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  • Location : Nice, France
Last update 2020-07-22 15:56:00.672

Valérie Grandjean PhD Genetics & Epigenetics

Course and current status

After a Ph.D based on the « Plasticity of bacterial genome which requires epigenetic mechanism », I switched to mammalian models. During my first post-doctoral period, I worked on germinal cell differentiation (Grandjean, V. et al. (1997) Dev Biol 184, 165-74 ; Grandjean, V., et al (1997b). Biol Reprod 57, 1115-22). Then, to increase my expertise on Epigentics, I performed a second post-doctoral period working on genomic imprinting in Cambridge (Grandjean, V., et al. (2000). Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 97, 5279-84.; Grandjean, V., et al. (2001). FEBS Lett 488, 165-9).

In 2001, I obtained a permanent position as a researcher at the Inserm institute. Together with Minoo Rassoulzadegan and François Cuzin, I evidenced for the first time the small RNA-mediated epigenetic inheritance in mice (Rassoulzadeganet al. (2006) Nature 431, 469-474; Grandjean et al. (2009) Development 136(21): 3647-55). Since then, I have focused my studies on paternal epigenetic inheritance of metabolic diseases induced by unhealthy diet. I demonstrated the role of spermatic RNA in this process (Grandjean et al. (2015) Sci Rep. 5:18193) and strongly suggested the pertinence of this mode of inheritance in human (Raad et al. 2017). 

Currently, my research project is focused on the environmentally-induced epigenetic inheritance of disease susceptibility in mice.

Scientific summary

Increasing evidence suggests that non-communicable diseases such as in particular obesity and its associated metabolic diseases are inherited from parents to children throughout several generations by epigenetic mechanisms. Thus, this environmental stress would induce epigenetic modification in the germ line that once transmitted and maintained in the progeny would induce the development of the parental pathologies. Considering the increasing prevalence of these pathologies worldwide, we urgently need to i) understand this process both in human and in mice and ii) determine the role of this process in the development of obesity-induced pathologies such as cardioavascular and liver diseases. These 2 questions are the main axes of our projects.

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