Station Biologique de Roscoff | EMBRC

Station Biologique de Roscoff


The Station Biologique de Roscoff  (SBR) is a research and training center in marine biology and oceanography and was founded in 1872 by Henri de Lacaze Duthiers, Professor at the Sorbonne University. Based on the high biodiversity and variety of habitats in the area. Today, it has become a world-renowned research and training centre in marine biology and ecology, with circa 300 staff on a 20 000m2 campus, jointly operated by the Pierre and Marie Curie University (UPMC) and the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS).

Mission and research: SBR’s missions are (1) to promote research and training on the biology of marine organisms and ecosystems, (2) to provide access, both for staff and non-resident researchers, to the ecological and biological resources of the site, (3) to carry out long-term observations of the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of the coastal environment in the vicinity of Roscoff, and (4) to contribute to the regional ecosystem of innovation.

Research covers aspects from genes to the marine environment and includes the study of biological processes in marine organisms, the discovery of bioactive molecules of marine origin for potential therapeutic applications, the study of the marine environment and the way it shapes ecosystems, populations and organisms, and the functional and evolutionary processes that structure marine biodiversity.

Marine facilities:

Research vessels (12m, 7m and inflatables) and diving facilities with access to all research equipment and technical support from the vessel crew

Roscoff Culture Collection (RCC) maintains over 3000 strains of marine phytoplankton, bacteria and viruses.


Four research laboratories are located in the station premises, among which a joint lab is co-located in Chile.


Integrative biology platforms with full access to equipment and technical support: Genomics, Proteomics, X-ray crystallography, Bioinformatics, Microscopy.

Main marine models:

Microalgae: cyanobacteria Synechococcus and Prochlorococcus; prasinophytes Ostreococcus tauri, Bathycoccus prasinos and Micromonas pusilla; coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi - Macroalgae: red macroalga Chondrus crispus; brown macroalgae Ectocarpus 'siliculosis'. Invertebrates: tunicate Ciona intestinalis; gastropod Crepidula fornicata; acoel Symsagittifera roscoffensis; sea urchin Spaerechinus granularis. Vertebrates: sea lamprey Petromyzon marinus; dogfish Scyliorhinus canicula.

Special partnerships:

SBR leads the French node of EMBRC.

The Station Biologique de Roscoff is partner in the project ASSEMBLE. The Roscoff teams have recently been granted three French “Investment for the Future” initiatives in the field of seaweed (IDEALG), plankton (OCEANOMICS) and biological facilities, with its two sister-observatories in France (Banyuls-sur-Mer and Villefranche-sur- Mer).

Research topics: 
  1. Molecular and cellular biology
  2. Biochemistry and structural biology
  3. Bioinformatics
  4. Developmental biology
  5. Physiology, reproductive biology
  6. Genetics
  7. Population genetics and ecosystem functioning
  8. Biological and chemical oceanography