Prof. Dr. Raphaël Mercier

Research focus

The capacity to reproduce and transmit genetic information is one of the few key features that define life. Both natural selection and breeding can optimize genetic information. They enable plants to adapt to the environment and confer beneficial characteristics for agriculture. The Department of Chromosome Biology aims to understand how genetic information is transmitted and modified through generations. A major focus of our research is meiosis and meiotic recombination.

Most important publications

  1. Singh DK, Lian Q, Durand S, Fernandes JB, Chambon A, Hurel A, Walkemeier B, Solier V, Kumar R, Mercier R (2023) HEIP1 is required for efficient meiotic crossover implementation and is conserved from plants to humans. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 120(23):e2221746120. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2221746120.
  2. Vernet A, Meynard D, Lian Q, Mieulet D, Gibert O, Bissah M, Rivallan R, Autran D, Leblanc O, Meunier AC, Frouin J, Taillebois J, Shankle K, Khanday I, Mercier R, Sundaresan V, Guiderdoni E (2022) High-frequency synthetic apomixis in hybrid rice. Nat Commun 13(1):7963. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-35679-3.
  3. Durand S, Lian Q, Jing J, Ernst M, Grelon M, Zwicker D, Mercier R (2022) Joint control of meiotic crossover patterning by the synaptonemal complex and HEI10 dosage. Nat Commun 13(1):5999. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-33472-w.
  4. Capilla-Perez L, Durand S, Hurel A, Lian Q, Chambon A, Taochy C, Solier V, Grelon M, Mercier R (2021) The synaptonemal complex imposes crossover interference and heterochiasmy in Arabidopsis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 118(12). doi: 10.1073/pnas.2023613118.
  5. Khanday I, Skinner D, Yang B, Mercier R, Sundaresan V (2019) A male-expressed rice embryogenic trigger redirected for asexual propagation through seeds. Nature 565(7737):91-95. doi: 10.1038/s41586-018-0785-8.
  6. Fernandes JB, Seguela-Arnaud M, Larcheveque C, Lloyd AH, Mercier R (2018) Unleashing meiotic crossovers in hybrid plants. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 115(10):2431-2436. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1713078114.
  7. Crismani W, Girard C, Froger N, Pradillo M, Santos JL, Chelysheva L, Copenhaver GP, Horlow C, Mercier R (2012) FANCM limits meiotic crossovers. Science 336(6088):1588-1590. doi: 10.1126/science.1220381.
  8. Marimuthu MP, Jolivet S, Ravi M, Pereira L, Davda JN, Cromer L, Wang L, Nogue F, Chan SW, Siddiqi I, Mercier R (2011) Synthetic clonal reproduction through seeds. Science 331(6019):876. doi: 10.1126/science.1199682.
  9. d'Erfurth I, Jolivet S, Froger N, Catrice O, Novatchkova M, Mercier R (2009) Turning meiosis into mitosis. PLoS Biol 7(6):e1000124. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1000124.
Prof. Dr. Raphaël Mercier

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Department of Chromosome Biology
Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research