Save the date!

Next MiCom will take place from 16th to 19th March 2020

Registration and abstract submission will be open from the 11th October.

The MiCom2020 organizing committee is happy to announce the first keynote speakers for the upcoming conference:

Dr. Norio Takeshita is an associate professor in the Faculty of Life and Environmental Science at the University of Tsukuba (Japan). He and his group study fungal pathogenicity, especially of filamentous fungus. They focus on the investigation of the molecular mechanisms of mylecial elongation, which is done by monitoring the polarized tip growth of the fungus using state-of-the-art fluorescent microscopy and high-resolution imaging. Understanding the fungal growth is not only important for pathogenicity but also for the usefulness of filamentous fungus, as it is also widespread globally in food production.

Prof. Dr. Matthias Erb is the executive director of the Institute of Plant Sciences and the leader of the Biotic Interactions group at the University of Bern. The Erb group explores the interactions between plants and pest insects on a molecular, chemical and ecological level. They focus on biologically active plant substances that improve the pest resistance of wild and productive plants and thus contribute to sustainable agriculture. Using a combination of different techniques and plant models, they focus on the strategies that plants use to survive biotic stresses in nature. More specifically they are interested in the role of secondary metabolites produced by the plant in different interactions.

Asst. Prof. Dr. Karoline Faust is the leader of the Microbial Systems Biology group at the University of Leuven. During her post-doctoral work she developed the Network Analysis Tools (NeAT), as a set of tools for performing basic operations on prediction and analysis of species interaction networks from metagenomic data. At the University of Leuven she and her group dedicate their research to the study of the structure and dynamics of microbial communities, using both in silico and in vitro methods, working across the boundaries of microbial ecology, systems biology and bioinformatics. They develop bioinformatic tools to address topics including microbial community time series data and the prediction of complex association networks.

Dr. Alan Walker is a group leader at the University of Aberdeen. He and his group study the role of intestinal bacteria in the breakdown of dietary fiber. Typical Western diets, rich in refined carbohydrates, fats, and proteins and low in fiber, are fundamentally different from those consumed in more agrarian societies, where people tend to consume more fiber-rich diets. Walker’s Lab combines DNA sequence analysis and microbiological approaches to understand how consuming disparate diets results in the development of different intestinal microbiota compositions, and how this impacts host health.

Further research interest of Dr. Walker is identifying bacteria within the intestinal microbiota. He is studying the microbial contributors to the development of chronic ailments, like for example bacterial consumers of lactate, which have been linked to chronic diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, and producers of trimethylamine (TMA), associated to cardiovascular disease.

Prof. Dr. Martin Grininger is a group leader at the Buchmann Institute of Molecular Life Sciences (BMLS) at the University of Frankfurt. He dedicates his research towards understanding the functional mechanisms of proteins to finally reprogram their reaction modes. Fatty acid synthases and polyketide synthases are the main targets that the Buchmann group is using for directed product synthesis. Fatty acid synthases (FAS) are a target of inhibition due to their involvement in key metabolic pathways and are promising targets for antibiotic and anti-neoplastic treatment. Furthermore, his group studies the use of type I FAS and type I polyketide synthases (PKS) as multistep catalysts for directed product synthesis. The synthetic strategy of these proteins provides high potential for biocatalytic approaches.

Concluding remarks for MiCom 2018

Thank you all for participating and sharing of your fruitful results! The MiCom especially attracting young scientists started in 2010 and is organized by PhD students of the Jena School for Microbial Communication (JSMC). MiCom2018 had over 160 participants from more than 20 different countries and a range of internationally renowned scientists from both Germany and abroad!

Besides oral presentations in different sessions, participants had deeper and active communication in welcome party (with Science Slam), poster session, workshops, conference dinner and various social activities. We heartily hope you enjoyed this conference for young scientists and got back with up-to-date “news” in microbial communication.

For further news and photos, please browse through our website and follow our updates on social media (Facebook/Twitter). We look forward to seeing you again in Jena and hearing about your research in the future!