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  Director : Marie-Christine PREVOST (mprevost@pasteur.fr)



The electron microscopy platform serves in three main areas. The first concerns the development and application of analytical ultra-structural tools for cellular biology, virology and microbiology in studies requiring both standard electron microscopy procedures as well as specialised techniques, such as immuno-gold labelling and cryopreservation and fixation methods. The second pertains to quality control of different biological samples (cell lines, primary cells, viral, bacterial and fungal isolates). Finally, the third area centres on teaching and training activities.



The electron microscopy platform is a laboratory dedicated to serve the Institut Pasteur community through providing technical and support resources for studies at the ultra-structural level. The laboratory is equipped with several transmission electron microscopes (Philips CM10 and CM12, Jëol JEM 1010 and 1200 EX) and will soon be enhanced by the acquisition of a JSM-6700F scanning electron microscope with a cold-emission cathode (" cold-FEG "). This instrument, which enables a resolution of 2-3 nm at 1 KV for biological specimens, is due to be installed in the first semester of 2002. The laboratory thus offers a wide spectrum of materials and equipment for the preparation and analysis of biological samples.

The electron microscopy platform also offers to train researchers and technical staff for the autonomous utilisation of the laboratory's resources.

Furthermore, in accordance with the guidelines set by Institut Pasteur's strategic council (conseil de stratégie d'orientation) and the coordinator of technical platforms, the laboratory will play an active role in the development of innovating methodologies, such as cryo-preparation techniques for cell biology applications.

Work within the platform is to be conducted on a collaborative contract basis, under which the objectives, possibilities, technical orientation, risks as well as confidentiality and recognition-related issues, are defined. Such collaborations may thus involve different laboratories and/or research groups.

Within this framework, several collaborative projects were initiated with various research units of the institute. Projects finalised in 2001 and on-going collaborations are listed below.



Studies on HIV

Entry of the virus into primary cell: lymphocytes, macrophages and dendritic cells.

Role of the mutations of the DNA flap in the function of the pre-integration complex.

Interaction of HIV with nucleolin at the cell surface and interference with the pseudopeptide HB19.

Studies on CMV

Infection of marrow fibroblasts that enhance the adhesion of CD34+cells eliciting viral transmission.

Infection mechanisms of Human CMV into epithelial cells.

Studies on HTLV-1

Visualisation of chimeric HTLV/MuLV particles in an experimental model of murine viral infection.

Study of the GAG protein during budding of the HTLV-1 retrovirus.

Studies on Theiler virus 

Morphogenesis of DA and GD7 strains of the Theiler virus in BHK-21 cells.

Ongoing Collaborations

Collaborative projects are centred on the search of various viral particles in cellular supernatants (Hepatitis C, enterovirus, ..).

Bacteriology and mycology 

Subcellular localisation of various antigenic proteins involved in the virulence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Mycobacterium bovis, BCG, and Mycobacterium segmatis.

Morphological analysis of Aspergillus fumigatus conidia of cell wall-mutants and their interaction with the alveolar macrophage.

A collaboration has been initiated with a view to characterising the appendix M cell of rabbit in intestinal infection.


Effect of mosquito salivary antigens on the degranulation of mastocytes and their role in the induction of infections by Plasmodium falciparum.

Expertise and external collaborations

Analysis of different biological samples for the presence of virus, bacteria and fungi in various cell lines or primary cell cultures (investigations requested by campus scientists). A research contract is also ongoing with Texcell for external companies. Several research collaborations have been developped with non-pastorian scientists. Investigations deal with the role of mitochondria in apoptosis, the identification and cytolocalisation of surface antigens in Mycoplasma.


Techniques of microscopy are continuously taught to scientists and technicians involved in electron microscopy investigations. This will serve as a basis for setting up the new course of Electron microscopy (Formation continue Pasteur, 2002).

Intramuros Collaborations.

Unité des Rétrovirus et Transfert Génétique. (J.M Heard)

Unité d'Immunologie Virale. ( S. Micheleson, JL Virelizier)

Unité des Virus lents ( F. Tangy, M. Brahic)

Unité de Virologie Immunologie Cellulaire (S. Nisole, A. Hovanessian)

Unité de Génétique Moléculaire des Virus Respiratoires. (L.Cohen)

Unité de Biologie des Infections Virales Emergeantes. (H. Zeller)

Unité de Génétique Moléculaire Bactérienne. (N. Honoré, S.Cole)

Unité des Aspergillus. (JP.Latgé)

Unité de Génétique Mycobactérienne. (O.Neyrolles, B.Gicquel)

Unité d'Immuno-Allergie. (C.Demeure, S.Mecheri)

Laboratoire d'Epidémiologie Moléculaire des Entérovirus. ( A.Budkoska, F.Delpeyroux)

Laboratoire des Interactions Lympho-Epithéliales.(S.Kerneis, M.Marchetti, E Pringault)

Groupe à 5 ans " Virus et Immunité " (O. Schwartz).

Groupe à 5 ans " Virologie moléculaire et vectorologie " (P. Charneau)

  web site

puce More informations on our web site


puce Publications of the unit on Pasteur's references database


  Office staff Researchers Scientific trainees Other personnel

Danièle LHOUMEAU (dlhoum@pasteur.fr)


Bronnert C.

Hamon S.

Chavinier-Jove B.

Rolin C.

Schmitt C.

Villey C.


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