Pathogens and Natural Toxins e-Conference
1 Jul–31 Aug 2022
Toxin, Venom, Evolution, Pathogen, Medicine, Antivenom, Antitoxin, Biodiscovery
- Go to the Sections
- S1. Venomous Animals
- S2. Poisonous Animals
- S3. Toxic Fungi
- S4. Toxic Plants
- S5. Toxic/Pathogenic Aquatic Microorganisms
- S6. Pathogenic/Toxic Bacteria
- S7. Pathogenic/Toxic Viruses
- S8. Technological Advances
- S9. Diagnostics and Therapeutics From Natural Toxins
- S10. Public Health Considerations of Toxic Organisms
- Event Details
Welcome from the Chair
This conference innovatively brings On-Demand content to science, and makes it Open-Access to anyone in the world. It will uniquely award prizes to the best presentations, with the public engagement during a two month period (number of views and scoring) selecting the presentations short-listed for assessment by the scientific committee. All presentations will be pre-recorded, and will be immediately accessible 1 July, 2022, rather than drip-fed to the public in sessions. Then talks are viewed and scored by the public for two months to generate the short list from which the winners will be selected. 60 cash prizes in total will be awarded. 30 for the student category, 30 for the early career category. With both categories having an additional grand prize in the form of a fee-waiver to the journal Toxins.
Long gone are the days when scientists were expected to present their work solely for specialist ‘ivory tower’ audiences. The dawning realization is that science can and should be communicated as widely as possible, and in a way that is accessible to both colleagues and lay public alike. The value of presenting technical work clearly and in an enjoyable way, has resulted in something like a paradigm shift in science communication. The widespread success of breaking down of barriers between scientists and non-scientists attests to the power of such initiatives to engage people with the world around them. In short, ensuring science communication is open and accessible sparks interest and curiosity in the population at large, and the greater clarity that results will also generate cutting edge insights in colleagues. This form of inaugural conference aims to bring both worlds together, scientific experts and the greater population, and anyone and everyone that has some interest in science, in order to generate knowledge and feed curiosity.
To-date, scientific conferences have typically retained a ‘scientists-only’ assumption and this implied resistance to truly open science represents one of the more persistent barriers to break down. The inaugural Pathogens and Natural Toxins e-Conference (PNTeC) will be held in 2022. PNTeC is an Open Access conference that aims to do for the scientific conference world what The Selfish Gene (Richard Dawkins) and A Brief History of Time (Stephen Hawking) did for popular science writing. As such, toxinologists from all career levels are encouraged to present their work in an accessible format for a broader global audience that caters for all levels of scientific understanding and knowledge. All presentations will be pre-recorded, allowing participants to make them as elaborate or intricately edited as they wish – any approach is welcome, from simple recorded presentations to full-blown DIY documentaries. Prizes will be awarded for the best presentations within each section; one set for students, another set for early career researchers (defined as up to 10 years experience post-PhD to allow for career interruptions including maternity leave, illness, or COVID lockdown disruptions).
All talks will be freely available to anyone anywhere in the world, from the date of the conference until the collapse of civilization (or the internet, which is the same thing really). This ‘science on demand’ approach will eliminate the headache caused by international time-zones more effectively than a novel spider venom-derived painkiller. It will allow an unparalleled level of public engagement and unprecedented amount of exposure for toxinological research. We invite you to make like a toxin and leave the body of the organism that produced you (the academy!) in order to effect change in the bodies and minds of your conspecifics around the globe.
The conference will include presentations on the latest scientific discoveries concerning all aspects of pathogens and natural toxins, whether affecting humans, livestock, pets, or wildlife. Topics will span all things toxinological, from viruses and pathogenic bacteria to poisonous and venomous plants and animals. It will include investigations into basic science and methodologies, the evolution of pathogenic organisms and toxins, toxin structure-function, mechanisms of action, and therapeutic discoveries that both use toxins (i.e., biodiscovery) and combat them (e.g., antivenoms; vaccines; etc.).
PNTeC 2022 will be divided into sections, with presentations on any relevant aspect including:
- Evolution of pathogenic or toxic organisms
- Toxin-synthesis and evolution of venom delivery systems
- Toxin molecular evolution
- Toxin biochemistry and pharmacology
- Clinical effects and treatment options including antivenoms and antitoxins
Dates: 1 July - 31 August 2022
Conference Email: [email protected]
If you have any questions related to the conference content please contact: [email protected]
Conference Founder & Chair
University of Queensland
Dr. Bryan Fry is an Associate Professor at the University of Queensland, Australia, and is primarily interested in venom evolution and genetics. Dr Fry leads an interdisciplinary group integrating ecological, evolutionary, and functional genomics approaches in order to understand the evolution of venom systems. He is an author/co-author of over 175 journal articles and 2 books. He has also led expeditions to over 40 countries, including Antarctica, and has been inducted into the elite professional society The Explorers Club.
SectionsS1. Venomous Animals
S2. Poisonous Animals
S3. Toxic Fungi
S4. Toxic Plants
S5. Toxic/Pathogenic Aquatic Microorganisms
S6. Pathogenic/Toxic Bacteria
S7. Pathogenic/Toxic Viruses
S8. Technological Advances
S9. Diagnostics and Therapeutics From Natural Toxins
S10. Public Health Considerations of Toxic Organisms
When registering as an "Academic" for the virtual conference, please register with your academic email address. If you are registering several people under the same registration, please do not use the same email address for each person, but their individual university email addresses. Thank you for your understanding.
Registration fees are structured in a way that acknowledges different career and financial opportunities available to students and researchers across the world. The registration fees are used to cover the running costs of the conference and the awarding of prizes. As we recognize that covid has imposed a massive disruption to the career development at all stages, for student registration we will accept student IDs that are <1 year expired, and for early career researchers rather than the usual definition of <5 years post-PhD, we will use a more expansive definition of <10 years to accommodate not only covid disruptions, but also disruptions from other illnesses, maternity leaves, or simply the fact that life is very challenging right now!
List of low-income countries:
Afghanistan, Algeria, American Samoa, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Arab Rep., El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bisau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, Kosovo, Kyrgyz Republic, Lao PDR, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mayotte, Micronesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Samoa, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Vietnam, West Bank and Gaza, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
Certificates will be available upon request at the end of the conference.
|Low-income countries Full-time Students||50.00 USD||
Please upload a picture of your recent student ID (not expired by more than 1 year)
|Low-income countries Early Career Researchers (<10 years post-PhD award)||60.00 USD||
Please upload a picture of your PhD award.
|Low-income countries Academic/Industry/Other||70.00 USD||
Please upload a picture of your ID
|Rest of the world Full-time Students||70.00 USD||
Please upload a picture of your recent student ID (not expired by more than 1 year)
|Rest of the world Early Career Researchers (<10 years post-PhD award)||80.00 USD||
Please upload a picture of your PhD award.
|Rest of the world Academic/Industry/Other||90.00 USD|
Cancellation of paid registration is possible under the terms listed below:
> 2 weeks before the conference Full refund
< 2 weeks before the conference No refund
We will endeavour to present the program advertised. However, MDPI and its partners reserve the right to alter or cancel, without prior notice, arrangements, timetables, plans, or other items relating directly or indirectly to Natural Toxins e-Conference. MDPI and its partners are not liable for any loss or inconvenience caused as a result of such cancellation.
Beware of Unauthorized Registration
Note that Sciforum is the only official registration platform to register to NTe. Beware that entering into financial agreements with non-endorsed companies can have costly consequences.
The organizers do not accept liability for personal accident, loss, or damage to private property incurred as a result of participation in Natural Toxins e-Conference.
Photographs and/or video will be taken during the conference
By taking part in this event you grant the event organisers full rights to use the images resulting from the photography/video filming, and any reproductions or adaptations of the images for fundraising, publicity or other purposes to help achieve the conference’s aims. This might include (but is not limited to), the right to use them in their printed and online publicity, social media, press releases and funding applications.
Wire transfer, Credit card
Currencies accepted by this event
US Dollar, Euro, Swiss franc
Instructions for Authors
Video presentations do not have to be uploaded at the time of registration but must be uploaded by the 10 June 2022 deadline. All presentations will then be assigned their own page with the embedded video, voting buttons, social media sharing options, and a discussion forum where the presenter can interact with the public to field questions about their work. Video presentations must not exceed 250MB in size and be less than 30 minutes. Acceptable video formats are mp4, webm, or ogg. It is the presenter’s responsibility to display copyright acknowledgments for videos and photos used during presentations. The organizers may require that such approvals be produced if we receive an enquiry. If there is a dispute, the conference will not assume any liability but will remove the presentation from the site.
Please note that before uploading your video, there will be a box to load your abstract (which is your advertisement for people to watch your video) and your co-author list (all the people who contributed to the work being presented). After it will be accepted, you will be able to upload your video.
Participants of this conference are welcome to contribute with a full manuscript to the Special Issue "Pathogens and Natural Toxins" in the journal Toxins. The submission deadline for this special issue is 25 February 2023. Toxins is indexed by the Science Citation Index Expanded (Web of Science), MEDLINE (PubMed) and other databases, and has an Impact Factor of 4.546 (2020).
Each section will have two streams of prizes:
1) current students (from undergraduate to Ph.D.),
2) early career researchers (Ph.D. awarded within the last 10 years to accommodate presenters who have had time off for maternity-leave or medical issues, COVID lockdowns).
Prizes will be awarded in a 2-step process:
- Presentations will be open to the public for 2 months (1 July 2022 – 31 August 2022), during which time viewers will rank the presentations to generate a shortlist of 10 contenders within each category. Public voting provides an incentive for presenters to make their presentations accessible and engaging for the broader community. It is important to note that IT controls will be in place to prevent mass voting from accounts with the same IP address.
- From the top 10 public-ranked presentations within each section for each of the two career levels, the scientific committee will select the top three talks in each category as overall winners. As science communication is at the core of this conference, short-listed talks will be ranked by the committee for their ability to communicate scientific concepts and findings to the non-specialist, with the judges coming from a wide range of disciplines and specialties. While it is easy to hide behind jargon, one must be truly adept in the subject material to clearly and effectively communicate its essence.
