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MaCuMBA: Key Events Helping to Map the Marine Microorganism Seascape


As the EU-funded MaCuMBA project enters its final and concluding year, it is gearing up to host a number of key events. MaCuMBA (Marine Microorganisms: Cultivation Methods for Improving their Biotechnological Applications) is a four-year EU Seventh Framework Programme (FP7)-funded project focusing on uncovering the untold diversity of marine microbes using cultivation-dependent strategies.

“All members of the project are excited by the progress we have made. Now, as we look toward the end of the project, it’s time to really ramp up our activities in order to ensure that all of our stakeholders benefit from MaCuMBA’s work. These include students, research institutes, industry, policy makers, and society in general. We are on the cusp of achieving our ambitious objectives and we plan to maximise the potential of our planned events for the remainder of the project,” explains Prof Lucas Stal, MaCuMBA project coordinator.

The MaCuMBA summer school on the sampling, isolation and cultivation of marine microorganisms kicked-off this retinue of MaCuMBA events. Twenty students attended the summer school in Texel, the Netherlands from 13-24 July 2015. During this two-week course, students interacted with experts in the field and obtained first-hand experience through a series of lectures and hands-on practical work, facilitated by leading microbiologists.


The second event, which will take place later this year, is the MaCuMBA third general assembly. This will be hosted by project partner Matís (Icelandic Food and Biotech R&D) in the Marine Research Institute in Reykjavik, Iceland. Project partners from all 22 institutes will attend this three-day event comprising scientific presentations and project workshops. The participants will also have the opportunity to sample the beautiful shores of Iceland in search of new bioactive marine compounds during a two-day sampling workshop.

The final keynote event is the MaCuMBA symposium taking place next June. It will focus on the biotechnical application of marine microbes and will involve a joint industry conference and open science meeting. The conference - ‘The Marine Microbiome - Discovery & Innovation’ - will bring the industrial and scientific worlds together. It will take place in Berlin-Adlershof, Germany’s leading science and technology park, from 27-30 June 2016. This event should not be missed as it will feature attractions including: an interactive industry exhibition featuring MaCuMBA ‘hardware’; round table discussions (on the cultivation of microorganisms, the potential of marine microbiology for industry, the future of synthetic microbiology and the global effects of legislation on marine biodiscovery); moderated panel discussions; one-to-one meetings; and excellent networking opportunities. Further details about this exciting event will be released in the coming weeks.

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