Halima Mouhib

Halima Mouhib is the recipient of the 2020 Descartes-Huygens Prize. She, who studies the sense of smell, has been awarded the prize for here outstanding research and here contribution to Franco-Dutch relations.

Halima Mouhib is an associate professor at the Champs-sur-Marne campus of Université Gustave Eiffel, a multidisciplinary institution of higher education and research. She specialises in theoretical chemistry, multi-scale simulations and high-resolution spectroscopy. Mouhib's mission is to understand fragrances and the mechanisms underlying the human sense of smell.

Her research is highly innovative and she is also skilled at explaining and making her work accessible to colleagues, students and a wider audience.

Mouhib has been collaborating with Dutch researchers for many years. In 2014, she was awarded a grant to conduct research at VU Amsterdam on how proteins pull themselves through the membrane that surrounds pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria. The Descartes-Huygens Prize will make it possible for Mouhib to cooperate with researchers at VU Amsterdam in 2021 for another six months. They will conduct simulations to explore how fragrances are absorbed from the air in a humid environment, such as that of the nose.

Photo Renate Schütt