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Overview

 

Celebrate life sciences with us

It is our great pleasure to announce the 10th ÖGMBT Annual Meeting, which will be held under the title “10 years of life, science and molecules” - from September 17-20, 2018 in Vienna, Austria. This meeting – the largest Life Science meeting in Austria - will be a unique occasion, connecting students and scientists, academic researchers and industrial representatives as well. The active and successful life sciences scene in Austria shall become visible by presentations in form of talks and posters, for which abstracts are kindly requested. PhD students are particularly invited to showcase their work and take the opportunity to start building their professional networks. Abstracts for scientific contributions are kindly requested from academia and industry.
To underline the fruitful diversity of research topics and locations and to celebrate the successful cohesion of our scene - 10 years now under the umbrella of ÖGMBT - special care has been taken to involve session chairs from different institutions spread over all Austria. Chairs from the Universities of basic and applied sciences, research institutes, startup companies and large pharma corporations will strive to present an extraordinary scientific program, covering three streams:

Biotechnology and molecular biology

Cancer and human disease

Medical microbiology and immunology


In addition to the main program, the Biophysics Austria Annual Meeting will be held as satellite meeting and career talks will be organized by ÖGMBT YLSA (Young Life Scientists Austria) on  September 17th
Ample time is planned for science, but networking and occasions to connect are an integral part of our event. Among other possibilities “Wine & Science” shall be highlighted. Our corporate sponsors traditionally invite all attendees to enjoy wine and cheese (prime biotech products, of course) and chat in an informal atmosphere.

Cordially inviting you to celebrate with us,

Michael Sauer, Sergey Zotchev, Angela Sessitsch, and Alexandra Khassidov

OGMBT JT2018 Poster 

Spread the word and download the 10th ÖGMBT Annual Meeting Poster!

> REGISTRATION & ABSTRACT SUBMISSION is open!

Main Topics

Biotechnology and molecular biologyMedical microbiology and immunologyCancer and human disease

Plant biotechnology

Optimization of microbial workhorses for biotechnology

Cell immobilization

Microbial chemical production

Biopharmaceutical technologies

Synthetic biology

Molecular microbiology

Neuroimmunology

Next-generation pathogen & antibiotic resistance diagnostics

New trends in allergy diagnosis and therapy

Microbiomes: interplay of microbes, their hosts and environments

Gut microbiota and hunger sensing

Antimicrobial drugs: drug sceening and prudent use

Antimicrobial resistance: transfer of bugs and genes in diverse ecosystems

From RNAomics to function

Biological barriers in health and disease

Extracellular vesicles in coagulation and inflammation

Biomaterials in surgery

Pluripotent stem cells and neural differentiation

Cancer metabolism, autophagy and cell death

Translational oncology

Invited Speakers

Irina Borodina
DTU, DK

Thibaud Coradin
CNRS / LCMCP, FR

Christian Eckmann
MLU, DE

Alexander Harms
University of Copenhagen, DK

Arnold J.M. Driessen
RUG, NL

Alexander Loy
University of Vienna, AT

Christine Radtke
Medical University of Vienna, AT

John WA Rossen
University of Groningen, NL

Marc Stadler
HZI, DE

Peter Zilla
Cape Town University, ZA

Alain Brisson
CBMN, FR

Paul Cos
University of Antwerp, BE

Stefan Jansson
Umeå University, SE

Christopher Landowski
VTT, FI

Roman Necina
Shire, AT

Liam O’Mahony
UCC, IE

Stefan Rose-John
CAU, DE

Marina Šantić
University of Rijeka, HR

Peter Vandenabeele
Ghent University, BE

Heinz Burgmann
Medical University of Vienna, AT

Richard Daneman
UCSD, US

Roman Jerala
NIC, SI

Rick Livesey
University of Cambridge, UK

Marco Prinz
BIOSS, DE

Joshua Rosenthal
The University of Chicago, US

Kerstin Schipper
HHU, DE

Christine Ziegler
UR, DE

 

Scientific Committee

Michael Bergmann,
Medical University of Vienna

 

Anton Glieder,
TU Graz

Sigismund Huck,
Medical University of Vienna

Annemarie Käsbohrer,
Vetmeduni Vienna

Günther Koraimann,
University of Graz

Alexander Lichius,
University of Innsbruck

Fatemeh Maghuly,
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences

Dorothea Orth-Höller,
Medical University of Innsbruck

Andreas Posch,
Ares Genetics GmbH

Angela Sessitsch,
AIT

Matthias Steiger,
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences

Eva Untersmayr-Elsenhuber,
Medical University of Vienna

Viktoria Weber,
Danube University Krems

Konstantin Bergmeister,
Medical University of Vienna / BG-Klinik Ludwigshafen / Heidelberg University

