At a glance

Microorganisms are the most abundant and diverse life forms on the planet. As bacteria are the cause of a vast number of infectious diseases they have always been important research models for the Institut Pasteur.

 

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Hilde De Reuse

Chair of the Microbiology Department

Jean-Marc Ghigo

Deputy Chair of the Microbiology Department

 

Following the pioneering work of scientists such as François Jacob and Jacques Monod during the last century, bacteria proved to be fabulous models for scientists wishing to explore the most fundamental aspects of cell life at the molecular level.

 

For ages microbiology developed totally oblivious to the history of microorganisms, yet the discovery of archaea shed new light on the beginning of microbial evolution and finally reconciled Pasteur with Darwin.

 

Interest in microbiology has grown phenomenally over the last decade with spectacular advances in genomics, cell imaging and molecular ecology.

 

Scientists in the Microbiology Department are focusing on various microorganisms (bacteria and archaea) and their viruses as model systems for fundamental research. Their aim is to develop a better understanding of the principles of pathogenicity and to find new treatments for bacterial infections as well as shed further light on their unique life cycle and interaction with the environment.

 

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