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Mol Microbiol. 2009 Sep;73(5):760-74. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2958.2009.06822.x. Epub 2009 Jul 28.

Nurturing scientific mutualism: a report from the 'Young Microbiologists Mini-Symposium on microbe signalling, organisation and pathogenesis'.

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BIOMERIT Research Centre, Department of Microbiology, BioSciences Institute, University College Cork, Ireland.


In April 2009, over one hundred microbiologists, primarily early career scientists, from 17 different countries met to discuss their work, under the broad heading of 'Microbe signalling, organization and pathogenesis'. The meeting took place at University College Cork, Ireland and was supported by the British Council, Society for General Microbiology, American Society for Microbiology, EMBO and others. The key and relatively unusual feature of this meeting was that it was specifically aimed to provide a platform for junior scientists to present their work to a broad audience. In this review, we have tried to summarize and highlight a number of particular areas covered during the meeting, including bacterial intracellular signalling and regulation; microbe-microbe communication; biogenesis; structure and transport of the bacterial cell envelope; and pathogenic versus probiotic microbe-host interactions. We draw attention to new findings, highlight unanswered questions and reveal the anticipated future directions of a variety of areas, as described in both oral and poster presentations. Overall, this meeting provided high-quality science, with many intriguing findings being eloquently reported, in a setting that fostered interactions between diverse young and talented microbiologists.

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