Kalina Duszka,
University of Vienna

Klaus Graumann,
Novartis / Sandoz

Beatrice Jahn-Schmid,
Medical University of Vienna

Georg Klima,
Boehringer Ingelheim

Kaisa Koskinen,
Medical University of Graz

Alexandra Lusser,
Medical University of Innsbruck

Winfried Neuhaus,
AIT

Brigitte Pertschy,
University of Graz

Claudia Preininger,
AIT

Sandra Siegert,
IST Austria

Joseph Strauss,
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences

Andreas Villunger,
Medical University of Innsbruck

Sergey Zotchev,
University of Vienna

David Berry,
University of Vienna

Mohamed Elgendy,
University of Vienna

Buck Hanson,
University of Vienna

Michael Jantsch,
Medical University of Vienna

Bon-Kyoung Koo,
IMBA

Margit Laimer,
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences

Astrid Mach-Aigner,
TU Wien

Christa Nöhammer,
AIT

Bruno Podesser,
Medical University of Vienna

Monika Schmoll,
AIT

 

Ines Swoboda,
FH Campus Vienna

Martin Wagner,
Vetmeduni Vienna

Organizing Committee

Michael Sauer (Chair)
BOKU

Alexandra Khassidov
ÖGMBT

Angela Sessitsch
AIT
Sergey Zotchev
University Wien

Venue

Campus of the University of Vienna
Spitalgasse 2 (Ecke Alser Straße)
1090 Wien

Irina Borodina, Technical University of Denmark, DK

Irina Borodina

Irina Borodina is Senior Scientist and Group Leader at the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark. Her group focuses on advancing the methodologies for metabolic engineering of yeast cell factories for sustainable production of bulk and high-value chemicals. Irina Borodina received her Chemical Engineering degree from Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania in 2001 and her Ph.D. degree in Biotechnology from Technical University of Denmark in 2007. She has authored and co-authored 37 peer-reviewed articles, which have been cited over 1,600 times, and she is co-inventor of 9 patent applications. She received Jay Bailey Young Investigator Award in Metabolic Engineering in 2016. Irina is co-founder and CEO of a biotech start-up company BioPhero ApS.

 

Alain Brisson, UMR-CBMN, FR

Alain Brisson

Alain Brisson studied physical chemistry, biochemistry and neurobiology and obtained a thesis diploma from Paris-7 University and a PhD dedicated to the structural analysis of membrane proteins by electron crystallography from the University of Grenoble (1975-80). A.R. Brisson held successively academic positions as scientist at the Grenoble Nuclear Energy Center (80-87), visiting scientist at Stanford University (82-84), research director at INSERM in Strasbourg (87-94), Professor of Chemistry at the University of Groningen (94-01), group leader at the European Institute in Chemistry and Biology in Bordeaux (2001-11) and Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Bordeaux (2001-2017). He is currently Emeritus Professor at the University of Bordeaux in CNRS unit CBMN. He was president of the French Society for Microscopies from 2004 to 2006 and was nominated senior member of the Institut Universitaire de France from 2011 to 2016.  

The central focus of his research has been membrane biology, with the objective of elucidating biological processes occurring at cell membranes and the relationship between structure and function of protein-membrane complexes, mainly by imaging methods (cryo-electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy) and physico-chemical methods (Q-CMD, flow cytometry). Since a decade, his research focuses on the field of extracellular vesicles and exosomes, with the objectives to determine their structure, phenotype and concentration in health and disease situations, to identify disease-specific EV signatures and develop standardized methods of EV quantification and purification. His group has major expertise in cryo-electron microscopy, immuno-gold labeling, flow cytometry and protein-conjugated nanoparticle synthesis.

Emilio Casanova, Medical University of Vienna, AT

Emilio Casanova

Emilio Casanova is a professor at the Medical University of Vienna since 2014. After completing his PhD in molecular biology at the University of Leon, Spain in 1997 he performed two post-doctoral trainings in Heidelberg and Basel where he became an expert in transgenic mouse models. In 2006 he joined the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Cancer Research in Vienna as group leader focusing on the use of transgenic mouse models to study tumorigenesis. His actual research interests are 1) generating genetically modified mouse models to understand KRAS driven lung adenocarcinoma and 2) developing of euchromatin-containing expression vectors to produce recombinant proteins on mammalian cells. He is an editor of a book in Methods of Molecular Biology about “Mouse Models of Cancer”.

