New Project Funding - ExocubeHALO (Preservation of Cell Surface Biosignatures of HALOphilic Microorganisms Exposed to Space Radiation on Exocube) Franco-German collaboration between our group and that of Andreas Elsaesser (Freie Universität Berlin) to study the effects of space solar radiation on the cell envelope (S-layer) of haloarchaea has been funded by the ANR-PRCI (ANR-21-CE49-0017-01).
New Arrival - Lucas Bourmancé - We are thrilled to welcome Lucas as a doctoral researcher on the ExocubeHALO project!
New Collaboration - We have partnered with the supercritical fluids team at ICMCB (https://www.icmcb-bordeaux.cnrs.fr/en/teams/group7/) (Samuel Marre, Anaïs Cario) to use their microfluidic systems for pre-flight testing of haloarchaea in preparation for their integration into the Exocube spaceflight experiment. Funding provided by CNES.
Beyond the boundaries of the ‘ideal’ conditions for microbial life exists a diverse group of microorganisms (mostly prokaryotic bacteria and archaea) that thrive in ‘extreme’ conditions that present serious physical and chemical challenges for the survival of living organisms (pH, temperature, hydrostatic pressure, high concentrations of salts/metals, etc). These ‘extremophiles’ possess adaptations that protect them from the cellular damages induced by the surrounding environment. We use an interdisciplinary approach to characterize the molecular mechanisms enabling the survival of such microorganisms, and identify adaptations enabling survival under a variety of stress conditions. Fundamentally, understanding these mechanisms at the cellular and molecular levels increases our understanding of global biodiversity and geo(bio)chemical cycles, provides resistant biomolecules for structural studies, and even contributes to medical research in areas like DNA damage and repair (cancer). It also helps us trace the origins of life on Earth and determine the possibility for life on other planets.
We are currently focusing on the roles of cell surface wall components called S-layers as adaptations against abiotic stresses in the environment (metals, salts, extremes in temperatures/pH, etc). S-layers are self-assembling proteinaceous structures present as well-ordered arrays on the surface of bacterial and archaeal cells as part of the cell envelope, forming their interaction interface with the external milieu. The direct contact of the S-layer with the surrounding environment provides a context for understanding mineral / microorganism interactions. S-layer proteins form an ordered structure that can serve as a site of nucleation for bio- or organo-mineralization. Preservation of S-layers during fossilization and diagenesis provides a potential biosignature for microbial life in the fossil record. The study of S-layers has implications for the origins and evolution of life on Earth, and the potential for life on other planets such as Mars.
“The earth never tires,
The earth is rude, silent, incomprehensible at first,
Nature is rude and incomprehensible at first
Be not discouraged, keep on, there are divine things well envelop’d,
I swear to you there are divine things more beautiful than words can tell.”
-Walt Whitman “Song of the open road”
Supervision of Early Career Researchers:
2020-2022 - Anaïs MASSÉ (ATER)
2022-2025 - Lucas BOURMANCÉ
2019-2022 - Charly FAVREAU
2017-2019 - Manon VANDERVENNET (EPHE)
Research Interns (Undergraduate and Masters Students)
2022 - Gaëlle MARMASSE (L3), Elisa RICHARD (Reseach technician, 2nd year student), ELISA RAVARO (ERASMUS+ Master student), Nour BEN HAMIDA (M1 summer intern)
2021 - Louise GILLET DE CHALONGE (L3)
2019 - Charly FAVREAU (M2), Rayan ABOUD (M1)
2018 - Prithviraj DESALE (M2), Charly FAVREAU (M1), Fairouz GZARA (M1), Rey MOUROT (L3)
2017 - Archjana CHAMDRAMOHAN (M2), Rey MOUROT (L2)
2016 - Meriem DORGHAM (M2), Lea BOUTEILLE (M1), Mathilde BOUREAU (M1)
2014 - Laura BELOT (L3)
Additional Research Interests
- Origins and evolution of microbial life
<a rel="me" href="https://mstdn.science/@AdrienneKish">Mastodon</a>
Selection of Articles Prior to 2012
Glamoclija M, Fogel M, Steele A, Kish A. (2012) Microbial Nitrogen and Sulfur Cycles at the Gypsum Dunes of White Sands National Monument, New Mexico. Geomicrobiology Journal. 29:8, 733-51.
Kish A, Griffin P, Rogers K, Fogel M, Hemley R, Steele A. (2012) High-Pressure Tolerance in Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1 and Other Non-Piezophilic Prokaryotes. Extremophiles. 16(2):355-61.
Kish A, Kirkali G, Robinson C, Rosenblatt R, Jaruga P, Dizdaroglu M, and DiRuggiero J. (2009) Salt Shield: Intracellular Salts Provide Cellular Protection against Ionizing Radiation in the Halophilic Archaeon, Halobacterium salinarum str. NRC-1. Environ Microbiol. May;11(5):1066-78.
Whitehead K* & Kish A*, Pan M, Kaur A, Reiss DJ, King N, Hohmann L, DiRuggiero J, Baliga NS. (2006) An integrated systems approach for understanding cellular responses to gamma radiation. Mol.Syst.Biol. 2:47. (*these authors contributed equally to this work)
Kottemann M, Kish A, Iloanusi C, Bjork S, DiRuggiero J. (2005) Physiological Responses of the Halophilic Archaeon Halobacterium sp. str. NRC1 to Desiccation and Gamma Irradiation. Extremophiles Jun,9(3):219-27.
- Participation in the annual “Festival of Science”
- Member of the following professional organizations : Société Française d’Exobiologie, Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire, European Astrobiology Network Association, American Society for Microbiology, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Mars Society of Canada, American Geophysical Union, European Association of Geochemistry