Post doc position on Viral / nuclear mechanodynamics and viral fate

Institut Pasteur in Paris, France

A research scientist position is available at the Institut Pasteur to join the Advanced Molecular Virology laboratory, which is focused on the basic study of the early steps of the HIV-1 life cycle.

Early steps of the viral life cycle are important for the establishment of viral reservoirs that represent a bottleneck for discovering a cure.

How replication of viruses in the host nucleus applies mechanical forces within the compartment that remodel the chromatin landscape, thereby impacting both functional and physical properties of the nucleus will be evaluated in a close collaboration with the King lab at Yale University, which is focused on nuclear mechanics, mechanotransduction and genome integrity.

The project aims to investigate mechanisms implicated in the remodeling of the nuclear compartment during infection. Our studies highlight that among pandemic viruses, HIV-1 influences important biological processes to effectively replicate in the host cell.

Some of these viruses trigger a phenomenon called liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) to form membraneless organelles (MLOs) involved in several cellular functions. This is a newly characterized biological phenomenon, prompted also by HIV-1 infection, which is likely to aid viral replication or persistence and is still unexplored.

We aim to determine how the mechanical state of the nuclear envelope and nuclear pore complexes influences key events in the viral life cycle: nuclear entry, reverse transcription, integration, formation of viral liquid droplets (HIV-MLOs) and entrance into latency. In addition, we will study the role that the LINC complex plays in the fate of viral infection.