Thibaud Coradin, Sorbonne Université - CNRS, FR

Thibaud Coradin

Thibaud Coradin obtained his PhD in Materials Science at Université Paris 11 in 1997. He was a post-doc in the Royal Institution of Great Britain (London) and Temporary Assistant Lecturer in Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Chimie Paris. He was appointed as a CNRS research fellow in 1999, in the Laboratoire de Chimie de la Matière Condensée de Paris where he developed biomimetic approaches to cell encapsulation in inorganic and then in collagen-based materials. He was promoted Research Director in 2007 and funded the “Materials and Biology” team in 2009, gathering chemists, biologists and physicists to study cell-materials interactions and their application in biofunctional materials design. He published 180 papers, co-edited 2 books related to bio-nanoscience, deposited 3 patent applications and gave 30 invited talks in international conferences

Paul Cos, University of Antwerp, BE

Paul Cos

Prof. dr. Paul Cos, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Laboratory of Microbiology, Parasitology and Hygiene (LMPH), University of Antwerp.

 

Paul Cos was born in Turnhout (Belgium) in 1970. In 2001, he became a Doctor in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Antwerp, Belgium. After a post-doc fellowship at the Research Fund (FWO) - Flanders, he was appointed associate professor in 2009 and professor in 2014 at the University of Antwerp. He is one of the directors of LMPH, which is a research unit at the University of Antwerp with more than 30 staff members (website: https://www.uantwerpen.be/en/rg/lmph/).

His main research interests are macrophage-pathogen interactions, with a focus on bacterial biofilms and oxidative stress. Paul Cos has an extensive expertise in the management of multi-partner research projects, including FWO, IWT-SBO (SBO-Resist), GOA-BOF and EU-FP7 projects (ITN Print-AID and ITN DED3). He is a board member of the Belgian Society of Microbiology (BSM) and BSM delegate for the Federation of European Microbiological Societies (FEMS).

 

Richard Daneman, UCSD, US

Richard Daneman

Richard Daneman received his Bachelor of Science McGill University, in Montreal Canada majoring in biochemistry.  He then received his Ph.D in developmental biology from Stanford University where he studied the molecular mechanisms that regulate blood-brain barrier formation in the laboratory of Dr. Ben Barres.  Dr. Daneman then started his own lab as a Sandler Fellow at UCSF, before moving to a position as Assistant Professor in the departments of Pharmacology and Neuroscience at the University of California, San Diego.  Dr. Daneman focuses his studies on understanding the molecular mechanisms that regulate blood-brain barrier (BBB) function during health and disease.  He has won a number of awards including the Rita Allen Foundation Milton E. Cassel Scholar Award, the Klingenstein-Simons Fellowship Award in Neuroscience, the ASPET Neuropharmacology Early Career Award and the American Association of Anatomists Young Investigator Award. His lab uses a combination of cellular, molecular and genetic approaches to understand the mechanisms of BBB formation and function, addressing important questions such as:  What are the molecules in CNS vascular cells that form the BBB? What are the signaling mechanisms that regulate the formation of the BBB during development, and dynamic function throughout life?. What are the molecular mechanisms that lead to BBB disruption during neurological disease?  The overall goal of his work is to elucidate these mechanisms, such that we will be able to develop therapeutics to modulate the barrier to treat neurological diseases.

Arnold Driessen, University of Groningen, NL

Arnold Driessen

Arnold Driessen is Full Professor in Molecular Microbiology at the University of Groningen (NL)  and member of the Kluyver Center of Genomics of Industrial Fermentation. He obtained his degree in biology at the University of Groningen in 1983. In 1987, he received his PhD with cum laude. In 1990, after postdoctoral research at UCLA, USA, he returned to the Netherlands and since then leads a research group that amongst others studies antibiotic and natural production formation in filamentous fungi. Driessen is flagship leader in BE-Basic, an international public-private partnership in the field of sustainable chemistry and ecology, funded by the Dutch government. Driessen is member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Christian R. Eckmann, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, DE

