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Penn Vet, Penn Medicine, and CHOP to Host Fifth Annual Microbiome Symposium Featuring New York Times Columnist and Science Writer Carl Zimmer

By Martin Hackett Published: Oct 11, 2018

Carl Zimmer[October 11, 2018; Philadelphia, PA] – Microbes are a critical component of human health. Scientists recognize that an imbalance in our bodies’ vast community of life-sustaining microbes can lead to heart disease, diabetes, auto-immune disease, and cancer. Methods for studying microbes have greatly improved in recent years. Researchers now understand the tremendous potential in managing microbe populations that can lead to positive, healthy outcomes. Microbes, Metabolomics and Modern Disease, presented by Penn Vet’s Center for Host-Microbial Interactions and the PennCHOP Microbiome Program, will showcase some of the cutting-edge research that is investigating not only how microbes cause disease, but how microbes can treat disease.

The two-day symposium will open with a FREE public lecture featuring New York Times columnist and science writer Carl Zimmer. His talk, “Science Reporting in the Age of Fake News,” will take place on Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 6:00pm at Penn Vet’s Hill Pavilion located at 380 S. University Avenue. Mr. Zimmer will discuss present-day science news reporting and its implications for public policy within the context of eroding journalistic norms. Zimmer, also a national correspondent for life sciences publication STAT, is a three-time winner of the AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Award. In his most recent book, “She Has Her Mother’s Laugh: The Powers, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity,” Zimmer chronicles his own experience with his children in understanding the advancing field of genetics. Registration for the public lecture is available here.

The symposium for the research community will take place the following day on Thursday, November 8, 2018 beginning at 8:00am at Penn Medicine’s Biomedical Research Building located at 421 Curie Boulevard. Admission is FREE. Registration for the research portion is available here. Scientists will discuss microbes as it relates to gut health, immune systems and infectious disease, environmental conditions, antibiotic resistance, and regenerative medicine.

Representing four of the world’s leading research institutions, the presenters are:

  • Michael Abt, PhD, University of Pennsylvania
  • Pieter Dorrestein, PhD, University of California at San Diego
  • Kathryn Hamilton, PhD, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Maayan Levy, PhD, University of Pennsylvania
  • Jessica Mark Welch, PhD, Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, MA
  • Cesar De La Fuente Nunez, PhD, University of Pennsylvania
  • Christoph Thaiss, PhD, University of Pennsylvania
  • Joseph Zackular, PhD, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

About the Center for Host-Microbial Interactions

Penn Vet’s Center for Host-Microbial Interactions facilitates collaborative projects that leverage genomics to study the intersection of microbes and disease. Researchers gain insight into how bacteria, parasites, viruses, and other organisms interact with their animal and human hosts in ways that either maintain health or lead to disease. Visit here for more information about the Center.

About the PennCHOP Microbiome Program

The PennCHOP Microbiome Program is a joint research program, between the University of Pennsylvania and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, which advances the understanding of the microbiome to improve both child and adult health. Visit here for more information about the Program.

About Penn Vet

Ranked among the top ten veterinary schools worldwide, the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) is a global leader in veterinary education, research, and clinical care. Founded in 1884, Penn Vet is the first veterinary school developed in association with a medical school. The school is a proud member of the One Health initiative, linking human, animal, and environmental health.

Penn Vet serves a diverse population of animals at its two campuses, which include extensive diagnostic and research laboratories. Ryan Hospital in Philadelphia provides care for dogs, cats, and other domestic/companion animals, handling nearly 35,300 patient visits a year. New Bolton Center, Penn Vet’s large-animal hospital on nearly 700 acres in rural Kennett Square, PA, cares for horses and livestock/farm animals. The hospital handles nearly 5,300 patient visits a year, while the Field Service treats more than 38,000 patients at local farms. In addition, New Bolton Center’s campus includes a swine center, working dairy, and poultry unit that provide valuable research for the agriculture industry.

Media Contacts

Martin Hackett
Director of Communications and Marketing
mhackett@vet.upenn.edu
215-898-1475

Hannah Kleckner Hall
Associate Director of Communications
hkleck@vet.upenn.edu
610-925-6241

John Donges
Communications Coordinator
jdonges@vet.upenn.edu
215-898-4234