Prizes will consist of:
- Gold Medal US$125 Amazon Gift Certificate*
- Silver Medal US$100 Amazon Gift Certificate
- Bronze Medal US$75 Amazon Gift Certificate
*In addition, the highest ranked of the gold-medal winners across the sections will also win a Fee-Waiver for the journal Toxins (valued at US$ 2,600).
Public interaction in the form of the discussion forums and voting system will remain open for two months, from 1 July to 31 August 2022. The public votes will be tallied for each presentation and the top 10 will be shortlisted for each category. It is anticipated that prize winners will be announced in October 2022. While the discussion forums and voting will be locked on 1 September, the conference site itself will remain active indefinitely and people can continue to view the presentations on demand for free. It is anticipated that this conference will become an annual event and develop into a valuable scientific and educational resource.
Scientific Committee Members
Azad Kashmir Medical College, Muzaffarabad, Azad Kashmir, Pakistan
Mehtab Alam is an Assistant Professor currently in Biochemistry at Azad Jammu & Kashmir Medical College, Azad Kashmir. He has served Dow International Medical College, Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS) from October 2011 to July 2019. He was also a visiting faculty member of various institutes. The area of vertical research is Protein Biochemistry and Bioinformatics. He got German scholarship and learnt peptide synthesis from IFIB, Eberhard Karls University of Tuebingen, Germany. He has published 21 international and national research papers in well reputed impact factor journal and has chapter in 2 books on "Protein Structure Function Relationship" and “Antivenom Research” published from Pakistan and United Kingdom respectively.
I am a herpetologist and evolutionary biologist with a particular interest in venomous animals. My work in toxinology focuses on an organismal (cf. molecular) scale, seeking to understand the behavioural ecology and evolution of animal venoms and poisons. I typically use a phylogenetic comparative approach to investigate a range of question concerning the evolution and ecological associations of toxic weaponry itself, but also how such chemical arsenals impact on the evolution of the animal lineages which possess them.
University of Nebraska Medical Center
Dr. James O. Armitage currently is the Joe Shapiro Professor of Medicine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, after having served as Chief of the Section of Oncology and Hematology, Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine, and Dean of the College of Medicine. He is board certified in internal medicine, medical oncology, and hematology, and a Fellow of both the American and the Royal College of Physicians, a Fellow of ASCO, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a Fellow of American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy. He has served on the United States National Cancer Advisory Board and the French National Cancer Advisory Board. He is past president of both the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the American Society of Blood and Marrow Transplantation. He has received numerous honors including the Claude Jacquillat Award for achievement in Clinical Oncology from Paris, the San Salvatore Foundation Research Award from Lugano, Switzerland, the Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Foundation Award from the American Association of Cancer Research, the Heath Memorial Award from the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, the Robert A. Kyle Award from the Mayo Clinic, The Special Recognition Award from ASCO, and election to the Association of American Physicians. Dr. Armitage has published more than 600 papers, written 112 chapters, and is editor/co-editor of 33 books. He currently edits the ASCO Post.
Biosecurity Queensland, Qld government
Janine is a veterinarian with postgraduate qualifications in veterinary pathology, virology, and management. As a policy officer for Biosecurity Queensland, she created Queensland’s policy for managing the exposure of pets to Australian bat lyssavirus based on her PhD research at UQ. Through this work she significantly influenced the national emergency animal response policy for lyssaviruses under AUSVETPLAN. She has also worked with Queensland Health on the zoonotic aspects of potential human exposures to ABLV, and emerging disease incidents including Hendra virus, E. coli, Leishmaniosis, cryptococcosis and psittacosis.
Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University
My main research focus is the evolutionary genetics of complex traits. The incredible genetic tractability of venoms allows me to ask fundamental questions about how complex traits originate and evolve.
Instituto Pasteur de São Paulo
Veterinary, Master and Doctor in animal virology by Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Currently Scientific researcher at Instituto Pasteur de São Paulo, Brazil working with diagnosis and research about rabies virus. Professor at Pos Graduate Program Biossistemas at Universidade Federal do ABC, Brazil.
Institute of Biotechnology, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
I recently finished my PhD working with the proteomic and biologic characterization of the venom of a previously unstudied species of coral snake from Mexico. I am part of the laboratory of Dr. Alejandro Alagón at the Institute of Biotechnology, UNAM, as well as curator of the Herpetarium “Cantil” from the same institute. To date, I have participated in virtually all the available research regarding Mexican coral snake venoms and have over 10 years of experience with the keeping and handling of venomous snakes. My main research line is the characterization of neurotoxic snake venoms both from a medical perspective (antivenom evaluation and improvement) and a biological point of view.
Florida International University, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Trained as a natural product chemist, specifically receiving my Ph.D. (1998) from Cornell University in Phytochemistry, my research focus moved into the areas of environmental toxicology through two NIH-NIEHS postdoctoral fellowship (at Cornell and University of Miami), and subsequent position of Associate Scientist at the UM Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. In 2006, I joined the faculty of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Florida International University where, currently as an Associate Professor, research in my group continues to focus on toxicology and analytical chemistry of biotoxins including, in particular, mycotoxins and phycotoxins in relation to environmental health and ecotoxicology.
Laura is a marine scientist with the Coastal and Freshwater group at the Cawthron Institute in Nelson. Laura’s focus is mainly on seafood safety and toxic microalgae (with a specific focus on toxic cyanobacteria and marine dinoflagellates and their impact on aquaculture species and environments). Laura’s PhD research aimed to investigate the source and transmissions of tetrodotoxin in New Zealand shellfish and marine food webs. Laura has expertise in the use of molecular techniques to monitor and understand aquatic organisms and habitats (high-throughput sequencing, qPCR, ddPCR and metagenomics).
New York State Animal Health Diagnostic Center/Cornell University
Karyn Bischoff, DVM, MS, Diplomate of the American Board of Veterinary Toxicology, and MPH in 2022, has been the diagnostic toxicologist of the New York State Animal Health Diagnostic Center since 2004. She teaches veterinary toxicology at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.
Veterinary bacteriologist. Research areas include novel diagnostic tools, novel vaccines, molecular epidemiology, food safety, antimicrobial resistance, One Health.
Centre for Superbug Solutions, Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland
Associate Professor Dr. Mark A. T. Blaskovich is an ‘antibiotic hunter’ and director of the Centre for Superbug Solutions in the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at The University of Queensland. A medicinal chemist with 15 years of industrial drug development experience prior to his academic career, he has been developing new antibiotics to treat drug resistant pathogens and using modified antibiotics to detect bacterial infections. He cofounded the Community for Open Antimicrobial Drug Discovery (CO-ADD), a global ‘crowdsourcing’ antibiotic discovery initiative, and has led a number of UQ-industry collaborations focused on antibiotic development. An inventor on eleven patent families with over 50 granted patents, he has developed drugs in clinical trials, published over 100 research articles, and secured over $20m in antibiotic-related grant funding, including the first CARB-X (Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator, a global $US500M fund) award to any university in the world. Blaskovich is an Associate Editor of ACS Infectious Diseases, where he has compiled a number of special issues focused on antimicrobial therapies, including a recent virtual issue on “Anti-infective Discovery Down Under”.
Department of Biotechnology and Bioinformatics, Faculty of Chemistry, Rzeszów University of Technology, Poland
I currently work at the Department of Biotechnology and Bioinformatics, Rzeszów University of Technology. I perform research in proteomics and snake venomics mostly using electrophoretical ans MS techniques. My current projects involve cobra venom enzyme activity, antimicrobial properties of venom components, and venom-antivenom interactions. I am a member of the European Venom Network COST Action Management Committee and the Polish Proteomics Society.
Div. Thrombosis and Hemostasis, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
Dr. Mettine Bos is a protein chemist with a special interest in the biochemistry of blood coagulation. Her research particularly focuses on the molecular regulation and evolution of blood coagulation factors V and X using a venomous Australian snake as a model, with the overall goal of developing innovative therapeutic proteins or identifying novel targets for the treatment of either bleeding or thrombosis. Her research has led to high impact publications and to several granted (and licensed) patents. Dr. Bos is president of the Dutch Society for Thrombosis and Hemostasis and editorial board member of several journals including ‘Toxins’.
My PhD work focused on understanding the fundamental mechanisms underlying ion channel interactions with animal toxins. After obtaining my PhD, I worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the NIH where I investigated the function and pharmacology of sodium channel voltage-sensing domains by using emerging ideas about potassium channel voltage sensors. As a PI at Johns Hopkins University and now the University of Ghent, I am focusing my laboratory’s efforts on advancing our structural and mechanistic understanding of membrane proteins as well as their relationship to auxiliary subunits. Our ongoing projects are diverse and include obtaining insights into sodium channel complex and GABAa receptor function and pharmacology and linking aberrant behavior to infantile epilepsy, irritable bowel syndrome, hyperhidrosis, and sensory perception disorders such as pain and itch. We also have an interest in designing environmentally friendly insecticides.
Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Pretoria
Christo Botha qualified as a veterinarian in 1982 and registered with the South African Veterinary Council. He completed a BVSc Honours degree in 1989 and the specialist MMedVet degree in veterinary toxicology in 1994 and registered as a Veterinary Specialist (Toxicology) with the South African Veterinary Council. In 2003 he was awarded a PhD by the Norwegian School of Veterinary Science. He generally focuses his research on plant poisonings and mycotoxicoses of veterinary importance. Since research on poisonous plants and mycotoxicoses affecting livestock in South Africa is extremely important, he is conducting research on economically important plant poisonings such as ‘vermeersiekte’ and cardiac glycoside poisonings. In addition, he also investigates new or lesser-known plant poisonings and mycotoxicoses occurring in livestock and companion animals.