Christian R. Eckmann

Christian Eckmann obtained a diploma in Molecular Genetics at the University of Vienna in 1995. Supported by a DOC stipend from the Austrian Academy of Sciences, he elucidated in his PhD thesis the molecular basis of adenosine-deaminase-mediated mRNA editing and graduated from the same University in 1998. As a postdoc, he joined the lab of Judith Kimble, a Howard Hughes Medical Investigator (HHMI) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, to follow his interests in developmental RNA regulation in germ cells and to be trained in the genetic animal model system, C. elegans. After co-discovering the unique family of regulated cytoplasmic polyA polymerases, he joined the newly established MPI of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics (Dresden) in 2004. Initially as a junior and later as a senior independent research group leader, he establish a broad research program on post-transcriptional RNA regulatory networks, developmental mRNP dynamics, and germ cell-specific RNA granule biology. In 2014, he got accepted into the Heisenberg Program of the German Research Council (DFG) and moved to the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, where he became professor for Developmental Genetics in 2016.

His long-standing research interests unite the two worlds of RNA and Germ Cell Biology. While specifically working on the molecular functions of RNA-modifying enzymes and RNA-binding proteins, he recently developed also a strong interest in the post-translational control mechanism of RNA regulators during germline specification and formation. His research philosophy is motivated by a strong commitment to interdisciplinary approaches, for which he also received funding from the Human Frontiers Science Project, as a Long-term Stipend holder and Program Grant awardee.

Alexander Harms, University of Copenhagen, DK

Alexander Harms

Dr. Alexander Harms is a microbiologist studying the molecular mechanisms that underly the failure of antibiotics to kill some bacterial cells despite their genetic susceptibility to the treatment.

He received his PhD degree at the University of Basel (Switzerland) for work on evolutionary links between bacterial stress response loci known as toxin‑antitoxin (TA) modules and host-targeted effector proteins of bacterial pathogens. Subsequently, he joined Prof. Kenn Gerdes’ group at the University of Copenhagen (Denmark) that was renowned for studying the role of TA modules in the formation of bacterial persisters. These dormant cells are hallmarked by their tolerance to antibiotic treatment and considered to be main culprits behind the recalcitrance of chronic or relapsing bacterial infections. Dr. Harms uncovered that the common view on Escherichia coli persister cell formation as being a phenomenon driven by TA module activation is wrong and he unraveled how a number of biological and technical artefacts have promoted this misconception in previous studies. Consequently, his current work is taking a new view on the molecular basis of bacterial antibiotic tolerance.

Stefan Jansson, Umeå university, SE

Stefan Jansson

Dr. Stefan Jansson is Professor and Head of the Department of Plant Physiology at Umeå University, Sweden, a part of Umeå Plant Science Centre. He got his PhD in plant cell- and molecular biology at Umeå University in 1992 and has in his career focused first and foremost on basic research of photosynthesis light harvesting, but since 2001 also on genetic, genomics and natural variation in aspen, in particular in relation to phenology. He was also leading the project to sequence the first conifer genome (Norway spruce). In the last years, he has been much involved in the debate on GMOS, in particular in relation to novel plant breeding techniques like CRISPR. He is a member of Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences and president of Scandinavian Plant Physiology Society (SPPS).

Roman Jerala, National institute of chemistry, SI

Roman Jerala

Roman Jerala is head of the Department of synthetic biology and immunology at the National institute of chemistry in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

He received his PhD at the University of Ljubljana and postdoctoral training at the University of Virginia. Since 1996 he has been at the National institute of chemistry, initially working on the NMR of proteins and later switching towards signaling in innate immunity and synthetic biology, which are currently two most important research topics in his group. Research in the field of innate immunity has been primarily dedicated to the investigation of the molecular mechanisms of signaling of Toll-like receptors using combination of molecular modeling, molecular biology and immunology with implications and applications for vaccines and cancer. The main areas of synthetic biology in his group include i) design of bionanostructures, ii) engineering of mammalian cell signaling, iii) information processing by mammalian cells and iv) scaffolding of the biosynthetic pathways. His group demonstrated single-layer logic NOR gates based on TALE-KRAB repressors that allowed construction of logic gates in mammalian cells and orthogonal bistable genetic switches  and designed cell logic was also used for the design of anti-inflammatory therapeutic cellular device. One of his most original achievement was the invention of a new principle for the construction of protein folds, called “coiled-coil protein origami” (CCPO), based on the concatenated modular building blocks, which is also the topic of his recent ERC Advanced Grant project MaCChines.

He is member of the editorial board of ACS Synthetic Biology, Journal of Biological Chemistry and Innate immunity. He has been elected as an EMBO member and member of the Academia Europaea and has been known in the synthetic biology community as a mentor of successful iGEM student research projects.

