Scott Tighe (Group Leader and Co-Founder)
is a microbiologist and geneticist. First started working in microbiome and microbial flora studies at Northern Arizona University in 1983. He has run multiple microbiology labs and specializes in microbial identification including bacteria, fungi, yeast, metazoans, and more. He is currently lab manager of the deep sequencing core at the University of Vermont and founder of the MGRG and co-founder of the XMP. Scott is the past Chair of multiple ABRF research groups and co-leader of the ABRF NGS consortium.
Chris Mason (Computational Group Leader and Co-Founder)
is a world renowned bioinformatics scientist. His lab has many young investigators working on developing new bioinformatics tools for metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, and metaepigenomics. He has published works on the metagenomics of the New York City subway introducing the PathoMap project and MetaSUB. Chris is a leader of the ABRF Next Generation Sequencing consortium and chair of the ABRF Genomics Bioinformatics Group (GBIRG). Chris is currently a professor at Weill Cornell.
is a Professor at the University of New Hampshire. Kelley started metagenomics studies in the 80s and has been involved with metagenomics for 20+ years. He is currently director of the Hubbard genome center at UNH.
is Professor from the University of Georgia and is principle investigator for deep ocean studies that requires her to use the Alvin submarine to go to the sea floor to study the microbial content of the deep ocean brine lakes at outstanding depths. Her contribution to the MGRG cannot be overstated. She is a world leader in extremophilic environments.
is Chief Science Officer at Signal Biology, Inc., a laboratory and consulting firm that provides genomics and metagenomics resources. His work builds on postdoctoral research at DuPont – Pioneer Hi-Bred Intl. and as founding director of the University of Pennsylvania Molecular Profiling Facility. Dr. Baldwin’s research interests include assays for viral and eukaryotic pathogens, circulating nucleic acid biomarkers, and translational genomics in orthopedics.
is Director of Genome Center at Hudson Alpha Laboratories and has been involved in multiple Microbiome studies since the 90s including the aircraft microbiome studies. He has been part of the ABRF NGS consortium team since 2011 and remains a “leader in the field” of NextGen sequencing.
is a molecular microbial ecologist, and is currently director of the DNA sequencing core at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Stefan has worked in a number of extreme environments, including hypersaline microbial mats from Egypt and Mexico, a subsurface environment contaminated with uranium (Oak Ridge National Security Complex), and beach sands contaminated with oil. Stefan was recently featured on a National Geographic expedition to the burning Darvaza (“Door to Hell”) crater in central Turkmenistan, led by global explorer George Kourounis.
is the former lab director of the molecular core at the University of Texas. He has recently moved to a more pronounced role at the Baylor College of Medicine’s microbiome sections. Russ was pass Chair of the ABRF Nucleic Acids Research Group.
is an Assistant Professor at The Alkek Center for Metagenomics and Microbiome Research (CMMR) at Baylor College of Medicine in charge of of managing collaborative projects with groups spanning multiple research fields including clinical, environmental, and industrial research topics. He is also a co-founder and project director for Diversigen, Inc.
is a microbiologist, geneticist, and Manager of genomics services in Brisbane, Australia and has executed dozens of metagenomics projects. Ken is proceeding forward with the unique sample site in remote Australia called Hillier Lake.
is the Associate Director of the DNA Core Facility at the University of Missouri. His focus for the past decade has been to develop NGS methods and technologies at the DNA Core Facility to bring a broad array of genomic and transcriptomic tools to the MU research community. Recent work involves metagenomic strategies for delineating microbiomes from mammalian hosts, as well as environmental metagenomics using both shotgun and targeted sequencing.
is a microbiologist from the Qiagen and has extraordinary experience working with, classifying, and growing a vast repertoire of microbes. Her background in bacteriology and genetics makes her an idea technical leader for our development of microbial standards and phylogeny.
is a research biologist at the US Army ERDC Environmental Lab and an adjunct professor at the Institute for Genomics, Biocomputing & Biotechnology (Mississippi State University). She is also the chair of the ABRF Genomics Research Group. She works with environmental samples, non-model species, and recently started working with paleogenomics samples.
Ian Charold Herriott
is the coordinator of the DNA Core Lab at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Institute of Arctic Biology. He has worked with groups studying permafrost-affected soil fungal and bacterial communities for over a decade, and is currently involved with microbial projects spanning environments of sea ice, sub-arctic aquifers, arctic seawater, and methanogenic thermokarst lakes.
Sarah Stewart Johnson (Australia)
is an assistant professor of planetary science at Georgetown University. Her research is driven by the underlying goal of understanding the evolution of planetary environments and the preservation of biosignatures within them. She is currently investigating acid salt lakes in Western Australia that have pHs as low as 1.4, salinities >32% TDS, and distinctive features that offer insights into what aqueous environments may have been like on early Mars.
is co-founder and director of Genspace, a nonprofit community laboratory dedicated to promoting citizen science and access to biotechnology. In 2011 she initiated Genspace’s award-winning curriculum of informal science education for adults, and in 2014 Genspace was named one of the World’s Top 10 Innovative Companies in Education by Fast Company magazine. Ellen’s efforts to develop Genspace into a haven for entrepreneurship, innovation and citizen science have been chronicled by Nature Medicine, Science, Discover Magazine, Wired, Make, BBC News, The Economist, Forbes, PBS News Hour, The Discovery Channel, and The New York Times. Ellen has a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from New York University, spent 30 years in the biotech industry, and is currently adjunct faculty at New York Medical College, the School of Visual Arts, and Cooper Union.
