Keynote: Genome Resolved Metagenomics -
Understanding the potential of marine microbial communities for novel product discovery
The field of metagenomics has expanded rapidly over the past decade, both in terms of the number and diversity of different datasets, and the volume of biological insight that can be gleaned from the sequence data. One area of significant growth has been the assembly of datasets, and the subsequent elucidation of genomes, so called metagenome assembled genomes.
- Dr. Rob finn will present the methods they have developed to start to understand all parts of the microbial kingdom, from virus to prokaryotes to eukaryotes. This has provided unprecedented insights in to the coding potential of microbiomes from a range of environments, including the marine environment.
- Datasets from marine environments are particularly enriched with alpha-beta hydrolases, key enzymes for biotechnological processes. Beyond single enzymes, the large contiguous units allow deeper insights into the metabolic functions encoded, and which microbes are producing them. For example, biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) encode the genes necessary for natural products such as antimicrobials and signalling molecules, which can play major roles in various ecological processes. Many of these natural products have also been exploited for industrial biotechnology or pharmaceutical applications. Thus, he will summarize their efforts on the accurate identification of BGCs in (meta)genomic data.