Research Unit MycSA

Présentation of the Research Unit: 'Mycology and Food Safety'

Discover MycSA

MycSA is a research unit located at the research centre INRAE Nouvelle Aquitaine - Bordeaux. It gathers about twenty-five researchers and technicians who work to unravel the interaction networks that result in the accumulation of Fusarium toxins in cereal or corn grains.

Part of the Plant Health and Environment (SPE) and Food Chain Microbiology (MICA) departments of INRAE, the unit conducts its research in partnership with other INRAE teams, universities and stakeholders in the cereal industry. Our ambition is to contribute to propose practical solutions to reduce the mycotoxic risk of cereals and its consequences on animal and human health, and on economic losses for producers.

MycSA is at the heart of the French research and development system on this topic. The research group leads the INRAE Fusatox network that seeks to consider all the components leading to the presence in food and feed of mycotoxins produced by Fusarium spp. It also provides scientific leadership and participates actively in the Mixed Technology Network on the Sanitary Quality of Field Crop Production (RMT Quasaprove), which was replaced in 2020 by the RMT Al-Chimie on chemical contamination along the food chain. MycSA coordinates the Holograin consortium which is interested in the successions of microbial communities in the cereal food chain and how they determine the final quality of the products.

The researches carried out within MycSA aim to achieve a fine and exhaustive understanding of the events that lead to the contamination of plant foodstuffs by mycotoxins. Fundamental developments are associated with more finalised studies such as the search for preventive solutions to limit fungal development and mycotoxin production as well as biological agents capable of degrading these toxins.

The entry point of our work is the mycotoxigenic fungus and the main parameters evaluated in output are the biosynthesis and the accumulation of toxins. The objects of study are the species of the genus Fusarium, and particularly the species producing mycotoxins of the family of trichothecenes B (Fusarium graminearum essentially) and mycotoxins known as emergent (Fusarium avenaceum and Fusarium tricinctum). An integrated approach is implemented, around four research axes that strongly interact with each other.

Axe 1: Fungal genomes expression a,d production of mycotoxins

Axe 2: Adaptation and evolution in fungal species

Axe 3: interaction of fungal species with the host plant and its microbiota

Axe 4: sustainable solutions for agriculture and agro-indusrty.


The MycSa Research Unit is located at the INRA Research Centre of Bordeaux-Aquitaine. MycSA gathers about 25 researchers and technicians who work on the networks of interactions which result in an accumulation of mycotoxins in corn or wheat grains.

Redactor: JM Savoie