Prof Neil Hall, Co-Director of Centre for Genomic Research, University of Liverpool
The Centre for Genomic Research performs world-class research at the leading edge of genomic technologies and data analyses. The Centre’s core remit is: To aid the research community to access the full potential of the latest advances in DNA sequencing and bioinformatics methods; and to develop an active, internally driven research programme alongside its collaborative service activities.
Prof Gerald T. Ankley, United States Environmental Protection Agency
Prof Gerald (Gary) Ankley is a Toxicologist with the USEPA/ORD Mid-Continent Ecology Division in Duluth, Minnesota. He also is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Minnesota and University of Minnesota-Duluth. Prof Ankley received his BS from the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife at Michigan State University, and MS and PhD from the School of Forest Resources at the University of Georgia. He has worked at the Duluth EPA lab for around 23 years in several areas, including the development of test methods for effluents and sediments, assessment of the effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals on wildlife, and application of genomic and computational toxicology tools to ecological risk assessments. He has authored more than 300 research papers and book chapters on these and related topics, and has been formally recognised as one of the most highly cited scientists in the world in the environmental sciences. Dr. Ankley consults for a number of national and international organisations involved in chemical regulation/risk assessment, including the World Health Organisation and Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. In 2008 he received the prestigious Founders Award from the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, in recognition of an outstanding career in the environmental sciences.
Dr. Margaret (Peg) Riley, Department of Biology, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Dr. Margaret (Peg) Riley, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Department of Biology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She received her Ph.D. at Harvard University in 1991 and joined the faculty at Yale University, where she was granted tenure and remained for 15 years while developing an internationally renowned research program in antimicrobial drug discovery. She has published over 100 articles and edited four books in her research area. Her early studies in microbial ecology and the evolution of antibiotic resistance suggested an alternative to the current paradigm of antibiotic drug discovery, one that recognizes the power of targeted approaches to therapeutic intervention, which result in lower levels of antibiotic resistance and reduced collateral damage to the healthy human microbiome. In 2009 Dr. Riley co-founded a biopharmaceutical company, Bacteriotix, whose mission is to provide proof of concept for this new drug development paradigm, with a focus on therapeutic interventions for catheter acquired urinary tract infections. In 2009, she co-founded the Institute for Drug Resistance, whose mission is to facilitate novel, multidisciplinary approaches to addressing the challenge of drug resistance and created a new Gordon Research Conference on Drug Resistance.
Confirmed Invited Speakers
Dr Jana Asselman, Francqui Foundation Fellow, Environmental Toxicology Lab (GhEnToxLab), Ghent University
Prof Dan Bradley, Prof of Genetics, Smurfit Institute of Genetics, Trinity College Dublin
Dr Logan Kistler, NERC Fellow, Department of Anthropology, Pennsylvania State University
Prof Frank Lyko, Head of Epigenetics, DKFZ Heidelberg (German Cancer Research Centre)
Dr Edward Perkins, Senior Research Scientist, Environmental Laboratory, US Army Engineer Research and Development Centre
Prof Stuart Piertney, Director of Institute of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of Aberdeen
Prof. Jeroen Raes, VIB Dept of Structural Biology, Vrije Universuteit Brussel
The Raes Lab have pioneered the analysis of metagenomic datasets emerging from the Human Microbiome project, possibly representing one of the most intensive metagenomic studies to date. The Raes lab combines large-scale, next-generation sequencing with novel computational approaches to investigate the functioning and variability of the healthy human microbiome at the systems level and study its alteration in disease. Underpinned by the goal of modelling entire communities and disentangling interspecific networks of competition, collaboration and communication at the molecular level, the group is responsible for major advances in our understanding of the relationship between gut enterotypes, hosts and the identification of microbial markers for intestinal diseases. Acknowledging the parallels between human and environmental microbiomes, the range of computational approaches and synthesis emerging from human studies therefore provide valuable inspiration for the environmental sciences.
Prof Jon Slate, Department of Animal & Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield
Prof Mark Viant, Professor of Metabolomics, University of Birmingham
Mark Viant is a Professor of Metabolomics in the School of Biosciences at the University of Birmingham, President of the international Metabolomics Society and Director of the national NERC Biomolecular Analysis Facility – Metabolomics Node (NBAF-B). His research programme encompasses the development of optimised analytical and computational workflows for high-throughput mass spectrometry based metabolomics and the application of these technologies to investigate the metabolic pathways underlying stress and toxicity in aquatic organisms. He is particularly fascinated by chemical and nanomaterial toxicology in the freshwater model organism Daphnia, and the translation of metabolomics based ‘discovery’ research into mechanistically based tools for chemical safety and environmental diagnostics. As an advocate for metabolomics science, he leads teaching through NBAF-B and as the ELIXIR-UK Sector Lead for metabolomics.
Dr. Xin Zhou, Beijing Genomics Institute
Dr. Zhou is the Director of Environmental Genomics at BGI, undoubtedly the largest genome centre in the world, with access to sequencing capability that is currently unparalleled in contemporary research. Following earlier research in freshwater ecosystems, bio-surveillance and DNA barcoding, Dr. Zhou’s group perform wide-ranging research in the field of environmental genomics. His group is performing cutting-edge approaches in utilising the Illumina sequencing platform to analyse biodiversity in a range of ecosystems, complemented by functional genomics in daphnia, evolutionary genomics in arthropods and population genomics and conservation biology of endangered mammal species.