A l'UM la science [S01-ep15]: From aniridia research to the gravimeter

This week, Frédéric Michon, Inserm researcher at the Montpellier Neuroscience Institute and winner of the Groupama prize, talks about his work on aniridia. In the second half, Nicolas Lemoigne introduces us to the Geosciences gravimeter.

I don't have to tell you, what's rare is expensive! This is as true of markets as it is of healthcare, and research into rare diseases often struggles to find the funding needed to bring solutions to patients. In France, a rare disease is defined as one that affects a maximum of 30,000 people, i.e. less than one person in 2,000. To date, 7,000 rare diseases have been listed and identified. For 80% of them, the cause lies directly in our genome. An estimated 3 million people in France and 25 million in Europe are directly affected. Because they are so rare, these diseases often take years to diagnose, and in the majority of cases, treatments simply don't exist.

Unfortunately, this situation is all too familiar to sufferers of aniridia, a rare disease that affects the eye and can ultimately lead to corneal blindness. Thanks to the work of our guest researcher, these patients may well be able to regain hope. Frédéric Michon is a researcher at the Montpellier Neurosciences Institute, and has just been awarded the Groupama prize supporting research into rare diseases for his work on aniridia.

Read more:

Frédéric Michon, winner of the rare diseases 2022 research prize

In the second half of the show, we meet Nicolas Lemoigne. He's a research engineer at CNRS's Géosciences Montpellier laboratory, where he's in charge of gravimetric instrumentation. We follow him to the laboratory basement, where the gravimeter, an instrument that measures gravity, is well protected from outside vibrations.

At UM la science you've got the program, here we go!

Coproduction : Divergence FM / Université de Montpellier
Animation :
Lucie Lecherbonnier
Interview :
Aline Périault / Lucie Lecherbonnier
Reportage :
Aline Périault
Editing: Bruno Bertrand
Production : Anna Demeulandre

Listen to the program "A l'UM la science" on Divergence FM 93.9

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