How are we what we eat?
How are essential cellular processes coordinated at the level of protein activity in response to nutritional changes? This is the broad question my research seeks to understand.
Metabolic pathways building the cell bricks are extensively described. By contrast, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms driving cell-wide processes is recent and incomplete. This explains why the regulatory links between these cellular processes and primary metabolism are largely unexplored. State of the art methods, in particular in cell biology, now provide the means to address this fundamental question. Investigating these connections are best carried out in simple well defined systems. My research uses the model bacterium Bacillus subtilis. It is a Gram positive rod-shaped bacterium that is genetically amenable.
In this project, we propose candidate and innovative large-scale approaches to identify and characterize metabolic sensors at the heart of these regulations. First, we will characterize a candidate protein that is expressed in the same operon as a metabolic enzyme and which absence affects cell division. We will also take advantage of this time to setup a high-throughput fluorescence microscopy workflow and transfer tools from my post-doctoral laboratory, hire students and formalize collaborations in Europe and the United States. Second, the main part of this project will concentrate on the identification and the characterization of new proteins coupling morphogenesis, division and chromosome dynamics to carbon and nitrogen metabolism. An interdisciplinary approach combining modern techniques in fluorescence microscopy, genetics, genomics, bioinformatics, biochemistry and automation will be used to study these metabolic sensors. Understanding the connections between metabolism and cell-wide processes will yield fundamental knowledge on the global functioning of the bacterial cell but also provide basis for new antibacterial drugs development.
Fields of science
- natural sciencesbiological sciencescell biology
- natural sciencesphysical sciencesopticsmicroscopy
- engineering and technologyelectrical engineering, electronic engineering, information engineeringelectronic engineeringsensors
- natural sciencesbiological sciencesmicrobiologybacteriology
- natural sciencesbiological sciencesbiochemistrybiomoleculesproteins
Call for proposal
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