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Dispatches from Microbiota 2011

Genomics fires Microbiota 2011 to new heights

By Shane Starling in Paris , 15-Dec-2011

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Mapping the microbiome and the increasing sophistication of gene sequencing and analysis have in just a few years completely changed the research landscape for microbiota, and looks set to answer many to-date unresolved ‘mechanism of action’ questions.

After two days of high-level scientific presentations meshed with commercial possibilities, along with debate dominated by cutting edge genomic revelations, the co-chairs of Microbiota 2011 scan the event’s highlights, and look forward to next year’s edition.

“If the delegates come they want us to pay attention to the high level in science,” said Microbiota founder and co-chair, Jean-Michel Pommet.

“Perfect mix of business and science”

Pommet’s co-chair for the event, Koos Oosterhaven, business manager at NIZO Food Research in the Netherlands highlighted the event’s multiple targets.

“It was a very exciting conference I would say – it’s the perfect mix of business and science…the science is progressing in such a way that they are going from names of microorganisms on the body, in the body, cavities, into gene function,” he said.

“So what does it mean that all these microorganisms are on our body, or in our body cavities? What do they do there? Why are they there? Even more important for business, how could that gene function be used in order to turn that into cosmetics, or into topical applications, or into prebiotic or probiotic functionalities.”

“It needs a multi-disciplinary approach from now on…”

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