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BEAMM team

Biodiversity, Ecology and Adaptation
of Magnetotactic Microorganisms

Team objectives

Our team is interested in the biodiversity, ecology and adaptation of microorganisms to environmental constraints in aquatic environments with high physicochemical pressure.

We are conducting a diversity exploration mission to:

  • Reveal new biological innovations and ecological strategies involved in the functioning and evolution of life
  • To propose high value-added microbial models in the field of biotechnology

We are also interested in the underlying mechanisms to:

  • Determine the genetic, molecular and physiological basis for the detection and sequestration of physiologically important or toxic chemicals,
  • Elucidating the functional and evolutionary basis of highly specialised prokaryotic organelles, and
  • Understanding the responses of microorganisms to environmental fluctuations and their impacts on biogeochemical cycles from the life cycle scale of the organism to the geological time scale.


These missions are carried out by several individual projects within a circular and integrative scientific approach at the team level, in which we address issues and systems at different scales of time and biological complexity; i.e. from the nanoscale to ecosystems, and from the molecular to communities. Our work is based on a network of interactions between global approaches exploiting the latest generation of high-throughput data and mechanistic and multidisciplinary approaches involving aquatic sampling, culture, microbial physiology, biochemistry, molecular biology and various approaches to microscopy, spectroscopy and molecular phylogeny.

Collaborative projects

The members of the BEAMM team are leaders or partners in several funded projects in which their three main research themes are involved

Our main ongoing projects:

ANR-18-CE31-0003 – Signature of magnetites produced by magnetotactic bacteria: chemical and isotopic perspectives – SIGMAG
ANR-19-CE01-0005 – Phosphorus trapping: contribution of magnetotactic bacteria in oxic-anoxic transition zones – PHOSTORE
ANR-20-CE92-0050 – Reconstruction of ancestral sequences and functional expression of proteins involved in the biogenesis of bacterial magnetosomes – ANCESMAG
ANR-21-CE01-0010 – Contribution of magnetotactic bacteria to the sequestration of inorganic carbon and alkaline earth elements through the formation of intracellular carbonate mineral phases – CarboMagnet
ANR-21-CE02-0034 – SymbioMAGNET