University of Texas at Dallas Founders Building Designated as a Milestones in Microbiology

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 The American Society for Microbiology Designates

 Founders Building, University of Texas at Dallas

as a Milestones in Microbiology site

The ASM Milestones in Microbiology program recognizes institutions and the scientists who worked there that have made significant contributions toward advancing the science of microbiology. 

Photo UT Dallas 1 - Susie Sharp and Provost Unveiling Plaque

(L-R) Susan Sharp, ASM President, and Inga Musselman, Senior Vice Provost, UT-Dallas, unveiling the Milestones Plaque

Milestones Recognition

The Milestones in Microbiology designation recognizes achievements of University of Texas at Dallas (UT-Dallas) scientists in molecular biology, in advancing medical science and in providing fundamental insights into bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms..   

 

Milestones Site Dedication Ceremony

The plaque that marks the UT-Dallas Founders Building as a Milestones in Microbiology site was unveiled on November 10, 2016, in a ceremony held at the building.  Susan Sharp, President of ASM, presented the Milestones plaque on behalf of ASM.  Inga Musselman, Senior Vice Provost, UT-Dallas, accepted the plaque on behalf of the site. 

 

Milestones Plaque 

xxPlaque UT Dallas-FINAL-Scanned 11-15-16

PDF of Plaque:  Click Here

 

Historical Background and Perspective

 

Earliest History of the Site – In October 1964, the Founders Building was dedicated as the centerpiece of the Graduate Research Center of the Southwest (GRCSW), a private research institution, which in 1967, was renamed as the Southwest Center for Advanced Studies (SCAS), and then in 1969 became The University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas).  As the first permanent structure on The University of Texas at Dallas campus, the Founders Building sits at the physical and historical heart of the University.   In those early days, the building hosted faculty and visiting scholars from around the globe who conducted research and graduate education in mathematics, physics, geosciences, and atmospheric and space science.  Biology, focusing on genetics and microbiology, was the largest division and the only molecular biology department in the Southwest at the time.  Together those programs formed the core that would become UT-Dallas’ School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

 

The biology division included leaders in the field of microbiology, the study of organisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, protists and phages (viruses that infect bacteria).  The first head of the Genetics Division was the phage biologist Carsten Bresch, who had been one of the first students of Max Delbrück, founder of the world-renowned Phage School.  Among the earliest faculty recruits to the Genetics Division were Claud (Stan) Rupert, Hans Bremer, and Roy Clowes, whose accomplishments are highlighted below.  A great deal of the early microbiology research done at UT Dallas was published in ASM journals. 

 

Overview of Significance of Site – In its 50+ years, the Founders Building has welcomed some of the most distinguished scientists in the world, whose research – and that of their students and protégés – has advanced medical science and provided fundamental insights into the natural world, especially bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms.  Biology (and microbiology in particular) has a rich history at UT Dallas and its predecessor institutions.  Research conducted in this building has made major contributions to understanding the molecular genetics of bacteria and their viruses (bacteriophages).  In overview, this designation honors the early developments of “molecular biology.”    

 

Foundations of “Molecular Biology” – Early microbial genetics research at UT Dallas was integral to the development of the field of Molecular Biology.  This “Molecular Biology” is firmly rooted in microbiology – the study of bacterial and phage genetics that prominently figures in the history of the Founders Building.  

 

Regional Influence – Microbiologists working in the Founders Building were “pioneers,” introducing the new science of Molecular Biology to Texas and the Southwest region of the United States.  

 

International Influence – From its very beginning, the Genetics Division of the GRSCW/SCAS was an international enterprise.  The internationally-renowned Phage School and European scientists were influential on the early development of GRSCW/SCAS.  Numerous trainees (PhDs and post-docs) of the Genetics Division and its descendants went on to highly successful careers in academia or industry (examples: Ry Young, now Professor, Texas A&M University; John Ryals, President and CEO, Metabolon).  Several of the early faculty went on to continue distinguished careers in Europe and the US (example: Hermann Bujard left a faculty position at SCAS to join Heidelberg University.  He later helped to establish the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) and the Centre for Molecular Biology at Heidelberg University).  Thus, GRSCW/SCAS has had a tremendous influence on the development of molecular biology in the US and worldwide.

 

Influence on Other Disciplines – Research activity in the department in other areas (cancer biology, neurobiology, biochemistry, cell biology) is to a large extent built upon the methodological foundations that were established by the early microbial geneticists. 

 

Educational Mission – The Division of Genetics of the GRCSW Molecular Sciences Laboratory was the predecessor of the current Department of Biological Sciences.  Microbiological research and teaching have long played a vital role in the mission of the Department. 

 

Specific Accomplishments – Microbiologists at UT Dallas and its predecessor institutions used the bacterium Escherichia coli as a model organism to elucidate fundamental molecular biological principles concerning the repair, transfer and expression of DNA.  In overview, the nomination encompasses the early developments of “molecular biology” – plasmids (Clowes), growth regulation (Bremer), and phage development including the highlight of the photoactivation of DNA repair (Rupert).

 

  • DNA RepairClaud S. Rupert did seminal research on enzymes in bacteria that are activated by visible light and are involved with repairing damage to DNA caused by ultraviolet light; he was among the first to describe a light-activated DNA repair process that requires a photoreactivating enzyme, or photolyase.  Rupert joined GRCSW from Johns Hopkins University, where he had discovered light-activated DNA repair.  At GRCSW, Rupert continued to study photo-activation of DNA repair in Escherichia coli and other microorganisms.  In 1978, Rupert and his student Aziz Sancar (Nobel Laureate, 2015, joint award) reported the cloning of the phr gene that encodes the E. coli photolyase.  Sancar believes that phr was the first gene to be cloned (in a recombinant plasmid) anywhere in the US outside of California.  

 

  • DNA RepairAziz Sancar (co-recipient 2015 Nobel Prize, 2015, for mechanistic studies of DNA repair), while a doctoral student at UT-Dallas in Rupert’s laboratory, successfully isolated the E. coli photolyase gene, which is critical to DNA repair in bacteria.  Sancar earned his PhD in molecular and cell biology in 1977.  His PhD research conducted in the Founders Building formed the foundation of subsequent work that led to his 2015 Nobel Prize (joint award) in chemistry. He is the first alumnus to earn the prize.

 

  • Plasmid BiologyRoyston Clowes, an influential microbial geneticist who headed the biology division for several years, was internationally renowned for his research on the molecular biology of genetic elements (plasmids and transposons) that mediate DNA transfer.  He did much to further understanding of the biology of plasmids and to lay the groundwork for their development as experimental tools.  His work had implications for medicine and was at the center of recombinant DNA technology, which has had wide-ranging applications in biotechnology, laboratory research and drug development. His research was central to a better understanding of drug-resistance factors in disease-causing bacteria. Clowes’ "milestone" contributions in this area include the genetic and physical characterization of plasmids  and studies of the mechanisms of plasmid and chromosome transfer.  Together with other distinguished microbiologists (Naomi Datta, Stan Cohen, Stan Falkow, Roy Curtiss and Richard Novick), Clowes co-authored a definitive plasmid nomenclature and the “plasmid subgroup” report for the 1974 Asilomar meeting that formed the basis for the Guidelines for Recombinant DNA Research.  Clowes also did important work on transposons and the exotoxin A of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, including one of the first reports of the isolation of DNA sequences encoding the toxin.  Besides his research papers, Clowes also authored several important books, including the highly influential “Experiments in Molecular Genetics” (co-authored with Bill Hayes). 

