Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire

Dina Surdin PRIZE 2021


My name is Yoann Santin, I am 30 years old, and I am from Corsica (Porto-Vecchio). I did my bachelor in cellular biology (with the third year spent at the Université de Montréal), and my master degree in microbiology, plant biology and biotechnology at Aix-Marseille Université. I did my PhD under the supervision of Dr. Eric Cascales at the Institute of Microbiology of the Mediterranée where I studied the type VI secretion system (T6SS), a multiprotein weapon depicted as a bacterial nano-crossbow and used by bacteria to destroy target cells. My project was to decipher how the length of the T6SS is controlled in cells to efficiently kill competitor cells. I am continuing my research as a post-doctoral fellow in the Géraldine Laloux lab in Brussels (Belgium), where I am studying the cell cycle of an outstanding predatory bacterium, Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus, which can invade prey cells to feed and grow upon them. My post-doctoral projects will aim to shed light on the molecular determinants underlying both the predation and the intra-periplasmic fate of the predator. Importantly, understanding the molecular determinants underlying the cell cycle of this predatory bacterium is a crucial step to assess the potential of Bdellovibrio as a “living antibiotic”, since it can feed upon antibiotic-resistance pathogens such as Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, or Klebsiella pneumoniae.