Hi, I am Youn Henry :)
I am a biologist specialized in ecology and evolution of insect species. The central point of my work consists in understanding how organisms can cope with their ever-changing environment, with a special focus on stressful thermal/nutritional conditions and host-microbe interactions.
Currently, my work primarily aims to study the evolution process of bacteria shifting from free-living to host-associated lifestyles, using Drosophila melanogaster as a model. The idea here is to investigate which bacterial functions could be involved in arising mutualistic interactions, and how these functions depend on the environmental conditions of the host. A second aspect of my research focuses on adaptive potential of the microbiota for its host. In particular, I ask whether the evolution of the host to an environmental constraint may also encompass durable changes in the microbiota community, either in the species composition or in the genetic characteristics of the microbiota. This project is funded by the NCCR microbiomes.
I address these questions using experimental approaches mainly in controlled laboratory conditions, but also in the field when it is relevant. Techniques I use include (among others): stress tolerance phenotyping, fitness and behaviors measurements, physiological measurements, gene expression (qPCR, RNA seq), genotyping, microbiota analysis (metagenomics), metabolomics (GC-MS).