Professor Emerita, University of Arizona
Dr. Boyer earned her M.D. at Harvard Medical School before completing a residency in Pediatrics at The Children’s Hospital, Boston and University Medical Center, Tucson. She completed a Fellowship in Medical Toxicology at the University of Arizona, then served as Medical Director of the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center for 16 years, during which time she founded the Venom Immunochemistry, Pharmacology and Emergency Response (VIPER) Institute at the University of Arizona. She has served as the central organizing principal investigator on clinical trials of antivenom for treatment of scorpion, pit viper and elapid envenomation. She has chaired Pharmacy & Therapeutics and Human Subjects committees as well as DSMBs, and she has collaborated extensively with toxinologists in Latin America and Africa. Her honors include eight teaching awards, designation as “Leading-Edge Researcher” by the University of Arizona, “Local Legend of Medicine” by the American Medical Women’s Association and the US Library of Congress and “Hero of Rare Disease” by the Office of Orphan Products, US FDA. The American College of Medical Toxicologists has awarded her both its Research Achievement Award and the Matthew Ellenhorn Award for career achievement, and she was the Elsevier Speaker at the 2012 Venom Week/IST conference.
University of Colorado, School of Medicine
Dr. Brandehoff is board certified in emergency medicine, medical toxicology, and addiction medicine with a focus on envenomation research. He has an appointment as Assistant Clinical Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and is faculty at the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center. He is also the President and Medical Director for the Asclepius Snakebite Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit, that focuses on improving snakebite education and management in West Africa.
Greenville, North Carolina
Dr. Sean P. Bush, M.D., F.A.C.E.P., is an emergency physician who studies venomous bites and stings. His work was the subject of the 11-part television series, Venom ER, aired by Animal Planet [Now on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxbVAXt-3eRVU35aicgSQvg]. Dr. Bush received a certificate of appreciation from the White House Medical Unit in 2002. When he is not working, he likes to be with his kids as much as he can.
Clinical management of snakebite, spider bite and scorpion sting
Primary medical degree (MB ChB, 1976) and ENT surgeon (MMed ORL 1985). Clinical experience in the management of snakebite, spider bite and scorpion sting over the past 47 years. Written several articles, books and protocols on the management of these envenomations in Namibia.
Eskisehir Osmangazi University
Assoc. Prof. Dr. in Biology Department of the Science and Literature Faculty of Eskisehir Osmangazi University. PhD (Biology/Biochemistry), Master in Sciences (Biology/Biochemistry), Bachelor Degree (Chemistry) Research in Toxinology and Immunology, specialized in study of the venom from venomous animals, with a principal focus on purification and characterization of scorpion and bee peptide toxins, and recently on the development of antivenom against to scorpion and snake venoms. Consultant to national company on antivenom production and venom toxicity. The main studies are related on the toxic variability of animal venoms and mechanisms of toxicity and on the capacity of therapeutic and experimental antivenoms on the neutralization of the different toxic activities of the venoms or its fractions. Management Committee Member of Turkey at European Venom Network EUVEN (the COST Action CA19144 2020-2024).
Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science, University of Santo Tomas, España Boulevard, Manila, Philippines | Southeast Asian Zoos and Aquariums Association | Philippine Zoos and Aquariums Association
Daniel Albert E. Castillo is a Ph.D. candidate in Biological Sciences at The Graduate School, University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines. He finished his BS and MSc degrees at the same institution. At present, he is an Instructor at the Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science, University of Santo Tomas, and is the Chief Communications Officer of the Southeast Asian Zoos and Aquariums Association – Secretariat.
Venom Evolution Lab, University of Queensland, Australia
Abhinandan, is a 2nd year PhD student, focusing on inhibitors against snake toxins as well as coagulotoxic effect on European vipers. He worked as a senior lecturer at Department of Biochemistry & Microbiology, North South University (Bangladesh) before joining the lab.
Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority
While Dr. Cope is a veterinarian by training (1989, University of Queensland) she has spent most of her professional career as a toxicologist. Following obtaining her veterinary qualification Dr Cope pursued further training as a radiation toxicologist/photobiologist (PhD, University of Sydney 1996). She is a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology, a Diplomate of the American Board of Veterinary Toxicology, a Fellow of the Australasian College of Toxicology and Risk Assessment and a registered specialist in Veterinary Toxicology in NSW. Dr Cope has held academic positions at the University of Illinois and at Oregon State University. Currently Dr Cope is the Principal Toxicologist for the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines authority and an Associate Professor at the University of New England.
Instituto de Biotecnologia - UNAM
His research work has focused on the study of the structure-function relationship of molecules from arachnid venoms, and on the expression of disulfide-rich proteins from other animal venoms. He also has explored the expression of the main toxic components from viperid, elapid and arachnid venoms to be used as immunogens for the elaboration of their respective antivenoms.
Department of Chemistry, Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany
Since 2018 PhD Student at the TU Berlin with main focus on Venom Proteomics of Snakes and other venomous animals, Mass Spectrometry as well as Biochemistry teaching duties. 2017: M. Sc. Biochemistry (FU Berlin) 2015: B. Sc. Biochemistry (FU Berlin)
CSIRO: Australian National Insect Collection
Daniel grew up in Alaska, but somehow developed a fascination for reptiles nonetheless. After studying speckled rattlesnakes as an undergraduate, he interned at the Kentucky Reptile Zoo and then moved to Australia to complete a PhD on the evolution of novel function in snake toxins in Bryan Fry’s Venom Evolution Lab. Daniel is now employed as a postdoctoral researcher at the Australian National Insect Collection within the Commonwealth Science & Industry Research Organisation (CSIRO) where he studies the venoms of spider wasps.
Centre of Excellence in Mycotoxicology and Public Health, Ghent University, Belgium
Prof. Dr. Sarah De Saeger is head of the Centre of Excellence in Mycotoxicology and Public Health (CEMPH) and full professor at Ghent University, Belgium. She is coordinator of the international thematic network MYTOX-SOUTH. She is visiting professor at the University of Johannesburg since 2020. She has been elected as President of the International Society of Mycotoxicology (ISM) in 2021. The CEMPH focuses on following research lines: mycotoxins and human health, mycotoxin detection methods, metabolomics and untargeted analysis, and exposomics. Many research proposals are running and funded by the EU H2020 programme, HERCULES, FWO, FOD, BELSPO, BOF, VLIR-UOS, B&M Gates Foundation. Research results are published in more than 370 A1 peer reviewed papers (h-index 50). She was an expert in EFSA CONTAM working groups (2011-2018) and a member of the Scientific Committee (SciCom) of the Belgian Federal Agency for Food Chain Safety (2015-2020). In June 2015 she established the Joint Laboratory of Mycotoxin Research of the Ghent University-Shanghai Jiao Tong University-Chinese Academy of Sciences (Shanghai Institutes of Biological Sciences). In 2015 she was awarded the Ghent University Prometheus Award for research. In 2021 she was appointed as eminent peace ambassador by the International Association of World Peace Advocates.
Institut des Biomolécules Max Mousseron, Univ Montpellier, CNRS, Montpellier, France.
I am a permanent CNRS researcher at the Institut des Biomolécules Max Mousseron (IBMM) in Montpellier, France. For the past 20 years, I have been working in the field of toxinology, including the discovery, synthesis and characterisation of toxins from the venom of various animals. I conducted my PhD studies on cone snail venoms (scholarship from the University of Queensland, 2002-2005) in the laboratory of Prof. Richard Lewis at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience (Australia). After being awarded my PhD from the University of Queensland in 2006, I obtained a prestigious EMBO postdoctoral fellowship to work at the Max-Planck Institute for Brain Research (Germany) in the laboratory of Professor Heinrich Betz on the structure-function of ion channels (2006-2007). Next, I joined Atheris laboratories (Switzerland), to work on a European funded project dedicated to the discovery and development of venom peptides as therapeutics (2008-2009; CONCO project FP6). In 2010, I was awarded a competitive UQ postdoctoral fellowship to resume my work on cone snail venoms in Prof. Richard Lewis’ group at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience, and since 2014 I develop at the Institut des Biomolécules Max Mousseron an integrated approach to accelerate the discovery of novel peptides from animal venoms.
Harper Adams University
Professor of Plant Pathology at Harper Adams University since 2010. Researched the epidemiology and control of mycotoxigenic Fusarium pathogens on cereals for over 20 years as part of national and European-funded grants. Prof Edwards is a member of JECFA (the FAO/WHO Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives and natural contaminants).
Center for the Study of Venoms and Venomous Animals – Sao Paulo State University, Brazil
Graduate in Veterinary Medicine by Universidade Estadual Paulista Julio de Mesquita Filho (1999), Masters in Tropical Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Universidade Estadual Paulista Julio de Mesquita Filho (2003) and Ph.D. in Tropical Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Universidade Estadual Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho (2005), Post-doctorate in Immunochemistry at the Butantan Institute, FAPESP (2006-2008). Specialization in Venomous Animals (FMB-UNESP 2000-2002), Specialization in Toxicology (Cevap 2000), and Specialization in Management of Distance Education (UFJF 2003-2004), Associate Professor in Venomous animals: envenomations and toxins (FMB-UNESP 2016). Vice-Director of CEVAP (2012-2014). Director of CEVAP (2014-2018). He is currently a researcher at the Center for the Study of Venoms and Venomous Animals Cevap-UNESP and Professor and Advisor of the Postgraduate Course in Tropical Diseases, Faculty of Medicine of Botucatu - UNESP. Council Member of the Postgraduate Program in Tropical Diseases, FMB / UNESP. Coordinator of Clinical Research Gradute Program of FMB/CEVAP – UNESP. Member of the Board of Cevap / UNESP. Is the leader of Toxicology Research Group (CNPq), Board member (2008-2016) and President (2016-2020) of Brazilian Association of Science Editors, Member of the Brazilian Society of Toxicology, the International Society on Toxinology, the Brazilian Association of Distance Education and the Association Brazilian Science Editors. Consultant Ad-hoc FAPESP. Judging Committee Member of the Brazilian Scientific Journals CNPq. Member of Council of Tech Park of Botucatu, Brazil. Has experience in the areas of biology, veterinary medicine, with emphasis on Toxicology and Accident Management and Venomous Animals, and Distance Education. International experience: visits to centers, institutes and university laboratories in Europe (2011) aimed at Bioprospecting, Drug development and Clinical Trials.