 

  • Bacterial Growth and the Synthesis of Macromolecules Hans Bremer, associated with the institution for close to 50 years, uncovered fundamental physiological principles in bacterial growth and the synthesis of macromolecules.  He made important contributions to the study of the growth rate regulation of ribosomal protein and RNA synthesis in Escherichia coli.  "Milestone" contributions of Bremer’s include elucidation of the role of ppGpp in controlling the rate of stable RNA synthesis, the discovery that the second ppGpp synthetase activity of E. coli is the product of the spoT gene, and many studies of the growth rate regulation of macromolecular synthesis.  Much of Bremer’s work is characterized by a strong quantitative and theoretical component, which reflects his roots in the Phage School.  Still associated with UT-Dallas, Bremer’s publishing career with the institutions associated with the Founders Building spans nearly fifty years.

 

In ADDITION –  Besides the individuals highlighted above, early members of GRCSW and SCAS included phage biologists and geneticists working on bacteria, yeast, Physarum, and protozoa.     

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

 

Photo UT Dallas 2a - Cropped- Susie Sharp and UT Dallas Folks with Plaque

(L-R) Bruce Novak, UT-Dallas Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Susan Sharp, ASM President,
Stephen Spiro, Head, Department of Biological Sciences UT-Dallas and Inga Musselman, Senior Vice Provost UT-Dallas, 
with Milestones in Microbiology Plaque 

 

Any questions? Contact the ASM Archivist at jkarr@asmusa.org 

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Merck Research Laboratories Designated as Milestones in Microbiology Site

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 The American Society for Microbiology Designates

 Merck Research Laboratories

 as a Milestones in Microbiology site  

The ASM Milestones in Microbiology program recognizes institutions and the scientists who worked there that have made significant contributions toward advancing the science of microbiology. 

Photo7-Perlmutter and Sharp Shaking Hands 

Roger Perlmutter, President, Merck Research Laboratories, and Susan E. Sharp, President, American Society for Microbiology (photo courtesy of Merck Creative Studios)

Milestones Recognition

The Milestones in Microbiology designation is made in recognition of Merck Research Laboratories’ strong and sustained legacy of anti-infective and vaccine research, and encompasses work accomplished in both the Rahway, NJ and West Point, PA facilities.   

 

Milestones Site Dedication Ceremony

The plaques that will mark Merck Research Laboratories (MRL) as a Milestones in Microbiology site were unveiled on October 17, 2016, in a ceremony held in conjunction with the opening of Merck's 125th Anniversary celebration.  Susan Sharp, President of ASM, presented the plaque on behalf of ASM.  Roger Perlmutter, President of MRL, accepted the plaque on behalf of Merck. 

Photo 1-Perlmutter-Sharp-Frazier and Plaques

 (L-R) Roger Perlmutter, President, Merck Research Laboratories, Susan E. Sharp, President, American Society for Microbiology, Kenneth C. Frazier, CEO, Merck & Co. (photo courtesy of Merck Creative Studios)

 

Milestones Plaques

 Scanned PDF-Merck Rahway Plaque 10-15-16                        Scanned PDF-Merck West Point  Plaque 10-15-16

Historical Background and Perspective

The Milestones designation is for Merck Research Laboratories’ strong and sustained legacy of anti-infective and vaccine research, and recognizes accomplishments in both the Rahway, NJ and West Point, PA facilities.  

 

RAHWAY FACILITY: 

Pioneering Breakthroughs and Contributions – Since its opening in 1903, Merck’s Rahway facility has been the location for many therapeutic breakthroughs in the anti-infective space.  Notably, scientists at Rahway conducted pioneering work in the development of

  • penicillin,
  • streptomycin,
  • Mefoxin® (cefoxitin),
  • Primaxin®(imipenem/cilastatin),
  • Mectizan® (ivermectin) and
  • Cancidas® (caspofungin acetate) g. as well as other life-saving products 

 

New Way to Conduct Inquiry: Formal Collaboration Between Academia and Industry – Merck worked with Selman Waksman (Rutgers University, New Jersey) to secure one of the earliest formal collaborations between a business and a university.  This early example of effective, cooperative academic and industrial collaboration is still touted today, and this partnership and later collaboration with Mayo Clinic allowed Merck scientists to show that streptomycin was the chemotherapeutic medicine found to be effective for tuberculosis.

 

Large Scale Production of Penicillin – While Merck cannot claim the discovery of penicillin, the company developed one of the first methods for its large scale production.  Prior to Merck’s involvement, academic scientists were producing penicillin in static cultures on nutrient media. This process was laborious and yielded limited quantities of the active ingredient for therapeutic purposes.  Merck scientists and engineers worked to scale up and enhance the penicillin yields from these cultures. Using pilot plants, they generated several hundred liters of penicillium culture that by March 1942 had yielded enough penicillin for the first patient, and another 10 cases were treated by June 1942. Further work involving Merck working in collaboration with other pharmaceutical companies and government agencies succeeded in advancing and refining a method of deep tank fermentation that increased yields substantially and ultimately paved the way for the mass production of penicillin.

 

Streptomycin – In 1939, Professor Selman A. Waksman of Rutgers University and George W. Merck, Merck ’s then CEO, secured one of the first ever formal collaborations between a business and a university to further explore the potential for isolating and characterizing antimicrobial agents derived from actinomycetes species found in soil samples. This agreement provided Waksman with support from Merck’s chemists and access to extensive animal testing resources, as well as state of the art pilot plant facilities.  This early example of effective, cooperative academic and industrial collaboration is still touted today and this partnership and later collaboration with Mayo Clinic allowed Merck scientists to show that streptomycin was the first chemotherapeutic medicine found to be effective for tuberculosis.

 

Natural Products Screening Program – Following the success of the Waksman collaboration, Merck invested in a natural products screening program that ultimately led to the identification of several new antibiotic medicines. These capabilities, based mainly in Rahway, enabled Merck researchers to culture organisms sampled from sites all over the world which were then evaluated for antimicrobial activity.  In the 1970s, following a fifteen-year effort, Merck’s screening procedure resulted in the discovery of Mefoxin® (cefoxitin). Mefoxin was an important new addition to the physician’s armamentarium due to the increasing incidence of antimicrobial resistance. Unlike cephalosporins that were originally discovered in fungi, Mefoxin® (cefoxitin) was interestingly derived from cephamycin C, which is produced by Streptomyces lactamdurans. At the time, it was recognized as a major advance over clinically available beta-lactam antibiotics.

 

Carbapenem Class Of Antibiotics – Primaxin® (imipenem/cilastatin) is the first member of the carbapenem class of antibiotics, which continues to be prescribed extensively in the U.S. and across the world. Carbapenems were an important discovery, as they are generally less susceptible to common mechanisms of antibiotic resistance than other beta-lactam molecules.  The development of Primaxin® even today is considered one of the most arduous research efforts in Merck’s history to date. Screening of bacterial cultures identified a molecule, thienamycin, that had potent antibiotic properties. Unfortunately thienomycin was highly unstable. In 1974, the research teams at Rahway produced a sample pure enough to be chemically analyzed. This allowed the company’s chemists to develop and synthesize a stable derivative with similar antibiotic properties known as imipenem.  Further experiments found that imipenem activity could be improved if it was administered with the dehydropeptidase inhibitor, cilastatin.  The commercial manufacturing process for imipenem involved 16 defined steps at four locations, finishing in Rahway. The process was the first in Merck’s history and the most complex total chemical synthesis the industry had known.  

 

River Blindness / Nobel Prize – Mectizan® (ivermectin): Research, performed predominantly in Rahway, led to the discovery and development of Mectizan® (ivermectin) for the treatment of onchocerciasis (also known as river blindness). River blindness is a parasitic infection by a parasitic worm Onchocerca volvulus that can cause intense itching, skin discoloration, rashes, and eye disease that can lead to permanent blindness. It is spread by the bites of infected black flies that breed in rapidly flowing rivers in the affected countries.  The development of ivermectin coupled with Merck’s commitment to donate it worldwide (over 1 billion people treated to date), has led to the elimination of river blindness in several countries and significantly reduced the prevalence of this affliction worldwide by breaking the lifecycle of the causative parasite.

