The research project of the Rhizogenesis team aims to decipher the molecular mechanisms underlying the actinorhizal symbiosis.
It relies on a comparative analysis with two other root endosymbioses, the Rhizobium-legume symbiosis and the endomycorrhizal symbiosis. It is expected that these studies will contribute to understand how some plants from the Rosid I clade acquired the ability to develop nitrogen fixing nodules about 70 million years ago.
To reach this objective, an approach of functional genomics is developed and two main aspects are under investigation :
· Characterization key genes from the actinorhizal tropical tree Casuarina glauca, involved in the perception and transduction of the symbiotic signaling molecules emitted by the microorganism Frankia
· Isolation and biochemical analysis of the signaling molecules secreted by the microorganism Frankia during the early stages of the symbiotic interaction.
The team is located in the IRD Center of Montpellier and has developed a wide range of partnerships both in France (LSTM Montpellier, University Lyon 1 and LIPM Toulouse) and in Southern countries (India, China, Morocco, Egypt and Senegal).