SANTA FE, N.M., March 7, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The New Mexico IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (NM-INBRE) and the National Center for Genome Resources (NCGR) announce the 12th annual New Mexico Bioinformatics, Science and Technology (NMBIST) symposium on Microbiomics March 16-17, 2017 at the Buffalo Thunder Resort in Santa Fe, NM. The study of microbial communities is an extremely fast-growing field in which all the microflora present in a given environment are investigated together. For example, studying soil, water, air, dust, or a particular body site (mouth, gut, or skin) is presenting groundbreaking findings. The implications span from biofilm control, animal husbandry, antibiotic resistance, disease treatment to how an environment affects the microbes an organism hosts. Probing such environmental communities is also revealing novel organisms with unique properties. A compelling area of microbiome research lies in investigating the resident microbiota in the human body elucidating that many are important for health.
This year's keynote speaker, Dr. Suzanne Simard, is a forest ecologist and studies plant-plant communication via an "invisible" underground network. This network of mycorrhizal fungi move carbon, water and nutrients between trees to help the entire forest flourish. Dr. Sadowsky will address how bacteriotherapy can be used to treat recurrent Clostridium difficile (C. diff) associated disease. Dr. Sutton will discuss pan-genomic approaches to study gene content differences in many strains of the same bacterial species, thus deconvoluting data representation. Dr. Brown will talk about how to tackle the massive influx of environmental datasets using effective bioinformatics methods. Dr. Crosby will present his innovative analysis suite for 16S probing, which exploits all nine hypervariable regions of the 16S rDNA. Dr. Britton's research focuses on diet driven evolution of new strains of C. difficile implicated in enteric CDI (Clostridium difficle infection). Dr. Weisenhorn will address single organism and multi-species community microbial metabolic models highlighting the importance of metabolites during interspecies interactions. Dr. Rupp will discuss bat viral metagenome analysis, which is of interest both ecologically and for potential zoonotic diseases. Dr. Hartmann will talk about antibiotic resistance in the dust microbiome. Dr. Dinwiddie's talk will shed light on the complex relationship between respiratory viral infections and the microbiome of an individual, and, Dr. Watkins will cover various analysis approaches to assess metaviromic data from environmental samples.
The goal of the conference is to provide university level students and faculty, from primarily the Southwest region, a glimpse into the vast world of microbial research and how it relates to life sciences, bioinformatics, computation and technology. The event offers students the opportunity to present their research during the student poster session and vie for a speaking slot at the plenary session.
Major funding is provided by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. Other benefactors include Pacific Biosciences, Illumina and Phase Genomics. The symposium's title sponsor, Bioo Scientific, will discuss NEXTflex 16S metagenomics; comparing 16S amplicons to microbial community standards and environmental samples.
About NCGR: NCGR is a nonprofit research institute that applies next-generation sequencing, software engineering and bioinformatics to solve the preeminent challenges of 21st century biology. To learn more about our collaborative projects, services and educational offerings, please visit www.ncgr.org.
About NM-INBRE: The objective of NM-INBRE is to increase collaborative, multidisciplinary biomedical research at New Mexico's institutions of higher education and expand the pool of biological and biomedical researchers in New Mexico. For more information, please visit www.nminbre.org.
NM-INBRE is supported by an Institutional Development Award (IDeA) from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under grant number P20GM103451.
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