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What We Do

ASM has various internal departments that work to advance the society's mission.


The American Academy of Microbiology (Academy) is the honorific leadership group within the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), the world's oldest and largest life science organization. The mission of the Academy is to recognize scientists for outstanding contributions to microbiology and provide microbiological expertise in the service of science and the public. Visit http://academy.asm.org/


ASM publishes books by internationally renowned authors and editors with expertise in a broad range of microbiology disciplines. View ASM's book catalog here. http://asmscience.org/content/books?order=date


ASM's education department works to educate individuals at all levels in the microbiological sciences. It supports both student and faculty development through fellowships, online publications, conferences, workshops/ institutes and networking opportunities.


ASM International Affairs' two essential programs, Global Engagement and Sustainable Development, leverage ASM's resources to ensure sustainable health systems strengthening around the world, where it is needed the most. Specialized programs in science communication, best practices, evidence-based policy making, microbiology mentorship and laboratory biosafety and biorisk management are central to ASM's work.

ASM has members in 158 countries who engage scientists and foster collaboration on a global scale. ASM currently focuses our efforts on 24 countries and is constantly working on expanding.

Laboratory Capacity Building: Better Labs, Better Health Globally
ASM utilizes the support of its members to provide clinical microbiology technical assistance in resource-constrained countries. More than 5,000 ASM members are clinical microbiologists with years of experience developing quality control programs, managing laboratories, instituting good laboratory practice, and training on diagnostic tools and procedures. ASM is able to rapidly engage these experts as consultants for the numerous LabCap projects that strengthen and expand clinical microbiological services, primarily through the training of laboratory staff.

  1. Goals
  2. Approach
  3. Support
  4. Accomplishments

LabCap Goals Include:

  • Strengthen microbiology laboratory capacity and health systems for quality assured diagnostics of infectious diseases.
  • Ensure institutionalization of quality management systems (QMS).
  • Develop and implement tools and practices to support human capacity building.
  • Support laboratory systems strengthening across disease areas.
  • Advance ASM Mission through global networks.

LabCap's approach to strengthening laboratory capacity includes:

  • Strengthening the national public health network for clinical microbiology
  • Ensuring countries have ownership of the laboratory infrastructure and programs they develop, as they are ultimately responsible for implementing them
  • Understanding that the strengthening and expansion of in-country laboratory programs requires a significant time commitment via mentoring
  • Establishing South-to-South collaborations involving the sharing of evaluated, culturally appropriate, and highly effective strategies and programs
  • Encouraging South-to-North collaborations in order to continue to strengthen the cadre of highly competent microbiologist mentors for LabCap Program countries
  • Fostering the expansion of Centers of Excellence as international and/or regional centers for quality assurance and training by providing both access to ASM educational and scientific resources and linkages to ASM partners
  • Promoting Partner collaborations by bridging the organizational affiliations of multiple partners and ASM to maximize coordination of international laboratory capacity building efforts and optimize resource leveraging



U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Initiatives

Under a multi-year Cooperative Agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ASM is collaborating with the CDC's Global AIDS Program (GAP) on capacity building of global HIV and clinical microbiology laboratories in resource-limited countries throughout the world in support of the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Initiatives. CDC's long-standing partnerships with Ministries of Health support improvement of critical infrastructure and services to build sustainable national public health capacity and help resource-constrained countries prevent HIV infection; improve treatment, care, and support for people living with HIV.


President's Malaria Initiative (PMI)

ASM is supporting efforts to control and prevent malaria in Guinea as part of a multi-million dollar USAID-funded President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) program, StopPalu. PMI is a U.S. Government initiative designed to cut malaria deaths in half in target countries in sub-Saharan Africa. PMI is implemented by USAID and CDC and works in partnership with host country governments in Africa, and builds on existing national programs. The newly awarded 4-year cooperative agreement, led by RTI-International, involves a consortium of 4 global health organizations including ASM, Johns Hopkins’ JHIEPGO, and Guinea’s Centre Africain de Formation pour le Développement (CENAFOD), together with 4 Guinean nongovernmental organizations; the consortium will implement an array of multi-sectoral interventions to address malaria in Guinea.


Annual M&E Statistics

  • Mentoring that enables visible, immediate results in improving laboratory diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) and other infectious diseases
  • Providing timely advice on laboratory renovations, equipment, and supply needs
  • Developing and harmonizing international training tools for TB and other infectious diseases
  • Maintaining close relationships with in-country laboratorians
  • Coordinating with strong international collaborators to gain information on activities already ongoing in-country and harmonizing LabCap's efforts accordingly
  • Collaborations with laboratory-oriented organizations leading to development of best practices


For country specific data please visit Where We Work

BioResource Centers
ASM's BioResource Centers (BRCs) provide scientists, educators, laboratorians, policy makers and students with cutting-edge scientific resources, training, and increase their knowledge-base of biological sciences. BRCs serve as locations for scientists and stakeholder to convene, offer access to cutting-edge scientific resources and provide ongoing professional development training through scientific webinars, virtual workshops as well as on-site workshops and lectures.


The mission of the ASM Journals program is to advance the microbiological sciences through the pursuit of scientific knowledge and dissemination of the results of fundamental and applied research. Edited by working scientists who are drawn from eminent institutions around the world, ASM Journals have delivered excellence and value for nearly 100 years. Known for their quality, rigor, and fairness, ASM Journals continue to provide current, influential coverage of basic and clinical microbial research. View all of ASM's journals.


The Professional Practice Committee's (PPC) mission is to provide professional development opportunities and content to members to increase their skill, enhance their job performance and contribute to the profession. The PPC will serve the microbiology profession by representing clinical microbiologists and immunologists, microbiologists working in the pharmaceutical, environmental and food industries and biological safety officers. Currently, the PPC oversees professional certification, accreditation of postgraduate clinical training programs, the clinical microbiology portal, mentoring for clinical microbiologists, and the Speakers' Bureau. The PPC also develops evidence-based and consensus-based practice guidelines and offers professional development opportunities.