Gut microbial communities interact with humans in a complex way. The joint study of human genomic and microbial metagenomic interactions in light of disease can contribute to a better understanding of these this bi-directional relationships and establish causal connections. In this session, we will depart from an evolutionary perspective to navigate through multiple areas in which human genomics and microbial metagenomics intersect to understand development and treatment of disease from a hologenomic perspective.
Food production processes are largely conditioned by microorganisms associated with the animals and plants that are produced, and modulating such host-associated microbial communities is devised as a strategic approach to improve quality, quantity and sustainability of food production. Microbial communities do not passively lay in or on their hosts’ tissues, but continuously interact with their host. Understanding how environmental and host genetic factors affect composition and dynamics of microbial communities, and how these interact with hosts to shape the final host phenotypes is therefore essential to optimise production processes. In this session, we will deepen into the use of hologenomic approaches to identify the most relevant host-microbiota interactions with impact on food production.
There is no doubt that conservation of biodiversity of our surrounding environments is crucial to ensure a sustainable future of our world. While understanding of genetic features of animals and plants has been long recognised as essential for biodiversity management, knowledge on the microbial communities associated with them is increasingly recognised as increasingly relevant. In this session, we will explore how animal-microbiota interactions are linked to species decays, and how hologenomic knowledge can be used to improve conservation measures, including identification of threatened populations and achieving optimal ex-situ breeding programmes.
The joint study of animal/plant genomic and microbial metagenomic features holds a large degree of inherent complexity. As new technologies are developed and implemented, new mathematical challenges are created to properly analyse the ocean of available data. In this session, we will first introduce the most advanced approaches to generate and process molecular data to understand host-microbiota interactions, to then identify the main hurdles and propose strategies to overcome them for advancing the nascent field of hologenomics.
In this panel discussion we will hear from leading industry experts and researchers about where they believe the future for applied hologenomics lay, the needs of industry to utilising these new frameworks and their thoughts on how research academia and applied industry can better prepare for the future.