ENS de Lyon, France

Project description

The goal of the project is to explore whether (and to what extent) regeneration mirrors development. Our team has recently established transgenic, live imaging, and genomics approaches to study leg regeneration in the crustacean Parhyale hawaiensis (see tinyurl.com/4vfbspp8). Parhyale can regenerate their legs throughout their lifetime. The regenerated legs are faithful replicas of the original legs generated during development (tinyurl.com/ycktdn2z), but the transcriptional and cellular dynamics associated with leg development and regeneration are significantly different (tinyurl.com/mr28u57m and unpublished). These observations suggest that identical structures could be generated by distinct mechanisms.

The recruited fellow will have the opportunity to probe this question using molecular genetics, imaging and genomics resources established in our team. Different projects can be envisaged in this context, depending on the candidate’s skills and interests, including:

  1. Reconstructing putative gene regulatory networks (GRNs) operating during leg development and regeneration based on bioinformatic analyses of single-cell RNAseq and chromatin profiling data, validating selected nodes, and comparing their roles in development and regeneration with in vivo experiments.
  2. Discovering to what extent the same genetic instructions are used to generate a leg during embryonic development and regeneration, by identifying the cis-regulatory elements of key patterning genes and comparing their activity during development and regeneration in transgenic animals
  3. Identifying the progenitors of different cell types during regeneration, based on the reconstruction of cell trajectories using snRNseq data, the establishment of Brainbow-like labeling tools, live microscopy and cell tracking.

Principal Investigator

Michalis Averof, PhD
CNRS researcher and group leader
ORCID: 0000-0002-6803-7251
E-mail: michalis.averof@ens-lyon.fr 

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Dr. Michalis Averof

Mathilde Paris, PhD
CNRS researcher
ORCID: 0000-0001-6166-6672
Email: mathilde.paris@ens-lyon.fr 

Dr. Mathilde Paris

The Host Team

The team is part of the Institut de Génomique Fonctionnelle de Lyon (IGFL), a laboratory of the CNRS and the École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, interested in the interfaces of animal development, physiology and evolution. The Averof team has a long-standing interest in the evolution of development, and has pioneering functional genetics approaches in emerging model organisms to study the evolution of development and the origin of evolutionary novelties. In recent years the team has established the crustacean Parhyale hawaiensis as a model for studying regeneration using genetics, live imaging and single-cell genomics/transcriptomics approaches. Our lab attracts people from all over the world, currently including scientists from France, Spain, Scotland and Greece. The lab’s working language is English.

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