 

William C. Campbell, a retired Merck scientist who worked in Rahway, shared the 2015 Nobel Prize winner in Physiology or Medicine for the discovery of avermectin, which led to the development of Mectizan® (ivermectin).  

 

Treatment for Fungal Infections – Cancidas® (caspofungin acetate): A 15-year process led Merck scientists to develop the first in class echinocandin antifungal agent, Cancidas® (caspofungin).  Caspofungin is a semisynthetic derivative of pneumocandin B0, a naturally occurring molecule isolated from the fungus Glarea lozoyensis.  Caspofungin is used today to treat opportunistic fungal infections of the genera Candida, Aspergillus, and Cryptococcus, particularly in patients who are immunocompromised.  This medicine provided an important new option for patients, and by 2006, caspofungin had become the number one intravenous antifungal medicine worldwide.

 

WEST POINT FACILITY:

Vaccines – Merck’s West Point facility has been the location for pioneering work leading to the development of prophylactic vaccines for the protection of measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, pneumococcal disease and Human Papilloma Virus.  In 1956, Maurice R. Hilleman became the director of virus and cell biology research at the Merck Institute, West Point, Pennsylvania. During his tenure, Hilleman and his team developed vaccines to prevent measles, mumps, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, meningitis, pneumonia, Haemophilus influenza bacteria and rubella. Notably, he cultivated mumps from a swab taken from his own daughter’s throat, using the culture as the basis of what became known as the Jeryl Lynn strain vaccine.  Hilleman also succeeded in isolating and culturing other viruses, including the hepatitis A vaccine in culture. Additionally, Hilleman and his team developed a vaccine for hepatitis B by treating blood serum with pepsin, urea and formaldehyde; however, there were concerns about the purity of this vaccine during the HIV/AIDS epidemic. To address these concerns, Hilleman and his team developed an alternate hepatitis B vaccine using recombinant DNA technology. This was the first recombinant vaccine to be approved for widespread use. Today, Hilleman is recognized as one of the most influential contributors to modern day vaccinology.

 

 ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

 

Any questions? Contact the ASM Archivist at jkarr@asmusa.org 

  

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University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Designated as a Milestones in Microbiology Site

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UIUC Milestones Photo 14 John Cronan and Stanley with Plaque-CROPPED-P1020479  

(L-R) John E. Cronan, UIUC Microbiology Alumni Professor and Head of Microbiology; Professor of Biochemistry, and

Stanley Maloy, Past President, ASM, and Past Faculty Member UIUC Department of Microbiology with the Milestones Plaque

 

The American Society for Microbiology Announces its Designation of the

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

as a Milestones in Microbiology site 

 

The ASM Milestones in Microbiology program recognizes institutions and the scientists who worked there

that have made significant contributions toward advancing the science of microbiology. 

 

Milestones Recognition

The Milestones in Microbiology designation is made in recognition of the rich history of major microbiological achievements at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and the many outstanding UIUC microbiologists who have made seminal discoveries that significantly increased biological understanding and advanced the field of microbiology.  

 

Milestones Site Dedication Ceremony

The plaque that will mark the site as a Milestone in Microbiology was unveiled on October 16, 2015, in a ceremony held in conjunction with the University's Annual Microbiology Conference.  Stanley Maloy, Past President of ASM and Former Faculty Member of the UIUC Department of Microbiology presented the plaque on behalf of ASM.  John E. Cronan, UIUC Microbiology Alumni Professor and Head of Microbiology, and Edward Feser, Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College of Fine and Applied Arts accepted the plaque on behalf of the University. 

 

The Milestones Plaque: 

 

Univ IL plaque 2015-FINAL Formatted as Plaque

PDF of Plaque:  Click Here 

 

Historical Background and Perspective

The Milestones designation specifically cites the contributions of the following UIUC scientists:

 

Thomas J. Burrill (1839 – 1916)

  • Discovered bacterial causes of plant diseases, founding the science of bacterial plant pathology
  • Identified Erwinia amylovora as the causal agent of fire blight in pear and apple trees
  • In 1891, established one of the earliest bacteriology courses in the United States

 

Sol Spiegelman (1914 – 1983)

  • Pioneered the study of RNA and mechanisms of viral replication
  • Pioneered the separation of RNA by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis
  • Developed nucleic acid hybridization technology to detect specific sequences, a basic tool of molecular biology
  • Solved the mystery of the origin of ribosomal RNA
  • Discovered self-reproducing RNA structures

 

Salvador E. Luria (1912 – 1991)

  • Pioneered the study of bacterial virus-mediated transfer of DNA
  • First observed genetically the phenomenon of microbial DNA restriction and modification
  • Awarded Nobel Prize with Max Delbrück and Alfred Hershey in 1969 for their discoveries concerning the replication mechanism and genetic structure of viruses

 

Marvin P. Bryant (1925 – 2000)

  • Pioneered the study of rumen microbes and their roles in cellulose fermentation
  • Isolated methanogens from the rumen and defined media for their cultivation
  • Pioneered the study of microbial anaerobic degradation of ligno-aromatic ring structures

 

Irwin C. ”Gunny” Gunsalus (1912 – 2008)

  • Pioneered studies in microbial biochemistry
  • Discovered lipoic acid and worked out its role as a coenzyme
  • Defined the structure of vitamin B6
  • Developed a genetic system to study Pseudomonas
  • Charted the microbial metabolic breakdown of steroid-like terpenes
  • Discovered the first microbial cytochrome P450 system

 

Carl R. Woese (1928 – 2012)

  • Revolutionized understanding of life on Earth by pioneering the use of 16S ribosomal RNA sequences as a basis for studying microbial evolution and ecology
  • In 1977, discovered the Archaea, a new Domain of Life distinct from Bacteria and Eukarya
  • Awarded the Leeuwenhoek Medal in 1992, the National Medal of Science in 2000, and the Crafoord Prize in 2003 

 

Abigail A. Salyers (1942 – 2013)

  • Pioneered studies of Bacteroides polysaccharide utilization and its role in colonic fermentation
  • Developed genetic tools for studying Bacteroides, including metabolism, mobilizable elements, and antibiotic resistance
  • First female tenured professor in Microbiology at UIUC in 1983 and full professor in 1988

 

Ralph S. Wolfe (1921 – )

  • Pioneered studies of the microbial biochemistry of methanogenesis
  • Developed the first archaeal cell-free extract for methane formation
  • Identified ferredoxin and six new coenzymes of methanogenesis
  • Isolated and characterized the first Acetobacterium
  • Leading role in establishing and developing the Woods Hole Microbial Ecology Course

 

UIUC Relationship with American Society for Microbiology:

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) has had a close relationship with the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) (formerly SAB - Society of American Bacteriologists) throughout its history. 

 

As of 2015, six UIUC Scientists have served as ASM (or SAB) Presidents:

Served as President of the Society while at UIUC:

    • Thomas J. Burrill (1916)
    • H. Orin Halvorson (1955)
    • Abigail A. Salyers (2002)

 

Served as President of the Society after they left UIUC:

    • Salvador E. Luria (1968)
    • L. Leon Campbell (1974)
    • Stanley R. Maloy (2006)   

The first ASM journal, Journal of Bacteriology, and the establishment of local Branches were first proposed at the 1915 SAB Meeting hosted by the University in Urbana, Illinois.  The first volume of Journal of Bacteriology was subsequently published in 1916.  The Bacteriology Club at Urbana became the first local Branch of SAB (1917).  

