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Research overview



Area of expertise: Plant biology,  transcription factors, Fruit/seed development, Quantitative genetic, Secondary metabolite biosynthesis and profiling, flavonoid, tomato, Arabidopsis


Research Overview


Molecular mechanisms controlling flesh development in fruit

I have joined the GBF lab in 2012 to start a new research project on the molecular mechanisms controlling fleshy fruit of early fruit development. We have recently characterized some new MADS-box type transcription factor that coordinate fruit and flesh development. We are currently developing new hormonal reporters to better understand the hormonal crosstalk that initiate fruit and flesh growth.

The majority of our work involves the use of tomato since it offers both many genomic and transcriptomic tools (some developed in house) .

Experimental approaches include: isolation of candidate genes based on expression pattern, RNAseq  analysis in early fruit development,  functional analysis in transgenic plants and analysis of the role of hormones in early development using transcriptional reporter and hormone sensors

In 2003, I got a permanent position at INRA (Versailles)  in the team of Loïc Lepiniec seeking to understand the genetic and molecular mechanisms involved in the control of Arabidopsis seed development and quality especially the biosynthesis and regulation of flavonoid. Major results include the comprehensive analysis of the flavonoid metabolites accumulated during seed development in Arabidopsis and the study of some of the genetic bases of such difference.  I have collaborated to the functional analysis of genes involved in modification, transport and regulation of flavonoid. Beside Arabidopsis, strawberry  fruit and rapeseed have also been used as models.

I earned my PhD in 1991 at the Plant Physiology lab. of M. Tissut ( and R. Douce) in Grenoble before joining successively the labs of J. Browse ( Washington State University, USA), C. Benning ( IGF, Berlin, Germany) and L. Lepiniec ( INRA, Versailles, france) to work on the rising model plant Arabidopsis and seed and plant lipids.


Others lab members involved in the project


Benoit Van-Der-Rest (MCF INP-ENSAT)

Isabelle Mila (AI, INRA)

Baowen HUANG (PhD candidate)

Gilles KREMBEL (Master student)







Recent publications



  • Xu W et al., Routaboul JM, Lepiniec L and Dubos C (2017)  the MADS-Box TRANSPARENT TESTA 16 and UDP-glycosyltransferase TT15 act through different mechanisms to control  proanthocyanidin accumulation in Arabidopsis  J. Exp. Bot (accepted)


  • Céline Masclaux-Daubresse, Gilles Clément, Pauline Anne, Jean-Marc Routaboul, Anne Guiboileau, Fabienne Soulay, Ken Shirasu, Kohki Yoshimoto (2014) Stitching together the multiple dimensions of autophagy using metabolomic and transcriptomic analyses reveals new impacts of autophagy defects on metabolism,development and plant response to environment, Plant Cell, ;26(5):1857-1877./
  • Laure C. David, Julie Dechorgnat, Patrick Berquin, Jean Marc Routaboul, Isabelle Debeaujon, Francoise Daniel-Vedele, Sylvie Ferrario-Mery (2014) Proanthocyanidin oxidation of Arabidopsis seeds is altered in mutant of the high-affinity nitrate transporter NRT2.7 J Exp. Bot 2014 65: 885-893 ../


  • Xu W., Grain D., Le Gourrierec J., Harscoët E., Berger A., Jauvion V, Scagnelli A., Berger N.,  Bidzinski P., Kelemen Z., Salsac F., Baudry A., Routaboul JM, Lepiniec L. and Dubos C. (2013)  Regulation of flavonoid biosynthesis involves an unexpected complex transcriptional regulation of TT8 expression, in Arabidopsis, New Phytol. doi: 10.1111/nph.12142.

  • Schaart JG, Dubos C, Romero De La Fuente I, van Houwelingen AM, de Vos RC, Jonker HH, Xu W, Routaboul JM, Lepiniec L, Bovy AG (2013) Identification and characterization of MYB-bHLH-WD40 regulatory complexes controlling proanthocyanidin biosynthesis in strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa) fruits. New Phytol, 197:454-67. .


  • Routaboul JM, C. Dubos, G. Beck, C. Marquis, P. Bidzinski, O. Loudet, L. Lepiniec (2012) Metabolomic and  quantitative genetics Analysis of natural variation for flavonoids in Arabidopsis, J. Exp. Bot., 63: 3749-3764

  • Routaboul JM., Skidmore C. Wallis J. and Browse J. (2012) Arabidopsis mutants reveal that short- and long-term thermotolerance have different requirements for trienoic fatty acids, J. Exp. Bot., 63:1435-43 -


  • Auger B., Marnet N., Gautier V., Maia-Grondard A., Leprince F., Renard M., Guyot S., Nesi N. and JM Routaboul (2010) A Detailed Survey of Seed Coat Flavonoids in Developing Seeds of Brassica napus L., J. Agric. Food Chem., 58:6246-56-

  • Dubreucq B, Baud S., Debeaujon I., Dubos C., Marion-Poll A., Miquel M., North H., Rochat C., Routaboul JM and L. Lepiniec (2010) Seed development in Plant development and morphogenesis – molecular and cellular approaches, E.C. Pua and M.R. Davey Deds., Springer

  • North H., Baud S., Debeaujon I, Dubos C., Dubreucq B., Grappin P., Jullien M., Lepiniec L., Marion-Poll A., Miquel M., Rajjou L., Routaboul JM. and M. Caboche, (2010) Arabidopsis seed secrets unravelled after a decade of omics-based research, Plant J., 61 : 971-981. -


  • Punginelli C., Wilson A., Routaboul JM and D. Kirilovski, (2009) Influence of zeanxanthine and echinenone binding on the activity of the Orange Carotenoid Protein, BBA-Bioenergetic, 1787, 280-288. -


  • Dubos C., Gentilhomme-Legourrierec J., Baudry A., Huep G., Lanet E., Debeaujon I., Routaboul JM, Weisshaar B., and Lepiniec L. (2008) MYBL2 is a new regulator of flavonoid biosynthesis in Arabidopsis thaliana, Plant Journal, 55, 940-53 -

  • Wilson A., Gall A., Bonetti C., Alexandre M., Routaboul JM, Kerfeld C., Van grondelle R., Robert B., Kennis J and Kirilovski D. (2008) A photoactive carotenoid protein sensor of light intensity, Proc. Natl. Sci. USA,105, 12075-80 --

  • Luceri C., Giovannelli L., Pitozzi V., Toti S., Castagni C., Routaboul JM., Lepiniec L. and P. Dolara (2008) Liver and Colon DNA oxidative damage and gene expression profiles of rats fed Arabidopsis thaliana mutants seed containing contrasted flavonoid contents, Food and Chemical Toxicology, 46 : 1213-1220.-