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Alexandra Colin - L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Young Talents Prize

​In order to promote the scientific excellence of women, the L'Oréal Foundation, in partnership with the French Academy of Sciences and the French National Commission for UNESCO, is awarding the Prix Jeunes Talents Pour les Femmes et la Science France 2022 (For Women in Science Young Talents France 2022) to 35 brilliant young researchers, including Alexandra Colin, a post-doctoral fellow at IRIG.

Published on 12 October 2022
One of the fundamental questions in biology is to know what differentiates a living being from an inert object. The living being is characterized by a dynamic requiring a permanent consumption of energy. However, what characterizes the dynamics of living beings is still unknown to this day.

« In my current project at CEA-IRIG in Grenoble, I use a biomimetic approach to understand how a dynamic biological structure can emerge from individual proteins. For this purpose, I have developed a microwell device mimicking the cell volume where the different molecular actors are encapsulated and can be observed by optical microscopy (Image beside illustrates such an experiment). My research has revealed the necessary and minimal proteins for the existence of a self-sustained dynamic for several hours from an initial pool of limited material. From this reconstitution of a cytoskeleton with dynamic properties similar to those found in cells, I will then be able to complexify the system to tend towards an artificial cell ».

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