Worth a look: American Academy of Microbiology report on the Human Microbiome

Definitely worth checking this out: FAQ: Human Microbiome, January 2014. It is a report from the American Academy of Microbiology and it is really well done.  In addition to the report itself there is also and Infographic and a nice little handout.

The report was based on discussions with a collection of Human Microbiome Gurus:

And it was written  by Ann Reid and Shannon Greene. It has a variety of useful tidbits and has a reasonable number of caveats – such as “it should be noted, however, that at this point, most studies, even in mice, are looking at correlations between gut microbiome composition and factors like weight, insulin sensitivity, and other metabolic measures.”

Full list of 2012 American Academy of Microbiology Fellows Announced

Just got this email and well, I thought I would share.  I would share even if I was not on the list since, well, I love microbes and microbiology.  Note the list is also available on the AAM Web site here.


The American Academy of Microbiology is honored to welcome these new Fellows, elected in recognition of their records of scientific achievement and original contributions that have advanced microbiology:
  • James B. Anderson, Ph.D., University of Toronto, Mississauga, ON, Canada
  • Dan I. Andersson, Ph.D., Uppsala University, Sweden
  • Raul Andino, Ph.D., University of California, San Francisco
  • Brenda J. Andrews, Ph.D., University of Toronto, BC, Canada
  • Charles Barlowe, Ph.D., Dartmouth Medical School, Hanover, NH
  • Joel B. Baseman, Ph.D., University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio
  • Ruth L. Berkelman, M.D., Emory University, Atlanta, GA
  • Robert E. Blankenship, Ph.D., Washington University, St. Louis
  • James B. Bliska, Ph.D., Stony Brook University, NY
  • Kerry S. Bloom, Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Jef D. Boeke, Ph.D., D. Sc., Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD
  • Charles M. Boone, Ph.D., University of Toronto, BC, Canada
  • Stephen Buratowski, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
  • George Church, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
  • Daniel G. Colley, Ph.D., University of Georgia, Athens
  • Patricia A. Conrad, Ph.D., D.V.M., University of California, Davis
  • Ross E. Dalbey, Ph.D., Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Roger J. Davis, Ph.D., Howard Hughes Medical Institute and University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worester
  • Piet A.J. de Boer, Ph.D., Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH
  • Mark R. Denison, M.D., Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN
  • Shou-Wei Ding, Ph.D., University of California, Riverside
  • Jonathan Eisen, Ph.D., University of California, Davis
  • Luis Enjuanes, Ph.D., National Center of Biotechnology-Spanish National Research Council (CNB-CSIC), Campus Universidad Autonoma, Madrid, Spain
  • Tom Fenchel, Ph.D., D. Sc., University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Robert L. Garcea, M.D., University of Colorado, Boulder
  • Reid Gilmore, Ph.D., University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester
  • Douglas T. Golenbock, M.D., University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester
  • Robert M. Goodman, Ph.D., School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
  • Daniel E. Gottschling, Ph.D., Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA
  • Glenda Gray, M.B. B.Ch., F.C. Paeds., Perinatal HIV Research Unit, Baragwanath Academic Hospital, Soweto and University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • F. Ulrich Hartl, M.D., Dr. Med., Dr. Med. Habil, Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Martinsried, Germany
  • Regine Hengge, Ph.D., Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
  • John E. Heuser, M.D., Washington University, St. Louis and Kyoto University, Japan
  • Wolf-Dietrich Heyer, Ph.D., University of California, Davis
  • Edward A. Hoover, D.V.M., Ph.D., Colorado State University, Fort Collins
  • Barbara J. Howlett, Ph.D., The University of Melbourne, Australia
  • Philip Hugenholtz, Ph.D., University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Australia
  • James M. Hughes, M.D., Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA
  • Eric Hunter, Ph.D., Emory University, Atlanta, GA
  • Regine Kahmann, Ph.D., Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology, Marburg, Germany
  • Albert Z. Kapikian, M.D., NIAID, NIH, Bethesda, MD
  • Patrick Keeling, Ph.D., University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • Karla Kirkegaard, Ph.D., Stanford University, CA
  • Eugene V. Koonin, Ph.D., NCBI, NLM, NIH, Bethesda, MD
  • Thomas M. Kristie, Ph.D., National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD
  • Nirbhay Kumar, Ph.D., Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
  • Ching Kung, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison
  • Jean-Paul Latge, Ph.D., Institut Pasteur, Paris, France
  • Jeffrey G. Lawrence, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh, PA
  • Jared R. Leadbetter, Ph.D., California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
  • Maxine L. Linial, Ph.D., Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA
  • Alison McBride, Ph.D., NIH, Bethesda, MD
  • Xiang-Jin Meng, M.D., Ph.D, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA
  • Hiroaki Mitsuya, M.D., Ph.D., National Cancer Institute, NIH, Bethesda, MD
  • Edward Mocarski, Jr., Ph.D., Stanford University School of Medicine, CA
  • Jens Nielsen, Ph.D., Dr. Technology, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden
  • Victor Nizet, M.D., University of California, San Diego
  • Paul A. Offit, M.D., Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, PA
  • Joseph S. Pagano, M.D., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Julian Parkhill, Ph.D., The Sanger Institute, Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Robin Patel, M.D., Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
  • John T. Patton, Ph.D., NIAID, NIH, Bethesda, MD
  • Martin Polz, Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • Markus Ribbe, Ph.D., University of California, Irvine
  • Naomi Rosenberg, Ph.D., Tufts University, Boston, MA
  • Eric J. Rubin, M.D., Ph.D., Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA
  • Peter Sarnow, Ph.D., Stanford University School of Medicine, CA
  • Christa M. Schleper, Ph.D., University of Vienna, Austria
  • Olaf Schneewind, M.D., Ph.D., University of Chicago, IL
  • David M. Serwadda, M.B.ChB., M. Med., M.P.H., Makerere University School of Public Health, Kampala, Uganda
  • Eric J. Snijder, Ph.D., Leiden University Medical Center, Netherlands
  • Roger E. Summons, Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • Michele S. Swanson, Ph.D., University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI
  • Rudolf K. Thauer, Dr. rer. nat., Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology, Marburg, Germany
  • Kenneth L. Tyler, M.D., University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver
  • Rytas Vilgalys, Ph.D., Duke University, Durham, NC
  • Peter R. Williamson, M.D., Ph.D., NIAID, NIH, Bethesda, MD
  • Thomas A. Wynn, Ph.D., NIAID, Bethesda, MD
  • X. Sunney Xie, Ph.D., Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
  • Arturo Zychlinsky, Ph.D., Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, Berlin, Germany
We hope that you will join us in welcoming the new Fellows at the Fellows Luncheon and Meeting at the General Meeting in San Francisco on June 19th. 
Sincerely yours,
Bonnie L. Bassler, Ph.D. 
Chair, Board of Governors 
American Academy of Microbiology

