I am a researcher working at INRA (National Institute of Agricultural Research) at the PACA Research Center, Plant Pathology Research Unit in Montfavet (France).
Microorganisms have an extraordinary capacity of evolution. My research career has focused on the study of the evolution of microbes, especially in the context of host-parasite interactions. I study experimental evolution in microbes and I am interested in understanding antimicrobials resistance evolution and host-parasite coevolution.
I am currently studying the efficacy of phages (viruses of bacteria) at controlling Ralstonia solanacearum, a plant pathogen with catastrophic effects for tropical agriculture. I also analyse the evolutionary consequences in the surviving bacteria (fitness, virulence, resistance levels, etc).
Phage therapy is currently being contemplated as an alternative to antibiotics in account of its numerous benefits and the worrying rise of bacterial infections which are multiresistant to antibiotics.
I did my PhD in València (Spain) in the group of Santiago F. Elena at the Institute of Molecular and Cell Plant Biology (Polytechnic University of València – Spanish Research Council), using plant viruses as a model to address evolutionary questions. I studied molecular compensatory evolution of the plant virus TEV (Tobacco etch virus).
From the end of 2010 till 2013 I was a postdoctoral fellow with Angus Buckling and Craig MacLean at the Department of Zoology at the University of Oxford (UK). I studied the evolutionary aspects of stress responses in the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the presence of antibiotics.
During my second postdoc at the ISEM (Institute of Evolutionary Sciences of Montpellier, France) from 2013 to 2015, my research project aimed to assess the combined effect of phages and antibiotics for bacterial density control and the evolution of resistance. I used the bacterial pathogen P. aeruginosa, and a panel of antibiotics and infective phages as the experimental system.
Phage design: Fadela Tamoune