June 2020


As we all adapt to a new COVID norm, APC activities have continued, many in new, virtual ways. We are delighted to see APC researchers return to their laboratories over the last four weeks, albeit at a reduced capacity and working on “shifts” to minimise their physical interactions. Those who can (such as bioinformaticians) are still working from home. We are also very pleased to see the big turnout for our APC seminar fora which are now held on a weekly basis and provide a very regular focal point for the entire APC community.

Speaking of working differently, our new Scientific Advisory Board met for two sessions last week, virtually. In these sessions the SAB discussed the content of the different research themes and platforms, as well giving us some great suggestions on how the programme could be improved for the future. We really want to thank Glenn Gibson (University of Reading, Chair), Susan Lynch (UCSF), Karen Scott (University of Aberdeen), Emmanuelle Maguin (INRAE, France), Emeran Mayer (UCLA) and Martin Galvin (UCC) for all the effort they have put into this and their continuing support. Our Governance Committee continues to meet virtually, as well and are particularly exercised with helping APC to develop a new Strategic Plan (2020-2026).

We are very proud of the twelve APC postgraduates who were awarded PhDs in the virtual Summer Conferrings at UCC last week. This represents 25% of the all the PhDs awarded across UCC's College of Science Engineering & Food Science and College of Medicine and demonstrates the enormous contribution APC makes in developing talented human capital for Ireland.

June 27th marks the 3rd World Microbiome Day, with the theme of Diversity. Please join some of the many on-line activities to celebrate the diversity of microbes, microbiome habitats, diets to feed and fuel microbiomes and diversity among microbiome researchers.

Prof Paul Ross,

Latest News

New microbiome research of practical value to patients

Prediction of relapse in IBD
Two of the most important and largest microbiome studies ever undertaken in patients with chronic inflammatory bowel disease have been conducted by a team of researchers in Cork from APC Microbiome Ireland. The research, which also includes collaborating scientists from the UK, USA and elsewhere took two different approaches to show …

Virtual metabolic humans

Virtual metabolic humans
Researchers, led by APC Principal Investigator Prof Ines Thiele based in NUI Galway, have developed whole-body computational models - Harvey and Harvetta - which advance the concept of personalised medicine. Harvey and Harvetta are virtual male and female human metabolic models, respectively, built from literature and data on human metabolism, anatomy …

Don’t cry over fermented milk

Don’t cry over fermented milk
Fermented foods have become very popular because of the growing awareness of the importance of gut health. While fermentation is one of the oldest forms of food preservation, much has still to be learned about the specific health benefits of fermented foods for our physical and mental health. Now researchers at APC Microbiome Ireland …

Recent Funding Successes

Recent Funding Successes
APC researchers have secured funding for several new projects. Dr Cormac Gahan and Dr Brendan Griffin will lead two new Innovative Training Networks (ITN). These new ITNs, which were successful at the evaluation stage and have been invited to participate in preparing the grant agreements worth €5.66m, will provide top-level research and training opportunities for two collaborative PhD Programmes across Europe, coordinated …

Catherine Stanton received the American Dairy Science Association® Distinguished Service Award I

The American Dairy Science Association® (ADSA®) is pleased to announce Catherine Stanton as the 2020 recipient of the ADSA Distinguished Service Award. Stanton was recognized during the virtual ADSA Annual Meeting. The ADSA Distinguished Service Award was created to recognize unusually outstanding and consistent contributions to the welfare of the dairy industry, either directly or indirectly. The award is based …

Discover the Diverse World of Microbes 

Discover the Diverse World of Microbes 
Variety is the spice of life and this is certainly true when it comes to microbiomes - the communities of bacteria, fungi and viruses that are found just about everywhere. That’s why the theme for this year’s World Microbiome Day is diversity. Join us as we celebrate the diversity of microbes, microbiome habitats, diets that feed …

APC educational workshop features on RTÉ Home School Hub

Food is Funky
With schools closed, pupils around the country have been tuning in daily to learn at home with the Home School Hub on RTE, Ireland's most popular TV station. At the beginning of June, the show featured one of APC’s educational workshops called "Food is Funky". Armed with only a few household items and …

Upcoming Events

World Microbiome Day 27th June
The 2020 World Microbiome Day theme is ‘Diversity’- celebrating diversity of microbes, microbiome habitats, diets to feed and fuel microbiomes and the diversity among microbiome researchers.

If you are planning an event, please keep in mind potential restrictions due to the Covid-19 epidemic. We encourage all of you to organise and join online activities on social media platforms should you be unable to organise an event in person. We still encourage you to celebrate WMD2020 in person at a time this year, when it is safe to do so. For 2020, the “Diversity” theme now includes a diversity of dates on which events can take place so that people can celebrate whenever it is safe to do so, to promote the amazingly diverse world of microbes.

Please share your event with us by registering at https://worldmicrobiomeday.com/events/. If you are having any trouble submitting your event details, please contact us at info@worldmicrobiomeday.com and we would be delighted to add your event to the map.

APC Microbiome Ireland,
BioSciences Building,
University College Cork,
Western Road, Cork T12 YT20, Ireland .
Email: apc@ucc.ie