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

 

Any questions? Contact the ASM Archivist at jkarr@asmusa.org

 

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Delft and C B van Niel Slide Show

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The Delft School in America:
The Contributions of C. B. van Niel (1897-1985)

 van Niel

Click Here To View Slide Show  

(For best results, use Firefox or Google Chrome Web Browser)

 Click here to download the slideshow (12.5MB)

 

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2015 History of Microbiology Research Travel Award Recipient

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The Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives (CHOMA) is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2015 History of Microbiology Research Travel Award: 

 

Ross picLauren N. Ross, M.D. 

Lauren Ross, University of Pittsburgh, Department of History and Philosophy of Science, used the award to conduct research at CHOMA on early American bacteriologists' understanding of Koch's postulates and more generally their ideas about disease causation as reflected in textbooks, lab manuals, and other materials.

 

The History of Microbiology Research Travel Awards are given to support historical research of the awardees' choosing, in areas that can be supported by materials in the CHOMA collections.  The CHOMA collections, located at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, include 9,000 volumes on microbiology and related topics, photographs, biographical materials, topical files on various aspects of microbiology, records of the Society from its founding in 1899 to the present, and several collections of personal papers. 

 

APPLY NOW FOR HISTORY OF MICROBIOLOGY TRAVEL AWARDS –

For more information on the Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives, visit the website at www.asm.org/choma    

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History of Microbiology at ASM Microbe 2016

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The Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives (CHOMA) Committee is pleased to announce its schedule of ASM MICROBE 2016 meeting events:

 

ASM MICROBE 2016
Boston, MA
June 16-20, 2016

 

For more information on CHOMA programs and activities, contact ASM Archivist at    jkarr@asmusa.org   OR  archives@asmusa.org

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History of Microbiology Lecture at ASM 2015 General Meeting

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115th ASM General Meeting
New Orleans, LA
May 30 - June 2, 2015

 

Annual History of Microbiology Lecture  

Sponsored by the Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives (CHOMA)

 

Title:              From Humor to Virus: The Microbiology of Yellow Fever in Historical Perspective 

Lecturer:        Mariola Espinosa, Ph.D.

                       Associate Professor, History Department

                       University of Iowa

Date:              Sunday, May 31, 2015

Description:  

This lecture traced the history of yellow fever, a viral disease that profoundly affected New Orleans, other Gulf Coast cities, and the larger Atlantic world. It began by describing the debates among doctors and scientists that led yellow fever to be identified as a distinct disease and distinguished from other fevers. Next, it traced the history of the identification of the disease's etiology, paying particular attention to the contributions of Carlos Finlay, John Carter, Jesse Lazear, and Walter Reed, and followed the subsequent efforts to eradicate the disease. It discussed how the virus that causes yellow fever was finally identified and how a complete understanding of its ecology forced a new strategy of containment.

Click Here for information on obtaining a session recording:  https://www.pathlms.com/asm/tracks/2216/events/374?per_page=25

Any Questions? Contact ASM Archivist at   jkarr@asmusa.org   OR   archives@asmusa.org

 

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History Exhibit 2016

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History of Microbiology Exhibit - Two-part Exhibit:  Significant Events in Microbiology and the Founding of Journal of Bacteriology, 1916

Visit the History of Microbiology Exhibit to view images and documents from the Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives collection and interact with the ASM Archivist!

Location: Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, Level 1 Northwest Lobby A

ASM MICROBE 2016

Boston, MA

June 16-20, 2016

http://asmmicrobe.org/

 

For more information, contact ASM Archivist at    jkarr@asmusa.org    OR  archives@asmusa.org

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Rockefeller University Designated a Milestones in Microbiology Site by ASM

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The Rockefeller University has been named a Milestones in Microbiology site by the American Society for Microbiology.  

RockefCeremony

 

SITE DEDICATION CEREMONY

The formal site dedication took place as follows:

 

Date:  Wednesday, April 8, 2015, at 12 Noon

Place:  The Cohn Library, The Rockefeller University 

Program:  

    • Remarks by Marc Tessier-Lavigne, Rockefeller University President
    • Overview of Milestones Program and Introduction of ASM President by Doug Eveleigh, Chair of Milestones in Microbiology
    • Plaque Presentation by Stanley Maloy, Past President of the ASM
    • Lecture by James Darnell, Vincent Astor Professor Emeritus:  “Rockefeller University’s Early Role in Microbiology”
    • Lecture by Emil Gotschlich, R. Gwin Follis-Chevron Professor Emeritus:  “History of Meningitis Research at Rockefeller."
    • Walking tour conducted by University historian Carol Moberg: Site for “Milestones” plaque (Collaborative Research Center) and Rockefeller University historical laboratory (Flexner Hall)

 

Plaque Presentation:

      • Stanley Maloy, Past President of the ASM, presented the official Milestones in Microbiology plaque on behalf of the Society.      
      • Marc Tessier-Lavigne, Rockefeller University President, accepted the plaque on behalf of the University

 

 RATIONALE FOR THE MILESTONES DESIGNATION

The Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research (now known as Rockefeller University), founded in 1901, was the first institute in the U.S. entirely devoted to using biomedical science to understand the underlying cause of disease.  Its initial focus on infectious disease and its continued leadership in fields such as bacteriology, virology, parasitology, immunology, and genetics have led to numerous contributions to the microbiological sciences.

The ASM Milestones designation is made in recognition of the many outstanding achievements of Rockefeller scientists, and in particular for the following ground-breaking discoveries:

  • The 1944 discovery by Oswald T. Avery, Colin M. MacLeod, and Maclyn McCarty that DNA from one pneumococcal type can transform cells of a different type, a finding that pointed to DNA as the molecule of heredity.
  • Peyton Rous’ formulation of the viral theory of cancer causation after his 1910 discovery that a virus in a chicken sarcoma could cause the same tumor type in inoculated healthy animals, a theory that was proven correct nearly a half century after he proposed it.
  • The development by Emil C. Gotschlich of purified capsular polysaccharide vaccines against groups C and A meningococcal bacteria, which have prevented meningitis in infants, children, and American military recruits since 1970.

 

THE MILESTONES PLAQUE

Plaque-Rockefeller-FINAL-2-19-15

 

PDF of Plaque:  Click Here

 

Press Release Announcing Milestones DesignationClick Here

 

VISIT TO THE “FLEXNER LAB”:

After the Milestones ceremony, Carol Moberg led a tour to the “Flexner Lab,” a historic lab that has been transformed into a small museum housing artifacts from Rockefeller University's past and serving as a venue for special exhibits relating to Rockefeller University history.  The lab contains fixtures and other items dating to the early 20th Century.  Among the artifacts on display are glassware created in the university’s glassblowing shop (the university also had a woodworking shop and machine shop where scientists worked with master craftsmen to create tools to solve problems), benches, fume hoods, air and gas nozzles, and heavy stone bench tops that are twice as thick as modern ones.  Of special note are several glass perfusion pumps (1930s) invented by Rockefeller’s Alexis Carrel and aviator Charles Lindbergh.  The pumps were used in animal experiments to keep whole organs alive outside the body, and were the precursors of the heart-lung machines used in open heart surgery beginning in the 1940s.  Lindbergh’s interest and involvement in this invention stemmed from his personal experience:  his sister- in-law had heart problems that were untreatable because technology at the time did not allow for organs to be removed and preserved during surgery. 

