American Society for Microbiology Division G Newsletter
Ken B. Waites

Division G Officers 2000-2001
Chair: Ken B. Waites (
Chair-Elect: Maureen Davidson (
Past Chair: Mary Brown (
Councilor: Joel Baseman (BASEMAN@UTHSCSA.EDU)
Alternate Councilor: Leigh Washburn (

This time of year everyone in mycoplasmology is interested in the program for the General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM). This year's meeting will take place May 20-24 in the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, USA. The Mycoplasmology Division has ambitious program planned that includes the Division Lecture to be delivered by Dr. Mary Brown, two symposia with oral presentations, three poster sessions that include 37 abstracts on a wide array of mycoplasma-related topics, and a social event. Our Chair-elect, Maureen Davidson has done a truly outstanding job in organizing our Division Mixer and raising an impressive This amount of money to support the food and drink. Everyone should thank Maureen for taking charge of this! For those planning to attend, be sure to put the Mixer on your schedule for Tuesday evening, May 22nd from 6:30 ­ 8:30 PM in the Peabody Hotel. The room location will be announced at the Monday morning symposium. This year we truly have an international Mycoplasmology Program at the ASM General Meeting. Among the posters and oral sessions there are a total of 11 different countries from North America, Europe, Asia and Australia represented. The complete calendar of events for Division G activities at the General Meeting is listed below.

Monday 8 ­10:30 AM: Symposium I - Mycoplasma Interactions with Cells
Monday 1:00 ­ 2:30 PM: Poster Session I- Pathogenesis of Mollicute Infections
Tuesday 10:30 AM ­ 12 PM: Poster Session II ­ Genomics & Molecular Biology of Mollicutes
Tuesday 6:30 ­ 8:30 PM: Divisional Mixer at the Peabody Hotel (room to be announced)
Wednesday 8:00 ­ 10:30 AM: Divisional Lecture and Symposium II: Immunological and Inflammatory Reactions to Respiratory Mycoplasmosis
Wednesday 10:30 AM ­ 11:30 AM: Divisional Business Meeting
Wednesday 1:00 ­ 2:30 PM: Poster Session III ­ Diagnosis of Mycoplasma Infections and Clinical Studies

I attended the General Meeting Planning Session in Washington, D.C. on January 26th and learned that Division G was allotted 2 student travel awards of $500 to support attendance at the General Meeting. Although the names of the students have already been chosen, the recipients have not yet been notified by the ASM, so I cannot list them here. Students will receive their checks and a certificate that will be placed on their posters at the time of their scheduled presentation in Orlando. This year ASM is providing additional audiovisual assistance for all oral sessions so that each room will be equipped with PC and MAC compatible LCD projectors so that powerpoint presentations can be used without the need for kodachrome slides. Each speaker will need to provide his/her own laptop computer, however.

For those of you interested in statistics, there were 4717 abstracts submitted for the 2001 ASM General Meeting. This is 896 more than were submitted for the meeting last year in Los Angeles. (Could the lure of Disney World have something do with it ?) I was also given reassurance that even though Division G remains one of the smallest divisions, we are one of the most active per capita in terms of abstracts submitted and meeting attendance and there are no plans at the present time to push us towards merging with another Division. This caused a great deal of concern just a few years ago. However, every IOM member is encouraged to join the ASM and to designate Division G as your primary Division affiliate.

Each attendee at the ASM General Meeting is encouraged to attend the Divisional Business Meeting that will be held immediately following the Divisional Lecture and Symposium on Immunology and Inflammatory Effects of Mycoplasmas. There are several issues that will affect the Division that must be dealt with and we must also use this time together to discuss plans for the programmatic content for the 2002 meeting and the election of officers for next year. Anyone who has ideas for symposia and wants to put together a session or serve on a nominating committee for divisional officers is invited to contact me or Maureen any time between now and the General Meeting. All topics of interest to mycoplasmology will be considered for inclusion in the 2002 program.

Finally, it is my pleasure to announce that the incoming Chair-elect of Division G for 2001-2002 will be Dr. Jerry Simecka of the University of North Texas Health Science Center in Fort Worth. On behalf of the Division, I want to express my appreciation to both Jerry and to Shyh Lo who agreed to be nominated for this important position in ASM governance.

I look forward to seeing many of you in Orlando at the Division G scientific and social events during the 2001 General Meeting of the ASM this coming May.