The “Sensing environment & community lifestyle” team is studying the regulatory pathways
that control biofilm formation in P. aeruginosa as well as the processes of evolution and
adaptation that this bacterium undergoes in this lifestyle.

90% of the microbiological activity in an ecosystem (aquatic environment, soil, human body, etc.) comes for the most part from sedentary flora adhering to surfaces in a structure called biofilm, which is an aggregate of micro-organisms (mostly bacteria), fixed to a surface, and stuck in a self-produced gangue of exopolymers.

The presence of biofilms is increasingly identified as the recurring source of both public health and industrial problems, which are often serious and sometimes dramatic. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a gram-negative bacterium, an opportunistic human pathogen with a very high adaptive capacity since it can colonise many ecological niches.

Practically harmless in healthy people, this Gram-negative environmental bacillus can become a deadly threat to immunodeficient individuals, intubated-ventilated patients in intensive care units or those suffering from chronic diseases such as cystic fibrosis.

Biofilm formation monitored in flow-cell after 4 Days of growth and treats exposed to tobramycin. Dead cells were labeled red.

During chromic infections, P. aeruginosa adopts a biofilm lifestyle that allows it to evade the immune system, limits the penetration of any antibiotic treatment and promotes the emergence of specific resistances.

The Sensing environment & community lifestyle team studies, using genomic, fluorescent microscopy and structural biology the regulatory pathways that trigger the formation of the biofilm and the evolutionary and adaptive processes that P. aeruginosa undergoes in its lifestyle. Our aim is to propose alternative therapeutic strategies for the treatment of P. aeruginosa infections.


Past Members / Alumni

  • Gaël Chambonnier : PhD student
  • Firas Fadel : Post-Doc
  • Coralie Marchand : Master 2 MBVB
  • Gianlucca Nicastro : Post-Doc
  • David Redelberger : Technical staff
  • Sarah Bigot : Researcher
  • Nicolas Roux : PhD student
  • Sophie de Bentzmann : INSERM Researcher
  • Lorène Roux : PhD student
  • Jennifer Spagnolo : PhD student
  • David Redelberger : Technical staff
  • Christophe Bernard : PhD student
  • Caroline Giraud : PhD student
  • Friederike Ewald : Master 2 BBSG
  • Laetitia Houot : Post Doc
  • Segolène Ruer : PhD student



  • National
    • Dr Chantal Iobbi-Nivol, BIP, Marseille
    • Dr Marie Thérèse Giudici-Orticoni, BIP, Marseille


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