Haloferax volcanii, model archaea, and me

When I was a graduate student I was looking around for an extremophile – especially an evolutionarily novel one.  And I settled on this species Haloferax volcanii – a model halophilic archaeon largely because Ford Doolittle and colleagues had started to turn it into a genetic model organism (and because Patrick Keeling, from Ford’s lab convinced me it was a good thing to do).  So I started work on this species – doing DNA repair studies in the lab.  See my PhD thesis for some of the work I did which I never published outside of the thesis for multiple reasons.  But I continued to be interested in this species.  And when I was working at TIGR, an NSF Program Officer approached me asking me to help get the genome sequencing done for this species.  So, well, I did: The Complete Genome Sequence of Haloferax volcanii DS2, a Model Archaeon.  And I became interested in other haloarchaea and eventually started working with Marc Facciotti, in the lab next to mine, in sequencing from across the diversity of the haloarchaea: Sequencing of Seven Haloarchaeal Genomes Reveals Patterns of Genomic Flux and Phylogenetically Driven Sequencing of Extremely Halophilic Archaea Reveals Strategies for Static and Dynamic Osmo-response.

Anyway – enough about me.  The whole point here is to point people to a new paper:  BMC Biology | Abstract | Generation of comprehensive transposon insertion mutant library for the model archaeon, Haloferax volcanii , and its use for gene discovery.  Further evidence for the use of Haloferax volcanii as a model species.  Tools continue to become available for genetic and experimental studies in this species.  So – if you are looking for an unusual and interesting organisms to work on – consider working on this species …

Halophiles 2013 Conference June 23-27 U Conn.

Just got this from Thane Papke

It is my pleasure to invite everyone to the tri-annual Halophiles conference on microorganisms. This year’s event will take place from June 23-27th on the Storrs Campus of the University of Connecticut.

The conference will highlight the diverse research of over 30 invited speakers on topics of biodiversity, evolution, proteins, biochemistry, physiology, genetics, applied biotechnology, astrobiology, ecology and biogeochemistry, and there will be a joint meeting of the ICSP-Subcommittees on the taxonomy of the Halobacteriaceae and Halomonadaceae.

If you are interested in participating, please go to the following website for registration, and more information. http://www.regonline.com/halophiles2013

This announcement was made from an incomplete email list and cannot reach everyone. If you are aware of any names who should receive this and future announcements, please forward this notice to them, and let me know their address and I will add them to the list. If you are on the list and wish to be removed, please let me know.