2017 Research highlights

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Experimental evolution of the plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum, where bacteria were maintained on plant lineages for more than 300 generations, revealed that several independent single mutations in the efpR gene from populations propagated on beans were associated with fitness gain on bean. In the present work, novel allelic efpR variants were isolated from populations propagated on other plant species, thus suggesting that mutations in efpR were not solely associated to a fitness gain on bean, but also on additional hosts.
In a review published last November in Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Emmanuelle Cam and collaborators critically analyze the methods used to test the "neutral theory of life stories", synthesizing the approaches and terminology proposed by other disciplines concerning the analysis of longitudinal data (ie long-term monitoring of individuals) and advocate for the use of these approaches in evolutionary ecology.
Arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis, a plant-fungal mutualistic relationship, is regulated by the miR171 family. Couzigou et al. discover that miR171b has evolved a target site mismatch such that instead of silencing, miR171b protects its target gene LOM1 from cleavage by other miR171 family members and thereby enables AM symbiosis.
Fabien Aubret, researcher at the SETE laboratory, recently launched a European cross-border cooperation project INTERREG POCTEFA named ECTOPYR, which aiming ats to benefiting from the cross-border distribution of Pyrenean ectotherms vertebrates and use them as biological indicators of climate change.
LIPM researchers identified an atypical protease of the subtilase family [SBT5.2(b)] that attenuates the transcriptional activation of plant defence independently of its protease activity. The SBT5.2 gene produces two distinct transcripts encoding a canonical secreted subtilase [SBT5.2(a)] and an intracellular protein [SBT5.2(b)]. Concomitant to SBT5.2(a) downregulation, SBT5.2(b) expression is induced after bacterial inoculation. SBT5.2(b) localizes to endosomes where it interacts with and retains the defence-related transcription factor MYB30. Nuclear exclusion ofMYB30 results in its reduced transcriptional activation and, thus, suppressed resistance.
In recent work published in february 2017 in eLife, LIPM researchers ask how codon optimization underpins generalist parasitism in fungi.
The temporal stability of a population or ecosystem was known to increase with spatial scale, but this relationship had never been made explicit. Researchers from SETE (CNRS and Paul Sabatier University) and their international collaborators describe for the first time the Invariability-Area Relationship (IAR) in a Nature Communications article. They establish a theoretical relationship and measure it with plant production and bird communities data.
Less than a year after the deciphering of the sunflower genome, its in-depth analysis by a LIPM team (TULIP laboratory) led to the identification of hundreds of genes that works together to regulate flowering or oil production. The results are published in Nature (online) on May 22th, 2017.
Do species with a greater diversity of color (polymorphism) have a lower risk of extinction than those with no color diversity? Simon Ducatez (post-doctoral fellow at Sidney University in Australia) and Lisa Jacquin (Associate Professor at the EDB Laboratory - a TULIP laboratory) were adressed this question in an article published in Global Change Biology in April 2017.
One of the main effects of global warming is to reduce the size of cold-blooded organisms such as insects, fish and bacteria. The ecological consequences of these size changes are still poorly understood. Researchers from the EDB Laboratory (member of the TULIP LabEx), the University of South Bohemia (Czech Republic) and Linköping University (Sweden) analyzed the long-term consequences of decreasing the size of cold blooded organisms on the survival of their populations and on the functioning of food chains. In an article published in May 2017 in Ecology Letters, they demonstrate that shrinking organisms can increase their populations survival and thus mitigate the ecological consequences of global warming on ecosystems.
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Modification date: 07 June 2023 | Publication date: 08 January 2018 | By: TULIP Communication