Our press releases

Our latest press releases

Molecular marker discovered for detecting artemisinin-resistant forms of malaria

2013/12/19 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur in Paris, the Institut Pasteur in Cambodia, the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), and the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIAID/NIH) have identified a molecular marker for detecting malaria parasites with resistance to artemisinin derivatives (major components in antimalarial medicine or drug treatments currently recommended by the World Health Organization, WHO).

The discovery of this marker will increasing our understanding of parasite resistance to artemisinin derivatives, improved monitoring of the spread of resistant forms of malaria, and the swift adaptation of effective treatment methods to combat this disease. This research was published online December 18, 2013 by the journal Nature.

A prime target for the development of anti-inflammatories

2013/12/13 For the first time, scientists from the Institut Pasteur and Inserm have demonstrated the key role played by a particular molecule in intestinal infection.

The study was published online in Immunity on December 12, 2013. The molecule, known as ATP, serves as a trigger signal for the inflammatory response targeting pathogenic agents. Using the Shigella flexneri model, the scientists have also shown how this bacterium is able to block the release of ATP in order to escape this defense reaction. Discovery of this blocking mechanism could be a milestone in therapeutics: the development of new drugs that mimic this process could open up new possibilities for the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases, such as Crohn's disease.

Carriers of a genetic mutation show increased dependence on tobacco

2013/12/13 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur, the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and Pierre and Marie Curie University (UPMC) have recently proven that, in mice, nicotine intake – nicotine is the main addictive substance in tobacco – is heavily regulated by a genetic mutation that is very common in humans.

This mutation affects the neuronal nicotinic receptor, disrupting its function and resulting in partial inactivation of the "reward circuit". Carriers of this mutation therefore have to increase their consumption to feel the effects of tobacco. These results, published online on December 3, 2013 in Molecular Psychiatry, pave the way for the development of new smoking cessation treatments that target carriers of this mutation.

Two European programs reinforce the fight against emerging diseases

2013/11/05 - The 31 partners involved in the two major European research programs PREDEMICS and ANTIGONE are to meet for a joint seminar at the Institut Pasteur on November 6th.

These two programs will respectively receive €11.7 million and €12 million funding of the European Union over five years to study the emergence mechanisms of infectious diseases in order to strengthen existing treatment and prevention. Since their launch, PREDEMICS and ANTIGONE have been active in various areas, in particular for modeling the spread and evolution of emerging pathogens and for studying host-pathogen interactions.

Identification of a new mechanism in the most commonly used immunotherapy for lymphoma

2013/11/04 - Using innovative dynamic imaging technique, scientists at the Institut Pasteur, Inserm and the VU Medical Center in Amsterdam have uncovered the mode of action of anti-CD20, an antibody therapy frequently used in the treatment of lymphomas.

In a lymphoma model, the scientists have been able to carry out real time in vivo imaging of the cellular events activated by the treatment and resulting in the destruction of tumor cells. These discoveries should help optimize the efficacy of future therapies involving anti-CD20 antibodies. This work is the subject of an article published online November 1 on the Journal of Clinical Investigation website.

Fine-tuning the approach to malaria and toxoplasmosis research

2013/10/10 - A study carried out by teams from the Institut Pasteur, the Institut Cochin (Inserm, CNRS, Paris Descartes University), and the Wellcome Trust Centre for Molecular Parasitology at the University of Glasgow, may very well redefine current approaches to malaria and toxoplasmosis research in terms of treatment development.

Their research which focuses on the role played by the protein AMA1 (present in both parasites) was published october 9, on the Nature Communications website. For many years AMA1 has been the focus of studies aiming to develop malaria treatments and vaccines. However, the authors of this study express their reservations about strategies that focus strictly on blocking AMA1 and show that malaria and toxoplasmosis parasites without AMA1 are still capable of developing normally.

Potential therapeutic targets for blocking AIDS virus replication

2013/10/01 - Scientists from the Institut Pasteur and Inserm have identified several proteins in humans as potential new therapeutic targets for treating the AIDS virus.

