The UMR7216 Epigenetics and Cell Fate unit (Epigénétique et Destin Cellulaire) is dedicated to studying the role of epigenetic modifications in determining cellular destiny and differentiation programs in normal and pathological conditions. It was created in 2009 by the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and the Université Paris-Diderot to bring epigenetics research to the university campus. Epigenetics is a fast growing field attracting much attention and support from CNRS, INSERM, the Government and the general public. The creation of the UMR Epigénétique et Destin Cellulaire has provided a unique opportunity for the Université Paris Diderot to become a major player in the ’epigenetic landscape’ in France.
The research goal of the eight research teams comprised in the unit (J Weitzman, C Rougeulle, PA Defossez and S. Polo are involved in this consortium) is focused on a shared interest in the role of epigenetic regulation in the definition of cellular plasticity and cell fate decisions. The research teams use a range of experimental approaches to investigate different model systems, including the differentiation of muscle, hematopoietic or neural lineages, and the epigenetic states of stem cells, both embryonic and adult, and tumor cells.
The unit comprises housed in the Lamarck Building and is equipped with state-of-the-art molecular and cellular technologies, together with genomics and microscopy imaging facilities. The research staff, currently around 50, participates actively in teaching and training. In addition, the unit has created technical platforms to offer high-quality expertise to researchers on the campus: (i) an innovative platform for Functional Epigenomics, (ii) an L3 facility for Lentiviral and Retroviral production: (iii) a platform to cultivate and manipulate human Embryonic Stem Cells.
Scientific and Technical Correspondant for the Who am I? executive committee