University of Queensland
Professor Mary Fletcher is a natural product organic chemist, and leads the Natural Toxin group within the Centre for Animal Science, Queensland Alliance for Agricultural and Food Innovation (QAAFI). She has previously worked as a research chemist at both The University Queensland and Queensland Primary Industries (Biosecurity Queensland), before joining the Queensland Alliance for Agricultural and Food Innovation in 2010. Prof Fletcher is based at the Health and Food Sciences Precinct (Coopers Plains), and her current work focuses on the identification and analysis of natural toxins and other bioactives in a range of plants, fungi and agricultural products. Such toxins and bioactives can affect both human and animal health posing risks to livestock production, food safety and market access
University of Virginia School of Medicine
Graduated with a B.A. in Philosophy and Chemistry from Monmouth College. Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Colorado State University. Post-Doctoral training at the University of Colorado, Denver, and Brookhaven National Laboratory. Asst., Assoc. and Full Professorships at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Cancer Biology. Currently Assoc. Dean for Research at UVa School of Medicine and Assoc. Director UVa Cancer Center. Former President of the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities and Former President of the International Society of Toxinology. Current Editor in Chief of Toxins.
Scientist D & DBT/Wellcome India Alliance Clinical and Public Health Intermediate fellow, ICMR-National Institute for Research in Reproductive Health, Mumbai India
Dr. Rahul Gajbhiye is a Physician-Scientist, currently working at the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) - National Institute for Research in Reproductive Health (NIRRH), Mumbai, India. He contributed immensely to the establishment of Maharashtra’s first Model Rural Health Research Unit at Dahanu, District Palghar, Maharashtra, India and researched snakebite envenomation and scorpion sting in Dahanu, Maharashtra, India. Based on his earlier research work, ICMR National Task Force recommended a national study on capacity building of health systems for management of snakebite envenomation. He is a recipient of prestigious fellowships including the DBT Wellcome Trust India Alliance Clinical and Public Health Fellowship, Indian National Science Academy (INSA) Indo-Australia EMCR Fellowship, Burroughs Wellcome Fellowship. Dr. Gajbhiye is the recipient of several extramural research grants from international and national funding agencies including DBT Wellcome Trust India Alliance, WHO-SEARO, ICMR, DBT, DST, DAE. He has worked on several disorders of public health importance including snakebite envenomation, scorpion sting, endometriosis, premature ovarian failure, male infertility, HIV, contraception, post-partum hemorrhage, endocrine disruptors. Dr. Gajbhiye is Principal Investigator of the National Registry of Pregnant women with COVID-19 (PregCovid registry https://pregcovid.com/), Endometriosis Clinical and Genetic Research in India ( ECGRI study https://ecgri.in/). Through these national research programs, he is providing mentoring support to the Medical colleges in India. He has published more than 50 original research articles in international and national journals of high repute along with several book chapters and policy briefs. He is actively contributing to health policy development especially disorders of public health importance at the national and international levels.
Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)
I graduated as a veterinary surgeon from the Royal Veterinary College, London, in 2005. I worked in small animal clinical practice for 12 years in the UK and Norway before starting a PhD on the clinical effects of Vipera berus bites in dogs. My research is clinically orientated with interests including acute kidney injury, cardiotoxicity and coagulopathies.
Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP)
Dr. Mirian Hayashi was born and educated in Brazil, and she is currently Associate Professor of Pharmacology at the Federal University of São Paulo (UNIFESP) and Head of the Molecular Pharmacology Lab and vice-chief of the Discipline in Cellular Pharmacology at the Department of Pharmacology of the Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Dr. Hayashi is extensively involved in medical and biomedical education and is also active in multiple research endeavors which primarily aim focused on the characterization of venomous animal toxins, aiming for novel drug discovery, and on the oligopeptides and oligopeptidases association with mental disorders. Her works broadly aim to characterize the underlying causes of mental disorders, notably schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, pursuing the neurodevelopmental hypothesis and the importance of oligopeptidases and inflammation to explain the dual influence of genetic background and environment for the susceptibility to mental disorders. This body of work has provided up to now a platform for identifying novel molecular biomarkers for diagnosis and potential new targets to treat and possibly prevent mental disorders, and also the discovery and development of a novel theranostic agent for cancer and metabolic diseases based on a South American rattlesnake toxin.
School of Science, Technology and Engineering, University of the Sunshine Coast, Sippy Downs, QLD 4556, Australia
A/Prof Volker Herzig is an ARC Future Fellow with his lab focused on the biodiscovery of novel arthropod venom components, particularly peptides, for potential applications in basic science, medicine and agriculture. His lab hosts the world's largest arachnid venoms collection (currently comprising 550 spider and 150 scorpion venoms), which is already used in a variety of collaborative projects around the world.
Ifremer (French Research Institute for the Exploitation of the Sea)
Researcher interested in harmful algal bloom (HAB) diversity and ecophysiology, algal toxins and impacts. BSc chemistry Saarbrücken 1990 (DE), MSc Analytical Chemistry EHICS Strasbourg 1993 (FR), PhD 1998 Aberdeen (UK), habilitation 2010 (Nantes, FR). FR representative to the IOC/UNESCO Intergovernmental Panel on HABs (IPHAB), member of the executive council of the International Society for the Study of Harmful Algae (ISSHA), co-director of the French research network GdR PHYCOTOX, co-coordinator of the implementation of the interagency strategy on ciguatera.
University of Michigan, Life Science Institute
I earned my Ph.D. from Lisle Gibbs Lab at Ohio State University where I studied the role of demography and environmental factors in the coevolution of rattlesnake venom and ground squirrel venom resistance. Since, I have held postdoctoral positions at Clemson, Florida State, University of Nevada Reno, and now University of Michigan, where I have combined genomic, proteomic, and functional data to understand the evolution of complex toxin and anti-toxin traits.
IMDEA Food Institute
Dr. Maria Ikonomopoulou is a Senior Research TALENTO Fellow and Head of the Translational Venomics Group at IMDEA-Food Institute in Madrid. She is an Honorary Associate Professor in the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland, Co-ordinator of the Stakeholder Engagement Committee and in the Core Management of the COST Action CA19144 EUVEN – European Venom Network as well as supporter of STEMM WOMEN in Australia. She had been in Australia for over 15 years and returned to Europe in 2017 with the award of the Marie Curie “AMAROUT” Fellowship to conduct her independent research in Spain. She has international research experience in biology and biotechnology in Australia, Spain, Greece, Ireland and Malaysia and been successfully collaborating with the industry for over ten years. Dr. Ikonomopoulou holds a BSc (Hons) in Agricultural Technology from the Technological Educational Institute in Western Macedonia in Greece and part of her degree was conducted in the Biotechnology Department at the Teagasc-Moorepark Research Centre in Ireland (Leonardo Da Vinci EU Program). She has a MSc in Zoology from the University of Tasmania (2003) and a PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Queensland (2009) in Australia (UQ & APAI Fellowships). She has held postdoctoral positions at the University of Queensland and QIMR Berghofer in Australia.
University of Melbourne
I am an evolutionary toxinologist and a philosopher of science, currently co-head of the Australian Venom Research Unit. As well as empirical investigations in evolutionary and clinical toxinology, I work on conceptual issues in the philosophy of biology, psychology, and pharmacology.
Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag)
Elisabeth Janssen received her PhD in 2010 from Stanford University in Environmental Engineering and Sciences before conducting post-doctoral research at the Natural History Museum in London (UK, 2011) and in Environmental Chemistry at ETH Zurich (2012-2015) where she continued as a senior researcher in photochemistry. Since 2016, she is a research group leader in the Environmental Chemistry department at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag) focusing on the environmental chemistry of micropollutants and biomolecules including occurrence and fate processes of cyanobacterial toxins.
Department of Life Sciences, Natural History Museum, London
My primary research interests are venom evolution and conceptual issues in comparative biology and phylogenetics. My empirical research focuses on venomous invertebrates, including centipedes and polychaete annelids.
Kansas State University
I have been on the faculty in Plant Pathology at K-State since 1984, where I specialize in the study of fungi in the genus Fusarium, including the mycotoxins they produce. I have organized an annual laboratory teaching workshop every year on Fusarium since 2000 (except for last year). My research is mostly with Fusarium genetics and taxonomy, but has been growing to include other mycotoxigenic fungi and assisting others in testing toxins for effects in commercial agriculture animals.
Laboratory of Food Chemistry and Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Valencia, E-46100 Valencia, Spain
Ana Juan-García is Associate Professor of Toxicology at University of Valencia in the Department of Preventive Medicine, Public Health, Food Science, Toxicology and Forensic Medicine. She holds a degree in Pharmacy and a European PhD in Food Science both by University of Valencia. She was Postdoc Researcher at Purdue University (IN, USA) for two years with a Fulbright Grant and more recently Visiting Scholar at Harvard University (MA, USA). Prof. Juan-García focuses most of her research in toxic effects of compounds/contaminants present in food and feed, and more specifically with pesticides, antibiotics and mycotoxins. To highlight that her research effort is addressed on evaluating mycotoxins toxicity through majorly in vitro but also in vivo assays by using different techniques and biological models.
Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Valencia
Associate Professor of Food Science in the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Valencia. Graduate in Pharmacy in 2002 and European PhD in Pharmacy (Cum Laude) in the University of Valencia in 2008. My research interests are focused in food safety and more specifically in the field of mycotoxins. My active research concerns to develop and performance analytical methods to quantify and identify the presence of mycotoxins in different matrices (food, feed, biological matrices and culture cells) using LC or GC coupled to different mass spectrometry equipment (QqQ, Qtrap and QTOF). I have wide experience in the analysis of nutrients components (carotenoids or polyphenol between others), and contaminants in food, feed and biological matrices (urine and milk), such as residue of veterinary contaminants (https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8923-3219). In the last years, my research has been focused in the cytoprotective agents (polyphenols, carotenoids…) against mycotoxins, and metabolomics and proteomic analysis to evaluate the effect of mycotoxins in vivo and in vitro studies. I have been involved in several research projects supported by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science (AGL-2010-17024; AGL2013-43194-P; AGL2016-77610-R, PID 2019-108070RB-I00ALI), from the Valencian Community government (GV2005-094, GV 2016-106, INNVAL10/19/078) and European calls (MycoKey H2020-EU.3.2.).