Infected macrophages SD
These proteins are part of a complex cellular mechanism that blocks the virus replication in cells called macrophages. The discovery of this mechanism and the proteins involved gives scientists a solid theoretical basis for developing new therapeutic strategies to be used alongside anti-retroviral treatments currently in use.

A simple in vitro test to bring surveillance of artemisinin-resistant malaria parasites to scale

2013/09/11 - A fruitful international cooperation, scientists from the Institut Pasteur in Cambodia, the Institut Pasteur in Paris and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) developed the first in vitro test adapted to field conditions in malaria-endemic areas for the study of artemisinin-resistant Plasmodium falciparum

Plasmodium SD
The test was developed for large-scale use to facilitate the surveillance of parasite resistance to antimalarial drugs. It is also the tool of choice for studying the biochemical and molecular basis of artemisinin resistance.

Neutrophils: the Unsung Heroes of Immunotherapy Cancer Treatment

2013/08/02 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur and Inserm have identified the group of cells within the immune system that make immunotherapy treatment (therapeutic antibodies) effective.

Neutrophiles Pasteur_SD
Immunotherapy is frequently used to treat breast cancer. In animal models they showed that neutrophils, the most common white blood cells in the body, are not only necessary but suffice on their own to eliminate tumor cells. The scientists produced these results using both skin and breast cancer models. If confirmed in humans, these discoveries should lead to the optimization of current treatments for several cancers. This work is being published online August 26, 2013 by the medical journal Blood.

Dengue: identifying mosquito genetic factors that control virus transmission

2013/02/08 - Scientists from the Institut Pasteur, the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), and the Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences (AFRIMS) have discovered several genetic factors controlling the transmission of various dengue virus strains in a natural population of mosquitoes in Thailand.

Their results indicate that the transmission of these viruses in nature depends not only on mosquito genetic factors but also on their specific interaction with viral genetic factors. This discovery significantly advances our understanding of dengue biology in nature. From a more general standpoint, this study also refines our view of the genetic basis of host-pathogen interactions. This work was published August 1st, 2013 on the PLoS Genetics website.

Transmissibility of new coronavirus too low to trigger global epidemic at this stage

2013/03/07 - In a study published online on July 5, 2013 for the medical journal The Lancet, a team from the Institut Pasteur suggests that the coronavirus MERS-CoV, in its current form, is not capable of triggering a global epidemic.

However, it should not be assumed that the virus transmissibility will not increase if the virus mutates or if transmission occurs at a one-off event where large numbers of people are gathered. Because of this, scientists emphasize the importance of identifying the animal reservoir for the virus in order to stop transmission to humans and the importance of continued monitoring, worldwide, of suspected cases in order to diagnose, treat, and isolate new patients as quickly as possible.

Worldwide Outbreak of Highly Antibiotic-Resistant Salmonella Risks Spreading to European Poultry Farms

2013/03/06 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur in Paris and the Institut Pasteur in Morocco once again bring attention to the rapid worldwide spread of Salmonella Kentucky (S. Kentucky), a bacterium showing resistance to several classes of antibiotics.

institutpasteur_Salmonella SD
S. Kentucky is responsible for foodborne infections and has spread at an astonishing rate throughout Africa and the Middle East in the space of only a few years. In this study, the authors note that the bacterium has recently spread to India and South-East Asia and has acquired new resistance, particularly resistance to antibiotics of “last resort”. The scientists also point out the considerable risk of this multi-resistant strain spreading to farmed poultry in industrialized countries. This bacterium has already been detected in farmed turkeys in Europe.

The new coronavirus and the role played by the Institut Pasteur

2013/05/28 - The new coronavirus and the role played by the Institut Pasteur

As part of its mission to monitor influenza and respiratory viruses in France, the Institut Pasteur has mobilized its teams at the French National Research Center for Influenza viruses (CNR) and the Laboratory for Urgent Response to Biological Threats (CIBU) to identify and confirm suspicious cases of acute respiratory infections linked to the new coronavirus (MERS-CoV). The combined work of these two laboratories enables the Institut Pasteur to respond 24/7 to health authorities faced with an until now unknown virus. Deputy director of the French National Reference Center for Influenza viruses, Vincent Enouf, sheds some light on the situation.

