Plant-Fungus Interactions and Remediation Team (IPCR)

Research activity

The IPCR team’s research activities are based on its expertise in mycology, in particular on the interactions between plants and fungi (phytopathogenic as well as symbiotic fungi), and in physiology, cytology, biochemistry, molecular biology and microbial ecology. They are organized in two main fields :

1 – Biocontrol of wheat foliar fungal diseases

This research theme aims to develop new biocontrol and sustainable control strategies against wheat fungal parasites, using Plant Defense Stimulants (PDSs) and/or beneficial bacterial (Plant Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria) or fungal (Plant Growth-Promoting Fungi) microorganisms such as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and/or biostimulants in plant protection. Our studies focus on two pathosystems in particular, wheat/Blumeria graminis f.sp. tritici (agent of powdery mildew) and wheat/Zymoseptoria tritici (agent of septoria). The study of defense reactions in wheat and the optimization of the protective efficacy of SDPs in response to various environmental factors that may influence the establishment of such protection (wheat genotype, nutritional status of the plant, soil microbiota, climate change, etc.) are the main objectives of our work.

2- Phytomanagement and Bioremediation of contaminated soils.

This research theme aims to develop alternative, gentle and sustainable methods of remediation and management of contaminated soils.

In the case of phytomanagement, the feasibility, effectiveness and sustainability of the main phytotechnologies (phytostabilisation, phyto/rhizodegradation and phytoextraction) are being studied from the laboratory scale under controlled conditions to that of in situ workshop sites (demonstrators).
The aim is (1) to study the performance of different plant species and soil improvers, especially biological ones based on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, in the fate (mobility, transfer, dissipation) of organic pollutants (e.g., in the form of a fungus): PAHs, dioxins/furans, alkanes) and inorganic pollutants (trace elements), (2) to develop non-food channels for the valorisation of phytomass produced on polluted soils, (3) to monitor the influence of phytotechnologies on the refunctioning of contaminated soils, in particular via the characterisation of their microbiota and (4) to assess the environmental and health risks after treatment.

In a complementary way, bioremediation consists in exploiting, in particular, the diversity of saprotrophic fungi within the framework of the biodegradation of organic pollutants such as PAHs, dioxins/furans and emerging pollutants not only in the soil but also in other matrices (water, sediments, gaseous effluents, biogas). This work aims to study the mechanisms involved in the degradation of organic pollutants (availability, transport and incorporation, degradation), and the interest of using natural polysaccharides (modified starches) as solubilising agents for these pollutants.

Team members















RAFIN Catherine


RANDOUX Béatrice












Scientific collaboration

 Régionals :

  • BioGAP, Institut Charles Viollette – ISA de Lille
  • ProBIOGEM, Institut Charles Viollette –Université de Lille
  • Laboratoire  Génie  Civil  et  géoEnvironnement, Université de Lille

Nationals :

  •  Unité de Recherche Vigne et Vin de Champagne, URCA à Reims
  • UMR Agroécologie, INRA de Dijon
  • Arvalis-Institut du Végétal

 Internationals :

  •  Laboratoire d’Amélioration Génétique des Plantes, Université d’Annaba (Algérie)
  • Université des Sciences et de la Technologie Houari Boumédiène (USTHB, Algérie)
  • Université de Djelfa
  • Helmholtz Zentrum München – German Research Centre for Environmental Health, Institute of Soil Ecology, Allemagne
  • Laboratory of Phytopathology, Université de Gand (Belgique)
  • Unité de Chimie Biologique Industrielle, Université de Liège (Gembloux Agro Bio Tech) (Belgique)
  • Laboratoire de Mycologie, Université de Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgique)
  • Agriculture et Agroalimentaire (Canada)
  • Institute for Biological Sciences (Canada)
  • Université de Wisconsin-Madison (USA)
  • Crop & Soil Systems Research Group, Scottish Agricultural College (Grande-Bretagne)
  • Faculté d’Agronomie, Université Saint-Esprit de Kaslik, université Libanaise (Liban)
  • Université Vasile Alecsandri de Bacau, Roumanie
  • Laboratoire de Génétique et Amélioration des Plantes, INAT de Tunis, Centre National de la Recherche en Agriculture Oasienne (Tunisie)
  • Centre National de la Recherche en Agriculture Oasienne (Tunisie)

