Research topic

Chemical and microbial defenses of Sextonia rubra (Mez.) Va der Werff (Lauraceae), a tropical holobiont in three dimensions.

Funding and period

CNRS Prime 80, Mission for Transversal and Interdisciplinary Initiatives (MITI), 2020-2021

Projet leader


EcoFoG correspondent : Emeline Houël


Tree-D is an interdisciplinary project (wood ecology, microbiology, analytical chemistry), which aims to explore the microbial and chemical defenses of Sextonia rubra (Mez.) Van der Werff (Lauraceae), a forest species characterized by its wood natural durability and exploited in French Guiana forest industry. The objective is to no longer consider the tree as a sum of sub-units, but as a living and complex three-dimensional organism, characterized by its stage of development, producing specialized metabolites, hosting microbial communities and interacting with its ecosystem. The aim is to set up a multi-scale spatial and integrative analysis, from microscopic to macroscopic scale, from roots to leaves, from bark to pith, multi-omics (genetics and metabolomics) and functional (natural durability and reverse chemical ecology approach), to produce the first 3D mapping of a mature tree in the Amazonian rainforest.

This project funded by the MITI (Mission for Transversal and Interdisciplinary Initiatives) of the CNRS has allowed the recruitment of Marceau Levasseur as a PhD student from October 1, 2020, under the co-direction of David Touboul and Emeline Houël.

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