The Rare Biosphere, 2011 report from American Academy of Microbiology

I had posted this to twitter a while ago but not here. There is a report that came out from the American Academy of Microbiology from a Workshop in which I participated. The report is on “The Rare Biosphere, 2011” and it discusses some of the issues associated with the long tail of rare organisms that might exist, especially microbes.  It is worth a look.

From their page:

The microbial world represents the last truly unexplored frontier in the diversity of life on Earth. New environmental sampling technologies have revealed a wealth of rare microbial species in the soil, ocean, even our own bodies that were effectively cloaked from previous sampling methods by more abundant species. Dubbed the rare biosphere, these microbial species, while individually rare, collectively account for more than 75% of the biomass of some microbial communities, yet little is known about them. This rare biosphere represents a treasure trove of genetic novelty that may possess numerous unique bioprocesses and biomaterials. These rare species may play keystone roles in microbial communities and act as a reservoir of genetic diversity. But how can scientists effectively study the rare biosphere? In April 2009 the American Academy of Microbiology convened a colloquium to explore this question. Based on that colloquium, this report analyzes the current state of study of the rare biosphere and identifies where gaps in knowledge exist. The report concludes that the Herculean task of studying the rare biosphere requires an international collaborative effort and additional environmental sampling, coupled with a focus on advancing sequencing and data analysis technologies. With less than 1% of microbial species able to be grown in the laboratory, the prospects of new discoveries in the rare biosphere seem as vast as microbial diversity itself.

You can get a PDF of the report here.