Ministry of Rural Development and Food, Directorate General of Rural Development, Directorate of Research, Innovation and Education, Hapsa & Karatasou 1, Thessaloniki, Greece
Researcher in the field of marine biotoxins, with a particular focus on emerging toxins, methods of biological and chemical detection and toxicology. Qualified veterinarian for animal experimentation (mouse bioassay protocols), experienced user of chromatography equipment (HPLC-UV, HPLC-FLD, LC-MS/MS etc.) and trained on design and implementation of harmful algal blooms' monitoring programmes for bivalve molluscs and shellfish in general. Special interest in the use of digital technologies in marine biotoxins research.
Department of Medicinal Chemistry, University of Michigan
Roland obtained a Diplom Biochemistry degree from Free University Berlin and a Ph.D. in Marine Biology from Scripps Institution of Oceanography (UCSD) in San Diego, USA. In his graduate studies in the labs of Dr. Pieter Dorrestein and Dr. Brad Moore, Roland developed omics-guided approaches for the discovery of microbial natural products for drug discovery. His postdoctoral training was at Salk Institute in the lab of Dr. Joseph Noel and at the Whitehead Institute under supervision of Dr. Jing-Ke Weng, where he worked on plant natural product biosynthesis. He joined the Department of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Michigan in 2019 as an Assistant Professor and is working on discovery and biosynthesis of medicinal plant natural products.
University of Northern Colorado, Mackessy Venom Analysis Lab
I began working with snakes when I was young and joined the Phoenix Herpetological Sanctuary in 2014 as a volunteer, then later on became the Toxinology Intern at the facility from 2017 to 2021, caring for their venomous snake collection. I completed my bachelor’s in Applied Biological Sciences at Arizona State University in 2020 and am currently a master’s student in the Mackessy Venom Analysis Lab at the University of Northern Colorado.
Texas Tech University
My expertise lies bacterial pore-forming toxins, and the mechanisms by which cells resist damage and alert the rest of the body. My lab focuses on cytolytic proteins on immune cells, especially using the archetypal pore-forming toxin Streptolysin O. Notably, my lab first described intrin-sic repair, the lipid-mediated sequestration and shedding of pore-forming toxins. We have developed a large toolset of toxin mutants with which to define mechanisms of mem-brane repair.
The University of Queensland
My lab exploits animal venoms as a source of human therapeutics and environmentally-friendly insecticides. Our early work on spider venoms led to the formation of Vestaron Corporation, an agricultural biotechnology company that has successfully developed eco-friendly bioinsecticides based on insecticidal spider toxins discovered in my lab. Current research is focused on the development of venom-derived ion channel modulators to treat pervasive nervous system disorders including chronic pain, epilepsy, and stroke. Our laboratory at The University of Queensland maintains the largest collection of venoms in the world, comprising venoms from more than 500 species of ants, assassin bugs, caterpillars, centipedes, scorpions, spiders, and other venomous invertebrates.
National University of Singapore
Dr. Manjunatha Kini is a professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore (NUS). He holds a Joint Professor position in the Department of Pharmacology, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, NUS and an Affiliate Professor at the Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia, USA. After graduation from University of Mysore, Mysore, India, he completed postdoctoral training in Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan and in Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia, USA, before joining NUS. He conducts basic and applied research on snake venoms and saliva of blood-feeding animals. His main research focus is "From Toxins to Therapeutics" and he designs potential drug-leads based on toxin’s structure. He was the Co-founder of ProScience, USA and ProTherapeutics, Singapore. He has 280 research publications and filed over 50 patent applications (32 issued patents). He edited two monographs and six special issues. He is the Editor-in-Chief of Toxin Reviews and a member of editorial boards of several international journals. He gave over 29 Plenary/Keynote and 109 Invited talks in International Conferences and given more than 220 invited talks in Universities and Industries. He was the Chairman/Co-chairman of a subcommittee of the scientific standardization committee of the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (1998-2016). He was a Council member, International Society on Toxinology for 12 years and the President of the Society (2019-2020). He was the Vice President, International Proteolysis Society (2015-2019).
Boston University School of Medicine
MD, PhD Hematology, Blood coagulation, Thrombosis Hemostasis, DIC, HUS, Animal models
University of Macau
Prof. Kwok is an Associate Professor and a Histopathology Core Consultant in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Macau of Macau. His research interests mainly focus on developing novel monoclonal antibody and venom-based peptide as prototype drugs for anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory therapies. In addition, Prof. Kwok’s research group is also expanding scientific research in novel and existing cancer biomarkers in order to identify and validate their prognostic and therapeutic values according to the hallmarks of cancer.
U.S. EPA Office of Research & Development
Aquatic Research Biologist, toxicology, ecology lab to field – field to lab
California Academy of Sciences and Ophirex, Inc.
Dr. Lewin is a recognized expert in expedition and field medicine. He is Board Certified in emergency medicine and has a PhD in the field of neurophysiology of pain. He is an elected fellow of the California Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians, a National fellow of the Explorers Club, a member of the Board of the North American Society of Toxinology and serves on the World Health Organization’s Snakebite Envenoming Working Group Antidotes Committee. He earned his MD and PhD at the University of Texas/MD Anderson Cancer Center Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (Distinguished Alumnus award, 2020-2021) and earned his BSc degree in Entomology at the University of California, Berkeley in 1991.
Professor Lewis started research on polyether sodium channel activator toxins known as ciguatoxins, which are responsible for ciguatera fish poisoning before moving to The University of Queensland in 1995 to initiate research into the pharmacology of conotoxins, small venom peptides produced by cone snails. This research led to the development of Xen2174 as a new class of non-competitive norepinephrine transporter inhibitors for the treatment of severe pain at Xenome Ltd, a company he co-founded. Professor Lewis’ current research interests include the origins and detection of ciguatoxins and the elucidation of the evolution and pharmacology of venom peptides, especially the discovery of novel classes of predatory and defensive conotoxins that may be useful for the treatment of pain.
Experienced Lecturer with a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry. Skilled in Veterinary Medicine and Pathology, Good Laboratory Practice (GLP), Epidemiology, and Strategic Leadership. Fluent in English, German and Portuguese. I have a strong professional education with Master (DVM equivalent) and Doctor (PhD equivalent) degrees in Vet. Med. at UniBern Switzerland, followed by a Federal Veterinarian and Public Health Specialization by the Swiss Federal Food Safety and Animal Health Office; and a Residency in Anatomic Pathology at the Zoological Pathology Program focused in Zoo and Wildlife Anatomic Pathology from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I pursue and have a history of multiple collaborative research in both wildlife diseases and laboratory animal models at UniBern, UofI, Tufts and now at UQ. I have a budding but strong interest in environmental toxicology under the premise of One Health, and I am Currently expanding my network/collaborations in comparative toxicology studies involving mice and neuroscience.
Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology
I am a biochemist with a primary research interest in venom and poison constituents, in particular those of amphibians, spiders and reptiles. I focus on questions relating to functional consequences of venom/poison profile plasticity, the discovery of novel molecule classes and their potential in drug discovery.
Florida Southern College
I am an evolutionary biologist using comparative ‘omics approaches in sea anemones and other venomous animals to address questions concerning venom evolution, symbiosis, and protein function. In my research, I use sea anemones as a model to understand how ecological factors influence molecular diversity from a phylogenetic perspective.
Faculty of Medicine, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka
Professor in Biochemistry. Snake envenoming, coagulopathy, snake antivenom, efficacy and effectiveness of snake antivenom.
ISM2, Biosciences, UMR CNRS 7313, service 342, Aix-Marseille Université - ST JEROME - Avenue Escadrille Normandie Niemen - 13013 Marseille
Marc Maresca is currently Researcher at the Aix-Marseille Université. He was awarded his PhD in Biochemistry from the Université Paul Cézanne (France, 2003), where he worked on toxins causing intestinal pathologies, including mycotoxins. In 2003, he moved to England to work on the bacteria enteropathogenic E. coli in the laboratory of Brendan Kenny. He then moved back to France to continue his work on mycotoxins, mainly deoxynivelanol, studying its effects on human health. He is currently working at the Aix-Marseille Université, and his research aims, in addition to study mycotoxins effects on health, to identify and develop new molecules with antimicrobial properties—natural, synthetic, or bio-inspired, including the ones produced by micro-organisms.
University of South Florida
I received a B.A. in Biology from Bethany College (KS) in 2011 and a Ph.D. in Biology from Florida State University in 2016. Following postdoctoral positions at Washington State University and Clemson University, I moved to Harvard University as the Sarah and Daniel Hrdy Fellow in Conservation Biology. I was at Harvard University until I joined the faculty at the University of South Florida in Fall 2020. At USF, my lab and I address fundamental questions regarding adaptation dynamics in two co-evolving systems: (1) Tasmanian devils and a species-specific transmissible cancer, and (2) venomous snakes and their prey. Research in both systems involves the integration of diverse -omic approaches with phenotypic data, ecology, field work, and experimentation to better understand the genotype-phenotype-fitness connection in natural populations.
Brain Chemistry Labs, Box 3464, Jackson, WY 83001
Dr. Metcalf has researched cyanobacteria and their toxins for 25 years publishing over 100 research papers, reviews and book chapters. His research encompasses the detection of cyanobacterial toxins in blooms and poisoning events and the long-term health implications of exposure to cyanobacterial and their toxins.
Department of Biological Sciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, USA
The assembly and functions of type IV pili in the Gram-positive anaerobic pathogenic bacterium, Clostridium perfringens. Identifying the cellular mechanisms responsible for secretion of toxins by C. perfringens. The interactions of C. perfringens with the host immune system. Specifically, the molecular mechanisms that allow the bacteria to kill, and avoid being killed by, phagocytic cells of the immune system, macrophages and neutrophils.
