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Key Sessions

Chris Howerton

Advancing Microbiome Therapeutics R&D through Application of Omics Technologies

Assembly Biosciences, Inc.

Dirk Gevers

Harnessing the Microbiome: A New Continuum for Therapeutics

Janssen Human Microbiome Institute

Mar 14
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08:00 - 08:50 50 mins
08:50 - 09:00 10 mins
Chairperson's Opening Remarks
09:00 - 09:30 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Microbiome Drug Development with Whole Communities and Defined Consortia
  • Joseph Maxwell - IBD Program Director, Finch Therapeutics
09:30 - 09:45 15 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Designed Microbiome Therapies Targeting the Microbes and Beyond
  • Shahram Lavasani - Founder and CEO, ImmuneBiotech AB

Altered microbial communities (dysbiosis) has been observed in many inflammatory disorders but it is not clear whether it is a cause or a consequence of the diseases. A healthy gut microbiota exists in an equilibrium with the gut barrier and the immune system. The importance and design of multiple-target drug cocktails comprising commensal bacteria will be discussed. The bacterial library, screening technologies will be presented with particular focus on successful products that treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Clostridium difficile infection.

09:45 - 10:00 15 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Microbiome and Skin Aging: An Example of Applicable Dysbiosis
  • Lionel Breton - Scientific Director, Advanced Research, L’Oréal

As published in a recent Scientist Report by l'Oreal and Tokyo University, comparative display of skin microbiome during age in women shows a specific dysbiosis. 

This dysbiosis characterized by an Increase of diversity during age associated with a decrease of a strain "gatekeeper" of healthy skin in young people associated with an increase of bacteria living usually in the mouth, during age.

10:00 - 10:30 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Morning Coffee and Networking
10:30 - 11:00 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Transforming the Therapeutic Landscape of Allergic Asthma
  • Nikole Kimes - Founder/Vice President, Siolta Therapeutics

Siolta Therapeutics, a San Francisco based biotech company, is designing next generation microbial therapeutics aimed at the prevention and treatment of inflammatory diseases. Our current focus is on the rational design of a mixed-species microbial consortium for the prevention and treatment of allergic asthma. We are concurrently working towards a future in which the microbiome can help drive patient stratification and tailored microbial therapeutics.

 * We have combined a human-first strategy with a multi-omics approach in order to develop an efficacious microbial therapeutic for allergic asthma.

11:00 - 11:30 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Advancing Microbiome Therapeutics R&D through Application of Omics Technologies
  • Chris Howerton - Head of Microbiome Discovery Platform, Assembly Biosciences, Inc.
11:30 - 12:00 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Measurement Assurance for Innovation in Microbiome Science
  • Scott Jackson - Leader – Complex Microbial Systems Group, Biosystems and Biomaterials Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology

Appreciation for the role of microbes in our lives has been growing rapidly, but the measurement science needed to understand and fully exploit microbial systems has developed at a much slower pace than the industries dependent on them demand. In all applications involving complex microbial communities, the research is hampered by the lack of standards, protocols, and technical infrastructure to allow confidence in the data and comparability. At NIST, we are developing methodologies to enable measurement assurance of complex microbial systems for applications in antimicrobial resistance, in vitro diagnostics, and characterization of microbiomes and biofilms.

12:00 - 12:30 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Standardizing Microbiomics – Removing Bias in Collection, Purification and Analyses
  • Thomas Kuri - Scientific Director, Zymo Research Europe GmbH
  • The rapid growth of Microbiomics has increased the demand for standard methods to improve the reproducibility and quality of the data being generated.
  • To address these fundamental challenges, the scientists at Zymo Research have created reference materials for the development of the most accurate and unbiased workflows from sample collection to analyses.
12:30 - 13:45 75 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Lunch and Networking
13:45 - 14:15 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Harnessing the Microbiome: A New Continuum for Therapeutics
  • Dirk Gevers - Global Head, Janssen Human Microbiome Institute
  • Microbiome-based therapeutics will span the health continuum, crossing from treatment into disease interception and prevention
  • The microbiome has already shown clinical success in GI disorders, but there is promising research demonstrating its potential in immuno-oncology, metabolic and auto-immune disorders.
  • Despite the high-perceived risk, less conventional approaches to product development, including microbial cocktails and precision microbiota editing, have lower actual risk and greater commercial opportunities.
    • In-human discovery allows us to more quickly understand the microbiome’s role in health and disease, while de-risking the development process
  • Improved and standardized computational data analysis tools are necessary to accelerate therapeutic development
    • Collaboration between industry and academia will help translate data into actionable insights
14:15 - 14:45 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Thought Leaders Discussion: Big Pharma’s Perspective on Microbiome Therapeutics
  • Oliver Chao - Head, Emerging Biomedical Sciences, Sanofi
  • What are big pharma’ view on microbiome therapeutics potential?
  • What are the challenges and strategies to overcome these to enter the microbiome sector?
14:45 - 15:15 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Defining the Mechanism of Action of Microbiome Therapeutics
  • John Hambor - Director, Research Beyond Borders, Boehringer Ingelheim
15:15 - 15:45 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
The Metabolome as a Potential Key Player in Inflammatory Bowel Diseases and Functional Bowel Disease
  • Wouter De Jonge - Professor of NeuroGastroenterology, AMC Amsterdam
  • Normal human intestines contain hundreds of bacteria and fungi species (known as the microbiome), which help digest food and protect against disease-causing germs
  • FMT -and other studies show an association between bacteria, fungus, and their metabolites, in IBD and functional bowel disorders. Cell based assays show
  • Metabolites can cause harmful effects to intestinal epithelia and barrier function; nutritional intervention studies may allow efficacy for treatment by adapting metabolite composition
15:45 - 16:15 30 mins
Afternoon Coffee
16:15 - 16:45 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
The Microbiome of the Naked Mole-Rat
  • Gerd Birkenmeier - Prof. of Biochemistry, University of Leipzig

The naked mole-rat (NMR) is a subterranean mouse-sized African mammal that is an excellent model to study the biology of healthy aging and longevity. Here we characterize the intestinal microbial ecosystem of the animal in comparison to humans and other mammals. Compositional gut microbiota peculiarities were shared with human gut microbial ecosystems of centenarians and Hadza hunter-gatherers, considered as models of a healthy gut microbiome. We found an enrichment of short-chain fatty acids and carbohydrate degradation products in naked mole-rat compared to human samples.

16:45 - 17:15 30 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Translating Microbiome R&D into the Clinic
  • Outi Vaarala - VP, Head of Lung Immunity, AstraZeneca
17:15 - 18:00 45 mins
Microbiome Therapeutics Europe
Inspirational Speaker: The American Gut Project
  • Daniel McDonald - Scientific Director, American Gut Project
18:00 - 18:05 5 mins
End of Conference Day 1