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Chromatin dynamics and signalling
 research groups

Keywords : Arabidopsis thaliana - Amarantrhus - core - chromatin - transcription regulation - silencing - development - hormone -seed

Doctoral school affiliation : ED145 "Sciences du Végétal" Université Paris-Sud, Orsay

Contacts :

Institut Jean-Pierre Bourgin, UMR1318 INRA-AgroParisTech--ERL3559 CNRS
Bâtiment 7
INRA Centre de Versailles-Grignon
Route de St-Cyr (RD10)
78026 Versailles Cedex France

tél : +33 (0)1 30 83 30 00 - fax : +33 (0)1 30 83 33 19

Group leader
Valérie Gaudin
Directeur de Recherche

Associate Group leader
Enrico Magnani
Research Scientist


Associate Group leader
Jeffrey Leung
Research Scientist CNRS



Olivier Coen
PhD student

Jing Lu
PhD student


Summary :


Plants have uniquely acquired a remarkable degree of plasticity, established on multiple signalling pathways, to orchestrate developmental growth and responses to environmental fluctuations. However, a vital signalling dilemma consists in balancing the plant energy budget for adaptive growth in response to environmental cues. For example, in responding to various stresses, plant will slow growth by diverting energy demands to reinforce defence mechanisms.
This balance requires fine-tuning of the genome activity. Long-term adaptative responses will eventually impinge on chromatin organisation involving histone and/or DNA modifications and a wide range of associated proteins leading to changes of transcriptional output in specific genomic regions. Conversely, chromatin regulation is also known to function as a "memory", to propagate, maintain or reset specific genomic status in diverse cellular-environmental contexts.
The aim of the group is to better understand developmental and environmental signalling mechanisms, and their interplay with chromatin dynamics and nuclear architecture, to approach the delicate equilibrium between signalling pathways. To do so, we exploit different biological contexts.

Main Results :


Developmental signalling in seed tissue coordination
Project manager: Enrico Magnani

Angiosperm seed development is a paradigm of tissue cross-talk as it requires synchronous development of four maternal tissues (nucellus, seed coat, chalaza and funiculus) and two fertilization products (embryo and endosperm). We are characterizing the signaling pathways that coordinate the development of different seed structures and their evolutionary histories, from chromatin organisation to downstream signal propagation. We use Arabidopsis and Amaranthus as comparative models for the two most ancient seed structures and exploit an interdisciplinary approach that spans genetics, tissue three-dimensional reconstruction, cell-type-specific transcriptomic profiling, and gene network analysis.

Persons involved
Olivier Coen, PhD, Co-supervision E. Magnani & L. Lepinierc
Jing Li, PhD, Supervision E. Magnani
Valérie Gaudin

Coordinate regulation of metabolites and chromatin modification in responding to environmental stress
Project manager: Jeffrey Leung
Serving on Editorial Boards: Mol. Plant, Plant Mol. Biol., Advances in Bot.

Once considered as mere byproducts of cellular metabolism, many small metabolites are now recognized to have big influence on myriads of physiological processes. Key targets include chromatin modifying enzymes whose activities are regulated by the availability of specific metabolites, including acetyl-coenzyme A, S-adenosylmethionine, ?-ketoglutarate, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide and polyamines. Metabolism and epigenetics interplay to synchronize gene expression patterns with the changing metabolic demand of the cell, like during stress. Our recent focus is on an acetylated metabolite that is found in plants and accumulates in human cancer. Our data indicate that the metabolite in plants is activated by covalent conjugates, which permits plants to maintain gas exchange for photosynthetic growth despite drought. We are reconstructing the signalling events by combining genetics, molecular biology, electrophysiology, chemistry, biochemistry, and eco-physiology.

Persons involved
Valérie Gaudin

Modelling chromatin dynamics
Project manager: Valérie Gaudin

Throughout its pleiotopic forms, from fiber to structures with higher orders of organisation in the cell nucleus, chromatin is a highly dynamic compartment formed by nucleic acids and a large repertoire of proteins. Its dynamics is central for life, and more specifically for genome activities, from replication, recombination, repair to regulation of genome transcription. Its dynamics participates to the control of development, the responses to environmental cues, and long-term adaptation.
We study chromatin dynamics at different scales in responses to various signalling events and question the organisational rules of the tri-dimensional nuclear architecture, exploiting the plant model Arabidopsis. We are particularly interested by Polycomb and trithorax proteins, which play critical dual roles in chromatin dynamics and transcriptional switches. We use an integrative approach based on molecular biology, microscopy and modelling approaches.

Persons involved
Philippe Andrey (IJPB-MIN team)
Jeffrey Leung
Enrico Magnani

former group

Selected Publications :

Lopez-Obando M, Conn C, Hoffmann B, Bythell-Douglas R, David C. Nelson DC, Rameau C, Bonhomme S (2016) Structural modelling and transcriptional responses highlight a clade of PpKAI2-LIKE genes as candidate receptors for strigolactones in Physcomitrella patens. Planta  243:1441-53. (Pubmed)

de Saint Germain A, Clavé G, Badet-Denisot M-A, Pillot J-P, Cornu D, Le Caer J-P, Burger M, Pelissier F, Retailleau P, Turnbull C, Bonhomme S, Chory J, Rameau C and Boyer F-D (2016) An histidine covalent receptor and butenolide complex mediates strigolactone perception. Nature Chem Biol 12:787-94. doi: 10.1038/nchembio.2147. Epub 2016 Aug 1. (PubMed) communiqué de presse INRA