Experienced Research and Operations Executive Director with a demonstrated history of accomplishments in the biotechnology industry. Skilled in Discovery Research, Synthetics (RNAi, peptides, toxins, small molecules), Biologics (mAbs, multi-specifics, TCEs, conjugates), R&D Management, CMC, staff development, and disruptive technologies. Strong venture and business development professional graduated from the University of Queensland.
Australian National University
I am an evolutionary biologist with an interest in using venom as a model of how traits evolve. Most of my work has focused on snake venoms, focusing on gene regulatory and sequence level evolution.
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Moran studied from 2001-2010 at Tel Aviv University where he obtained a BSc in Life Sciences, MSc in Biochemistry and PhD working on sea anemone toxins. Then he moved to the Department of Molecular Evolution and Development at the University of Vienna to study the evolution of post-transcriptional regulation by small RNAs. At January 2014 he was appointed as a senior lecturer at the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior of the Alexander Silberman Institute of Life Sciences of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and since the academic year 2017-2018 he is an Associate Professor and department head.
Fundação de Medicina Tropical Dr. Heitor Vieira Dourado and Universidade do Estado do Amazonas
Born in Paraná State, Southern Brazil. In 2004, he earned his bachelor’s degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the Maringá State University. He received his MSc degree in Biological Sciences from this university in 2006. In 2011, he obtained his PhD degree in Tropical Diseases from the Amazonas State University at Manaus. In 2008, he moved to the Fundação de Medicina Tropical Dr. Heitor Vieira Dourado (FMT-HVD), in Manaus, where held positions as a researcher. In 2011 he holds a joint appointment between FMT-HVD and the Amazonas State University, as an Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology. He has experience in the area of the epidemiology of neglected parasitic diseases, working mainly in malaria and snakebites. Since 2013, he has been dedicated more specifically to the study of the epidemiology, physiopathology and clinical aspects of snakebites in the Amazon. Director of Research of the FMT-HVD, since 2017.
Instituto Butantan, Brazil
Graduated in Pharmacy from the University of São Paulo, with a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the Escola Paulista de Medicina and a postdoctoral fellowship at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine in Molecular Biology of Toxins. Researcher at Instituto Butantan, was the head of the scientific division of the institute in two different periods when was responsible for the organization of the first postgrad course in Toxinology. Her studies were mostly in the area of Toxinology, focusing on the functional activity of components of snake venoms, particularly on the structure and function of metalloproteinases. In the last years, collaborates with groups from the Amazon States, addressing ecological and evolutionary aspects of snakes, as well as experimental and translational approaches related to human snakebites, including the effectiveness of commercial antivenoms in the region. Presents more than a hundred publications in international journals, also acting as a reviewer and associate editor in relevant journals for Toxinology.
Director, Institute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology, Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India, Guwahati-781035, Assam, India.
Prof. Ashis K. Mukherjee is currently serving as the Director, Institute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology, Guwahati, Assam, India. He also holds the position of Professor in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (MBBT), Tezpur University, India (on deputation), and Outstanding Professor in the Faculty of Biological Sciences, the Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research (AcSlR) (an Institution of National Importance established by an Act of Parliament, India). He served as the Head of the Department of MBBT from 2008 to 2011, Head and Coordinator, DBT Nodal Center for Medical Colleges and Biomedical Research Institutes of North-East India, from 2009 to 2018, and Dean, Research and Development, Tezpur University from 2016-2019. Prof. Mukherjee obtained M. Sc. (Biochemistry) from Banaras Hindu University, India in 1992, Ph.D. from the Dept. of Biochemistry, Burdwan Medical College, Burdwan University, India in 1998; and D. Sc. in Biotechnology from Calcutta University, India in 2017. He has over 27 years of research experience in the characterization of snake venom toxins. His current research interests include biochemical and proteomic analyses of snake and scorpion venom proteomes, quality assessment and improvement of commercial antivenom, a new method(s) of antivenom production, peptidomimetic, and cardiovascular and anticancer drug discovery from natural resources, including snake venom.
University of Technology Sydney
A/Prof Shauna Murray leads a team at UTS, investigating the ecology, evolution, and toxicology of marine microbial eukaryotes, particularly species of phytoplankton involved in harmful algal blooms. She has developed and commercialised an eDNA based tool to detect a harmful algal toxin, discovered many new toxin-producing harmful algal species, held an ARC Future Fellowship and been awarded multiple grants in collaboration with the aquaculture and seafood industries and government. She teaches Ecological Genetics and has an interest in all aspects of the evolutionary ecology of marine biotoxins.
University of Witwatersrand, Save The Snakes
Hiral Naik is a herpetologist with a focus on snake ecology and snakebite. She is currently a PhD student investigating the behavioural ecology of venomous snakes in South Africa in relation to snakebite. She is also the Africa Program Manager at Save The Snakes, working on education and conservation projects to mitigate human-snake conflict and reduce snakebites.
Instituto Butantan, São Paulo, Brazil
I graduated in pharmacy at School of Pharmaceutical Sciences of University of São Paulo – USP and I have a postgraduate degree in Science (Biology / Genetics) at Institute of Biosciences of USP. My research focus on snake venoms polymorphism and defensins.
UQ, UNSW, Uni Exeter, Uni Melbourne
A/Prof Nick Osborne, BSc(Hons), MAgSc, PhD is an epidemiologist and toxicologist with research interests in using environmental epidemiology to examine aetiology and pathological pathways of disease. He has worked on a range of projects examining environmental exposures and health outcomes including exposure to metals, pollen, mould, chronic exposures to low levels of chemicals, pesticide and cyanotoxins.
Department of Biological Sciences and Department of Forestry and Environmental Conservation, Clemson University Genomics and Bioinformatics Facility
Dr. Christopher Parkinson attended Ohio University for his undergraduate education then went on to earn his Ph.D. from the University of Louisville and carried out postdoctoral work at Indiana University and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Dr Parkinson is currently a Professor in the Departments of Biological Sciences and Forestry and Environmental Conservation at Clemson University where he and his team utilize genomic approaches to investigate the evolution, conservation, and systematics of vertebrates. Dr. Parkinson is interested in understanding the evolutionary processes of speciation and utilizes New World venomous snakes as a model system. Over the last 25 years, Dr. Parkinson has worked extensively with the biogeography, systematics and taxonomy of pitvipers, and has recently started using whole genome sequencing and transcriptomics to investigate the evolution of venom and venom variation. Dr. Parkinson has carried out fieldwork in over 20 countries and has built numerous, multidimensional collaborations with researchers across the globe and welcomes many more.
Graduated in Pharmacy and Biochemistry at Federal University of Santa Catarina, Master in Pharmacy (Clinical Analysis) and PhD in Science (Biology of the Pathogen-Host Interaction), both at University of São Paulo. Scientific Researcher at Bacteriology Lab in Butantan Institute, working in the study of microbial pathogenicity, especially the toxins produced by the different pathotypes of diarrheagenic Escherichia coli, and the generation of antibodies, polyclonal, monoclonal or recombinant, as well as the standardization and development of immunoserological assays for the diagnosis of emerging and reemerging pathogens.
Biomedical graduate (B.Sc.), Masters in Molecular Biology (Biochemistry) (1997) and Doctor of Science (Biochemistry) from the Federal University of São Paulo (2001). Post-Doctorate fellow at the Butantan Institute and Atheris Laboratoires (Geneva) in 2001-2004. Currently holds a scientific researcher permanent position at Butantan Institute. Professor and Advisor in the Post-Graduation Program in Toxinology of the Butantan Institute and also in the Graduate Program in Tropical Diseases of Botucatu Medical School (UNESP). Works on Biochemistry, with emphasis on the isolation and characterization of molecules with relevant biological activity from animal venoms and secretions, particularly amphibians and marine organisms, using approaches that involve liquid chromatography and Mass spectrometry (including proteomics), with a particular focus on peptides and proteins, as well as low molecular mass toxins. Collaborates with other researchers in topics such as Organic Chemistry, Leishmaniasis, Food Biochemistry, Microbiology, Enzymology, Metabolomics and in the development of sera (antivenoms). Reviewer of indexed journals and advisor to development agencies.
Université Côte d’Azur AND Sophia Agrobiotech Institute (CNRS, INRAE)
Full Professor (PR1) Université Côte d’Azur Prize of the French Academy of Sciences (Integrative Biology, Balachowski prize, 2008) Current position Team leader of ESIM “Evolution and Specificity of Multitrophic Interactions” – 10 members. Leader of a INRAE “Young team” (2009-2011). Co-Head of the Sophia Agrobiotech Institute (ISA), UMR INRA-CNRS-University Côte d’Azur for 6 years (2012-2017) and nominated member of the Academic committee of the University Côte d’Azur for 4 years. Member of the steering committee of the Labex Signalife for 4 years. Member of the pedagogic committee of the international MSc BOOST (Biocontrol solutions for plant health). Co-head of the Doctoral School ‘Life and Health sciences” since 2016. 67 publications.
