Christel Carles

Date du document : 28 mai 2014
Dernière mise à jour le : 7 juillet 2014

Christel Carles

Education / Graduation / Career

  • 1997 - Ecole Nationale Supérieure Agronomique, Toulouse (France) - Diplôme d'ingénieur en Agronomie
  • 2000 - University of Perpignan, France - PhD of Molecular Biology and Plant Physiology
  • 2001 - 2008 - Plant gene Expression center, UC Berkeley, CA, USA - Post-Doctoral Fellow (2001-2004) and Staff Scientist (2004-2008)
  • 2008 - 2009 - IRD, Montpellier, France - Chargée de Recherche (CDD)

Teaching: The main disciplines

  • Developmental Genetics
  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Epigenetics and Chromatin Biology

Research Topics

  • Plant Developmental Genetics
  • Chromatin Biology


  • J. Engelhorn, R. Blanvillain and C.C. Carles (2014). Molecular control of cell fate in plants: Mechanisms of gene activation from a chromatin point of view. CMLS. DOI 10.1007/s00018-014-1609-0. Pdf
  • T. Mandel, F. Moreau, Y. Kutsher, J.C. Fletcher, C.C. Carles, and L. Eshed-Williams (2014). The ERECTA receptor kinase regulates Arabidopsis shoot apical meristem size, phyllotaxy and floral meristem identity. Development. 141(4):830-41. Pdf
  • M.M. Monfared, C.C. Carles, P. Rossignol, H.R. Pires and J.C. Fletcher (2013). The ULT1 and ULT2 trxG Genes play overlapping roles in Arabidopsis development and gene regulation. Molecular Plant. 6(5):1564-79. Pdf
  • C. Smaczniak, R.G.H. Immink, J.M. Muino, R. Blanvillain, M. Busscher, J. Busscher-Lange, Q.D.P. Dinh, S. Liu, A.H. Westphal, S. Boeren, F. Parcy, L. Xu, C.C. Carles, G.C. Angenent, K. Kaufmann (2012). Characterization of MADS-domain transcription factor complexes in Arabidopsis flower development. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 109(5):1560-5. Pdf
  • J. Rodor, E. Jobet, J. Bizarro, F. Vignols, C.C. Carles, T. Suzuki, K. Nakamura, M. Echeverria (2011). AtNUFIP, an essential protein for plant development, reveals the impact of snoRNA gene organisation on the assembly of snoRNPs and rRNA methylation in Arabidopsis thaliana. The Plant J. 65(5) : 807-819. Pdf
  • C.C. Carles, C.M. Ha, J.H. Jun, E. Fiume and J.C. Fletcher (2010). Analyzing Shoot Apical Meristem Development. Methods Mol Biol. 655:105-29. Pdf
  • C.C. Carles and J.C. Fletcher (2010). Missing links between histones and RNA Pol II arising from SAND? Epigenetics 5(5) : 381-385. Pdf
  • C.C. Carles and J.C. Fletcher (2009). The SAND domain protein ULTRAPETALA1 acts as a trithorax group factor to regulate cell fate in plants. Genes & Development. 23: 2723-2728. Pdf
  • L. Williams*, C. C. Carles*, K. S. Osmont*, J.C. Fletcher (2005). A database analysis method identifies an endogenous trans -acting short-interfering RNA that targets the Arabidopsis ARF2, ARF3, and ARF4 genes. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 102(27):9703–08. *L.W., C.C.C., and K.S.O. contributed equally to this work. Pdf
  • C. C. Carles, D. Choffnes-Inada,, K. Reville, K. Lertpiriyapong, J.C. Fletcher (2005). ULTRAPETALA1 encodes a SAND domain putative transcriptional regulator that controls shoot and floral meristem activity in Arabidopsis. Development 132(5): 897-911. Pdf

Interests, Projects, Ideas

As Associate Professor for the Department of Biology and Chemistry at the Joseph Fourier University and member of the LPCV laboratory (iRTSV institute, CEA Grenoble), I share my time between teaching in Biology and research in Plant Developmental and Chromatin Biology. [Teaching] I give lectures in Cell Biology (Licence 2d year), Valorisation of Plant Ressources (Licence 2d year), Plant Developmental Genetics (Licence 3d year), Plant Physiology and Development (Master 2d year), Evo-Devo in Eukaryotes (Master 2d year), Epigenetics and Differenciation (Master 2d year). I find it extremely interesting and rewarding to share life science knowledge with students, teach them scientifc reasoning and support them in their career goals. While this mission begins from the early years at university, my double function as teacher and researcher allows me to mentor candidates for doctorates as well. [Research] I am interested in the molecular mechanisms by which chromatin factors activate gene transcription in plants, following very precise spatio-temporal patterns. In particular, I would like to understand how, at corresponding loci, chromatin is brought from a repressed to an active state and is maintained and propagated through time and cell division in specific cell types. To this end, I created a novel niche of research that currently uses the Arabidopsis flower as model of development and employs an integrated experimental approach combining molecular genetics, biochemistry and next generation sequencing analyses. With my little group, we study, over the flower developmental framework, the dynamics of (i) chromatin landscapes and (ii) of activator binding activities (chromatin activators and transcription factors); and (iii) characterise novel chromatin activators. Our strategy should allow understand the crosstalk between chromatin structure and transcription factor binding, two phenomenons often studied independently even though they are closely linked. Dynamics of chromatin activation: temporal and spatial resolution at the developing flower Plant ontogeny is associated with highly flexible cell fates that allow organogenetic programs to take place throughout the plant lifespan. During organogenesis, small clusters of stem cells acquire new fates before differentiating into specific cell types. Such events are initiated by the activation of developmental genes specific to clusters of cells that will give rise to specific organ primordia. We aim at deciphering the molecular events that take place at the level of the chromatin and underlie this transition. To this end, we develop and exploit new methodologies enabling a genome-wide analysis of chromatin activation dynamics. Our model of study is the Arabidopsis floral meristem for which genetic tools enable the isolation of synchronized tissues and/or specific tissue types, in large amounts. This permits to follow, in vivo, the transcriptional status of floral developmental genes at different stages of flower development. Characterization of novel transcriptional and chromatin activators We previously showed that ULTRAPETALA1 (ULT1), a plant-specific chromatin activator, induces gene expression through the removal of chromatin repressive marks. Taking ULT1 as an anchor, our goal is to identify novel transcriptional activators and characterize their molecular assembly during flower development in Arabidopsis. To that aim, we use (1) yeast-two-hybrid screen (2) Bimolecular Fluorescent Complementation and (3) in planta immuno-precipitation approaches. Meta-analysis of binding maps for ULT1 and ULT1 partners, together with chromatin features will allow temporal resolution of their assembly and function during gene activation events.

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