Paris then performed a post-doctoral training in the BME Department of the Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, USA) in Prof. K. Leong’s laboratory with a focus on biomaterials for regenerative approaches. In 2007, she joined with a tenured position

the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM) to investigate chemically cross-linked polysaccharide hydrogels. As a group leader, her most recent works have focused on innovative hydrogels as i) carriers of cells or bioactive molecules in the context of IVD disease and osteoarthritis and ii) tools for stem cell-based organogenesis. She is an elected member of the TERMIS-EU Council (2018-2021), and has been appointed Chair of the communication committee.
She is a member (2020-2022) of the Editorial Advisory Board of ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, and a reviewer for national and international funding agencies (Canada First Research Excellence Fund, European Science Fondation, L’Oreal/UNESCO). She has coauthored 73 publications (h-index 32) and 11 patents, and has given 60 invited lectures/seminars at national and international conferences.
Web of Science ResearcherID: E-5460-2011

Catherine Le Visage

Uppsala University, Sweden

Cecilia Persson is a Professor in Applied Materials Science at Uppsala University (https://katalog.uu.se/profile/?id=N9-1332) and the President of the Scandinavian Society of Biomaterials. She currently directs research networks within the field of biomaterials and devices for the spine (MSCA ITN NU-SPINE and EIT Health SOFTBONE), as well as a Competence Centre for Additive Manufacturing in the Life Sciences (https://www.uu.se/en/research/am4life/).
Abstract (coming soon)

Cecilia Persson

University of Bern, Inselspital

Christoph Albers is the Chief Consultant in Orthopaedic Surgery, Co-Head of Spine Surgery and Head of Traumatology in University Hospital Bern, Switzerland. Since over 10 years he is dedicated to Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology and in 2020 he was awarded with the Venia Docenci (Habilitation) title from the University of Bern. He is involved in many international orthopedic and spine surgery societies including AOSpine, EuroSpine, Swiss Orthopaedics. He has published more than 60 original articles/reviews and currently he is the Head in translational Research Orthopaedic Surgery in Swiss Institute for Translational and Entrepreneurial Medicine (SITEM).

Christoph Albers

AO Foundation, Switzerland

Roland Herzog achieved his PhD degree in Physics in the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zürich Switzerland. He Dr. sc. Nat in ETH Zürich in Biomechanics with 30years of experience in medtech development, medtech marketing, innovation management and technology transfer in several international companies and organizations including Joint, Replacement, Dental Implants and Trauma.

Roland Herzog

CTU Bern, Switzerland

Sven Trelle achieved his Venia Docenci (Habilitation) title in Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics from the University of Bern, Medical Faculty. Since 2007 he is a member of review panels on clinical research calls in the German Research Foundation and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Similarly, since 2015 he is a member of data monitoring committees of various clinical trials including industry and investigator-initiated trials. He is an active researcher involved in randomized and non-randomized clinical trials, observational studies including diagnosis studies, contribution to grant applications and regular consulting for clinical researchers on study design, statistical analysis and regulatory aspects. Currently he is the director of the Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) Bern in the University of Bern.

Sven Trelle

Social Event

Will take place at Rosengarten

Sponsors & Partners

We thank our sponsors and partners for their support.


Consortium members

Monday - Friday, including social event

Consortium members

Online participation 0CHF with Coupon ONLINEFREE

External participants

Conference Thursday and Friday

External participants

Social event

External participants

Online participation

Cancellation fee until January 7, 2022: 20%
Cancellation fee after January 7, 2022: 100 %
Note that this is planned as a live event in Bern, Switzerland.
Please be prepared to present a valid COVID certificate (QR-code based).
Swiss COVID rules in place at the time of the meeting will be applied.




Event Manager: Julia Spyra, Spyra & Partners GmbH, Switzerland

Phone: +41 78 301 2005

Email: julia.spyra@spyrapartners.ch

Copyright 2021