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  Director : Aaron Bensimon (abensim@pasteur.fr)



The research being pursed in this laboratory explores the relationship between genome dynamics and human disease. Our recent research has focused on the mechanisms regulating DNA replication and genome stability with particular emphasis on their relevance to cancer and aging.



Molecular combing is a method of aligning DNA molecules, which consist in fixing one extremity of DNA molecules in solution to a treated glass surface. The molecules are then stretched. At the end, the DNA molecules are aligned and regularly stretched as if they had been combed.

In addition to its applications in the physical mapping of genomes and the diagnosis of genetic diseases, this relative simple method is opening up new prospects in oncology. It may be used to detect phenomena occurring during the malignant transformation of a cell: microdeletions, inversion or amplification of genes.

In addition to these applications, molecular combing provides a totally new approach to DNA replication in eukaryotic cells. The identification and molecular definition of an origin of replication remains a fundamental challenge. Molecular combing has made it possible to study the organization of replication units and determine their distribution in the genome together with their activity during cell division. This approach enables systematic analysis of the mechanisms controlling the process of DNA replication.


puce Publications of the unit on Pasteur's references database


  Office staff Researchers Scientific trainees Other personnel

Bensimon Aaron, Institut Pasteur

Svetlova Ekaterina stagiaire post-doc

Conti Chiara stagiaire post-doc

Caburet Sandrine stagiaire en thèse

Lebofsky Ronald stagiaire en thèse

Vasserot Delphine stagiaire DEA

Schurra Catherine, technicienne Institut Pasteur


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