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Lallier Sylvain

PhD student in sociology, Université Paris Cité

Doctoral school: 623 - Savoirs, Sciences, Education

Contact: sjp.lallier(at)





Dissertation title: Scientific emergence of microbiota and transversality of metagenomic technology in human and plant health

Under the direction of Catherine Bourgain and Elise Demeulenaere

Since the 2000s, studies of the microbiota, at the interface between human health and environmental issues, have been a source of new medical and agronomic interventions. Currently, interest in this microbial diversity is fully in line with the strategic innovation plans for 2025 and 2030 led by the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research (Inserm) and the French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (Inrae). In parallel, the development of high-throughput genome sequencing technologies, associated with new bioinformatics tools, allows the development of an approach known as "metagenomics", making it possible to analyse microbial diversity at the scale of microbial ecosystems.

The aim of this thesis is to analyse the circulation of knowledge on microbiota in various fields of human and plant health and the conditions for the deployment and integration of high-throughput genome sequencing technologies into clinical and agronomic approaches.

Two issues structure this thesis: 

(1) to document in a comparative way the placing of the microbiota on the scientific agenda and its effects within distinct scientific fields, both in human and plant health; 

(2) to examine the link between the construction of the "microbiota" research object and the development of high throughput genome sequencing technologies, which implies analysing the deployment of research infrastructures for these new technologies and the research dynamics that they generate within the epistemic communities concerned.

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