François Leulier

active 1 year, 10 months ago


Full Name

François Leulier

Current position

Group leader


Institut de Génomique Fonctionnelle de Lyon


Lyon, France

Research interests

The research projects of my team aim at deciphering the effector and regulatory mechanisms of both host and commensal intestinal bacteria underlying their beneficial interaction. The research work of the team focuses on the study of Lactobacillus plantarum beneficial impact on Drosophila melanogaster physiology mainly growth and metabolism.


Twitter handle


Google Scholar Profile

Research activity


Metazoans establish reciprocal interactions with the bacterial communities that colonize their mucosal surfaces. These interactions contribute to many aspects of host physiology including the promotion of digestive efficiency and proper immune system development and homeostasis. In return, the microbiota derives benefit from the association with its host by inhabiting a nutrient rich environment. When deregulated this relationship results in pathological outcomes such as episodic infectious diseases, chronic inflammatory diseases, metabolic disorders or even some cancers. Despite recent progress, a clear view of the physiological benefits associated with host/microbiota relationship remains elusive. Hence the molecular mechanisms through which the microbiota exerts its beneficial influences are still largely undefined.

The goals of our research are two folds:

(1) Decipher the molecular dialogue governing the mutualistic interaction between intestinal bacteria and their host. To this end, we use an animal model, Drosophila melanogaster and one of its natural commensals, Lactobacillus plantarum. We develop a multiscale functional approach to identify of the basic regulatory and effector mechanisms that underlie their mutualistic relationship. This integrated approach couple a host and a bacteria centred-view of this beneficial interaction to identify the bacterial and host genetic networks required to sustain a mutualistic relationship. Our aim is to reveal how these molecular activities translate into cellular, tissular and organismal functional benefits and uncover the interdependency of these benefits.

(2) Identify and characterize new potential Lactobacilli probiotic strains beneficial to host intestinal biology. In this light, we will focus our analysis on the impact of Lactobacilli association on intestinal functions in steady state and upon enteric infection using Drosophila as a host model.

Using Lactobacilli species and an animal host model with evolutionary conserved molecular and physiological features, our approach is relevant to most lactobacilli/host interactions including those occurring in humans. Our work provides fresh and unbiased insight into the fundamental biological question of host/microbe mutualism and opens more applied research avenues on new Lactobacilli probiotic strains with a beneficial impact on intestinal physiology.

Representative publications

23332152, 21907145, 19888449, 19692992, 20375589, 18692774, 18227810, 16894030, 16485033, 12692550, 12123572,

Research keywords

Microbiota, Physiology, Growth, Metabolism, Gut, Bacteria,

Job openings

Motivated trainee, students and post-docs always welcomed!


Latitude and Longitude