Adresse : Laboratoire Mer, Molécules, Santé (EA 2160) Université du Maine, Avenue Olivier Messiaen 72085 Le Mans cedex 09

Composition :
Nathalie Casse (MCU du Mans)
Aurore Caruso (MCU du Mans)
Annick Manceau (PR1 du Mans)
Benoit Chénais (PR2 du Mans)

Activité scientifique : We characterize transposable elements (transposons and retrotransposons) in the genome of marine microalgae. In marine environment, TEs are poorly known. Microalgae are the first link in the trophic chain in the marine environment. They are frequently submitted to various stresses such as thermal variations or pollutions. The expression of various transposons and retrotransposons are studied in microalgae submitted to such stresses. Stresses due to copper, zinc or nanoparticles are chosen because a big amount of these elements reach the marine environment after being used in the terrestrial environment.
We also address several questions on TE expression: what kinds of stresses induce TE expression? Do such stresses induce all kinds of TEs? Is TE transcription followed by translation and a transposition process or are TEs silenced?
Another part of our work consists in testing TEs as molecular tools for mutagenesis or transgenesis. New TEs isolated from marine microalgae will be tested as DNA vectors to durably modify the nuclear genome of some microalgae.

Team leader