A special exhibit commemorating the Milestones designation was on display in the lab, featuring photographs related to the accomplishments and scientists cited on the plaque.  Also displayed were photos and documents relating to the four Rockefeller scientists who have served as ASM president: 

ASM Presidents:

1936 – Thomas Milton Rivers (1888-1962) 

1941 – Oswald Theodore Avery (1877-1955)

1943 – Rebecca Craighill Lancefield (1895-1981)

1952 – René Jules Dubos  (1901-1976)

 

ASM Milestones Exhibit Poster

Several reprints addressing Rockefeller history were available to visitors.  Copies were obtained for the ASM Archives:   

 

MORE ABOUT THE ROCKEFELLER UNIVERSITY

The Rockefeller University is one of the world’s foremost biomedical research institutes and is dedicated to conducting innovative, high-quality research to improve the understanding of life for the benefit of humanity.

 

Founded in 1901, The Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research was the country’s first institution devoted exclusively to biomedical research. In the 1950s, the Institute expanded its mission to include graduate education and began training new generations of scientists to become research leaders around the world. In 1965, it was renamed The Rockefeller University. Its more than 70 laboratories conduct biological and biomedical research and a community of over 2,000 faculty, students, postdocs, technicians, clinicians and administrative personnel work at the University’s 14-acre campus.

 

Rockefeller’s unique approach to science has led to some of the world’s most revolutionary contributions to biology and medicine. During Rockefeller’s history, 24 of its scientists have won Nobel Prizes, 21 have won Albert Lasker Medical Research Awards and 20 have garnered the National Medal of Science, the highest science award given by the United States.

 

For more information, go to www.rockefeller.edu

_________________________________________

 

THE MILESTONES IN MICROBIOLOGY PROGRAM AND LIST OF MILESTONES SITES

For general information on the Milestones in Microbiology program, a list of current Milestones sites, and guidelines for nominating a site for Milestones recognition, click here

_________________________________________

Any questions?  Contact the ASM Archivist at archives@asmusa.org or jkarr@asmusa.org

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CHOMA Symposium 2016

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CHOMA Symposium

 

Title:                Foundations to Frontiers: The Molecular Revolution

Date:               Sunday, June 19, 2016

Time:               2:45 pm – 5:15 pm

 

Location:         Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel; Grand Ballroom B

 

Conveners:      Joan W. Bennett; Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

                        Lin-Jun MA; University of Massachusetts, Amherst

 

Symposium Description:         

Every branch of the microbial sciences and clinical medicine has been transformed by our ability to exploit scientific insights into the molecular workings of life. This section will invite FIVE distinguished scientists who have made significant contributions to recent biology, including molecular cloning, DNA sequencing, and gene editing. Hearing stories from these scientists directly regarding why they chose their career paths, how they made their discoveries, and what they think about the economic, ethical and social implications of their research, will be extremely valuable for the next generation microbiologists. 

Speakers/Topics:    

 

  • The Ignition of BLAST
    • Stephen Altschul; NIH, Bethesda, MD

 

  • From the Lac Operon to Science and Social Justice Teaching
    • Jonathan Beckwith; Harvard University Medical School, Boston, MA

 

  • Microbial Genomics: The Early Years
    • Claire M. Fraser; University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD

 

  • Origins of Genomics and Semi-synthetic Genes
    • Joachim Messing; Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, NJ

 

  • Following Carl Woese into the Natural Microbial World: The Beginnings of Metagenomics
    • Norman R. Pace; University of Colorado, Boulder, CO
 
ASM MICROBE 2016
Boston, MA
June 16-20, 2016

 

For more information on CHOMA programs and activities, contact ASM Archivist at    jkarr@asmusa.org    OR  archives@asmusa.org

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Alice Evans - First Woman President of ASM (formerly SAB) - Slide Show

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Click on image to begin the slideshow

From its founding in 1899 (as the Society of American Bacteriologists) until 1975, the American Society for Microbiology elected only two women to serve as its President: Alice C. Evans in 1928 and Rebecca Lancefield in 1943. While this may have reflected a certain bias among the (primarily male) members of the Society, it is also likely to have resulted from a larger lack of educational and employment opportunities in the broader society: the pool of potential female SAB Presidents was simply too small to offer up many successful candidates.

 

Whatever may have been the case, the purpose of this brief overview of the career of Alice Evans is to demonstrate that this first woman President was fully engaged with the science, and the network of scientists, of her day, and was a worthy successor (and predecessor) to the other microbiologists who have held that office. It is presented in the hopes of simulating further historical interest in her life and career.

 

This slide show is based on an exhibit prepared for the asm2013 Meeting, which was comprised solely of materials in the collections of the Center for the History of Microbiology /ASM Archives.

 

For more information, contact ASM Archivist at jkarr@asmusa.org

 

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Annual History of Microbiology Lecture 2016

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Annual History of Microbiology Lecture

 

Title:                Alexander Fleming and the Beginnings of Biofilm Research

Lecturer:         Michael J. Hanophy

                        St. Joseph's College, Brooklyn, NY

 

Date:               Saturday, June 18, 2016

Time:              2:45 pm – 3:45 pm

 

Location:         Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC); Meeting Room 257A

 

Conveners:      James A. Poupard; Chair, Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives

                        Douglas E. Eveleigh; Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

 

Lecture Description:   

The 2016 History of Microbiology Lecture discusses the early work of Alexander Fleming on wound infections and what we would now call biofilm research. The history of bacteriology had been, in many ways, a history of the study of pure culture until significant research into the area of biofilms began in earnest in the 1990s. However, although the term “biofilm” did not appear in a publication until as late as 1977, the study of microbial communities attached to surfaces goes back to the earliest days of microbiology. Van Leeuwenhoek himself noted the abundance and diversity of microbes in dental plaque, while research in the 1940s by Heukelekian and Heller was among the first studies to note real differences between growth in a film and planktonic growth. Some of the earliest work on biofilms, particularly medically significant biofilms, was actually carried out by a young Alexander Fleming, long before his Nobel prize-winning work on penicillin. A review of the literature shows that Fleming authored or co-authored ten papers between 1914 and 1920 specifically on the mechanisms and treatment of infection. Among these papers are studies of the mixed flora found on soldiers’ uniforms and in different types of wounds and reports on innovative techniques that Fleming developed that allowed him to study biofilm populations. As a result of this work, Alexander Fleming was among the first to extensively characterize the diverse populations in biofilms and to recognize that organisms in a biofilm are often much more resistant to antimicrobial compounds than organisms growing planktonically. The Annual History of Microbiology Lecture is sponsored each year by the Center for the History of Microbiology/ASM Archives (CHOMA) to present topics in the history of microbiology and show how they have impacted and continue to influence the field of microbiology. The Lectures demonstrate that history is a critical factor for understanding the current and future directions of the science.

ASM MICROBE 2016

Boston, MA

June 16-20, 2016

http://asmmicrobe.org/

 

For more information on CHOMA programs and activities, contact ASM Archivist at    jkarr@asmusa.org    OR  archives@asmusa.org

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Annual Clinical Virology Symposium: Programs and Abstracts

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 cvs 87

Dates: 1984—

Size: 3.5 linear feet

Source: Dr. Steven Specter

Arrangement: Chronological

In 1984 the University of South Florida sponsored the first International Symposium on the Biomedical Sciences; the topic was “Viruses, Immunity and Immunodeficiency.” The topic the next year was “Clinical Virology,” and the need for a meeting on this topic was sufficiently great that 1986 saw the Second Annual Clinical Virology Symposium, co-sponsored by the Pan American Group for Rapid Viral Diagnosis (PAGRVD). The meetings continue to this day, now sponsored by ASM and the France Foundation, in cooperation with the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology (formerly PAGRVD.)


