NoE Marine Genomics Europe Exploratory Workshop:

Marine Genomics meets Marine Diversity


Time:     8th and 9th June 2006

Location: Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen

Contact: eu-workshops(at)mpi-bremen.de

The ecosystem-centred exploration of marine biodiversity has already a long tradition. Over the past two decades an unexpectedly large diversity of marine microbes (defined as microscopic pro- and eukaryotes) has been disclosed by molecular biological techniques, often based on comparative sequence analysis of single genes, such as the small subunit rRNA. Since few years high-throughput sequencing technologies are adding a new genomic perspective of marine microbes. Already the first preliminary insights into these blueprints of life revealed unexpected findings which provide hints on niche adaptations and key functions of the organisms in the global cycling of matters.

It is now time to bridge the gap between marine diversity research and marine genomics. An integration of (i) data on diversity and spatio-temporal abundance of microorganisms with (ii) genomic data and (iii) further oceanographic information on the chemistry, physics, geology and biology of the habitat can be readily achieved based on geographic location and sampling time. Whereas it is the task of computer scientists to provide searchable integrated datasets, it is up to the ecologists to raise and answer questions that have been out of reach so far, e.g.:

“How does the microbial community change from a coastal to an open ocean site, how over different oceanic provinces?”

“What is the seasonal variability and the influence of change in water temperature and nutrient availability?”

“How does the interface between biosphere and geosphere – the famous biological pump removing carbon from the atmosphere - work on the molecular level?”

Large geographically integrated datasets will undoubtedly change the way marine biology is done today and it’s now time to define the questions, expectations and technology that needs to be addressed.

The meeting is intended to bring together experts in the field of Marine Diversity, Genomics, Ecology, Technology and Bioinformatics to explore common interests and steps that have to be done.

The final agenda with abstracts and the workshop report can be found here:


Tagungsband_Expl_Workshop_Bremen_2006.pdf (911.96 KB 13.02.2007 10:11)

Report-Expl-Workshop-Bremen-2006-final.pdf (322.84 KB 13.02.2007 10:15)

More information:

How to reach the institute

The Microbial Genomics Group

The workshop is finanzed by the Network of Excellence Marine Genomics Europe and organized by Frank Oliver Glöckner and Johanna Wesnigk (EMPA).