Annemarie Käsbohrer, University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, AT

Annemarie Käsbohrer

Annemarie Käsbohrer is veterinarian with specialisation in microbiology and epidemiology. Since 2006, she is Head of Unit for Epidemiology, Zoonoses and Antimicrobial resistance at the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. In addition, since April 2016 she is professor and head of institute of Veterinary Public Health at the Veterinary University in Vienna. She has very much expertise in the areas monitoring and surveillance of zoonotic pathogens in the food chain; collection and analysis of data related to risk factors for zoonotic agents and antimicrobial resistance and the impact of risk factors on the spread of these; she was involved in the development and validation of epidemiological models and exposure assessment of zoonotic pathogens and antimicrobial resistance.

Christopher Landowski, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd., FI

Christopher Landowski

Christopher Landowski is the Research Team Leader of the Protein Production Team at VTT Technical Research Institute of Finland. His research expertise covers metabolism of anticancer prodrugs, membrane transport proteins for nutrients and peptidomimetics, and recombinant protein production in industrial microbes. He earned his Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Michigan (USA) in 2005. He has done postdoctoral work in Harvard Medical School (USA) and University of Bern Medical School (CH). At VTT his research work is aimed at understanding secretion related processes in filamentous fungi and applying this knowledge to create improved commercial production strains. He is currently Principal Investigator on an Academy of Finland funded research project to study sugar sensing and enzyme secretion in filamentous fungi (2016-2020).

Rick Livesey, University of Cambridge, GB

Rick Livesey

Rick Livesey MD PhD is currently a Senior Group Leader at the Wellcome Trust/Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute at the University of Cambridge, where he has been based since 2001. His lab uses human stem cell systems to study human forebrain development, evolution and disease, with a focus on the cellular biology of highly penetrant mutations. That work has also enabled research on therapeutic target identification and validation in neurodegeneration, as well as studies of therapeutic efficacy in human neurons and microglia. 

Alexander Loy, University of Vienna, AT

Alexander Loy

Alexander Loy is Professor for Microbial Communities at the Department of Microbiology and Ecosystem Science (University of Vienna, Austria), managing director of the Austrian Microbiome Initiative (AMICI), and faculty member of the Austrian Polar Research Institute (APRI). Research of the Loy group focuses on ecology and evolution of sulfur microorganisms, the function of the complex symbiotic microbiota of animals and humans in health and disease, and the development of molecular and isotope-labeling methods for studying uncultivated microorganisms in their natural environment.

Alexander Loy received his PhD in Microbiology in 2003 at the Technical University of Munich in Germany. In the same year, he was awarded a Marie Curie postdoctoral fellowship to join the newly founded Department of Microbial Ecology at the University of Vienna in Austria, where he established his own research group in 2006 based on third-party grants and was Assistant Professor (2009-2013) and Associate Professor (2013-2017). He obtained his Habilitation (venia docendi) in Microbiology and received the Young Scientist Award of the City of Vienna in 2012. He has published 74 peer-reviewed papers with a total impact factor of 506 and more than 7.900 citations (Google Scholar H-index of 41).

Roman Necina, Shire, AT

Roman Necina

Roman is heading the Process Science and Technical Services team at Shire. In his current role he is responsible for all process, assay and formulation development activities across all modalities, medical device development, QbD and technical support for GMP products across the internal and external manufacturing network. Roman has 25 years experience in development and launch of biopharmaceuticals and has served as VP Biopharmaceutical Production & Process Science for Boehringer Ingelheim, SVP Quality & Regulatory Compliance and as VP Technical Operations for Intercell. Roman graduated at the University for Agriculture in Vienna, Austria and holds a Ph.D. in biotechnology.

 

Liam O'Mahony, University College Cork, IE

Liam O'Mahony

Prof. Liam O’Mahony received his BSc in Microbiology from University College Cork, Ireland in 1994 and his PhD in Immunology was awarded in 1998 by Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. Thereafter, Dr. O’Mahony performed post-doctoral research at the Department of Microbiology, University College Cork, Department of Medicine, University College Cork and the Digestive Diseases Division, UCLA. Dr. O’Mahony was a Principal Investigator at the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre, University College Cork, from 2003 to 2008. From 2009 to 2018, he was head of Molecular Immunology at the Swiss Institute of Allergy and Asthma Research, University of Zürich, Switzerland. He is currently the Prof. of Immunology at the Departments of Medicine and Microbiology, APC Microbiome Ireland, National University of Ireland, Cork, Ireland. His research interests are focused on the molecular basis for microbe and metabolite modulation of mucosal inflammatory responses.