The Center for the History of Microbiology now has a nearly complete set of programs and abstracts from this important annual meeting. Copies of the Symposium and Workshop programs are available online (http://www.clinicalvirologysymposium.org/ ) and full documentation (abstracts, workshop materials, etc.) is available through the Archivist (jkarr@asmusa.org)

Holdings:

  • Program and Abstracts of the International Symposium in the Biomedical Sciences: Viruses, Immunity and Immunodeficiency. 1984
  • Program and Abstracts of the International Symposium in the Biomedical Sciences: Clinical Virology. 1985
  • Program and Abstracts of the Clinical Virology Symposium: 1986-1996
  • Program and Speaker Abstracts of the Clinical Virology Symposium: 1997-1998; 2000-2014
  • Poster Abstracts of the Clinical Virology Symposium: 1997-2014
  • Molecular Virology Workshop Handouts: 1994-2014
  • Travel Awards Booklet: 2003, 2006 Guide to Exhibits: 2011-2012; 2014

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Ocean Station ALOHA, University of Hawai'i at Manoa Designated as a Milestones in Microbiology Site

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  The American Society for Microbiology

Announces its Designation of the

 

Ocean Station ALOHA, University of Hawai'i at Mānoa

 

as a Milestones in Microbiology site  

 

The ASM Milestones in Microbiology program recognizes institutions and the scientists who worked there

that have made significant contributions toward advancing the science of microbiology. 

 

OS ALOHA Milestones Plaque

(L-R) Alexander Shor, Associate Dean for Research, UH School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology; Tim Donohue, ASM Past President; Rita Colwell, ASM Past President; David Karl, Co-Founder of the HOT program that established Ocean Station ALOHA, and Co-Founder and Co-Director of C-MORE and SCOPE; Matthew Church, Professor and Senior Researcher, C-MORE and current lead PI of the HOT program; Doug Eveleigh, Chair of Milestones in Microbiology; Ed Delong, Co-Director and Co-Founder of C-MORE and SCOPE with the Milestones Plaque

 

To view videos of the Milestones ceremony and Pavel Lecture Held prior to the ceremony, go to http://cmore.soest.hawaii.edu/


To access a 30-minute video (produced by Jay Fidell of “Think Tech Hawai’i”) featuring event highlights and interviews go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iprHO5wrf1A

 

Milestones Recognition

The Milestones in Microbiology designation is made in recognition of the historic and visionary contributions of Ocean Station ALOHA to the science of microbial oceanography.   

 

Milestones Site Dedication Ceremony

The plaque that will mark the site as a Milestone in Microbiology was unveiled on November 17, 2015, in a ceremony held in conjunction with the inaugural lecture in the “Waypoints in Microbial Oceanography” Distinguished Lecturer Series.  The Pavel lecture, “Climate, Oceans, and Human Health: The Cholera Chronicle,” was presented by Rita Colwell, former director of the National Science Foundation and former ASM president, who commented, “Ocean science can no longer be viewed as an esoteric, ‘offshore’ discipline.  It is mainland and mainstream. The health and bounty of our oceans are an issue of planetary survival.”

The Milestones plaque was presented by Tim Donohue, ASM past president, to Alexander Shor, Associate Dean for Research, UH School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, David Karl, Co-Founder of the HOT program that established Ocean Station ALOHA, and Co-Founder and Co-Director of C-MORE and SCOPE, Edward DeLong, Co-Director and Co-Founder of C-MORE and SCOPE, and Matthew Church, Professor and Senior Researcher, C-MORE and current lead PI of the HOT program.  “This open-ocean research station has played a key role in defining the discipline of microbial oceanography and educating the public about the vital role of marine microbes in global ecosystems,” said Donohue.  “It is my opinion that we are in a renaissance period for microbiology, a time where we are poised to gain new insight into the myriad of ways in which microbes impact the world that we inhabit and will pass on to future generations.  We can look to Ocean Station ALOHA for examples of how to explain the science that excites us and its potential to solve problems relevant to society today and in the future.” 

The Milestones event was well attended by faculty, students, ASM Hawai‘i Branch members, university leaders, including David Lassner, President of the University of Hawai‘i System and Donna Vuchinich, President and CEO of the University of Hawai‘i Foundation, and ASM guests, including Doug Eveleigh, chair of Milestones, and John Meyers, Membership Services Director.  Other highlights of the Milestones celebration and Pavel Lecture were a seminar, “The Science of Ocean Station ALOHA” delivered by David Karl, Edward DeLong, and Matthew Church, a tour of C-More Hale, and a viewing of the award-winning film, “The Invisible Seas” which was produced in the 1970s by Rita Colwell.  

 

Milestones Plaque: 

 Plaque-Staion ALOHA Hawaii-FINAL-in White

 First-Day Cover Issued by U.S. Postal Service in Honor of the Milestones Designation:

  First-Day Cover COPY Issued Post Milestones

 

 

Historical Background and Perspective

 

Overview: 

Ocean Station ALOHA (A Long-term Oligotrophic Habitat Assessment), the microbiological research site 100 km north of O'ahu, Hawai'i, has played a fundamental role in defining the discipline of microbial oceanography, developing a comprehensive understanding of the sea, and educating the public about the critical role of marine microbes in global ecosystems.  In light of the pioneering research conducted there over the past three decades,  Station ALOHA may be viewed as the “birthplace” of microbial oceanography. Important scientific breakthroughs, including the discovery of new microorganisms, new metabolic pathways, and new understanding of the environmental controls of microbial rates and processes at a site representative of the North Pacific Subtropical gyre – Earth’s largest biome – justify the recognition of Station ALOHA as an important proving ground in microbial ecology.

 

In the 1960s, the field of marine microbiology gained prominence as an important sub-discipline of microbiology, including systematic laboratory-based studies of the structure and physiology of marine bacteria, unicellular algae, and protozoa, with a focus on the metabolic effects of salt, temperature, pressure, and later on nutrient uptake kinetics and controls. These important – mostly pure culture – studies laid the foundation for subsequent investigations of the ecological role of microorganisms in the sea. Later that decade, culture-independent methods were devised to enumerate marine bacteria using epifluorescence microscopy, and the results documented much larger populations than had been reported using selective, plate count methodologies.  Furthermore, the use of radiolabeled organic substrates provided novel methods for the determination of heterotrophic bacterial community dynamics and growth. These methods contributed to a new era of quantitative marine microbial ecology, and to the eventual founding of microbial oceanography as a new approach to the study of microorganisms in marine ecosystems. While there is overlap in mission, the main difference between the sub-disciplines of marine microbiology and microbial oceanography is whether the focus of the study is the microbe itself or the roles and interactions of microbes within naturally occurring communities. This sometimes subtle distinction is analogous to the complementary sub-disciplines of marine biology and biological oceanography. It is possible to study marine microbiology anywhere in the world using pure culture isolates; microbial oceanography can only be done at sea – by analyzing the complex inter-relationships between and among microorganisms and their environment. In this way, studies at Station ALOHA can be viewed as the marine equivalent of an agricultural field station where observations of microorganisms can be made and experiments conducted.

 

While the new field of microbiological/microbial oceanography was emerging as an extension of marine microbiology, scientists at the University of Hawaii proposed a new program – the “Hawaii Ocean Experiment” – or HOE (hoe is a Hawaiian word meaning “to paddle” or “to work together”). This project was not initially funded, but it was later reconfigured as the Hawaii Ocean Timeseries (HOT) research program. When HOT was created in October 1988, Station ALOHA was selected as the deep ocean site that was representative of the vast North Pacific Subtropical Gyre – one of Earth’s largest biomes. It soon became a transdisciplinary collaboration among individuals who traditionally did not interact (microbiologists, physical scientists, oceanographers, mathematicians, and educators), and created unique opportunities for scientific discovery, knowledge transfer, and outreach to society at large. In 2006, the scope of the HOT program was enhanced with the creation of a new NSF-supported Science and Technology Center (STC), the Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education (C-MORE). This multi-institutional collaboration was established to investigate the identities, roles, and impacts of microorganisms including their potential responses to global environmental variability and climate change. In addition to this important, basic research mission, C-MORE had an important education mission: to train a new breed of inter-disciplinary microbial oceanographers, to develop curricula at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and to increase the number of students and teachers engaged in quantitative sciences and engineering, focusing on underrepresented groups, especially Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders. In July 2014, a third collaborative research program, Simons Collaboration on Ocean Processes and Ecology (SCOPE), was created to complement the objectives of HOT and C-MORE, and to specifically investigate microbially-mediated processes that govern the flow of matter and energy at Station ALOHA with a greater temporal and spatial resolution.

