To carry out their activities, Research Teams of the Frédéric Joliot Institute for Life Sciences have developed high-profile technological platforms in many areas : biomedical imaging, structural biology, metabolomics, High-Throughput screening, level 3 microbiological safety laboratory...
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Laboratory | Bioinformatic | Genomics | DNA
Team LeaderJean-Marc ELALOUF+33 1 69 08 40 email@example.com
Our team is associated with multidisciplinary research in major archaeological sites discovered during the last two decades (Chauvet-Pont d'Arc, Cussac) or sites whose resources for research remained intact a century after their discovery (Trois-frères). In these decorated caves from the Upper Palaeolithic, we study the DNA of the animal remains with the objective to reconstitute complete genomes (especially of extinct species) using methods of high-throughput DNA sequencing. Analysis of fossilized feces (coproliths) allows us to characterize the DNA of a species and its diet. Radiocarbon datations are also performed with different partners. The whole data are integrated in a perspective of characterization of the biocenosis of caves, species interactions, and relationships between man and animals for the use of underground space.
Work done in the Cave of Chauvet-Pont d'Arc have led to obtain the complete sequence of the mitochondrial genome of the cave bear, and showed that the bears who lived in the cave, of low genetic diversity, are late specimens of the species. The cave bear, which became extinct during the last great glaciation, would have disappeared from Ardèche at - 30 000 years. This gives a minimum age, dating back to the Aurignacian, to the naturalistic representations of bears in the Chauvet Cave.
Our current works highlight the use of new sequencing methods to analyze DNA from one species and its food thanks to genetic material contained in the coproliths. In particular, we showed the good preservation of DNA in hyena coproliths. The analysis of the food diversity of this large predator-charognard from the Pleistocene is underway. This project will provide information on the ancient genomes of species whose remains are rare and poorly studied. A study is also underway on a wolf specimen of Chauvet-Pont d'Arc Grotte.
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.