Goals and challenge
PSL-Qlife, Institut de convergence created in 2017 within the framework of the French Research Ministry funding “Programme d'investissements d'avenir”, is dedicated to quantitative biology. It is located in Paris and federates 10 research institutes and organisms that are PSL members or partners, 5 Labex (Laboratory of excellency) and 2 Equipex (equipment of excellence).
As research expands, the field of life sciences becomes more and more predictive rather than being only descriptive. Indeed, biological processes can now be analyzed in a truly dynamic and quantitative fashion, at multiple spatial and temporal levels, and models can be elaborated, making predictions about how biological systems operate.
We choose to focus on three main topics :
- The dynamic architecture of the nucleus
- The organization of cell membranes
- Cellular communication.
Indeed, these topics constitute fundamental and important biological questions, for which quantitative methods have the potential to radically transform our understanding and where interdisciplinary approaches are essential.
Predictive biology thus requires new tools emerging from other disciplines such as chemistry, physics and mathematics. In this line, PSL-Qlife gathers scientists from these different fields in order to foster fruitful interdisciplinary collaborations, and accelerate the transfer of technologies, from academic labs to start-ups and companies.
In addition, we aim at training future interdisciplinary scientists, as we develop and implement a talent strategy to foster an innovative and collaborative culture, including fellowships for master and PhD students, as well as thematic Quantitative biology courses including digital workshops.
In a nutshell, our main missions are:
- Support highly innovative research addressing scientific and socio-economic challenges.
- Train future leaders who are able to navigate across disciplines and methodologies.
- Strengthen the socio-economic impact of this research by accelerating the innovation value chain.