Lopez-Obando M, Hoffmann B, Géry C, Guyon-Debast A, Téoulé E, Rameau C, Bonhomme S, Nogué F. (2016) Simple and Efficient Targeting of Multiple Genes Through CRISPR-Cas9 in Physcomitrella patens. G3 (Bethesda). 2016 Sep 9. pii: g3.116.033266. doi: 10.1534/g3.116.033266. [Epub ahead of print] (Pubmed)

Kameoka H, Dun EA, Lopez-Obando M, Brewer PB, de Saint Germain A, Rameau C, Beveridge CA, Kyozuka J. (2016) Phloem transport of the receptor, DWARF14 protein, is required for full function of strigolactones.Plant Physiol. Sep 26. pii: pp.01212.2016. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed)

Catherine Rameau, Jessica Bertheloot, Nathalie Leduc, Bruno Andrieu, Fabrice Foucher3 and Soulaiman Sakr (2015) Multiple pathways regulate shoot branching. Front Plant Sci. 2015 Jan 13;5:741. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00741. eCollection 2014. (PubMed)

Lopez-Obando M, Ligerot Y, Bonhomme S, Boyer FD, Rameau C. (2015) Strigolactone biosynthesis and signaling in plant development. Development. Nov 1;142(21):3615-9. doi: 10.1242/dev.120006. (PubMed)

Boyer FD, de Saint Germain A, Pouvreau JB, Clavé G, Pillot JP, Roux A, Rasmussen A, Depuydt S, Lauressergues D, Frei Dit Frey N, Heugebaert TS, Stevens CV, Geelen D, Goormachtig S, Rameau C (2014) New strigolactone analogs as plant hormones with low activities in the rhizosphere. Mol Plant 7: 675-90 (PubMed)

Hoffmann B, Proust H, Belcram K, Labrune C, Boyer FD, Rameau C, Bonhomme S (2014) Strigolactones Inhibit Caulonema Elongation and Cell Division in the Moss Physcomitrella patens. PLoS One:9(6):e99206. doi: 10.1371(pdf)

de Saint Germain A, Bonhomme S, Boyer FD, Rameau C (2013a) Novel insights into strigolactone distribution and signalling. Curr Opin Plant Biol 16: 583-589 (pdf)

de Saint Germain A, Ligerot Y, Dun EA, Pillot JP, Ross JJ, Beveridge CA, Rameau C (2013b) Strigolactones stimulate internode elongation independently of gibberellins. Plant Physiol 163: 1012-25 (pubMed)

Bonhomme S, Nogue F, Rameau C, Schaefer DG (2013) Usefulness of Physcomitrella patens for studying plant organogenesis. Methods Mol Biol 959: 21-43 (pdf)

Chen VX, Boyer FD, Rameau C, Pillot JP, Vors JP, Beau JM (2013) New synthesis of A-ring aromatic strigolactone analogues and their evaluation as plant hormones in pea (Pisum sativum). Chemistry 19: 4849-4857 (pdf)

Boyer FD, de Saint Germain A, Pillot JP, Pouvreau JB, Chen VX, Ramos S, Stevenin A, Simier P, Delavault P, Beau JM, Rameau C (2012) Structure-activity relationship studies of strigolactone-related molecules for branching inhibition in garden pea: molecule design for shoot branching. Plant Physiol 159: 1524-1544 (pdf)

Braun N, de Saint Germain A, Pillot JP, Boutet-Mercey S, Dalmais M, Antoniadi I, Li X, Maia-Grondard A, Le Signor C, Bouteiller N, Luo D, Bendahmane A, Turnbull C, Rameau C (2012) The pea TCP transcription factor PsBRC1 acts downstream of strigolactones to control shoot branching. Pl Physiol 158:225–238 (pdf)

Proust H, Hoffmann B, Xie X, Yoneyama K, Schaefer DG, Nogue F, Rameau C (2011) Strigolactones regulate protonema branching and act as a quorum sensing-like signal in the moss Physcomitrella patens. Development 138: 1531-1539 (pdf)

Chen X, Boyer FD, Rameau C, Retailleau P, Vors JP, and Beau JM (2010). Stereochemistry, total synthesis, and biological evaluation of the new plant hormone solanacol. Chemistry 16, 13941-13945 (pdf)

Beveridge CA, Dun EA, and Rameau C (2009). Pea has its tendrils in branching discoveries spanning a century from auxin to strigolactones. Plant Physiol 151: 985-990 (pdf)

Gomez-Roldan, V., Fermas, S., Brewer, P.B., Puech-Pages, V., Dun, E.A., Pillot, J.P., Letisse, F., Matusova, R., Danoun, S., Portais, J.C., Bouwmeester, H., Becard, G., Beveridge, C.A., Rameau, C., and Rochange, S.F. (2008). Strigolactone inhibition of shoot branching. Nature 455: 189-194 (pdf)

Johnson, X., Brcich, T., Dun, E.A., Goussot, M., Haurogne, K., Beveridge, C.A., and Rameau, C. (2006). Branching genes are conserved across species. Genes controlling a novel signal in pea are coregulated by other long-distance signals. Plant Physiol 142: 1014-1026 (pdf)


Detailed list of Publications


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