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09.23.17 - Fifth Annual Microbiome Symposium is a Success



The fifth annual Southern California Microbiome Symposium was held Friday at CALIT2.

The one-day event, titled, Connections to the Environment and Health, was co-hosted by UCI’s Institute for Genomics and Bioinformatics, CALIT2, UCI’s Data Science Initiative and the UCI Microbiome Initiative.

The term "microbiome" was coined by Joshua Lederberg, an American molecular biologist, who argued that microorganisms inhabiting the human body should be included as part of the human genome because of their influence on human physiology. Microbiome's most important aspect may be its possible effect on auto-immune diseases like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, and perhaps some cancers.

This annual event is an occasion for experts and researchers in the microbiome community to share recent findings and discuss opportunities for future collaboration.

The event presenters and topics included:

Rachel Dutton, UC San Diego, “Deconstructing and reconstructing microbial communities using cheese"

Denise Dearing, University of Utah, “Gut microbes facilitate the ingestion of dietary toxins by wild herbivores”

David Valentine, UC Santa Barbara, “The microbiome of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill”

Adam Martiny, UC Irvine, “Population genomic structure of marine bacteria”

Susan Huang, UC Irvine, “The impact of decolonization on health care associated infections”

Steven Frese, Evolve Biosystems, Davis, CA “Restoring the infant gut microbiome”

IIhem Messaoudi, UC Irvine, “Uncovering the role of microbiome in development of environmental enteric disease using a rhesus macaque model”

Rob Edwards, San Diego State University, “The global and local evolution of a ubiquitous phage from human intestines”

The symposium was followed by a wine and cheese reception with a live band in the CALIT2 Building Atrium.

--Shelly Nazarenus