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Dear guests, colleagues and friends,

  When the first human genome was published in 2001, some microbiologists suggested that this “tour de force” would not be concluded unless the complete genome of the human microbiota be performed, as both have coevolved to a degree of mutualistic symbiosis that tightly links them in a common physiological scheme. The parallel development of metagenomics, metabolomics and culturomics over the last 15 years made this dream come true, and promoted the microbiota to the status of bona fide driver of health and disease, the initial focus being largely on the human gut microbiota taken as model ecosystem. 

  As a matter of fact, alterations in the microbiota – also called dysbiosis – are often correlated with the occurrence of various disease status, the current objectives being to precisely define the nature of these alterations and to provide a link of causality beyond the link of correlation. This raises a novel paradigm in the “infectious cause of diseases”, switching to the classical model of “one pathogen – one host” – illustrated by the Koch’s postulates, to a more complex model of “one ailing microbial ecosystem (i.e. dysbiosis) – to one host”, calling for revisited “ecological Koch’s postulates”. 

  A vast program ahead that takes us further on the way to increased complexity as well as to personalized medicine that encompasses the host genetic background, individual behavior and environmental influences. As sensor, integrator and effector of environmental cues, the human microbiota hereby emerges as a strong health and disease driver, playing a major role in the rapid increase in incidence of the so-called “post-modern non-communicable diseases” like allergy, atopy, asthma, obesity, diabetes, inflammatory bowel diseases and colon cancer. 

  Scientists from the Center for Microbes, Development and Health at Institut Pasteur of Shanghai, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and from Shanghai Jiao Tong and Fudan Universities, all invested in microbiota sciences, have decided to join forces and launch an annual symposium series entitled “Microbiota Science from Disease to Health”. This series is planned as an international forum aimed at presenting and clarifying the latest advances in microbiota science. 

  The first symposium of this new series will deal with very basic aspects of the human microbiota initiation, maturation, resilience and eventual degradation. Emphasis will be on presenting the basic concepts under an evolutionary and ecological perspective and the cutting-edge technological innovation in omics serving microbiota analysis. Colonization barrier effect will be deciphered as a model of microbial occurrence and exclusion supported by a complex network of metabolic fluxes and antimicrobial molecules, hence offering opportunities to identify microbiota-derived bioactive functions, including novel antibiotics. Microbiota systems biology is on its way and the next symposia will increasingly focus on establishing causality links between dysbiosis and pathologies, emphasizing basic experimental research and clinical, interventional studies.

  Most eminent scientists in the field of microbiota science have enthusiastically accepted to participate to this symposium in spite of the consequences of the current sanitary situation with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We wish to heartedly thank them for generously sharing their knowledge.  

  We wish you an excellent symposium in Shanghai! 

    For more information and registration, please visit the following link: https://meeting.bioon.com/2021MH