Stefan Rose-John, University of Kiel, DE

Stefan Rose-John

Stefan Rose-John studied at the University of Heidelberg Biology with the subsidiary subjects Chemistry and Physics. After receiving his doctorate, Stefan Rose-John worked as a postdoc at the Michigan State University in the USA. Thereafter, Stefan Rose-John became a junior group leader at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, Germany. After moving to the RWTH Aachen, Stefan Rose-John was habilitated in Biochemistry. He became Associate Professor of Pathophysiology at the University of Mainz. In 2000, he moved to the University of Kiel where he became full Professor and Director of the Institute of Biochemistry.

Since many years, his laboratory is focused on understanding the molecular biology of cytokines. A major aspect of his work has started with the discovery of a naturally occurring proteolytic cleavage of the Interleukin-6 receptor, which leads to the generation of a soluble Interleukin-6 receptor. He has discovered that the complex of soluble Interleukin-6-receptor and Interleukin-6 stimulates cells, which express the signal transducing receptor subunit gp130 but not the ligand binding subunit Interleukin-6 receptor. In the absence of the sIL-6R such cells do not respond to IL-6. He has called this process 'trans-signaling' and he has shown in the past years that 'trans-signaling' has a prominent role in inflammation, neuronal survival, hematopoiesis, and tumor defense. He is currently developing the concept that IL-6 'trans-signaling' is an emergency reaction of the human immune system and that disruption of 'trans-signaling' can be used therapeutically for the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases and cancer. Indeed, he generated a specific IL-6 'trans-signaling' antagonist, which – in animal models – has proven effective in blocking chronic inflammatory diseases such as Crohn’s diseases, Rheumatoid Arthritis and inflammatory colon cancer, is now being tested in Phase II clinic trials in patients with inflammatory bowel disease.

Joshua Rosenthal, Marine Biological Laboratory/ Univ of Chicago, US

Joshua Rosenthal

Joshua Rosenthal is a Senior Scientist at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. He received his Ph.D. in Biology from Stanford University and completed his postdoctoral training in biophysics and physiology at UCLA. Before coming to the Marine Biological Laboratory, he rose from Assistant to Full Professor at the University of Puerto Rico’s Medical Sciences Campus. Dr. Rosenthal’s research focuses on the process of RNA editing from a variety of angles. His group has shown that mRNA recoding is unusually frequent in cephalopods. They are interested in what it’s being used for and how the underlying machinery for RNA editing differs in this taxon.  Other projects aim to use RNA editing as a vehicle for therapeutics.

John W.A. Rossen, University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, NL

John W.A. Rossen

Prof. dr. John W. A. Rossen has an almost 30-year history in molecular virology/microbiology and more than 144 peer reviewed publications (Google Scholar H-index 33; Scopus H-index 27). He is tenure track Professor at the University of Groningen and head of the molecular unit which has recently implemented the use of next generation sequencing for routine clinical microbiology and infection prevention. The method is used to determine the genetic relationship between pathogens (used to guide infection prevention measures) and for the molecular detection and further characterization of (emerging) pathogens. This includes analyses for revealing (new) antibiotic resistance mechanisms and for determining the virulence of pathogens resulting in improved risk assessment and infection prevention. In addition, based on comparing whole genomes of bacteria, tailor-made diagnostic tests are developed used for specific detection of outbreak and or virulent bacterial strains. Nowadays his research is focused on implementing metagenomics into clinical microbiology. In his research group “Personalised Microbiology” several PhD students, Post-Docs and technicians work together to investigate not only patient samples but also samples taken from animals, food and water - thereby realizing the one health principle in microbiology. Currently, Prof. dr. Rossen is involved in the supervision of 9 PhD students. He is secretary of the ESCMID study group for genomic and molecular diagnostics (ESGMD) and treasurer of the Dutch Society of Medical Microbiology. 

Specialties: Molecular diagnostics of infectious diseases - Real-time PCR -
Molecular Biology - Virology - Cell biology - Microbiology - Genomics - Next Generation Sequencing - Genotyping - Metagenomics - Transcriptomics

Ana Ruiz-Saenz, UCSF, US

Ana Ruiz-Saenz

Dr. Ana Ruiz-Saenz is a senior scientist at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF). She obtained a degree in Biochemistry and a Ph.D in Molecular Biology from the University Autonoma of Madrid.