Medical School, Federal University of Roraima, Brazil
Professor Pucca (27th December 1982) holds a bachelor in Biomedicine (2004), and a MS.c (2008) and a Ph.D. (2012) in Immunology, Department of Biochemistry and Immunology at the Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo (USP), Brazil. From 2012-2016, she was a postdoc fellow of the Animal Toxins Laboratory at the Department of Physics and Chemistry, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of São Paulo (USP), Brazil, under the supervision of Dr. Eliane Candiane Arantes. Moreover, she performed a 1-year postdoc (2014-2015) in the Laboratory of Toxicology and Food Chemistry at the Catholic University of Leuven (KULeuven), Leuven, Belgium, under the supervision of Dr. Jan Tytgat. Since 2016, she is a full-time professor at the Medical School of the Federal University of Roraima (UFRR), Boa Vista, Brazil. Recently, she was also affiliated as a guest postdoc at the Department of Biotechnology and Biomedicine, Technical University of Denmark (DTU), in Lyngby, Denmark, under supervisor of Dr. Andreas H. Laustsen (Nov2018-Mar2020). Dr. Pucca’s research is focused on Immunotoxinology, especially regarding the discovery of human recombinant antivenoms and bioprospection of venom-derived peptides, such as scorpion neurotoxins and snake enzymes. Also, she leads clinical projects in the main hospital of Roraima aiming to understand the severity of locally snakebite envenomings – Snakebite Roraima (www.snakebiteroraima.com). Manuela is also the group leader of the Brazilian Bioprospection and Tropical Disease research group. She has received some prizes and has a patent, Serrumab - nº. BR 10 2013 005043-1. Professor Pucca has published ~50 scientific papers on venoms and antivenoms, and she serves on the editorial board of the scientific journals Toxins, Toxicon, Acta Tropica, Frontiers in Immunology, Vaccines, Antibodies, Biochemical and Biophysical Acta, Proteomics, etc.
German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany
Jens Puschhof is a junior group leader at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg, Germany. He obtained an MSc in Oncology from the University of Oxford and a PhD in Cancer, Stem Cells and Developmental biology from Utrecht University for his work with Hans Clevers. Dr. Puschhof is developing adult-stem cell based miniature organ models (organoids) to study venom gland biology and cancer-microenvironment interactions. His group is working on co-culture models of human intestinal organoids and select bacterial species to disentangle microbial contributions towards colorectal cancer initiation and progression. The study of bacteria and microenvironmental toxins in mutational signature induction in human cancers is a particular focus in these endeavors.
Charles Sturt University
AProf Quinn moved to Charles Sturt University in 2008 to be part of a new School of Animal and Veterinary Science. This school has a mission to deliver qualified veterinarians with a focus on large animal practice for rural and regional Australia. Since that date her research has focused on strategies to improve livestock productivity and economic outcomes for the Australian farming sector using innovative field and molecular technology based approaches, and particularly the discovery of novel pharmaceuticals or management practices for the animal health industries and projects that aim to improve productivity in Australian sheep and beef systems, several of which have been awarded patent protection. Her research is extensively funded by Meat and Livestock Australia as well as and numerous industry partners. As a member of Knowledge Commercialisation Australia, Associate Dean Research for the Faculty of Science she creates opportunity for industry partnerships and commercialisation for her research and others. AProf Quinn has supervised numerous honours, Masters and PhD students and is passionate about training the next generation of impactful researchers for science and industry.
Ghent University, Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, Department of food technology safety and health
Prof. dr. Andreja Rajkovic graduated at Belgrade University-Faculty of Agriculture in 2001 as Engineer in food technology of food of animal origin and afterwards obtained his Master and PhD at Ghent university in 2002 and 2006, respectively. His subsequent postdoctoral research was funded by the European Commission, Federal Public Service for Health, Food chain safety and Environment, and the Flanders Research Foundation. Since 2015 he has been appointed as professor. His expertise comprises microbial food safety, especially focusing on toxigenic bacterial pathogens, bacterial toxins, mycotoxins, cyanotoxins, environmental contaminants (eg microplastics and nanoplastics) and impact of food processing on food safety, as well as host-pathogen interactions and toxicology. His personal interests also include research on ultra-processing, OMAD, gut microbiome, metabolic disorders and bioenergetics; all of them at the crossroad of food, health and environment. He is executive board member of the International Committee of Food Microbiology and Hygiene, member of the Belgian Society for Food Microbiology and the Serbian Society of Microbiology, and is an editorial board member for several Q1 scientific journals.
University College Copenhagen
I am heading the R&D Unit in Automation and Data Handling at University College Copenhagen. Our focus is bioactive compounds and biological processes. My expertise is the analytical biogeochemistry of toxic natural compounds. Current activities focus on the occurrence and fate of natural carcinogens (illudane glycosides and pyrrolizidine alkaloids) in soil/water, food/plants (incl. chemotaxonomy), and body fluids. I am also involved in similar food chemical studies with emphasis on antioxidants, sugars and mycotoxins as well as in microbiological effect studies on the interaction between bacteria/fungi and ozone/bioactive compounds.
Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
2004-present: Professor in Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China 2002-2004: Post-doc in University of Liverpool , UK 1995-2001: PhD, Kunming institute of zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences 1991-1995: Bachelor, college of life science, southwest university.
University of Leiden
Career training and education: 1990: PhD at London University, UK; The expression of pigment patterns in the plumage of the quail-chick chimaera. 1993-2000: Lecturer and Senior Lecturer, Anatomy and Developmental Biology, University of London. 2000-present Professor of Animal Development, Leiden University. Administrative roles: Member of the Board of Admissions, MSc Biology (Evolution, Biodiversity and Conservation), University of Leiden International scientific roles Editorial boards: Evolution and Development; Editorial board of Zoological Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences; PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. Referee for: Nature, Science, Evol. Develop., Endocrinology, J. Moprhol., Development, Developmental Biology, J. Theoret. Biol. and many others Evaluation panels: Netherlands Scientific Organisation (NWO; panel member and chair), Harvard (MCZ) faculty search and many others. Major Grants: SmartMix Drug Screen Consortium, Head Applicant €14 million; NWO-MEZ; 2007-20013 and many others. Current Research: I have 2 PhD students. Research topics are teleost fish models for toxicology and compound screening, reptile development, and chick embryo as a screening model. Patents: EP2442909. A Biological Microfluidics Chip and Related Methods. Applicant: Universiteit Leiden, Rapenburg 70, 2311 EZ Leiden, The Netherlands. Inventors: Vrouwe. E. X; Wielhouwer, E. M.; Oonk, J.; Olde Riekerink, M. B.
Department of Biotechnology and Biomedicine, Technical University of Denmark, Kongens, Lyngby, Denmark
Esperanza is a postdoctoral researcher at the Tropical Pharmacology Laboratory at DTU (Lyngby, Denmark). She got her Ph.D. in Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biomedicine in 2020 from the Complutense University of Madrid. She worked with sea anemone and black widow spider toxins from transcriptomics passing through proteins expression to biophysical characterization. During her Ph.D., she was a visiting student at UMass Lowell (MA, USA) and Abo Akademi (Turku, Finland). She is currently working on discovering recombinant antivenoms for funnel-web spider and black widow spider venom using state-of-the-art phage display techniques.
Florida State University
Dr. Darin R. Rokyta received a B. S. in Zoology from the University of Texas at Austin in 1999 and a Ph.D. in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology from the University of Idaho in 2006. After two additional years of postdoctoral research at the University of Idaho, Dr. Rokyta joined the faculty in the Department of Biological Science at Florida State University, where he remains. Dr. Rokyta is a broadly trained molecular and evolutionary biologist with expertise in computational biology and protein evolution. His graduate and postdoctoral training focused on mathematics and statistics, emphasizing probability theory and stochastic processes and their applications in evolutionary theory. His primary field of study is the genetics of adaptation, and he has used venoms, viruses, and theory in his pursuit of establishing general rules for adaptive evolution. Much of Dr. Rokyta’s current work focuses on venom evolution and how the genetic encoding of venom systems biases their evolutionary patterns.
University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix
Dr. Ruha is a medical toxicologist at Banner – University Medical Center Phoenix and a Professor of Internal Medicine and Emergency Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix. Her primary clinical and research interest is in envenomations, particularly rattlesnake envenomations. She is the Principle Investigator for the American College of Medical Toxicology’s North American Snakebite Registry.
Clinical management of snakebite, spider bite and scorpion sting
Primary medical degree (MB ChB, 1990), Medical officer emergency medicine (1992-1997), Specialist Anaesthetist (M Med, 2003). Snakebite management Namibia past 8 years. Several articles, PhD student (Zebra snake and antivenom neutralisation) since 2019.
Center for Biodiversity and Climate Change Research. Universidad Tecnológica Indoamérica, Quito, Ecuador.
David Salazar-Valenzuela graduated in Biological Sciences from Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador in 2007. In 2016, David received a Ph.D. in Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology from The Ohio State University with a thesis entitled Diversification in the Neotropics: Insights form demographic and phylogenetic patterns of lancehead pitvipers (Bothrops spp.), and in that year became a postdoctoral fellow at the same institution. David is currently Curator of Reptiles at the Zoology Museum (MZUTI) of Universidad Tecnológica Indoamérica, Quito, Ecuador, and a professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences in the same institution. He is mainly interested in the evolutionary ecology and toxinology of Neotropical reptiles and amphibians.
Research and Development Directory, Ezequiel Dias Foundation, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil. Network for Snake Venom Research and Drug Discovery.
PhD in Biochemistry, Professor/Researcher, Laboratory of Protein Biochemistry of Animal Venoms. Main area of research: Structure-function studies of components from animal venoms (snakes) with action on hemostasis and protein-protein interactions, to find new thrombolytic, anti-thrombotic and anti-metastatic agents. Research Member of the National Research Council of Brazil (CNPq).
Pharmacy Program, University of Nicosia
Dr. Yiannis Sarigiannis is currently Assistant Professor at the University of Nicosia, Nicosia, Cyprus. He obtained his Diploma in Chemistry (1998) and his PhD in Medicinal Chemistry (2006) from the University of Patras, Patras Greece. He has developed wide research activities covering mostly synthetic and analytical aspects of chemistry. Currently, he started working on the isolation of peptides from endemic species in Cyprus (scorpions and snakes).
Venom Evolution Lab, University of Queensland
Herpetologist specializing in the evolutionary and clinical aspects of snake venom by integrating a toxinological approach in the frame of ecology and biology of the animals.
I’m an Associate Professor of Sociology and snake ecologist interested in conceptualising more-than-human relations in various ecosocial fields. I am currently tracking a sample of Eastern brown snakes (Pseudonaja textilis) in Canberra to better determine habitat use, movement profiles and welfare of translocated snakes post-release.
