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ERL5261 CNRS team

Welcome to the Web pages of the Bacterial Pathogenesis and Cellular Responses (PBRC)

Published on 16 October 2020

Team leader

Ina Attrée
CNRS Research Director, HDR

Laboratoire Biologie du Cancer et de l'Infection
17 avenue des Martyrs
38 054 Grenoble cedex 9
Phone: +33 (0)4 38 78 22 19
Fax: +33 (0)4 38 78 44 99

Team members

Claire Bama, CEA technical assistant
Stéphanie Bouillot, CEA technician
François Cretin, UGA associate professor
Sylvie Elsen, CNRS researcher (CR), HDR
Eric Faudry, CEA engineer-researcher (CR), HDR
Philippe Huber, CEA engineer-researcher (DR), HDR
Viviana Job, CEA engineer-researcher,
Antoine Maillard, CEA engineer-researcher (CR), HDR
Marie-Pierre Mendez, CNRS assistant engineer, team secretary
Michel Ragno, CNRS assistant engineer,
Mylène Robert-Genthon, CNRS engineer,
Lionnel Bulin, Master 2 student
Vincent Deruelle, PhD student
Manon Janet-Maitre, PhD student
Stéphane Pont, PhD student
Adèle Renier, PhD student
Victor Simon, Master 2 student
Fostine Toro, Student
Julian Trouillon, PhD student


The main interest of our Team is the study of bacterial pathogenesis and our model is a gram-negative bacillus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This bacterium possesses a great adaptability to different environments; it has been detected in diverse niche and is usually associated with human activities. The bacterium is capable to colonize different hosts, including humans, but also insects, plants and some animals. In healthy people, P. aeruginosa is detected on the skin, in the nose and in the gastrointestinal tract.

However, P. aeruginosa is clearly recognized as a dangerous opportunistic pathogen; it provokes acute and chronic infections, notably in immunocompromised patients or associated with other pathologies, such as cystic fibrosis, or patients under ventilation in Intensive Care Units. Therefore, P. aeruginosa is considered as a nosocomial pathogen. The main problem of treating P. aeruginosa infections is its antibiotic resistance and its amazing adaptation capacities, which results in synthesis of numerous toxic products that allow host invasion, colonization and spread.
P. aeruginosa possesses a number of secretion machineries that permits the transfer of bacterial proteins from the cytoplasm toward the extracellular milieu, or even the direct translocation within the host cell. These secretion systems confer to P. aeruginosa the virulence capacity, which may be more or less important, depending on expression levels or combination of toxins one given strain is employing.
The main focus of the team is to develop a basic research aiming at deciphering the virulence strategies used by Pseudomonas aeruginosa to promote infections. More specifically, our goal is to understand the molecular mechanisms this human opportunistic pathogen employs to colonize organs and to eventually cross epithelial and endothelial barriers, leading to acute and chronic infections. To achieve this goal, we have developed a pipeline that allows us to study different bacterial proteins/toxins by integrated approaches (genetics, biochemistry, cellular microbiology, infection of in vivo models) and to assign their role(s) in pathogenesis. By studying bacterial secretion systems and secreted toxins/effectors that are responsible for cellular effects, with possible applications in the treatment of P. aeruginosa infections, the Team is positioned at the interface of translational research.

Additional Grants

Key words

Pseudomonas aeruginosa, toxins, cystic fibrosis, T3SS, T6SS, translocon, needle, injectisome, host-pathogen interaction, interactome, chemogenomics, regulation, signaling.

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