Genoscope was created in 1996 to participate in the Human Genome project and to develop genomics programs in France. He then moved on to environmental genomics . It develops methods and projects for the exploration of biodiversity , in particular in the massive sequencing of DNA and bioinformatics. The Genoscope is open to the national scientific community through calls for projects coordinated since 2012 within the framework of France Génomique.
These projects cover the whole of biodiversity, in particular the genomics of plants, fungi and the metagenomics of complex ecosystems. The experimental identification of new biological functions , in particular in the field of biocatalysis , carried out within the UMR8030, is an extension and addition of value to sequencing and opens prospects for development in industrial biotechnology . Through the exploration and exploitation of biodiversity, Genoscope intends to contribute to the development of sustainable biological solutions in synthetic chemistry. Genoscope is thus involved in the sequencing of many plant species (orange, coffee, cocoa, banana, rapeseed, wheat) and animals, a crucial step for progress in the field of agronomy or in the understanding of evolution.
It also contributes to the discovery of previously unknown microscopic organisms . Indeed, because some microorganisms are impossible to isolate and to cultivate, microbial diversity is very poorly known. To study the biodiversity of an environment, Genoscope teams use metagenomics . This technique, which can now be realized thanks to the development of new sequencing technologies and the increase in bioinformatics data processing capacities, consists in sequencing the genome of all the organisms of a sample from A given environment. Metagenomics has been used, for example, for the study of wastewater from a treatment plant (Cloaca Maxima), For the study of the diversity of the world's oceans (Mission Tara Oceans) or the intestinal flora of an individual (Gut Microbiome Project). These studies make it possible to reconstruct the genomes of unknown organisms, to study the interdependence of these individuals within an ecosystem, to determine the rules of association of various species in a connected community, and to increase the Knowledge of biodiversity.