In 2013, she was awarded with a Ramon Areces postdoctoral fellowship and she joined the laboratory of Dr. Moasser at UCSF where she has focused her research on the progression and resistance to therapies of HER2-amplified breast cancers. In an effort to explore novel therapeutically approaches, she found a novel mechanism to target the currently undruggable HER3 and explored the potential of HER2 to overcome the requirement of HER3 in HER2-amplified cancers. In collaboration with scientists at the University of California San Diego and The Netherlands Cancer Institute (NKI) she is also studying the role of Src in therapeutic resistance of BRAF(V600E) colorectal tumors. She is actively involved in Science Communication initiatives, mentoring and has participated in numerous international conferences.

Marina Santic, Medical faculty, University of Rijeka, HR

Marina Santic

Dr. M. Santic is full professor at the Department of Microbiology, Medical Faculty, University of Rijeka. She is running several projects related to the research of intracellular pathogens and Host pathogen interaction with special focus on F. tularensis and L. pneumophila. M. Santic (maiden name Radulic) has published more than 40 papers in high impact journal including “Science” and “Journal of Experimental Medicine” in addition to the book chapters. She frequently reviews proposals for national and international programs, institutes and papers. M. Santic has been awarded Best Scientist in Croatia, 2007, Best Scientist at the University of Rijeka two years in a row, 2005 and 2006 and Best Scientist of Primorska-goranska County 2010.

Kerstin Schipper, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, DE

Kerstin Schipper

Kerstin Schipper, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany

Kerstin Schipper obtained her Ph.D. in the field of plant pathology in 2009 from Philipps University Marburg. She conducted her doctoral project under the supervision of Prof. Regine Kahmann at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology. In her work she investigated the interaction of the corn smut fungus Ustilago maydis with its host plant maize on the level of secreted fungal effectors. Since then, protein secretion is in the center of her research interest. After a short postdoctoral time at the MPI in Marburg, she moved on to the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf where she started her own group in 2011. Sticking with the model fungus Ustilago maydis, she now dedicates her work to more applied aspects. One major focus is the dissection of a novel unconventional secretion pathway and its potential applications for heterologous protein production.

Marc Stadler, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung (HZI), DE

Marc Stadler

Marc Stadler studied biology in Kaiserslautern and received his PhD in 1993 on the subject of new antibiotics and nematicides from predacious fungi. His PhD project was supported by a grant form the German National Scholarship Foundation. After a DFG-funded post-doctoral stay at University of Lund/Sweden in natural product chemistry, he joned the pharmaceutical industry in 1995 and worked in the natural products department of Bayer Healthcare (Pharma Division). Together with other Bayer researchers, he later co-founded the company InterMed Discovery GmbH in 2006 as an MBO, where he worked as Department Head until April 2012. During his industrial career (17 years in total) he was responsible for the fungal and microbial culture collections , the fermentation and biotechnological process development, as well as a natural product chemical laboratory. Concurrently, he was teaching at University of Bayreuth, where he completed his habilitation in 2009 and received the venia legendi in Mycology. He is a globally recognized expert in industrial microbiology and mycology, as well as fungal biodiversity research. He also acts on the Editorial Boards of leading mycological journals such as Studies in Mycology and Fungal Diversity, was appointed in 2016 as Editor-in-Chief of Mycological Progress, and is Acting Vice President of the International Mycological Association (IMA). He took over his current position at HZI in 2012 and is teaching biology and biotechnology at Technical University of Braunschweig. He has coauthored over 250 original papers, reviews and patents.

Dora Clara Tarlungeanu, IST Austria, AT

Dora Clara Tarlungeanu

Dora Clara Tărlungeanu completed a BSc and an MSc in Pharmacy at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Iuliu Hatieganu” in Cluj-Napoca (Romania) before joining IST Austria in 2013. Her main research interests include understanding the role of genetics in the onset of complex diseases, such as autism spectrum disorder, and contributing to the development of individualized therapies for such conditions. She worked on the research project “The Branched Chain Amino Acids in Autism Spectrum Disorders ” at IST Austria, and has published the results in the prestigious and leading biology journal Cell. During her PhD studies, Dora presented her research results at several international conferences and earned an award for the best poster at the BioParadigms conference in Lausanne, Switzerland in 2017. Besides her scientific research interests, she was a leading member of the organizing committees for IST Austria's Young Scientist Symposium 2016 and the Science Industry Day 2017. She is a very motivated and dedicated scientist who is genuinely interested in tackling medical challenges and in using her skills to develop innovative medical treatments as part of her future career. 

