Group leader : Cécile Morlot

Presentation activities PG

The cell envelope plays major roles in bacterial proliferation, survival and virulence. However, its assembly mechanisms remain misunderstood. The PG group applies a broad range of structural and cellular methods to unravel the structure, function and interaction of macromolecules linked to the bacterial cell envelope. Our research is particularly focused on the metabolism and architecture of the cell wall, cell morphogenesis and β-lactam resistance in Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcus), and on the assembly and architecture of the spore envelope in Bacillus subtilis.
Our flagship methods include metabolic labeling using click chemistry, advanced cell imaging (super-resolution fluorescence microscopy, cryo-FIB/SEM coupled to cryo-electron tomography), biochemistry, enzymology and molecular structural biology (cryo-electron microscopy and X-ray crystallography). Altogether, these approaches aim at enlarging our knowledge of the bacterial envelope biology, from the molecular to the cellular level, and at generating important information for the identification, characterization or design of new antibiotics to fight human pathogens.


Streptococcus pneumoniae, pneumococcus, Bacillus subtilis, bacterial cell envelope, bacterial division, bacterial morphogenesis, sporulation, bacterial cell wall, peptidoglycan, teichoic acids, beta-lactams, penicillin-binding proteins (PBPs), peptidoglycan hydrolases, spore coat, SpoIIIA-SpoIIQ complex.


Electron microscopy, cryo-FIBM/SEM and cryo-tomography
Protein crystallization, X-ray crystallography
Click chemistry metabolic labeling
Fluorescence microscopy, super-resolution microscopy PALM and dSTORM
Molecular biology, pneumococcus genetics
Protein engineering
Soluble and membrane protein biochemistry