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Workshop 1: Fermentation Basics
Workshop 2: Unification of gene expression data by standard mRNA quantification references for comparable analyses using qRT-PCR array assay
Workshop 3: So you're a microbiologist - now what?

Workshop 1
Fermentation Basics

Organizer: Mark Berge, Medimmune
Date: Sunday, July 24
TIME: 8 am - 4 pm
LOCATION: Sheraton New Orleans Hotel

Includes continental breakfast, lunch and 2 breaks as well as workshop materials To bring: Calculator; pen and notepaper will be provided

Fermentation Basics
In an effort to provide individuals with an introduction to fermentation concepts in industrial settings, a pre-meeting, one day workshop is being offered. The workshop will be lecture based with visual aids to help the attendees understand the fermentation principles discussed. The workshop will be broken into sections based upon the topics that are being presented. After each section has been completed, the attendees will be given real life fermentation case studies that they will work through to reinforce the just discussed topics. The first section of the workshop will include topics on fermentor design including aspect ratios, agitator design, sparger design and sterilization of equipment and media. The second section will deal with actual operational issues of fermentation processes. Included will be discussions about media considerations, foam control strategies, shear, mixing, aeration, feeds and different types of fermentations and the controls involved. The workshop will finish with a section that covers issues involved in scale-up to production size fermentors.

Workshop Organizer
Mark Berge
2010-Current: Sr. Scientist at MedImmune, Inc. in the Process Cell Culture & Fermentation group leading a team responsible for fermentation and cell culture process development activities. 2006-2010: Sr. Scientist at Amgen Inc. in Cell Science & Technology group developing processes for therapeutic protein production using fermentation. 1999-2005: Sr. Scientist at Pfizer Inc. in Global Biologics division developing processes for therapeutic protein production using cell culture. 1995-1999: Process Engineer at FermPro Manufacturing in deep tank toll manufacturing for varied customers of food grade materials. Mark holds a BS and MS in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Hampshire.

Workshop 2
Unification of gene expression data by standard mRNA quantification references for comparable analyses using qRT-PCR array assay

Organizer: Z. Lewis Liu, Ph.D. Molecular Biologist, NCAUR, USDA-ARS
Date: Sunday, July 24, 2011
Time: 8 a.m. - Noon
Location: Sheraton New Orleans Hotel

Includes continental breakfast, lunch and 2 breaks as well as workshop materials To bring: Calculator; pen and notepaper will be provided

Gene expression data obtained from different experimental sets/sources of qRT-PCR assays show variations that are difficult or impossible to compare with each other. Data obtained as such practice have limited use. Development and application of commonly accepted standard mRNA quantification references are urgently needed in order to compare gene expression data and make the database as a valuable resource for the scientific community. This workshop will introduce advanced quantitative gene expression technology to safeguard data reliability and reproducibility and thereafter to unify expression data obtained from multiple sources for comparable analyses. Topics of this workshop include the recently developed robust mRNA quantification threshold reference for qRT-PCR assay, calibration controls, valid data acquisition procedures, Master Equation of standard curves, experimental design, PCR amplification efficiency, pathway-based qRT-PCR array assay, and gene regulatory network analysis. The workshop is suitable for graduate students, postdoctoral scientists, research associates, principle investigators, lab managers, and researchers with general background of qRT-PCR as well as for seasoned investigators who are desired to bring their research to the next level. After completion of the workshop, the attendees will be equipped with most updated knowledge for mRNA quantification and able to generate valid gene expression data for comparative analyses. Standard mRNA reference and bench top protocols will available free of charge upon request for qualified investigators.

Workshop Organizer
Z. Lewis Liu
Dr. Liu earned his Master degree from Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ph.D. from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is experienced in research areas of microbiology, molecular biology and genomics working in academic, industrial R&D and national laboratory environments. As a Molecular Biologist at the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research, ARS-USDA, Dr. Liu's research focuses on genomic studies of yeast stress tolerance for economic lignocellulose-to-ethanol conversion. He is Project Director of NIFA National Research Initiative award on "Genomic mechanisms of in situ detoxification of biomass conversion inhibitors for ethanologenic yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae". He developed universal mRNA reference for quantitative gene expression analysis across different platforms of microarray and qRT-PCR. Dr. Liu has generated tolerant yeast strains and pioneered research on in situ detoxification of lignocellulosic hydrolysates for biofuels production. He serves as Editor and Associate Editor for several professional journals. Dr. Liu is elected Chair of Division of Fermentation and Biotechnology, American Society for Microbiology.

Workshop 3
So you're a microbiologist - now what?

Organizer: Bob Berger, BB and Associates, Sarasota, Florida; SIM Placement Chair and Sara Dorman, Marcor Development Corp.
Date: Sunday, July 24, 2011
Time: 1 pm - 4 pm
Location: Sheraton New Orleans Hotel
No meals included.

FREE Job Workshop for New Graduates and Postdocs. May bring copy of resume for critique.
Topic areas:
  • Job Search
  • Resume Writing
  • Networking Tips

Workshop Organizer
Bob Berger
Robert G. Berger is currently President of B/B Associates, an independent consulting firm specializing in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical and fermentation industries worldwide. Established in 2001, B/B Associates is currently under contract as a consultant to a major producer of peptones and protein hydrolysates as well as a dehydrated culture media manufacturer. B/B has also done consulting for an Italian fine chemical manufacturer, a biotech company, a nutriceutical manufacturer and a research toxins manufacturer. Previously Bob was Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Marcor Development Corp., from 1982-2000, where he was in charge of worldwide sales for bulk culture media ingredients and fermentation nutrients for the fermentation, vaccine, diagnostic and pharmaceutical industries. Bob has been SIM Placement Chair for ten years.