 

When the HOT program began, momentum was building towards the development of a new, quantitative understanding of marine microbial assemblages, their control of biogeochemical cycles, and the sensitivities of microbially-mediated processes to climate change. The fundamental underpinning of this pioneering research effort was to determine environmental (physical and chemical) influences on the abundance, diversity, structure, and population dynamics of the dominant life forms in the sea – microorganisms. Long-term, time-series studies such as those conducted at Station ALOHA are ideally suited for investigating subtle habitat change, irregularly spaced stochastic forcing events, and complex interdependent ecological phenomena that affect microbial biogeochemical processes in nature. Because most naturally occurring microbes were not in pure culture at that time (and many still are not), taxonomic identities, evolutionary histories, and metabolic characteristics and controls were lacking. The key role(s) of viruses and the ubiquity of fundamental microbe-microbe interactions were largely unexplored.  For example, the three major groups of microorganisms that are now known to be numerically dominant members of the Station ALOHA ecosystem (and other open ocean ecosystems) were not even known at the beginning of the study. These microorganisms include: (1) Prochlorococcus spp., a novel oxygenic cyanobacterium which is now recognized as the most abundant photolithoautotroph on the planet. Prochlorococcus was first identified by its unique pigment-based flow cytometric signature (red fluorescence at 660-700 nm when excited by blue light at 488 nm). Prochlorococcus has unique pigmentation and a streamlined genome and exhibits enormous phenotypic and physiological variability, believed to be a result of genetic microadaptation; (2) SAR11 clade of alphaproteobacteria, the most abundant chemoorganoheterotrophic bacterium in the sea, first identified by 16S rRNA shotgun gene cloning and sequencing. SAR11 also has a streamlined genome and exhibits extensive ecotypic differentiation among related lineages; and (3) planktonic archaea, previously thought to be relegated to “extreme” (high temperature, low oxygen, high salt) environments, also discovered by rRNA sequence analysis. In addition to these numerically-abundant novel microorganisms, research conducted at Station ALOHA has discovered several unicellular, nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterial groups, one of which exhibits a unique mutualistic, symbiotic association with a eukaryotic alga. Furthermore, research conducted at Station ALOHA has discovered, or contributed to the understanding of, several metabolic pathways, including proteorhodopsin-based phototrophy via a novel light-driven proton pump and the aerobic production of methane via methylphosphonate metabolism. 

 

Research at Station ALOHA is ongoing. 

 

Scientists Behind the Contributions:

The importance of field research conducted at this site, and its relevance to the discipline of microbial oceanography has attracted a very large contingent of outstanding microbiologists who have worked collaboratively for a common purpose. Many distinguished microbiologists have already contributed significantly to the Station ALOHA research portfolio as members of the HOT, C-MORE, or SCOPE research teams: 

 

Sallie W. (Penny) Chisholm - American Academy for Microbiology fellow Sallie W. (Penny) Chisholm, the discoverer of Prochlorococcus, has been a major contributor in all three programs and a co-PI of the C-MORE program. Penny is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and was awarded the Medal of Science by President Barack Obama. She has also received numerous awards, based partly on her work at Station ALOHA, including the Alexander Agassiz Medal (National Academy of Sciences) and the A. G. Huntsman Medal (Royal Society of Canada).

 

Edward F. DeLong - Professor Edward F. DeLong, also an American Academy for Microbiology Fellow and member of the National Academy of Sciences, is co-founder and co-Director of the C-MORE and SCOPE programs. Ed has received numerous international awards including the prestigious A. G. Huntsman Medal (Royal Society of Canada), the DuPont Award in Applied and Environmental Microbiology from the American Society for Microbiology, and the ASM’s David C. White award for outstanding mentoring. DeLong also served on the American Academy for Microbiology Board of Governors.

 

David Karl - David Karl is the co-founder of the HOT program that established Station ALOHA, and co-founder and co-Director of C-MORE and SCOPE (both with DeLong). He is also a Fellow of the American Academy for Microbiology and member of the National Academy of Sciences. He has received numerous awards for his research at Station ALOHA including the Alexander Agassiz Medal (National Academy of Sciences) and the A. G. Huntsman Medal (Royal Society of Canada), and is the 2015 recipient of the ASM’s DuPont Award in Applied and Environmental Microbiology.

 

Others - In addition to Chisholm, DeLong, and Karl, other American Academy for Microbiology Fellows involved in the C-MORE/SCOPE efforts at Station ALOHA include John Waterbury, Mick Follows, Jonathan Zehr, and Virginia Armbrust.

 

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES 

 

Any questions? Contact the ASM Archivist at jkarr@asmusa.org 

  

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Annual Clinical Virology Symposium: Programs and Abstracts (2)

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Dates: 1984—

 

Size: 3.5 linear feet

 

Source: Dr. Steven Specter

 

Arrangement: Chronological

In 1984 the University of South Florida sponsored the first International Symposium on the Biomedical Sciences; the topic was “Viruses, Immunity and Immunodeficiency.” The topic the next year was “Clinical Virology,” and the need for a meeting on this topic was sufficiently great that 1986 saw the Second Annual Clinical Virology Symposium, co-sponsored by the Pan American Group for Rapid Viral Diagnosis (PAGRVD). The meetings continue to this day, now sponsored by ASM and the France Foundation, in cooperation with the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology (formerly PAGRVD.)

 

The Center for the History of Microbiology now has a nearly complete set of programs and abstracts from this important annual meeting. Copies of the Symposium and Workshop programs are available online (http://www.clinicalvirologysymposium.org/ ) and full documentation (abstracts, workshop materials, etc.) is available through the Archivist (jkarr@asmusa.org)

 

Holdings:

Program and Abstracts of the International Symposium in the Biomedical Sciences: Viruses, Immunity and Immunodeficiency. 1984

Program and Abstracts of the International Symposium in the Biomedical Sciences: Clinical Virology. 1985

Program and Abstracts of the Clinical Virology Symposium: 1986-1996

Program and Speaker Abstracts of the Clinical Virology Symposium: 1997-1998; 2000-2014

Poster Abstracts of the Clinical Virology Symposium: 1997-2014

Molecular Virology Workshop Handouts: 1994-2014

Travel Awards Booklet: 2003, 2006

Guide to Exhibits: 2011-2012; 2014

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University of Michigan Department of Microbiology and Immunology Designated as a Milestones in Microbiology Site

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UMICH Milestones Photo 4-Dept Faculty with Plaque-P1020800a  

Faculty UMICH Department of Microbiology and Immunology, October 22, 2015, with Milestones Plaque

 

Click Here to Access This Week in Microbiology (TWiM) Podcast Held in Association with the Milestones in Microbiology Designation (10/22/15)

Click Here to Access This Week in Virology (TWiV) Podcast Held in Association with the Milestones Designation (10/23/15)

Click Here to Access This Week in Virology (TWiV) Podcast Held Following up on the Milestones Designation (focus on Frederick Novy's return from retirement to recover a lost rat virus...) (10/30/15)

 

The American Society for Microbiology Announces its Designation of the

University of Michigan Department of Microbiology and Immunology

as a Milestones in Microbiology site 

 

The ASM Milestones in Microbiology program recognizes institutions and the scientists who worked there

that have made significant contributions toward advancing the science of microbiology. 

