Microbes is the center for interdisciplinary microbial sciences at the Paris-Saclay University, dedicated to training, research and technology transfer. The community consists of about 600 professors, assistant professors and researchers and a similar number of PhD students, working in 127 different research teams housed in 34 laboratories of the University Paris-Saclay. Within the University of Paris-Saclay, these research teams are associated with 7 graduate schools and microbiology training is covered by several master courses, providing 20 different M2 diplomas or equivalent. PhD students belong to 10 different doctoral schools. Microbes has therefore the potential to become one of the largest microbiology centers in France.
A distinctive feature of the Microbes community in Paris-Saclay is the diversity of vantage points from which microbiology is studied and taught. The societal challenges that drive our activity include health, environment, climate, energy, biodiversity, agriculture and industrial renovation. The disciplines used to investigate microbes are biology, ecology, chemistry, physics, applied mathematics, informatics and engineering. Microbes are studied and taught from the smallest scale, at the level of molecules and macromolecules, over cellular pathways and mechanisms, whole cells and viruses until interactions of microbes with other cells, organs and organisms, ecosystems, the biosphere or the biogeochemical cycles. Finally, the objectives of our activities cover new knowledge generation by fundamental research, diagnostics and therapeutics for health, and biotechnology for the production of new molecules and materials, for the protection of the environment as well as for the food industry and agriculture.
The objectives of Microbes are fourfold. Foremost is the reinforcement of the sense of belonging to the community and the creation of a national and international visibility of the microbiology research and teaching at the University Paris-Saclay. To reach this goal, we establish privileged relationships with international microbiology centers, to promote exchanges of students and researchers. We organize yearly Microbes symposia for the local community and Young Microbiologist Symposia to invite extramural young, promising microbiologists. Second, we reinforce the interdisciplinarity in research and teaching through calls for research projects jointly promoted by teams of different disciplines, by favoring the access of master students to teaching modules in disciplines different from their primary discipline and by organizing interdisciplinary summer schools for master and PhD students. Third, we promote the career of young microbiologists through the above actions and through the support of the establishment of new researchers and teachers. Finally, Microbes favor the interactions of the research teams with the industrial sector. Links with industry between individual teams do exist, including several start-ups that emerged from them. We exploit this extended address book to even further favor new interactions of teams with private sector partners.
Microbes will strengthen the quality, the relevance and the visibility of our activities in research, teaching and technology transfer at the highest level and will thereby contribute to reinforce the impact and attractiveness of the Paris-Saclay University.