Evan E. Afshin
is a researcher at the Mason Lab at Weill Cornell Medical College. He led and coordinated the PathoMap project and focuses on the development and assessment of the software pipelines used in microbiome studies.
is the Bioinformatics Core Director in the Genome Center at the University of California, Davis and focuses on all thing bioinformatics including microbial genome sequencing, 16S community profiling, metagenomics and metatranscriptomics as well as software development.
Mohamed Abou Donia
is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Molecular Biology at Princeton University. His laboratory develops computational and experimental approaches to discover small molecules encoded and produced by bacteria living in complex microbial communities, and to study the biological activity, ecological relevance, and potential therapeutic and industrial applications of these molecules. The complex microbial communities his lab is currently studying include the human microbiome, the microbiome of marine invertebrates, and the extreme microbiomes sequenced by XMP.
has worked over 30 years in the field of molecular biology and 20 of those years as a genomic core manager/ director. He currently serves as the director of the Advanced Genome Technologies Core at the University of Vermont. Tim has been an active member in the core community serving ABRF as a member of the DNA Sequencing and Nucleic Acid Research Groups, and currently serving a 4 year term on the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities (ABRF) executive board. He is a co-founder of both the NERLSCD (Northeast Regional Life Sciences Core Directors) and NICL (Network of IDeA-funded Core Laboratories) that promote best practices in core operations and sharing of research resources.
Rita R. Colwell
is Distinguished University Professor at the University of Maryland, College Park and Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health and Chairman and Chief Science Officer, CosmosID, Inc. Her interests are focused on genomics, biodiversity, and molecular microbial systematics and ecology. She is an honorary member of the microbiological societies of the UK, Australia, France, Israel, Bangladesh, India and the U.S. Rita served as the 11th Director of the National Science Foundation from 1998 to 2004 and has authored/co-authored 19 books and over 700 scientific publications. She is a member of the National Academy of Science and has been awarded the Stockholm Water Prize, Order of the Rising Sun, Japan, and the US National Medal of Science.
is a Lead Scientist at the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC), where he is responsible for managing research and product development for ATCC Microbiology Systems. His main emphasis is the establishment of controls and standards for various infectious microorganisms that have applications in clinical, food, and pharmaceutical microbiology. He is currently developing various metagenomics controls with a goal to help microbiome and molecular diagnostics researchers standardize their methods.
is the founder and CEO of One Codex, a microbial genomics startup based in San Francisco. With a background in software engineering and data science, Nick leads the technical development of One Codex’s genomics platform, and oversees the company’s efforts in application areas including environmental metagenomics, microbiome research, infectious disease diagnostics, food safety, and biodefense.
is the head of extremophiles research line of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and a collaborator with Mekelle University for Dallol.
Ali Budhi Kusuma
is the lecturer and also appointed as a head of Microbial diversity and Bioprospecting research group in the Faculty of Biotechnology, Sumbawa University of Technology, Indonesia. Currently, he is still working on his PhD research in Newcastle University UK. His research is to study the biodiversity of extremophilic actinomycetes community which inhabit several types of extreme environments in Indonesia, such as an extremely acidic volcanic crater, geothermal hot spring, geyser, alkaline lake, semi-arid sand dunes, and hypersaline mud pot.
was born in Karanganyar, Indonesia. He received the B.Sc. degree (with honors) in Biology from Diponegoro University, Semarang, Indonesia. The M.Biotech. degree in Biotechnology from Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, and the Ph.D. degree in Genetic engineering from Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany. He has held lecturing positions at Biology Department, Faculty of Sciences and Mathematics, Diponegoro University since 1997 – present. He gives lectures in the subject of genetics, molecular biology, microbiology, and genetic engineering. His research interests cover the metagenomic, bacterial genetic engineering, microbiology, molecular biology and genetics.
is a bioinformatics scientist and his research work focuses on epigenetics, genomics and metagenomics. He is also co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Biotia, a startup company using NGS to monitor hospital settings and to decrease nosocomial infections and other diseases. He completed his Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of California, Riverside and obtained his “Diplôme d’Ingénieur” in Computer Science at ENSIIE, in Évry, France.
is a researcher at the Christopher Mason Lab at Weill Cornell Medicine. She is currently one of the directors of MetaSUB, a project focused on the metagenomics of subways and urban biomes.
is a cold regions microbiologist at the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory and has experience leading Arctic field campaigns to hunt for microorganisms. Recently, she’s been studying climate change impacts on the permafrost microbiome and using microbes for biotechnology applications.