 

Milestones Recognition

The Milestones in Microbiology designation is made in recognition of the long and productive history of significant contributions to the advancement of microbiology by University of Michigan microbial scientists. 

 

Milestones Site Dedication Ceremony

The plaque that will mark the site as a Milestone in Microbiology was unveiled on October 22, 2015, in a ceremony held in conjunction with the annual Neidhardt-Freter Symposium on Microbial Physiology and Pathogenesis.   Moselio Schaechter, Past President of ASM, presented the plaque on behalf of ASM.  Marck Schlissel, President, University of Michigan, and Harry Mobley, Chair, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Michigan, accepted the plaque on behalf of the University and Department.  Prior to the presentation of the plaque, Powel Kazanjian, MD, PhD, University of Michigan gave a presentation, "Frederick Novy: Beginnings of Bacteriology in American Medicine 1889-1933." 

 

UMICH Milestones Photo 3-Kazanjian-Schaechter-Schlissel-Mobley with Plaque-P1020799a

 

 Milestones Site Plaque:  Univ Michigan Plaque2015r2

 PDF of Plaque:  Click Here

 

Historical Background and Perspective

Novy (1864-1957): 

Microbiology at the University of Michigan Medical School (UMMS) has a rich history, tracing its roots back to the appointment of Dr. Frederick G. Novy as assistant professor of Hygiene and Physiological Chemistry in 1891. Prior to his appointment, Novy, along with medical pioneer and UMMS Dean Dr. Victor C. Vaughan, traveled to the laboratory of Dr. Robert Koch in 1889 for formal training by Koch’s close associate, Karl Fraenkel. Upon returning, Novy offered a three-month intensive course, Practical Bacteriology, which is credited as being the one of the earliest lecture-lab courses in the United States. The following year, Novy’s class was made a required part of the medical school curriculum, making UMMS one of the first medical schools to require formal training in microbiology.

 

Novy and Vaughan also traveled to Paris to study at the Pasteur Institute, where Novy worked with and became close friends with Emile Roux. Among his other notable achievements, Novy was selected in 1901 by U.S Surgeon General Dr. Walter Wyman to serve as a member of a commission investigating whether or not there was plague in San Francisco. With Simon Flexner of the University of Pennsylvania and Llwellys Barker of the University of Chicago, he confirmed an earlier controversial finding of plague within the city. By 1902, Novy was a Professor in the newly established Department of Bacteriology at the University of Michigan.

 

After returning from Koch’s lab, Dr. Novy focused his early research on “ptomaines”, the toxic products of bacteria. Eventually, his research at Michigan covered a wide range of topics, which included developing the earliest method for culturing trypanosomes, performing studies on the causative agent of syphilis, and studying microbial metabolism, with a particular emphasis on gas exchange.  Finally, he examined the chemistry of immune reactions, seeking to understand how substances from trypanosomes cause anaphylaxis. For his enormous number of contributions, Novy was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1924. His own range of research areas set the pattern for the future of the department now known as the Department of Microbiology & Immunology, where research into microbial physiology and genetics, pathogenicity and immunity continues today.

 

Other University of Michigan Scientists and Their Contributions:  

 

Victor C. Vaughan (1851-1929) - Vaughan, Professor of Hygiene and Physiological Chemistry and Director of the Hygiene Laboratory, applied biochemical methods to identify putrefactive bacteria in food products, leading to significantly reduced incidence of "ptomaine poisoning" in Michigan and beyond. In 1898 he served on Walter Reed’s Typhoid Commission, which investigated typhoid fever in U.S. military camps during the Spanish-American War.

 

A. C. Furstenburg (1890-1969) and W. J. NungesterStudents of Novy went on to careers in microbiology that extended his legacy further. Included among these are A.C. Furstenburg, who later became Dean of the University of Michigan Medical School, and W.J. Nungester, who became Chair of Microbiology at Michigan. 

 

Paul De Kruif (1890-1971) - One of Novy's most consequential students at Michigan was Paul De Kruif, who wrote the seminal work Microbe Hunters, exploring the lives and contributions of 11 giants in the field of microbiology. This book influenced many young people from later generations to enter the fields of science and medicine.  De Kruif was introduced to the Nobel Prize winning author Sinclair Lewis by the critic H. L. Mencken and Dr. Morris Fishbein, editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association.  De Kruif and Lewis became close collaborators on the book, Arrowsmith, which won the Pulitzer Prize in 1928. The book is about an idealistic physician-scientist, Martin Arrowsmith, who is working on a method to use phage to combat bubonic plague. Lewis credited De Kruif - drawing from his experiences - with providing the inspiration for nearly all of the medical institutions, physicians, and scientists in the novel. In particular, the character of Dr. Max Gottlieb, who instilled in Arrowsmith a love and dedication for the scientific process, was largely based on Novy.

 

Thomas Francis Jr. (1900-1969) - Dr. Francis, an influenza virologist, founded the Department of Epidemiology in our School of Public Health (SPH) at Michigan, where he mentored Jonas Salk on vaccine development. Francis led the national field trials of the Salk polio vaccine, which provided the first real hope against this dreaded disease. Francis won the Lasker Award in 1946, the Medal of Freedom in 1947 and was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1948.

 

Frederick Neidhardt (1931-  ) - Neidhardt studied bacterial physiology and was among the earliest investigators to apply powerful systems-based approaches to understand physiological responses of the cell to specific environmental stresses. Professor Neidhardt received the Eli Lilly Award from ASM in 1966, and served as ASM President in 1982. He served the field as an author and educator as well, writing or co-writing two successful textbooks, The Physiology of the Bacterial Cell: A Molecular Approach and Microbe, the latter published by ASM Press as one of its early forays into textbook publishing. With ASM Press, Professor Neidhardt also conceived and edited the landmark epic Escherichia Coli and Salmonella Typhimurium: Vols 1-2: Cellular and Molecular Biology, which came to be known as the "Coli Bible" soon after its publication in 1987.

 

Rolf Freter (1926-2009) - Freter was a prominent and innovative researcher who studied complex relationships between the gut microbiome, gastrointestinal pathogens and the mucosal immune system. His work on these areas in the 60s, 70s and 80s was visionary, given the remarkable upsurge in interest in these topics in the past 10 years.

 

UMICH Relationship with American Society for Microbiology:

 

ASM Leadership:

Novy was a Charter Member of the Society of American Bacteriologists (SAB) in 1899 (the SAB changed its name to the American Society for Microbiology in 1960). He served as the fifth president of the Society (1904), served on Council in 1905 and 1907, and in 1937 was elected an Honorary Member, a distinction conferred on only 19 individuals in the first 50 years of the Society's history.

Extending this legacy of leadership in the field, two other distinguished investigators from University of Michigan have also served as President of the Society: Thomas Francis Jr. (1947) and Frederick C. Neidhardt (1982). 


ASM Headquarters:

In 1959 the Society hired Raymond W. Sarber as Executive Secretary. Sarber was Councilor of the Michigan Branch of the SAB while working at Parke-Davis (headquartered in Detroit). Sarber established an office for the Society, which was to become the first headquarters operation, in the Detroit suburb of Grosse Pointe Woods. In 1962, the Society
(which by then was the American Society for Microbiology) moved the headquarters operation to an office building near the University of Michigan campus at 115 Huron View Boulevard.   
 


 

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Any questions? Contact the ASM Archivist at jkarr@asmusa.org

 

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