Seminar Series – 26 January

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SymbNET Online Seminar Series

Monthly seminars on host-microbe symbiosis, genomics, and metabolomics, with two talks from SymbNET researchers.

The seminars are open and free to all, but registration is required.

Please register once for the entire seminar series.



26 Jan 2023, 15h00 WET // 16h00 CET

Hybrid seminar @FCG-IGC and online


15:00 WET / 16:00 CET (Ionians Auditorium, FCG-IGC)  

Speaker: Ramya Ganesan

Affiliation: Symbiosis department, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Jena, Germany; Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany.

Title: Dynamics and mechanisms of colonization in a beetle associated bacterial symbiont

Abstract: Many animals are associated with symbionts that provide nutrition, defend against pathogens or help detoxify harmful compounds. Among these, extracellular symbionts usually colonize each host generation anew and likely endure physiological and immunological challenges and/or competition from other microbes during this process. We know that microbial traits like motility, adhesion, and stress response factors facilitate colonization in pathogens. However, our knowledge on symbiont colonization factors in beneficial symbionts is limited to a few well-studied systems. We work with Lagria beetles and their defensive Burkholderia symbionts to gain more knowledge on this aspect. An adult female Lagria villosa beetle hosts multiple Burkholderia strains in specialized glands that are accessory to the reproductive system and the bacteria are smeared onto the egg surface during oviposition. On eggs and in early larvae, symbionts protect the host from fungal pathogens by producing anti-fungal compounds. We investigated how a culturable Burkholderia strain colonizes symbiotic structures on the dorsal surface cuticle of larvae, and using the Tn-seq method we identified a number of potential colonization factors. A comparison of genomic capabilities between two coexisting Burkholderia strains leads us to speculate that mechanisms of colonization differ among strains associated with the same host. Thus the LagriaBurkholderia symbiosis gives us the opportunity to compare colonization strategies among closely related bacteria.


15:30 WET / 16:30 CET (online)  

Speaker: Luís Graça

Affiliation: Lymphocyte Regulation Lab, Instituto de Medicina Molecular João Lobo Antunes (IMM), Lisbon, Portugal

Title: Regulation of antibody production by specialized T follicular subsets