Henning Walczak, UCL Cancer Institute, GB

Henning Walczak

Professor Henning Walczak is Head of the Department of Cancer Biology at the Cancer Institute of University College London (UCL), Chair of the Centre for Cell Death, Cancer and Inflammation (CCCI) and Scientific Director of the Cancer Research UK - UCL Centre. Following his PhD in 1995 at the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ, Heidelberg, Germany), he performed postdoctoral research at Immunex Corporation in Seattle (WA, USA). After returning to Europe in 1998, he became group leader at the DKFZ in 2000 following receipt of a BioFuture Prize awarded by the German Ministry for Science and Education. In October 2007 he was appointed as Chair of Tumour Immunology at Imperial College London, and joined UCL in January 2013 to assume his current position. In 2012 Professor Walczak was awarded an ERC Advanced Grant and received a Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator Award. His research on cancer has been funded through Programme grants from Cancer Research UK since 2008.

Professor Walczak’s research focuses on cell death and ubiquitin in inflammation, cancer and auto-immunity. He is particularly interested in unravelling the mechanisms how different death receptor-ligand systems such as the TNF and TRAIL systems are regulated and how they impact cancer cell survival and cancer-related inflammation. His research aims at developing novel cancer therapies on the basis of specifically inducing cancer cell death and by therapeutically directing the type of death induced in cancer cells to convert cancer-related inflammation from being immune-regulatory to enabling the immune system to recognise and kill cancer cells.

Wolfram Weckwerth, university of Vienna, AT

Wolfram Weckwerth

Wolfram Weckwerth integrates system-theoretical ideas with genome-scale molecular analysis using genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, phosphoproteomics and metabolomics to understand and predict the genotype - phenotype-relationship. He investigates plant, microbial, animal and human systems. Working in the field of metabolomics since 2000, Wolfram Weckwerth has established metabolomics, proteomics and phosphoproteomics platforms in Germany and Austria. In 2008 he moved as a full professor to the University of Vienna and founded the Department of Molecular Systems Biology (MOSYS). Since 2013 he is Head of the newly founded Department of Ecogenomics and Systems Biology comprising a full PANOMICS platform. Since 2015 Wolfram Weckwerth is founding chair of the Vienna Metabolomics Center (VIME) (https://vime.at/). VIME has a focus on biomedical research questions and algorithms for data processing and integration, biochemical interpretation, structural elucidation of unknown metabolites as well as metabolomics/life sciences databases. Wolfram Weckwerth published more than 180 publications on systems biology applications, multiomics analysis and data-driven inverse modelling, edited several books and is special chief editor of Frontiers Metabolomics.

Peter Zilla, Univ. of Cape Town, ZA

Peter Zilla

After graduating as “Doctor of Medicine” at the University of Vienna in 1980 he obtained a DrMed. degree from the University of Zurich, a Habilitation” from the University of Vienna and a PhD degree from the University of Cape Town. He is a registered general-, vascular- and cardiothoracic surgeon.  

After he spent his initial three post-graduate years in basic science he commenced his surgical career with his residency at the University Hospital Vienna from 1983 to 1989. His subsequent surgical positions were as Senior Resident at the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, University Hospital Zurich (1989-1990) followed by staff surgeon positions in Austria and Cape Town where he has been Head of the Chris Barnard Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery for the past two decades.

Pioneering tissue engineering since 1983, his group developed a method of culturing the patient’s own endothelial cells on prosthetic surfaces. Addressing the need for ‘home grown’ solutions for patients in developing countries who have no access to cardiac surgery, Professor Zilla founded a University of Cape Town Start-Up Company in 2008.

He is author of >200 peer reviewed full papers and patents (104 times first author or corresponding author) with almost 10,000 citations and an H-index of 45. Apart from >40 filed or issued US/PCT patents he is the editor of 5 books and has authored numerous book chapters. He obtained international academic and industry grants of >14 million Euros and secured 20mio Euros for his University start-up company since 2008. For his research he has received several prestigious awards such as the Alexis Carrel and the Alain Carpentier Award. He was the organizer of 6 major international conferences in 4 different countries; is a member and executive council member of 10 international societies; was president of ISACB from 1994-98 and is on the editorial board of major international journals and was Associate Editor of ‘Biomaterials’ (IF 8).

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