Junior Research Scientist in epigenetics of nodulation


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INRAE presentation

The French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (INRAE) is a public research establishment under the dual authority of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Research.

INRAE is recruiting researchers by open competition and offering permanent position.

It is a major player in research and innovation created on 1st of January 2020. INRAE is a research institute resulting from the merger of INRA and IRSTEA. It is a community of 12,000 people with more than 200 research units and 42 experimental units located throughout France.

The institute is among the world leaders in agricultural and food sciences, in plant and animal sciences, and is 11th in the world in ecology and environment. INRAE’s main goal is to be a key player in the transitions necessary to address major global challenges. In the face of the increase in population, climate change, scarcity of resources and decline in biodiversity, the institute develops solutions for multiperformance agriculture, high quality food and sustainable management of resources and ecosystems.

Work environment, missions and activities

You will carry out your research activity at the "Laboratory of Plant-Microorganism Interactions (LIPM), a joint INRAE-CNRS research unit located in Toulouse. The LIPM, with 150 people, benefits from excellent technological support and platforms. As part of the TULIP Laboratory of Excellence ( and the FRAIB Research Federation, the LIPM offers a rich scientific environment for creating interactions with key plant biology and ecology laboratories.
Within the LIPM unit, you will join the "Endosymbiotic infection and nodule development" team, recognized for its work on rhizobia-legume symbiosis. You will benefit from the team being part of an International Associated Laboratory with French and Argentinian researchers specialized in plant epigenetics. You will also participate in national plant epigenetics networks (EPIPLANT and REACTION). The team is studying the symbiosis between leguminous plants and bacteria called Rhizobia. It has made major discoveries on the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the formation of nodules in the legume Medicago truncatula, including new epigenetic mechanisms. Notably, it has shown that genes co-regulated during nodule differentiation are preferentially clustered in co-regulated functional units called "symbiotic islands" enriched in long non-coding RNAs called lncRNAs, which are emerging regulators of gene expression and chromatin structure in plants.
You will seek to understand the importance of lncRNAs for the development of nodules, a facultative organ that represents an optimal system for addressing the emerging role of lncRNAs in plants in a context of interaction with its environment. Your research will aim to determine the functional role of lncRNAs in the coordinated regulation of symbiotic gene expression. Your project will focus on questions such as the functional link between lncRNAs and chromatin accessibility, the way lncRNAs contribute to the coordinated regulation of symbiotic gene expression, and the way lncRNAs contribute to the three-dimensional organization of symbiotic islands in the nucleus.

Training and skills

PhD or equivalent

Candidates must have a PhD or equivalent.
A molecular biologist with sound knowledge in epigenetics would be highly desirable. Experience in bioinformatics and genome-wide data processing would be an asset.
Candidates should have a good command of English, and long-term international experience would also be desirable. Successful candidates who have not yet acquired this experience abroad will be required to do so after their probationary period (1st year).

INRAE's life quality

By joining our teams, you benefit from:

- 30 days of annual leave + 15 days "Reduction of Working Time" (for a full time);
- parenting support: CESU childcare, leisure services;
- skills development systems: training, career advise;
- social support: advice and listening, social assistance and loans;
- holiday and leisure services: holiday vouchers, accommodation at preferential rates;
sports and cultural activities;
- collective catering.

Offer reference

  • Profile number: CR-2021-SPE-6
  • Corps: CRCN
  • Category: A
  • Open competition number: 7

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