Céline Dinet

A Multiscale Analysis of Cell Polarity Transitions in a Bacterium

Team: Tâm Mignot (LCB) - Alphée Michelot (IBDM)

Her background

January 2020 - present | CENTURI Postdoctoral fellow

2018 - 2019 | Junio Research Fellow - University of Durham. England

2013 - 2016 | PhD in Biophysics and material science - CINaM (Marseille, France)

2012 - 2013 | MSc in Nano-sciences and functional materials - Lebanese University. (Beirut, Lebanon)

2011 - 2012 | MSc in Chemistry - Lebanese University (Tripoli, Lebanon)

About her Postdoc project

Cell decisions are governed by complex regulatory networks that integrate changes in the environment and convey a cellular response. Understanding the functioning of these networks is a major challenge because they are generally obtained from fragmentary datasets that lack both quantitative and spatiotemporal information. As a result, the genetic pathways mostly consist of blueprints that capture the interactions between the components but generally fail to contain mechanistic and thus predictive value. Given that molecular interactions are in essence only amenable to low-throughput analyses, any first attempt in modeling dynamic networks must focus on highly tractable experimental systems. In this project, five CENTURI teams, Mignot and Michelot, and Habermann, Tichit and Barrat will develop an interdisciplinary collaboration to elucidate how bacterial cells (Myxococcus xanthus) make directional decision using an evolutionarily-conserved G-protein cell polarity oscillator. The two intertwined projects will combine biophysical cell mimetic assays, genetic live experiments and computational simulations of higher-order networks to provide a first spatiotemporal model of the protein-protein interactions that drive protein oscillations. In the long run, this work will serve as a framework to study single cell decisions in multicellular contexts, a question of general significance in higher organisms. This proposal is principally experimental.