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Microbes in ecosystems: weaving intracellular processes into ecological networks
Description & Aim
The workshop “Microbes in ecosystems: weaving intracellular processes into ecological networks” aims to discuss the theoretical and experimental basis for analyzing and understanding multi-species interactions in microbial communities at the integrated intracellular and community level.
In recent years, systems biology has considerably enhanced the understanding on the functioning of organisms, by an iterative approach combining experimental transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic data with mathematical models. Recent developments in the field of microbial ecology allow now also for the generation of large data sets on complex microbial communities and the cellular composition of these communities, by addressing genomic information on the species present and their genes (metagenomics), their gen-expression (metatranscriptomics), proteins (metaproteomics) and metabolites (metametabolomics). This calls for the adoption and application of concepts from systems biology, which is currently still especially aimed at single species, to complex multispecies ecosystems, in order to improve insight into the functioning of ecosystems. During this workshop, we will explore the field and discuss possible integrating research avenues. To achieve this goal we will bring together academics with various backgrounds ((theoretical) ecologists, microbiologists, systems biologists) to present and integrate approaches and concepts for the study of multi-species interactions in simple artificial experimental systems and in real environments.
The workshop will be centred about four major, interrelated, topics:
1. Quantitative understanding of community functioning from molecular data.
2. Analysis of fluxes through ecosystems.
3. Community assembly and structure.
4. Microbial controls on ecosystem processes