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The LBM Institute

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The Laboratory of Membrane Biology (LBM), UMR 5200, associated with the CNRS and the University of Bordeaux, was created in 1994. Since June 2012, the LBM is located on the INRA campus in Villenave d’Ornon. The LBM is one of the nine laboratories of the research federation "Integrative Biology and Ecology." LBM conducts research on the metabolism and physiological functions of membrane and non-membrane lipids in plants and yeasts. The LBM has developed a solid network of international, national and local collaborations and organized two major congresses in the theme : the "International Symposium on Plant Lipids" in 2008, the "European Symposium on Plant Lipids" in 2013 and the “European Network for Plant Endomembrane Research meeting” in 2016.

The LBM is organized into three research axes that work closely together.

- Domains of the plasma membranes in plants (Leader : S. Mongrand). The main subjects of our studies concern membrane lipids such as phosphoinositides, sphingolipids, sterols and phospholipids. This work focuses on the study of specialized subdomains of plasma membranes and of plasmodesmata in plants.

- Lipids, Compartmentation, Traffic and Morphogenesis in Plants and Yeast (Leader : P. Moreau). Our studies investigate the function of membrane lipids (sphingolipids, sterols and phospholipids) and some specific proteins in the dynamics of vesicular traffic linked to the secretory pathway, in cell polarity, organomorphogenesis in plants and cyto-morphogenesis in yeast.

- The group Integrative biochemistry of plant lipid metabolism (Leader : J. Joubès) studies lipid metabolism and the associated enzymes in order to understand its regulation during abiotic or biotic stress or during development of specialized plant organs. The group’s project is particularly concerned with the synthesis of fatty acids, their incorporation into complex lipids and lipid structures such as biological membranes, lipid barriers (cuticle and suberin) or storage lipids (lipid droplets in seeds and fruits, plastoglobules in leaves) in the model species Arabidopsis thaliana but also in the oil palm or the microalgae Ostreococcus tauri. Recently Amelie Bernard joined the group to develop a research project concerning the role of lipids in autophagy in Arabidopsis thaliana.

The activity of the laboratory is supported by 3 technicians, 2 engineer assistant, an engineer and a research engineer.

The LBM also includes a Lipidomic Plateform, composer of the platform "Metabolome" of the Center of Functional Genomics of Bordeaux and a cell of Technology transfert called LEB (for Lipids Environment and Biotechnology) Aquitaine Transfert.

The Lipidomic Platform carries out all types of lipid analysis (quantification, identification ...) for academic laboratories and companies. Its activity has benefited since 2011 from the presence of an permanent research engineer (L. Fouillen) and more recently an assistant engineer (P. Van Delft) which develops different methods of lipid analysis in LC-MS / MS and which animates the platform.

The technology transfer unit (LEB Aquitaine Transfert) specializes in the lipids of plants and micro-organisms. It offers innovative services and/or technological research in the field of environment and biotechnology. Its partners are public bodies as well as private companies. LEB Aquitaine Transfert was created in 2012 by ADERA and is run by a permanent research engineer (M. Le Guédard, IR ADERA).