Celebrating 30 years since the discovery of the HIV

2013/05/28 - Celebrating 30 years since the discovery of the HIV: 3 questions to Olivier Schwartz

In the days leading up to the scientific symposium on HIV held at the Institut Pasteur May 21-23, Olivier Schwartz, head of the Virus and Immunity Unit at the Institut Pasteur, took the time to answer a few of our questions about the current state of research on the virus.

Chikungunya : discovery of a human-specific factor involved in the virus replication

2013/05/06 - Scientists from the Institut Pasteur, Inserm and CNRS, have identified a human-specific factor involved in the replication of Chikungunya virus which accounts for the species specificity of this virus.

The identification of this new host factor enriches our understanding of the molecular bases of Chikungunya virus infection, which were characterized so far. This work also paves the way for the development of a more relevant humanized animal model to better understand the pathophysiology of infection. This research has been published online on April 26, at the European Molecular Biology Organization reports (EMBO reports).

The loss of François Jacob, a prominent name in molecular biology

2013/04/22 - It was with great sadness and regret that the Institut Pasteur learned of the death of François Jacob.

A former member of the French Second Armored Division and Companion of the Liberation, François Jacob risked his life to defend the fundamental values of democracy and freedom. He was a brilliant scientist who spent his entire career at the Institut Pasteur and who inspired many researchers who followed in his tracks.

François Jacob never missed an opportunity to demonstrate his commitment to the Institut Pasteur. On November 14, 2012, alongside the President of the Republic, he was delighted to be able to inaugurate the new building that bears his name.

Legionellosis: unique host cell reprogramming induced by the bacterial pathogen Legionella pneumophila

2013/04/17 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur, the CNRS, the Institut Curie and Inserm have identified a unique mechanism that enables the bacterial pathogen Legionella pneumophila (the causative agent of Legionnaires’ disease or legionellosis) to "reprogram" the gene expression of the eukaryotic cells that it infects.

This mechanism, which has never been observed before, facilitates the survival and proliferation of Legionella pneumophila during infection. The work provides precious information on the regulation of the host’s gene expression, as well as important insight into the tactics used by bacteria to manipulate host cells. This research is published online on April 17, at the Cell Host & Microbe website.

Atomic-level characterization of the effects of alcohol on a major player of the central nervous system

2013/04/16 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur, the CNRS and the University of Texas have been able to observe at atomic-level the effects of ethanol (the alcohol present in alcoholic beverages) on central nervous system receptors.

Scientists have identified five ethanol binding sites in a mutant of a bacterial analog of nicotinic receptors, and have determined how the binding of ethanol stimulates receptor activity. These findings can be directly extrapolated to human GABA receptors (the primary inhibitory neurotransmitters in the human brain), which are ethanol's main target in the central nervous system. This work is being published online on April 16, on the Nature Communications website. It paves the way for the synthesis of ethanol antagonist compounds that could limit the effect of alcohol on the brain.

Even in low doses, antibiotics can contribute to the emergence of multi-resistant bacteria

2013/04/11 - Scientists at the Institut Pasteur and CNRS have shown that the use of low dose antibiotics can increase the emergence of resistance among pathogenic bacteria.

Scientists observed that a low concentration of antibiotics is enough to activate a stress response in these bacteria. This response, known as "SOS", leads to the acquisition of resistance genes via two separate pathways. This work is the subject of an article published online on the Plos Genetics website on April 11.

Buruli Ulcer: Mechanism Behind Tissue Erosion Revealed

2013/03/18 - Scientists at the Pasteur Institute in Paris and the CNRS (French National Center for Scientific Research), in collaboration with the Universities of Basel (Switzerland) and Cambridge (UK) have identified the mechanism underlying the formation of Buruli ulcers caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium ulcerans.

This discovery opens avenues for the development of novel therapeutic approaches for combating this disfiguring skin disease. This study is published online by The Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Aids: 14 adult patients in long term functional remission of HIV seven years after being taken off early antiretroviral treatment

2013/03/14 - Newly published scientific study confirms on a larger and durable scale that early therapeutic intervention may be instrumental in HIV remission and has important implications for HIV cure research.

This article confirms what the Mississippi `functionally cured´ baby indicated.

