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Microbial Insights to offer Environmental Molecular Diagnostic Webinar Series

January 25, 2013

Microbial Insights (MI) will host a webinar series in February and March featuring presentations on Environmental Molecular Diagnostic tools (EMDs) and their practical application by leading experts from academia and industry.

ImageThe series kicked off in January with an overview of environmental microbiology and an introduction to these diagnostic tools by Dr. Michael Hyman from North Carolina State University. In February, the webinar series will continue with a presentation on the degradation of chlorinated pollutants by internationally recognized speaker, Dr. Frank Loeffler from the University of Tennessee.

Each webinar will be offered at multiple times for convenient attendance in different time zones. Webinars presented at 11am Eastern US Time will include an interactive question/answer session. Please see the list below for dates, topics and speakers.

To register for a webinar, click on the time that you would like to attend and you will be redirected to the registration link. If you were unable to attend Dr. Hyman’s webinar, the presentation was recorded and is available by clicking on the following links, Part 1 and  Part 2.

Microbial Degradation of Chlorinated Pollutants: Principles and Applications

Prof. Frank Loeffler
University of Tennessee

February 12, 2013    

Eastern US Time-11am

Pacific US Time-11am 

February 13, 2013 

Eastern Australia Time-11am

  • Many chlorinated chemicals are not foreign to nature and chemical, thermal and biological processes have generated a plethora of halogenated compounds for millions of years.  Not surprisingly, microorganisms have evolved strategies and pathways to benefit from these chlorinated substrates as food sources.
  • Anthropogenic (i.e., human) activities released large amounts of chlorinated compounds causing environmental and human health concerns.  In-situ bioremediation relies on naturally occurring bacteria capable of degrading and detoxifying these contaminants of concern.
  • Efforts to advance fundamental understanding of organismal biology (pathways, enzymes and genes) and ecology (environmental effects on activity) enable science-based implementation of in-situ bioremediation.
  • Select examples for science-enabled bioremediation at sites impacted with chlorinated pollutants approaches will be presented.

Incorporating Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (qPCR) Analyses into Site Management

Anita Biernacki
Microbial Insights, Inc.

March 12, 2013

Eastern US Time-11am

Pacific US Time-11am

March 13, 2013

Eastern Australia Time-11am

    • Whether planning bioremediation at a contaminated site, eliminating fecal pollution of surface waters, or combating microbiologically influenced corrosion (MIC), accurate quantification of specific microbial populations and direct evidence of particular biological processes is critical.
    • Since the overwhelming majority of microorganisms (>99%) cannot be grown in the laboratory however, traditional methods such as plate counts and most probably number (MPN) analyses cannot accurately quantify specific microbial populations including contaminant-degrading bacteria.
    • Over the past 10 to 15 years, quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), a DNA based technique, has increasingly been used for accurate yet cost-effective quantification of specific microorganisms or target genes deemed critical for bioremediation (e.g. Dehalococcoides spp.) or involved in microbiologically influenced corrosion (e.g.. sulfate reducing bacteria).
    • The webinar will include a brief introduction to qPCR, a discussion of available assays, and perhaps most importantly, real world case studies where qPCR results were used to assess the feasibility and performance of monitored natural attenuation (MNA) and enhanced bioremediation at sites impacted by chlorinated solvents and petroleum hydrocarbons.

For more information about Microbial Insights visit

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