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Peter Ertl

Univ.Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr.

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+43 (1) 58801 - 163605

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Curriculum Vitae

  • 2014 Visiting Scientist at the Medical Center of University of California at San Francisco, US
  • 2013 Visiting Scientist at the Center of Biomimetic Sensor Science of the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
  • 2012 Fulbright Scholar at University of California at Berkeley, US
  • 2011 Habilitation (venia docendi) Nanobiotechnology at the University of Life Sciences (BOKU), Vienna, Austria
  • 2002 Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Chemistry of the University of California at Berkeley, US
  • 2001 Postdoctoral Associate at the Department of Chemistry at the University of Waterloo, CAN
  • 2001 Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (Ph.D.) at the Department of Chemistry of the University of Waterloo, ON Canada
  • 2000 Certificate in University Teaching (CUT – University of Waterloo, Canada)
  • 1997 Graduate Engineer (Dipl.-Ing.) in Food Science and Biotechnology at the University of Natural Resources and Life Science, Vienna Austria 


Peter Ertl holds an engineering degree in Biotechnology (BOKU, Austria), a PhD in Chemistry (Univ. Waterloo, Canada) and received his postdoctoral training as a biophysicist at University of California at Berkeley (US). Additionally, in 2003 Dr. Ertl co-founded a biotech start-up company where he served a number of years as Director of Product Development in Kitchener-Waterloo (CAD) developing benchtop-sized cell analyzers. In 2005 Dr. Ertl moved to Austria where he worked as Senior Scientist in the BioSensor Technology unit at the AIT Austrian Institute of Technology. In 2016 he was appointed Professor for Lab-on-a-Chip Systems for Bioscience Technologies at the Faculty of Technical Chemistry of the Vienna University of Technology. Dr. Ertl was also granted a Fulbright Visiting Scholarship at UC Berkeley in 2011/2012 and conducted visiting scientist positions at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore in 2013 and the Medical Center of the University of California at San Francisco in 2014. In 2016 Dr. Ertl was appointed Professor for Lab-on-a-Chip Systems in Bioscience Technologies where his research focuses on the development of organ-on-a-chip and chip-in-organ systems for biomedical research.

Research Topics

My current research endeavours aim at the integration of optical and electrical sensors, miniaturized fluid handling systems and electronic components into microfluidic devices to develop automated lab-on-a-chip systems for applications in biotechnology and medicine. The main focus of my research is the development of

  1. advanced organ-on-a-chip technologies,
  2. next-generation microfluidic devices for cell analysis and
  3. self-powered sensing applications as well as
  4. implantable biosensors and smart implants.

A variety of technologies are employed to achieve those goals including rapid prototyping, such as hot embossing and replica molding; micromachining including photolithography; material science aspects, including biocompatibilities, (bio)interfaces and (bio)functionalization methods; microfluidics including integrated pneumatic valves, micropumps, microdegassers and CFD simulations; as well as various biosensor technologies to monitor dynamic cell responses and activities.

Established technology platform, biosensors and miniaturized analysis systems

My research group has been developing miniaturized analysis systems for a number of years, including lab-on-a-chip systems containing integrated electro- analytical (AMP, ECIS), magnetic (GMR) and optical (OPD) detection methods to continuously monitor blood glucose concentrations, viral contaminations, stem cell fitness, cancer interactions with tissue and immune cells, as well as nanoparticle uptake rates by various tissue types. Another focus of my research group for some years has been the combination of liquid handling systems, electronic components and sensory systems to develop next generation diagnostic devices for biomedical applications. Our latest cell chip system, for instance, consists of computer controlled and pneumatically-activated pumps and valves, degassers and a biochip containing embedded sensor arrays as well as electronic read out. This diagnostic platform can perform a variety of tasks including sample loading, rinsing and washing steps, reagent addition at specific concentrations and gradients, as well as multilevel cell analysis.