Treatment of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis

2013/02/07 -  Treatment of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis: Study of Phase III Shows Antibiotic Cream Has High Cure Rate, Few Side Effects

An international research partnership from Tunisia, France and the United States has demonstrated a high cure rate and remarkably few side effects in treating patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) with an antibiotic cream. CL is a parasitic disease that causes disfiguring lesions and affects 1.5 million people worldwide annually, including the socio-economically disadvantaged in the developing world, especially children. The results of the study conducted by the Institut Pasteur de Tunis, the Institut Pasteur (Paris) and U.S. medical researchers were published today in the New England Journal of Medicine. 

Retracing the evolutionary history and emergence of tuberculosis

2013/01/07 -  Scientists at the Institut Pasteur in Paris, the CNRS, INSERM, the Institut Pasteur of Lille, and Université Lille 2 have recently determined the origin of the emergence of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacterium, the main causative agent of tuberculosis.

institutpasteur_Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Researchers have also provided insights into its evolutionary success. They have identified several genetic mechanisms that could have contributed to the worldwide dissemination of this pathogen, which currently infects up to 2 billion people. This research, published on the Nature Genetics website on January 6, offers possibilities for identifying new targets in the fight against tuberculosis.

The Institut Pasteur inaugurates its new center for research on emerging diseases at a ceremony attended by French President François Hollande.

On November 14, 2012, Professor Alice Dautry, President of the Institut Pasteur, and Jean-Pierre Jouyet, Chairman of the Institut Pasteur Board of Directors, officially opened the Institut Pasteur’s research center for the study of emerging diseases at a ceremony attended by French President François Hollande.


New Finding Helps Explain Antibiotic Resistance in Staphylococcus aureus

2012/11/5 - Researchers at the Institut Pasteur, the CNRS, and the University of Tsukuba Faculty of Medicine (Japan) have proven for the first time that activating a specific gene in Staphylococcus aureus enables it to incorporate extracellular DNA and develop resistance to methicillin.

They have also identified two mechanisms for the activation of the gene in question. These results represent an important step forward in the understanding of antibiotic resistance gene acquisition by S. aureus. This research was published in the journal PLoS Pathogens on November 1, 2012.

Rooting out the Cause of Blindness in Type 1 Usher Syndrome

2012/10/17 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur, the Institut de la Vision, Inserm, and the Pierre and Marie Curie University have determined the cause of blindness associated with type 1 Usher syndrome (the most common genetic cause of deafness and blindness in humans).

Processus calyciel
They have also shown why rodents, the only animal model currently available for research on this disease, are invulnerable to the vision loss observed in human patients. Their work will be the basis for future research towards producing an animal model in primates. If successful, this could lead to a therapeutic approach for treating blindness in patients with type 1 Usher syndrome. This research was published on October 8th in the Journal of Cell Biology.

Malaria Takes a Hit – Two New Molecules Stop P. falciparum in its Tracks

2012/09/27 - Researchers at the Institut Pasteur and the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), in collaboration with Imperial College London, have synthesized two molecules capable of quickly and irreversibly stopping the growth of P. falciparum  at every blood stage of its life cycle.

Plasmodium Falciparum_Institut Pasteur
These two molecules work by inhibiting the histone methyltransferase enzymes necessary for the parasite’s development. This research was published on September 24, 2012 in the journal PNAS and was recently presented at the 23rd Annual Molecular Parasitology Meeting in Woods Hole, Massachusetts (USA).

Institut Pasteur and WHO join forces in the fight against epidemics

2012/14/09 - On Thursday, September 13, the Institut Pasteur and the World Health Organization (WHO) signed a collaboration agreement in Geneva on epidemic response and global health security.

Their aim is to help countries boost their surveillance, detection and response capabilities through application of the WHO International Health Regulations.

Dormancy of stem cells enables them to remain viable…many days post mortem

06/12/2012 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur, the Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, the Paris Public Hospital Network (AP-HP), and the CNRS have shown for the first time in humans and mice, the capacity of stem cells to adopt a dormant state when their environment becomes hostile, including several days after death.


