Thursday, February 11, 2021

Spotlight on AOCS Young Scientist Research Award Winner: Anne-Laure Fameau

Congratulations to Anne-Laure Fameau for winning the AOCS Young Scientist Research Award. 

The AOCS Young Scientist Research Award recognizes a young scientist who has made a significant and substantial research contribution in one of the areas represented by AOCS Divisions. The award is sponsored by the International Food Science Centre A/S.

This spotlight will help you get to know Dr. Fameau including an overview of her current research and how AOCS has helped develop her career.

Plan to attend her award presentation on March 17, 2021, 10:45-11:45 a.m. CDT (Chicago USA; UTC-5). You can join the livestream on our website, on FaceBook Live, or on YouTube Live. The abstract for this presentation is at the end of this blog post.

Anne-Laure Fameau is a researcher working at L'Oréal in France. Her research interests are in responsive soft materials based on lipids and green surfactants with a particular emphasis on foams and interfaces. She couples the development of these systems with detailed structural characterization using xray and neutron scattering techniques. Her work has demonstrated the presence of capillary forces at the nanoscale revealing a fundamental assembly mechanism and highlighted new potential for sustainable materials in consumer products. She has published 38 peer-reviewed papers and reviews and 3 book chapters. She received the European Young Lipid Scientist Award 2018 and was a plenary speaker at the International Conference on Small Angle Scattering in Berlin, Germany, in 2015. Dr. Fameau also enjoys transmitting her passion for science to young students. She visited many schools and gave scientific talks to students to promote science in France, and especially to promote science for girls.

Can you tell us about current research?

For the past nine years, I have worked both in academia and industry. In academia, my research
focused on the use of Self- and Direct- Assembly to Design Smart Soft Materials (foams, emulsions and gels). These smart materials, which respond to various stimuli (light, temperature, magnetic field, etc.), are usually designed from synthetic molecules. The novelty of my research is the use of lipids to develop new earth-friendly materials. The use of agricultural resources for industrial purposes is one of the major societal challenges of the 21st century and the development of green soft materials is a growing trend in many industries, including pharmaceuticals, foods, and cosmetics. The main contributions of my work has been the development of multi-responsive aqueous foams based on lipids. Responsive foams refer to foams for which the stability can be switched between stable and unstable states by external stimuli. Another contribution was the original use of capillary forces at the nanoscale to design new materials. This work was performed during my stay at NC State University. The capillary forces on the macro- and nanoscale are emerging as a research theme of interest, because of the unusual characteristics of the attraction potential induced by liquid bridging as compared to traditional surface interactions. We demonstrated for the first time the presence of capillary forces at the nanoscale in liquid media between magnetic nanoparticles and lipids, which is similar to the way sandcastles are bound by water. This unconventional assembly mechanism has opened new pathways for making multifunctional materials, including microrobots, self-repairing gels, and novel inks for 3D printing. In the past few years, I have been focusing my research on oil foams based on vegetable oils and lipids for food and cosmetic applications. Formulation of oil-continuous foams based on oleogels is a new and steadily expanding area of food technology research.  Since 2015, I worked for L’Oreal company. Working in industry provides an opportunity to apply my knowledge and skills toward the development of new cosmetic products based on green surfactants, lipids and vegetable oils.

What was your reaction when you learned you had won the award?

When I received the email telling that I was awarded the 2021 Young Scientist Research Award, I was surprised and very excited to present my work for the first time to AOCS community. It is such an honor to have my name on the list of AOCS Young Scientist Research Award winners, especially when one admires, as much as I do, all the scientists in that list. These figures have been an inspiration for me from the beginning of my passion for science in lipids, surfactants, soft matter, food science and nutrition. It is fantastic that AOCS helps the young and emerging scientists by giving such awards. I really feel encouraged to continue to do my best as a scientist to advance as much as I can both applied and fundamental research in my field.

How has AOCS helped develop your career?

I joined AOCS only recently. I wrote an article for INFORM magazine in 2019, and it was the time that I realized how the AOCS community could help me in different ways for my research and my career. Especially, because AOCS is very important for both people working in academia and in industry, and that is why for me it is very useful to get access to all AOCS contents: networking, follow the new hot topics in the field, online resources, etc. I joined AOCS after the Virtual 2020 Annual Meeting & Expo and there were so many great talks, which were very important for my field.  Now, I am looking forward to the 2021 AOCS annual meeting where I hope to meet personally many of more AOCS community members in the coming years - not only virtually.

Connect with Dr. Fameau on Research Gate

Award presentation abstract

How to use Self- and Direct assembly to design Smart Materials based on Fatty Acids?

All of the physical matter around us is composed of atomic or molecular building blocks. Controlling the assembly of these building block units holds the key for producing materials with new properties. Our research is focused on the self- and directed assembly of matter at all length scales, i.e. from molecular to macroscopic scale. We are interested in multiscale approaches to understand the interactions, which govern the assembly of colloids both in bulk and at interfaces. We develop new strategies to control the interactions and design responsive materials. These systems could find applications in a wide range of industrial and environmental processes such as in food, cosmetics, crude oil treatment and extraction.

Soft materials, such as foams, which respond to external stimuli, are on the leading edge of materials research. The macroscopic responsivity relies on the ability to react at microscopic or mesoscopic scales. A change in the molecular structure of the surfactant activated by stimuli can affect the self-assembled structure in water and the interfacial activity, which can in turn tune the foam stability between ultrahigh stability and immediate destabilization. We will illustrate how we can use fatty acids to produce multi-stimuli responsive foams.

 Other technologically important materials are made by assembling colloidal particles into structures. A variety of techniques are available to assemble particles into chains, but so far it has proven challenging to make permanent chains that are flexible. We will present a new method for making highly flexible particle chains based on capillary attractions between particles coated with liquid fatty acids, which is broadly similar to the way sandcastles are bound by small volumes of liquid. We will illustrate how the lipid capillary bridges between particles can be used to provide new opportunities for assembling particles in the form of filaments, networks and self-repairing gels. 

No comments:

Post a Comment