Launch of the ISblue University Research School


On 24 October 2018, was the official launch of the Interdisciplinary graduate School for the blue planet (ISBlue). The creation of ISBlue is an evolution and amplification of the LabexMER “A Changing Ocean”, which was one of the laboratories of excellence retained during the first wave of the “Investments for the Future” programme. It is now replaced by the ISBlue University Research School, an international level graduate school, bringing together the best marine science and technology researchers in western Brittany to strengthen knowledge and understanding of how the ocean is functioning in the context of global change.

To learn more about ISBlue click here.

Conference “Lipids in the ocean”


This international-level conference will strengthen the position of international research on marine lipids toward broad scientific questions, ranging from cellular-level to marine ecosystems functioning.

One of the aims of this multidisciplinary conference is to stimulate discussions on concepts related to the role of lipids from lower up to higher trophic levels.

This conference will enable the participation of graduate students, academic and government researchers, and industrial and resource managers interested by lipids in aquatic ecosystems.

Register here :


  • First Announcement: February 7th 2018
  • Pre-registration for abstract submission begin: March 1st 2018
  • Pre-registration for abstract submission deadline: May 15th 2018
  • Notification of abstract selection: May 30th 2018
  • Early registration: May 1st  – June 30th 2018
  • Late registration: July 1st – September 30th 2018
  • Registration deadline: September 30th 2018

Guillaume Mitta seminar

Cracking the code of Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome

For decades, methodological limitations have restricted the study of infectious diseases to simplified experimental pathosystems in which the influences of host and pathogen diversity and the biotic and abiotic environments have been minimized. Such reductionist approaches have made diseases with complex etiologies difficult to characterize. This is the case for some diseases triggering recurrent mass mortalities in non-model species of ecological and/or economic interest such as pollinators, corals and marine mollusks.

The objective of the present work was to examine a disease of complex etiology affecting one of the main invertebrate species exploited in the world, the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas. Introduced to France in the 1970s, C. gigas suffers mass mortalities associated with complex interactions between host, environment and pathogens. The severity of these mortality outbreaks has dramatically increased since 2008They mainly affect juvenile stages decimating up to 100 % of young oysters in French farms. Over the past years, this mortality syndrome has become panzootic, being observed in numerous other countries worldwide.

By developing a holistic approach to tackle the complexity of interactions, we deciphered the complex intra-host interactions underlying the Pacific oyster mortality syndrome. Using ecologically realistic experimental infections combined with thorough molecular analyses on oyster families with contrasted susceptibilities, we demonstrated that the disease is caused by a multiple infection whose initial and necessary step is the infection of oyster hemocytes by a herpesvirus. Viral replication leads to an immune-compromised state of the host, evolving toward subsequent bacteremia by opportunistic bacteria.