This ability to significantly reduce metabolic activity enables them to preserve their potential for cellular division, even after extended periods post mortem. After isolation, they can then be used to repair damaged organs or tissues. This discovery could lead to new therapeutic avenues for treating numerous diseases. The study is being published today in the journal Nature communications.

Bladder cancer treatment with BCG may be improved with new patient protocol

2012/06/06 - Researchers have recently discovered a way to reinforce the effectiveness of BCG in the treatment of bladder cancer


BCG has been the standard treatment for bladder cancer tumors with a high risk of recurrence for the past 35 years. If the efficacy of this new therapeutic protocol is confirmed it would limit relapse of one of the most common cancers in industrialized countries.

A new optical microscopy approach opens the door to better observations in molecular biology

05/16/2012 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur and CNRS have set up a new optical microscopy approach in order to visualize molecular assemblies at a resolution 10 times better than traditional microscopes.


Researchers from the Institut Pasteur and CNRS have set up a new optical microscopy approach that combines two recent imaging techniques in order to visualize molecular assemblies without affecting their biological functions, at a resolution 10 times better than that of traditional microscopes. Using this approach, they were able to observe the AIDS virus and its capsids (containing the HIV genome) within cells at a scale of 30 nanometres, for the first time with light. This newly developed approach represents a significant advance in molecular biology, opening the door to less invasive and more precise analyses of pathogenic microorganisms present in human host cells. 

Learning and memory: the role of neo-neurons revealed

05/14/2012 - Researchers at the Institut Pasteur and the CNRS have recently identified in mice the role played by neo-neurons formed in the adult brain.


By using selective stimulation the researchers were able to show that these neo-neurons increase the ability to learn and memorize difficult cognitive tasks. This newly discovered characteristic of neo-neurons to assimilate complex information could open up new avenues in the treatment of some neurodegenerative diseases.

A new hope in the fight against tuberculosis

19/04/2012 : an attenuated strain of Mycobacterium tuberculosis offers a better protection than BCG to mice


Researchers from the Institut Pasteur and Inserm, in collaboration with researchers from the University of Pisa, have uncovered the key role played by specific proteins in the virulence of the mycobacterium responsible for tuberculosis, Mycobacterium tuberculosis. They were able to create an attenuated strain of the mycobacterium, which confers a better protection against tuberculosis than the BCG vaccine to mice. This finding represents a major step forward in the scientific quest to develop a new vaccine, more efficient at fighting the disease. 

DENFREE: flying towards the efficient control of dengue

29/02/2012 - Starting in January 2012, the Institut Pasteur will coordinate an ambitious international project called DENFREE that aims at better understanding, and managing, dengue epidemics


“DENFREE is a very ambitious project that aims at studying dengue from many different angles: from epidemiology to immunology, through climatology and geography,” explains Pr Anavaj Sakuntabhai, coordinator of the project at the Institut Pasteur in Paris.

Four Prestigious Awards  to Support Innovative Biomedical Research

02/27/2012 - Sanofi (EURONEXT: SAN and NYSE: SNY) and the Institut Pasteur announced today the creation of the Sanofi-Institut Pasteur Awards to encourage scientific excellence in the service of health.


Four hundred and eighty thousand euro (480,000 €) will support four innovative research projects demonstrating real progress in the life sciences and providing answers to major healthcare problems, more specifically in four fields: neglected tropical diseases, vaccine innovation, drug resistance, and therapeutic approaches to ageing and regenerative medicine.

New cancer target identified?

24/02/2012 - A team of researchers from the Institut Pasteur and the CNRS has recently identified a protein that can specifically control the activity of an enzyme whose dysfunction has been linked to the development of several types of cancer.


This work reveals a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of certain tumors.

Two stem-cell subpopulations identified in skeletal muscles

22/02/2012 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur have recently detailed the existence of two populations of stem cells found in the skeletal muscles of mice.


The identification of these two stem cell subpopulations that show distinct behaviors when faced with trauma to skeletal muscle, is an important step forward", explains head of the Stem Cells and Development Unit at the Institut Pasteur, Professor Shahragim Tajbakhsh.

Europe’s united front against emerging viruses

14/02/2012 - The new PREDEMICS project strives to improve current knowledge on certain emerging infectious diseases and develop effective treatment and prevention resources. The European Union will be financing this project to the tune of €11.7 million over a five year period.


