Bertrand Bénazéraf
  • E-mail :[email]
  • Phone : 33 6 3 33 88 34 55
  • Location : Illkirch-Graffenstaden, France
Last update 2012-10-30 17:59:37.251

Bertrand Bénazéraf PhD cell and developmental biology

Course and current status


2012-   : Research Associate (CR2/CNRS), Institut de Génétique Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (IGBMC), Olivier Pourquié’s team, Strasbourg, France.

2009- 2012    : Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (CDD-INSERM), Institut de Génétique Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (IGBMC), Olivier Pourquié’s team, Strasbourg, France.

2006-2009: Postdoctoral Research Associate at Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Olivier Pourquié’s group, Kansas City, USA

2001-2005: PhD student at the Centre de Biologie du Développement, Fabienne Pituello’s team  Toulouse, France.

2000-2001: Master’s degree at the Centre de Biologie du Développement in Fabienne Pituello’s team,Toulouse, France.

1999-2000: DESU training at the Centre de Biologie du Développement in Cathy Soula‘s Group Toulouse, France.


- Bertrand BENAZERAF, Paul FRANCOIS, Ruth E. BAKER, Nicolas DENANS, Charles D. LITTLE and Olivier POURQUIE .Un gradient de migration non directionnelle dans le mésoderme  présomitique contribue à l’allongement de l’axe chez l’embryon de poulet. Biologie Aujourd’hui, 2011;205(2):95-103.

- Bertrand BENAZERAF. Elongation of the embryo results from random cell motion.  Medecine/Sciences (Paris). 2011 Jan;27(1):12-4.

- Bertrand BENAZERAF, Paul FRANCOIS, Ruth E. BAKER, Nicolas DENANS, Charles D. LITTLE and Olivier POURQUIE . A random cell motility gradient downstream of FGF controls elongation of an amniote embryo. Nature, 2010  Jul 8;466(7303):248-52.

- Bertrand BENAZERAF, Olivier POURQUIE (2008) Developmental biology: cell intercalation one step beyond. Current biology 2008 Feb 12;18(3):R119-21.

-Bertrand BENAZERAF, Quisheng CHEN, Emilie PECO, Valérie LOBJOIS, François MEDEVIELLE, Bernard DUCOMMUN and Fabienne PITUELLO (2005) Identification of an unexpected link between the Shh pathway and a G2/M regulator, the phosphatase CDC25B.  Developmental Biology 2006 Jun 1;294(1):133-47.

- Valérie LOBJOIS §, Bertrand BENAZERAF §, Nicolas BERTRAND, François MEDEVIELLE, Fabienne PITUELLO. Specific regulation of cyclin D1 and D2 by FGF and Shh signalling co-ordinates cell cycle progression, patterning and differentiation during early steps of spinal cord development. Developmental biology 2004 Sep 15;273(2):195-209, § the two authors have contributed equally to this work.

-Christine BRAQUART-VARNIER, Cathy DANESIN, Catherine CLOUSCARD-MARTINATO, Eric AGIUS, Nathalie ESCALAS, Bertrand BENAZERAF, Xingbin AI, Charles EMERSON Philippe COCHARD, and Cathy SOULA. A subtractive approach to characterize genes with regionalized expression in the gliogenic ventral neuroepithelium: identification of chick Sulfatase 1 as a new oligodendrocyte lineage gene. Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience. 25 (2004)  612-628.


Scientific summary

Coming from a developmental and cell biology background, I am interested in deciphering morphogenetic mechanisms involved in embryogenesis. The main animal model I use for my research is the chicken embryo. Chicken is a classical model in developmental biology; it is very easily accessible and therefore well suited for microsurgery, manipulation of gene expression by electroporation and time-lapse imaging. During my PhD thesis, I have studied the coordination between cell proliferation and patterning during neural tube development. We found that the morphogene Shh is positively controlling the expression of cell cycle regulators genes Cyclin D1 and CDC25B. My postdoctoral training and work as a researcher focuse on embryonic axis elongation, a complex morphogenetic event that requires the coordination of tissue mechanics, cell behaviours, and signalling pathway activities. Using time lapse imaging we demonstrated the existence of a non directional gradient of cell migration in the paraxial mesoderm of chicken embryo. Experimental and theoretical evidences led us propose that this gradient of motility is responsible for axis elongation. I am now working in collaboration with biophysicists to measure embryonic forces and  to do a quantitative analysis of cellular and tissue parameters during elongation and somitogenesis (the morphogenetic event leading to the segmentation of the body axis).

Image d’exemple