Thomas LANDRAIN

Nationality French
Year of selection2009
InstitutionUniversité d'Evry-Val-d'Essonne
CountryFrance
RiskLife risks

Type of support

Ph.D

Granted amount

120 000 €

Duration

3 years

From Cancer to Explosives: The Many Talents of Biosensors

What tool could be useful for both cancer diagnosis and detection of explosives? The answer is biosensors made of circuits of the genetic material RNA. Landrain is building platforms to design these tools that could be triggered by signals in the environment. Molecules specific to a tumor could alert the biosensors to destroy these cells. Chemicals found in landmines could be detected and reported by the circuits. Thanks to RNA, his systems could be adaptable to many different environments, just like life.
My research focuses on creating RNA-based synthetic bio-molecular tools that enable the control of gene expression in living cell. RNA is a very versatile molecule, able of holding genetic information, of interacting and assembling with other molecules in the cell, and of catalyzing very diverse molecular reactions necessary for life. I have created an efficient computational methodology for designing synthetic RNA systems that perform as logic gates in the cell. The designer RNAs can then sense specific molecules and act on specific targets in he cell, making them very promising components for the future of molecular diagnostic and synthetic biology.

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