Coordinated by the Institut Pasteur, this collaborative program unites 17 European research and public health institutions. The project targets the study of four viruses originating in animal reservoirs that have a high potential for human transmission in Europe.

Newly characterized dengue virus antibody shows promise

10/02/2012 - Research teams from the Institut Pasteur, the CNRS, and Inserm have recently characterized the structure and mechanism of action of an antibody that successfully neutralizes all four strains of the dengue virus in mice models.


Their groundbreaking work represents major progress for research efforts that hope to develop an effective vaccine to combat this disease.

New results underline the importance of synaptic genes in autism

09/02/2012 - Autism has been declared a major national cause for 2012, and will have a high profile in France throughout the whole year. New results show that genetic mutations interfering with communication between neurons are directly involved in the disorder.

“All these results underline the vital importance of synaptic genes in autism spectrum disorders,” explained Professor Thomas Bourgeron, head of the Human Genetics and Cognitive Functions Unit at the Institut Pasteur-CNRS.

Launching of the Institut Pasteur in Laos

23/01/2012 - Today, Monday January 23, 2012, in Vientiane the launch of the Institut Pasteur in Laos was officiated by the Lao Minister of Public Health, professor Som Ock Kingsadat and the President of the Institut Pasteur in Paris, professor Alice Dautry.


This is the Institut Pasteur International Network’s 32nd institute. The new research center for infectious and parasitic diseases aims to reduce the risks of pandemic outbreaks in Southeast Asia where such diseases are rife.


Genetic diversity: crucial for our survival in many ways

19/12/2011 - researchers from the Institut Pasteur and the CNRS reconstruct the genetic history of interferons, and put forward potentially innovative ways to improve their clinical use in the treatment of pathologies as diversified as Hepatitis C, multiple sclerosis, and some specific cancers.

“By using an evolutionary genetic approach, we were able to identify which interferons could be essential to our survival, and which ones could be less important or have a redundant role,” explains Mr Quintana-Murci,  head of the Institut Pasteur/CNRS Unit of Human Evolutionary Genetics.

Cerebral malaria, allergy-like mechanisms to blame

04/10/2011 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur and the CNRS, in collaboration with Inserm and the Université Paris Diderot, have demonstrated the role an inflammatory reaction plays in the development of cerebral malaria in mice.


Cerebral malaria is one of the most severe forms of malaria primarily affecting young children. If confirmed in humans, this discovery would pave the way for new therapeutic developments to help prevent this disease. This study was recently published online by the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

The first human model for neurodegenerative Sanfilippo syndrome

13/09/2011 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur and Inserm, in collaboration with the Centre de Biologie Cellulaire in Lyon, have obtained the first human neuron model for Sanfilippo syndrome, an incurable neurodegenerative disorder that occurs in children.

This model is the tool of choice for studying the cellular mechanisms at the root of this disease as well as for identifying therapeutic options.  The procedure, which involves stem cells, could also be applied to model other diseases, especially neurodegenerative diseases. This work has been published in the Human Molecular Genetics journal.

The troubling emergence of multi-drug resistant Salmonella

03/08/2011 - As part of a vast international study, researchers from the Institut Pasteur, the INRA and the French Institute for Public Health Surveillance have tracked the sudden and worrying emergence of a Salmonella strain that has developed resistance to almost every possible antibiotic treatment.

The study has retraced the evolution of the bacteria throughout the last 50 years. It has notably determined the chronology for the appearance of different resistances, decrypted the bacteria’s mechanisms, and identified poultry to be the main vector of the strain. This work, published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, underlines the importance of closely monitoring these bacteria responsible for food-borne infections and the need to rationalize the use of antibiotics in farming at the international level.

Graft rejection at the cellular level filmed in 3D

Using a new and original in vivo imaging technique enabling real-time, in-depth, cellular immune response mechanism investigation in animals, researchers from the Institut Pasteur and Inserm have been the first to observe the process of graft rejection.

Observing this "cellular choreography" has most notably proven the existence of a mechanism that contributes to the immune reaction underlying rejection. This discovery, published in Nature Medicine, paves the way towards the optimization of immunosuppressive therapies and promotes successful grafting techniques.

