Skip to main content
fish and coral in their underwater ecosystem

International symbiosis conference to feature public talk by science writer Ed Yong

9th International Symbiosis Society (ISS) Congress at OSU

The 9th International Symbiosis Society (ISS) Congress will take place at Oregon State University. Anticipated to bring together 400 symbiosis scientists from 20 nations, the Congress will also feature a keynote talk by acclaimed science journalist Ed Yong, who is currently staff writer for The Atlantic and author of the bestselling book on the microbiome in the human body, I Contain Multitudes (2016).

The conference will be held July 15-20, 2018 at the CH2M Hill Alumni Center. Yong's keynote address, entitled "I contain multitudes: Telling stories about microbes and the people who study them," will take place on Monday, July 16, 8-9 p.m at the Austin Auditorium in the LaSells Stewart Center.

Yong's public lecture is free and open to all to promote awareness and appreciation of the intrinsic value of symbioses, their importance in all ecosystems and to human health and well-being.

Held every three years, the ISS Congress is the primary international meeting focusing on symbioses, including complex interactions between hosts and their microbiomes. The participating scientists will present the latest research on symbioses, their ubiquity in nature and their impact on all environments on the planet. The Congress will include theme-based cross-disciplinary sessions aimed at sharing new discoveries and cutting edge approaches across the traditional taxon-based areas of symbiosis.

OSU associate microbiology professor Rebecca Vega Thurber is a plenary speaker at the Congress. She is one of eight plenary speakers hailing from Vanderbilt University, the University of Minnesota, the University of Alberta, Canada and other institutions.

Integrative Biology Professor Virginia Weis is the program committee chair of the 2018 ISS Congress. Thomas Sharpton, assistant professor microbiology and statistics, is also a key member of the program committee. The Congress is generously sponsored and supported by the College of Science, the College of Agricultural Sciences, OSU Research Office and The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.