The Institut Pasteur de Lille, private non-profit foundation


The Institut Pasteur de Lille is a private, non-profit foundation, recognised as being of public benefit since 1898, dedicated to the fight against diseases through research, preventive healthcare and training workshops. Created in 1894 to respond to the epidemics of the 19th century, the Institut Pasteur de Lille has been fighting diseases for more than 120 years through research on pathogens, the development of vaccines and drugs and the promotion of preventive measures and good hygiene practices.

The Institut Pasteur de Lille has an international medical research center, a prevention center and a center of expertise at the heart of public health issues on its campus.

façade institut pasteur de lille

  International center for medical research

33 research teams work to decipher the fundamental physiopathological mechanisms of  diseases with the biggest impact, especially those which are infectious, to better understand them, slow down their development and discover the treatments of tomorrow.

Within this international medical research center are grouped 8 research units which lead the fight against several diseases : 

    • Infectious diseases : COVID-19, coronavirus, tuberculosis, pertussis, plague, hepatitis C, legionellosis, listeriosis, malaria, bilharzia…
    • Cancers.
    • Neurodegenerative diseases : Alzheimer’s disease, dementias…
    • Cardiovascular diseases : infarction, aneurysm, stroke, coronary heart disease, atherosclerosis …
    • Metabolic diseases : diabetes, obesity.
    • Inflammatory diseases : inflammatory diseases of the digestive tract, respiratory tract, asthma, allergies …

  Center for health and longevity (CPSL)

Combining research and preventive health, the Cnter for Preventive Health and Longevity adopts an innovative approach, unique in France, of preventive health and education, advice and development, and support for staying active and aging well.

The “CPSL” is : 

  • A Health Examination Center : which offers preventive health examinations or a Longevity Course, an original and innovative course in preventive medicine.
  • An International Vaccination Center, specialising in medical advice for travellers, specifically with regards to infectious and tropical diseases, approved by the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as an anti-rabies center.
  • A Nutrition & Physical Activity Department : which carries out clinical studies in nutrition, training and health education.
  • A Center of Study and Expertise : a recognized and labeled center of expertise.

  Department of health and environment expertises

The Institut Pasteur de Lille offers recognized and certified expertise in specialized sectors where it is today a benchmark :

  • Genetic toxicology : a unique expertise in France in the context of nanotechnology.
  • Microbiological safety : research on emerging microorganisms and their impact on health.
  • Nutrition and physical activity : scientific expertise in the areas of diet, physical activity and stress management.
  • Clinical studies : support for agri-food professionals in assessing the health benefits of their products.
  • Corporate health : support for businesses through a preventive health program for employees.
  • Formations : educational teams offer a training program throughout the year on various topics of prevention and health education.

The organisation of l’Institut Pasteur de Lille

The General Direction

In accordance with the wishes of Louis Pasteur, the managing director must be a scientist. They manage the teams of the foundation and is responsible for the smooth running of the Institute and the fulfillment of its mission. They provide a link with the board of directors and coordinate the operations in compliance with the ethical and scientific code of conduct of the mission of the foundation. They are supported on a daily basis by the general secretary and a board of directors. They may appoint specific project managers or advisors.



Pr Xavier Nassif

Research physician, professor of microbiology, Prof. Xavier Nassif holds a doctorate in medicine from the Necker-Enfants-Malades faculty of medicine and a doctorate in microbiology from Pierre and Marie Curie University obtained at the Pasteur Institute of Paris in 1989.

Since the 1 January 2020, he has been responsible for the general management of the Institut Pasteur de Lille and the medical management of its Longevity Health Prevention Center, in conjunction with Didier Bonneau, deputy managing director and Prof. Benoit Deprez, scientific director.


Didier Bonneau

Since March 2015, Didier Bonneau, an ESSEC graduate, joined the foundation after a busy career with the multinational Unilever and then in social protection groups.

Within the Foundation, Didier Bonneau inspires organization, finance and employee development. He also leads the implementation of the necessary tools to enable the foundation to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow.


Pr Benoit Deprez
Scientific president

Pr Benoit Deprez has been the Foundation’s scientific director since March 2019. He ensures the continuity of scientific projects and relations and represents the Foundation in scientific bodies and meetings in direct connection with Dr Jacques RICHIR, Chairman of the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Since 2020 and the start of the COVID-19 epidemic crisis, he has led the team formed in the emergency to find a treatment and a vaccine against the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Learn more : Xavier Nassif


Xavier Nassif headed the Clinical Microbiology Department of the “Necker-Enfants Malades” Hospital and the “Necker-Enfants Malades” Research Institute, a joint INSERM / CNRS / Paris Descartes University research unit with 250 researchers. Xavier Nassif is also co-head of the “Pathogenesis of systemic infections” team within this unit. Convinced that improving the treatment of infections requires a better understanding of them, he has focused his career on analyzing the mechanisms that allow pathogens to spread in the body and developing new anti-infective treatments.

His discoveries and publications have made it possible in just a few years to make significant progress through the development of new methods for identifying pathogenic bacteria as well as new vaccine approaches. Pr Nassif is the inventor or co-inventor of 10 patent families, including 7 in the USA and in Europe. These patents mainly relate to new vaccine approaches against meningococcal infection and to new methods of identifying pathogenic bacteria. Prof. Xavier Nassif was a member of the Scientific Council of the Foundation for Medical Research and medical director of the Institut Pasteur in Paris (independent foundation of the Institut Pasteur in Lille, member of the international network of 32 Pasteur institutes). He is the author or co-author of more than 200 scientific publications and is a member of the French Society of Microbiology and the American Academy of Microbiology.