Current Thesis

Prénom Nom



Robin Raveau2017-2020Essential oil production: an eco-innovative sector for the reconversion of historically polluted soils
Nour Raouani2017-2020Novel biosourced molecules and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi for the biocontrol of wheat phytopathogens
Arnaud Grignet2017-2020Study of the phytoextraction performance of Zn and Cd from the hyperaccumulator Arabidopsis halleri in co-culture with willow
Amandine Ducousso2018-2021Influence of plant-microbes-mycorrhizal fungus interaction on the biological dissolution of phosphates

Research agreement

Internationals Projects

  • 2018-2020 : CAPES-COFECUB research progam BIOSTIMALG ULCO/Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC Florianόpolis).

Nationals Projects

  • 2017-2021 : ADEME project PHYTEO : « Essential oil production: an eco-innovative sector for the reconversion of historically polluted soils ».
  • 2017-2020ADEME project Extra-Zn  : Production of Zn-enriched biomasses by phytoextraction for ecocatalysis ». INERIS/ULCO.

Regionals Projects

  • 2020 : Phytofonc. project, SFR Condorcet.
  • 2016 – 2020 : CPER  project « ALIBIOTECH Food and Biotechnology ».
    WP 1. Characterization of the plant’s interaction with its environment
    WP 2. Biological activities of biomolecules and secondary metabolites from plants and/or micro-organisms
  • 2019 – 2020 : A2U project : ULCO/UPJV. Tripartite interaction as an alternative control method against powdery mildew and septoria in wheat, TRIPLET.

Recent publications

  • F. STEFANI, K. BENCHERIF , S. SABOURIN, A. LOUNES HADJ-SAHRAOUI, C. BANCHINI, S. SÉGUIN, Y. DALPÉ : Taxonomic assignment of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in 18S metagenomic dataset: a case study with the saltcedar (Tamarix aphylla). Mycorrhiza, 2020
  • H. HADJ YOUCEF TAIBI, N. SMAIL-SAADOUN, . LABIDI, K. ABDELLAOUI, M. MAKHLOUF, A. LAOUAR, C. TAGMOUNT BENOUARET, L. REZKI-SEKHI, A. BELKEBIR BOUKAIS,, A. LOUNES-HADJ SAHRAOUI : The Influence of No-till Farming on Durum Wheat Mycorrhization in a Semi-Arid Region: A Long-Term Field Experiment. Journal of Agricultural Science Vol. 12, No. 4 77-96, 2020. DOI:10.5539/jas.v12n4p77
  • R. RAVEAU, J. FONTAINE, A. LOUNÈS-HADJ SAHRAOUI : Essential Oils as Potential Alternative Biocontrol Products against Plant Pathogens and Weeds: A Review. Foods2020, 9(3), 365, 2020.
  • A. GRIGNET, A. DEVAUFLEURY, A. PAPIN, V. BERT : Urban soil phytomanagement for Zn and Cd in situ removal, greening, and Zn-rich biomass production taking care of snail exposure. Environ. Sci. Pollu. Res., 27(3), 3187-3201 , 2020. doi: 10.1007/s11356-019-06796-2.
  • I. EL-ALAM, R. ZGHEIB, M. IRITI, M. EL BEYROUTHY, P. HATTOUNY, A. VERDIN, J. FONTAINE, R. CHAHINE, A. LOUNÈS-HADJ SAHRAOUI, H. MAKLOUF : Origanum syriacum essential oil chemical polymorphism according to soil type. Foods, 8(3),90, 2019.
  • H. MEGLOULI, J. FONTAINE, A. VERDIN, M. MAGNIN-ROBERT, B. TISSERANT, M. HIJRI, A.LOUNÈS-HADJ SAHRAOUI : Aided Phytoremediation to Clean Up Dioxins/Furans-Aged Contaminated Soil: correlation between microbial communities and pollutant dissipation. Microorganisms, 7(11), 523, 2019.
  • M.A. ORS, B. RANDOUX, A. SIAH, G. COULEAUD, C. MAUMENÉ, K. SAHMER, Ph. REIGNAULT, P. HALAMA, S. SELIM : A Plant nutrient- and microbial protein-based resistance inducer elicits wheat cultivar-dependent resistance against Zymoseptoria tritici. Phytopathology, 109: 2033-2045, 2019. doi: 10.1094/PHYTO-03-19-0075-R.