AREVA Foundation and Institut Pasteur sign a new partnership agreement for Aids research

1st/04/2011- AREVA Foundation continues to fight Aids alongside the Institut Pasteur in 2011.

Two new Institute teams will benefit from the continuing partnership:
• the team led by Professor Olivier Schwartz, who directs the Virus and Immunity Research Unit
• the team of Dr. Michaela Müller of the Retroviral Infection Regulation Unit directed by Professor Barré-Sinoussi, Nobel Prize in Medicine.

Anaphylactic shock: the key players identified

24/03/2011 - Researchers from the Institut Pasteur and Inserm (French National Institute for Health and Medical Research) have recently identified, in animals, the otherwise unexpected culprits responsible for anaphylactic shock.

If confirmed in upcoming clinical investigations, these results could markedly improve means to handle this potentially fatal medical emergency.

Powerful human DNA mutators identified

03/07/2011- Scientists from the Institut Pasteur, the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), and the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research (Inserm) have shown that a cellular protein, APOBEC3A, known for its antiviral activity, is also capable of mutagenic activity on human cell DNA.

Apobec 3A
This discovery suggests that this protein plays a role in the cellular DNA degradation occurring in apoptosis, programmed cell death, and cancer genesis. This work has been published on the PNAS website.

Unsuspected immune arsenal in infants

02 / 21 / 2011 - While completely protected from any infectious germs in their mother’s womb, fetuses spontaneously develop, “in advance”, an immune defense system ready to react to the bacterial colonization of their digestive tract at birth.

This surprising observation made by scientists at the Institut Pasteur and the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) also shows that this same mechanism is capable of regulating its antibacterial activity to allow the installation of intestinal commensal flora and establish the indispensable balance between bacteria and the immune system. This discovery sheds new light on the understanding of mechanisms at the root of auto-immune diseases such as Crohn's disease.

Discovery of a new group of highly susceptible malaria mosquitoes in Africa

02 / 04 / 2011 - In the course of a large genetic study of malaria vector mosquitoes in Burkina Faso, West Africa, researchers at the Institut Pasteur, the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and their collaborators have discovered a new subspecies of the mosquito Anopheles gambiae, the world’s most important malaria vector.

This new mosquito group, which may be an especially efficient malaria vector, was identified using a novel sampling method that for the first time accounted for mosquito behavior. The results of this study, published in the journal Science, highlight the importance of including mosquito behavior as a factor in malaria vector control strategies. A better accounting of mosquito behavior could expand the reach of control measures to target all malaria vector populations, and not just those found indoors.

Discovery of a new bacterial strategy to control immunity

01/25/2011-Researchers at the Institut Pasteur, INRA, Inserm and the CNRS have just identified a mechanism that enables the pathogenic bacterium Listeria monocytogenes to reprogram expression of the genes in the host cell it infects to its advantage.


L. monocytogenes secretes a protein that can penetrate the cell nucleus and thus take control of the genes in the host’s immune system. This research was published in the journal Science.

3D structure leads to first decoding of mechanism of action of general anesthetics

01/20/2011 - Two teams from the Institut Pasteur in association with the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) have published in the journal Nature the three-dimensional structure of two general anesthetics bound to their membrane receptor.

This research provides the first atomic-resolution structures of general anesthetics which can be used to understand their action mechanism, a mechanism that has remained largely unknown since their discovery two hundred years ago. The research could therefore be a first step towards the development of new compounds that are more specific and cause fewer side effects.

Hepatitis C : in 2011, a predictive marker for response to therapy

Scientists at Inserm and Institut Pasteur have performed biomarker discovery on patients being treated for chronic hepatitis C infection.

Their work, published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation, demonstrates that the plasma levels of the protein IP-10 predict, prior to treatment initiation, the efficacy of treatment with pegylated-interferon and ribavirin. Based on these results, the scientists have developed a prognostic test. Commercialization is anticipated in 2011, and will help inform physicians of the chances that patients will respond to standard treatment or if instead they will require new therapeutic cocktails (e.g., inclusion of protease inhibitors).