Learn more : Didier Bonneau

Didier Bonneau began his career in 1985 in the Unilever group doing internal audit in France and French-speaking Africa. Then, he took responsibility for the management control of a factory before becoming controller in charge of subsidiaries in French-speaking Africa and financial director of those in the French overseas departments and territories. In 1996, he moved to Prague to regain management control over the group’s activities in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Three years later, he moved to the London headquarters as Vice President of Finance for the structure in charge of managing the IT infrastructure of Unilever “Global Infrastructure Organization”.

In 2005, Didier joined the Vauban Humanis group in Lille at the time of the merger. He was first CFO of the Vauban Humanis group, responsible for financial accounting, management control, asset management, general services, real estate, purchasing and legal services. Developing its teams is at the heart of all its achievements. With the teams, he succeeded in having the treasury certified in about 3 years. Then in 2012, he became financial director of the new Humanis group, following the merger of Vauban Humanis with other social protection groups. In 2012, he succeeded in obtaining the responsible investor award and in 2012 and 2013 the financial transparency award.

Learn more : Benoit Deprez

Benoit Deprez is Professor of Pharmacy at the University of Lille, director of unit U1177, drug discovery research laboratory (Institut Pasteur de Lille, INSERM, University of Lille), member of the strategic scientific committee of the Institute Pastor of Lille since its creation and founder of the company APTEEUS.

Its research work on drug discovery is at the interface of the various research themes of the Institut Pasteur de Lille and thus gives it the transversal vision necessary to lead the research project on longevity led by the Institut Pasteur de Lille, in conjunction with the directors of the Foundation’s research units. His knowledge of the university, industrial and economic sectors are assets for the Institut Pasteur de Lille and its development projects.

Executive board

The Board of Directors of the Institut Pasteur de Lille ensures that the fundamental values ​​of the foundation and its statutes are respected. He defines the organization’s strategy, its economic model and monitors its implementation by the Chief Executive Officer.

College of founders :

  • Jacques Richir, Lille city hall
  • Claire Mounier Vehier, Lille city hall
  • Marie-Christine Staniec, Lille city hall
  • Justine Ratelade, Lille city hall
  • Julie Nicolas, Lille city hall

College of institutional partners :

  • Damien Castelain, represented by Catherine Lefebvre, MEL
  • Xavier Bertrand, represented by Nicolas Lebas, Hauts-de-France Region
  • Jean René Lecerf, represented by Nicolas Siegler, Concil of Nord
  • Stewart Cole, Institut Pasteur de Paris
  • Jean-Christophe Camart, Lille University
  • Gilles Bloch, represented by Samir Ould Ali, Inserm Paris
  • Antoine Petit, represented by Christophe Muller, CNRS

College of qualified personalities :

  • Pr François René Pruvot, Medical Commission Establishment
  • Maître Patrick Vacossin, Chamber of Notaries

College of Friends of the foundation :

  • Thierry Letartre, Anios

Permanant guest members :

  • Antoine Pernod, Auchan
  • Stéphane Bauw, AG2R LA MONDIALE
  • Thierry Mathieu, Eurabio
Members of the Bureau
  • Jacques Richir, Président
  • Nicolas Lebas, Vice-Président
  • Patrick Vacossin, Treasurer
  • François Kinget, Secretary
  • Thierry Letartre, Representant of the friends of the foundation
The strategic committee for research

The purpose of this committee, chaired by the managing director, is to define the scientific strategic guidelines of Institut Pasteur de Lille in compliance with the mission that it proposes to the board directors. Its composition of certified mixed units guarantees the excellence of the research conducted by the foundation.

Its members are the directors of the mixed research units :

  • Dr Jean Dubuisson (Inserm, CNRS, Lille University) : Centre of infection and immunity of Lille 
  • Pr Philippe Amouyel (Inserm, Lille University) : Public health and molecular epidemiology of age-related diseases
  • Pr Benoit Deprez (Inserm, Lille University) : Biostructure and discovery of medicines
  • Pr Philippe Froguel (CNRS, Lille University) : Genomics and molecular physiology of metabolic illnesses
  • Dr Isabelle Vanseuningen (CNRS, Lille University) : Cancer heterogeneity, plasticity and resistance to therapies (Canther)
  • Pr Bart Staels (Inserm, Lille University) : Nuclear receptors, metabolic and cardiovascular diseases

The permanent guests at the Scientific Council :

  • Dr Jacques Richir, Vice-chairman of the board of directors
  • Pr Patrick Berche, Managing director
  • Didier Bonneau, Vice-President
  • Dr Fabienne Jean, Administrative director for Research
The strategic committee for health and the environment

This committee meets under the aegis of the managing director. Members are :


  • Heads of toxicology and microbiological safety units

  • Managers of the Longevity Health Prevention Center

  • General manager

  • Deputy General Director

  • Director of Research Administration

It is made up of the managers of the toxicology and microbiological safety laboratories and the managers of the public health, prevention, vaccination and nutrition sectors.