We are a research group involved in the application and development of advanced technologies to characterize intracellular signaling networks and their mechanisms in human primary cells. Our quantitative observations range on multiple scales from nanometer for single molecules using optical and electron microscopy, to centimeter using Doppler to image in live the effects caused in the human body. Our work describes the multi-protein signaling complexes, their mechanisms, their transport systems and allows us to draw maps of signaling networks.
With the technological support of facilities at the Pasteur Institute and through collaborations with several international institutions, we study the early steps of signaling induced by interleukin-7 on CD4 T lymphocytes (helper). This cytokine is the main regulator, in lymphoid tissues as well as in the peripheral compartment, of differentiation, activation, survival and proliferation of CD4 T cells that coordinate the immune surveillance and response to infections and tumors.
Application of research to guide diagnostic and therapeutic strategies
When the signaling induced by IL-7 is constitutively altered in patients, we observed lymphopenia when the response is reduced (eg AIDS), and leukemia when it is increased (eg acute lymphoblastic leukemia T-ALL). Comparing the expression of signaling proteins and their location profiles between patients and healthy donors allows us to identify the molecular cause of alterations. These elements are used to select the molecular markers for pathology diagnostic or to identify new therapeutic targets.