Introduction: Focus on living

Studies on major cellular functions such as genome expression, membrane trafficking, signaling, cell migration and tissues organization require to locate, measure and quantify  dynamics and interactions between molecules of interest (proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, ions), in vivo at the microscopic and nanoscopic scales . These studies are currently limited by multiple technological barriers (sensors, targeting, optical sensing, phototoxicity, image analysis, modeling).

Modern microscopy results from a series of technological innovations that answer to these needs, in both academic and industrial research. Research strategies are placed at the interface between different sciences and evolve according to the biological questions. The “Green Fluorescent Proteins” (GFP), the popularization of confocal microscopes (CLSM), the ease of use of commercial lasers (including femtosecond), the development of new fluorescence microscopy, highly resolved in time and space, are the major advances of the past years.

Objectives of the Research Group

The purpose of this GdR is to promote the sharing of expertise between research teams, with the aim to develop new strategies up to overcome technological and methodological limitations in the study of gene expression, nuclear organization in territories, network signaling, the membrane trafficking … This GdR gathers teams in biology, physics, chemistry, image processing, computing and applied mathematics .

GdR missions are to

  • Bring together teams from different disciplines and encourage the pooling of their resources and expertise in order to develop new strategies in biological imaging. Through Thematic Activities, teams will have the opportunity to develop joint research projects and to develop and experiment new tools.
  • Give access to advanced strategies through technological platforms
  • Implement communication and training instruments
  • Participate in the establishment of a European network of excellence in Microscopy of the Living

Research areas

Currently, there are strong technological barriers that limit our functional investigations in the living matter. The nature of these difficulties is partly independent of biological subjects. To overcome them, we propose to develop 5 lines of research or approaches, in a transverse manner with respect to biological areas of interest :

  • Probes, targeting and phototoxicity
  • N ew microscopy
  • Measurement of dynamic and molecular interactions, unique and complex macromolecular molecules
  • Intravital microscopy
  • Processing and image analysis, modeling and data archiving