I am currently Professor at Institut Pasteur, head of the Genetics of Biofilms Unit in the Department of Microbiology. For the past 25 years, I investigated the molecular bases of various bacterial processes. I first studied type 1 protein secretion in Gram-negative bacteria with Cécile Wandersman (*) at the Institut Pasteur, Paris, France , where I obtained my PhD in 1994. After being appointed Research Assistant at the Institut Pasteur in 1995, I took a post-doctoral leave of absence to join the laboratory of Jon Beckwith at Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA, where I studied cell division in Escherichia coli. I returned to the Institut Pasteur in 1999 to develop an independent project investigating bacterial biofilm lifestyle at the genetic and molecular level. This led to the creation of the Genetics of Biofilms 5 year young investigator group (G5) in 2002, which was turned into a full Research Unit in 2007.
The research undertaken in my laboratory aims at revealing new or under-explored aspects of bacterial biofilm communities by addressing 2 main questions: how do bacteria form biofilms? what particular properties emerge from mono- or multi-species bacterial communities? These studies were often developed via fruitful national and international collaborations, contributing to a better understanding of the biofilm lifestyle.