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PLoS Comput Biol. 2018 Mar 15;14(3):e1005992. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1005992. eCollection 2018 Mar.

Meet-U: Educating through research immersion.

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Departments of Computer Science and of Life Sciences, Sorbonne Université (SU) / UPMC, Paris, France.
Department of Biology and of Computer Science, Univ. Paris-Sud, Université Paris-Saclay (UPSay), Orsay, France.
Unit of Structural Dynamics of Macromolecules, CNRS, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.
Institute for Integrative Biology of the Cell (I2BC), IBITECS, CEA, CNRS, Univ. Paris-Sud, UPSay, Gif-sur-Yvette cedex, France.
AMIBio team, Laboratoire d'informatique de l'École polytechnique (LIX, UMR 7161) / Inria Saclay, UPSay, Palaiseau, France.
Laboratoire de Biochimie Théorique, UPR 9080 CNRS Institut de Biologie Physico-Chimique, Paris, France.
Sorbonne Université / UPMC, CNRS, IBPS, Laboratoire de Biologie Computationnelle et Quantitative (LCQB), UMR 7238, Paris, France.
Institut Universitaire de France.
LRI, Univ. Paris-Sud, CNRS, UPSay, Orsay, France.
Sorbonne Université / UPMC, Univ. Antilles, Univ. Nice Sophia Antipolis, CNRS, Evolution Paris Seine - Institut de Biologie Paris Seine (EPS - IBPS), Paris, France.
Institute for Integrative Biology of the Cell (I2BC), CEA, CNRS, Univ. Paris-Sud, UPSay, Gif-sur-Yvette cedex, France.
Department of Structural Biology and CheImistry (CNRS UMR3528) - Center of Bioinformatics, Biostatistics and Integrative Biology (CNRS USR3756) - Structural Bioinformatics Unit, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.
MaIAGE, INRA, UPSay, Jouy-en-Josas, France and LIMSI, CNRS, UPSay, Orsay, France.
Sorbonne Université / UPMC, Ecole Normale Supérieure - PLS Research University, Département de Chimie, CNRS, Laboratoire des Biomolécules, UMR 7203 - Univ. Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité, Paris, France.
Mitochondria, Metals and Oxidative Stress Group, Institut Jacques Monod, UMR 7592, Univ. Paris Diderot, CNRS, Sorbonne Paris Cité, Paris, France.


We present a new educational initiative called Meet-U that aims to train students for collaborative work in computational biology and to bridge the gap between education and research. Meet-U mimics the setup of collaborative research projects and takes advantage of the most popular tools for collaborative work and of cloud computing. Students are grouped in teams of 4-5 people and have to realize a project from A to Z that answers a challenging question in biology. Meet-U promotes "coopetition," as the students collaborate within and across the teams and are also in competition with each other to develop the best final product. Meet-U fosters interactions between different actors of education and research through the organization of a meeting day, open to everyone, where the students present their work to a jury of researchers and jury members give research seminars. This very unique combination of education and research is strongly motivating for the students and provides a formidable opportunity for a scientific community to unite and increase its visibility. We report on our experience with Meet-U in two French universities with master's students in bioinformatics and modeling, with protein-protein docking as the subject of the course. Meet-U is easy to implement and can be straightforwardly transferred to other fields and/or universities. All the information and data are available at

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