Suranaree University of Technology, Thailand
I have specialized on studying venomous snake movement over the past 10 years. Mainly, my team and I work in Thailand attempting to elucidate how humans are coming into spatial overlap and thus conflict with venomous snakes. While originally the conservation aspect was the most interesting component of this research to me, I have more recently become interested in how to evaluate effectiveness of educational programs in a robust manner and combine such information with scientifically sound results pertaining to snake space use in order to mitigate these negative interactions. In the last two years I have begun to investigate the state of open science practices in Herpetological research and how to expand universal access to data to broaden ease of entering the field for emerging researchers globally.
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Dr. Mark Sumarah is a research scientist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in London Ontario. His expertise is in the isolation, structural elucidation and analysis of small organic molecules from complex matrices using mass spectrometry and NMR. The majority of his research is focused on the development and implementation of better tools using LC-MS for the detection and monitoring of emerging mycotoxins in the food production system and contaminants such as pharmaceuticals and pesticides in the environment. He has published more than 90 peer review articles.
Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
I am an evolutionary biologist with a passion for research on venomous animals and their venoms. The central focus of my research in the recent past has been the innovation of pan-India efficacious snakebite therapies. I have also placed a major emphasis on gaining fascinating insights into the ecology and evolution of the neglected venomous animals from the Indian subcontinent.
Prof. Tabor is a molecular biologist who commenced with the inaugural UQ Queensland Alliance for Agriculture & Food Innovation in 2010 after 19 years with Queensland’s Department of Primary Industries. Her research has focused on the development of livestock pathogen diagnostics and genotyping; novel vaccines against the cattle tick and the paralysis tick (patents pending); and the study of parasite:host interactions to identify disease biomarkers. She has a publication h index of 34 with ~>95 publications.
Anita Mitico Tanaka-Azevedo is a researcher at the Laboratory of Herpetology, Instituto Butantan (São Paulo-Brazil). Her research focuses on the biochemical characteristics of snake plasmas and venoms, and isolated proteins, with particular interest on factor that influence venom variability, such as geographical and seasonal variation, captivity, age, sex and diet, as well as on antivenoms and phospholipases A2 inhibitors.
Department of Pharmacy, School of Medicine and Surgery, University of Naples Federico II
I’m from April 2021 Associate Professor in Organic Chemistry at Department of Pharmacy, University of Napoli Federico II (UniNa), Italy. I’m co-author of more than 67 research articles on international journals with a significant impact on the scientific community testified by 2421 citations and a H-index of 28 (Scopus, April 2021). My research activity is mainly focused on marine and freshwater toxins including the following topics: -Development of new liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) methods for determination of natural toxins in environmental and food matrices (seawater, algae, aerosols, mussels, fish); -Identification of the toxic profile and content of harmful algae and contaminated marine organisms (mollusks, fish, soft corals) for food and decorative purposes even as indicators of variations of environmental parameters; -Development of new untargeted high resolution multiple stage mass spectrometry (HRMSn) approaches for structural characterization of toxins contained at trace levels in complex matrices; -Bio-guided isolation and NMR-based structure elucidation of new bioactive compounds and toxins from marine sources. -Inter-disciplinary studies and development of provisional approaches for risk characterization
University of Newcastle
Life-long herpetologist/ecologist/evolutionary biologist. Currently doing post-doc research on the venom composition and variability of Australian elapid venoms.
University “Magna Graecia”of Catanzaro, Italy
The research activity of Dr. Tilocca is particularly focused on the application of molecular and proteomic methodologies to the study of microorganisms of veterinary interest and their toxins. In particular, the use of molecular and metaproteomic techniques for the profiling, both taxonomic and functional, of bacterial communities in different intestinal sections of animals of zootechnical interest, including the development and optimization of a dedicated metaproteomic analytical pipeline, bioinformatic analysis and integration of multiple "omics" data in order to assess the structural and functional variations of the intestinal microbiota in relation to different environmental conditions. He has also learned and applied advanced molecular techniques on different types of samples of animal origin, aimed at the diagnostic screening of zoonotic viral agents, as well as at the development of new strategies for the determination of etiological agents of relevant importance in the field of veterinary and human health. Finally, he adapted and applied a proteomic analysis pipeline for the phenotypic characterization of mycotoxin-producing fungal strains in relation to treatments with different biological control approaches. The results of these research have been the subject of scientific dissemination through participation in national and international conferences and/or publications in international journals, with anonymous review.
EYDAP SA and NCSR Demokritos
Chemist, working at the Athens Water Supply & Sewerage Company (EYDAP SA) and associated to the National Centre of Scientific Research “Demokritos” in Greece. Research interests include environmental chemistry, water quality, advanced water treatment. Special focus on cyanobacterial metabolites and cyanotoxins.
Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas)
As Principal Chemist in the Cefas Weymouth Food Safety Group, Andrew is responsible for the aquatic biotoxin testing in shellfish performed on behalf of the UK government competent authorities. He oversees the development and implementation of new methods for food safety surveillance and leads the development of research activities of the chemistry team. As a Chartered Chemist, he has over 22 years postgraduate experience delivering analytical chemistry in a commercial and government environment. Current research interests include the development and validation of new instrumental methods for marine biotoxins, assessment of rapid testing methods for use by industry and the impact of cyanobacteria on aquatic food safety. They also include the development and production of stable toxin reference materials and risks from new and emerging shellfish and fin fish toxins to the UK and Europe, including the impacts of tetrodotoxins and ciguatera fish poisoning. He leads an active programme of research, collaborating with a wide network of international government and commercial testing laboratories throughout Europe, North and South America and Asia.
University of Reading, UK
Sakthi is a Professor in Cardiovascular & Venom Pharmacology at the University of Reading in the UK. His research is mainly focused on understanding the pathophysiological actions of various venom toxins to develop better diagnostics and therapeutics for snakebite envenomation. Moreover, by working with various stakeholders, he is involved in improving public awareness, education, and clinical management for snakebites in rural areas of India.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Division of High Consequence Pathogens and Pathology
DR Velasco-Villa was born in Mexico City, Mexico where he started working on public Health since 1996. He has a triple major in Chemistry, Bacteriology and Parasitology, a Masters degree in Microbiology and a PhD in Biomedical Sciences. He holds A Senior Service Fellow position since 2003 at the Poxvirus and Rabies Branch, Division of High-Consequence Pathogens and Pathology, National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Here, his core duties are related with the coordination and execution of molecular epidemiological investigations on rabies in the US and other countries of the World where this disease remains of public health concern. He has participated in procuring national and international capacity building trainings to enhance laboratory-based rabies surveillance fostering efficient implementation of resources towards control, prevention and potential elimination of dog-maintained rabies. His major topics of interest are viral evolution, viral host shifts, disease persistence, disease spreading dynamics and its impact in public health. Dr Velasco-Villa started his career as public health servant in the Mexican Ministry of Heath (InDRE), where he became Chief of the rabies reference laboratory in the period 1996-2003, and Associate deputy director of Zoonotic Disease Department during 2001-2003. Dr Velasco-Villa is peer reviewer for prestigious scientific journals such as Lancet EID, Scientific Reports, PNAS, Royal Proceedings B, Emerging, Infectious Diseases, PLOS Neglected Tropical Infectious Disease, Epidemiology and Infection, among several others. DR Velasco-Villa work at CDC has been recognized with some distinctions such as the Global Rabies Hero Award, 2021, the Nakano citation for scientific excellence 2014. a nomination for the Charles Shepard Science Award for scientific excellence in Public Health in 2009, scientific merit award by the Brazilian Society of Microbiology in, 2005, a certificate of appreciation from the USDA-APHIS in 2002 for his work to assess the impact of rabi
Institute for Insectbiotechnology, Justus Liebig University Giessen and LOEWE Center for Translational Biodiversitygenomics, Senckenberg, Frankfurt
Evolutionary biologist and zoologist with focus on pancrustacean systematics and phylogeny (phylogenomics and genomics approaches) originally trained at the Leibniz Institute for Animal Biodiversity (Researchmuseum Koenig, Bonn, Germany). I started working in venom evolution in 2012 at the Natural History Museum London focused on understudied invertebrates, insects and crustaceans. As cave diver I have a fable for remipede crustaceans which I described as first venomous crustaceans. As assistant professor at the University of Leipzig I proceeded to study venom as evolutionary trait especially in robber flies, remipedes, and hymenopterans. From 2018 to 2021 I coordinated the group Animal Venomics in the LOEWE Center for Translational Biodiversitygenomics adding some translational aspects to my work. In particular, however, I generated and learned here more about genomics data to dive deeper into venom gene evolution. Since 2020 I am core group member and management committee member of the COST Action EUVEN (European Venom Network) in which I organize as well working group 2 to develop collaboratively new methods for venom research on all levels (https://euven-network.eu/).
Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland
My research interests are centred around the structure and function of venom and silk polypeptides produced by arthropods, and their use in biotechnology and medicine. I am a Postdoctoral Fellow in the King laboratory in the Institute for Molecular Bioscience, the University of Queensland, Australia. Currently, I am investigating the composition, function and evolution of neglected insect venoms produced by assassin bugs (Hemiptera: Reduviidae), robber flies (Diptera: Asilidae) and nettle caterpillars (Lepidoptera: Limacodidae).
United States Department of Agriculture, Poisonous Plant Research Laboratory
I have been working as a research toxicologist at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Poisonous Plant Research Laboratory (PPRL) for over 15 years. Prior to working for the PPRL, I completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Toxicology. I earned my PhD in Toxicology from Utah State University. I am a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology (ABT). The focus of my current research is to determine the mechanism of action of poisonous plants in livestock, including a number of plants that contain compounds that are teratogenic. My research program includes studying the effect of mixtures of poisonous plants and their toxins. Additionally, I study the toxicokinetics of plant toxins in numerous animal species.
Bing is a computational biologist with scientific interests in venomics and developmental biology. For venomics, he not only explores the evolution of toxins, but also aim at exploiting animal venom compounds for the development of novel therapeutics. For developmental biology, he is interested in the interplay of natural DNA sequence variation with basic biology from molecular and cellular processes to complex physiology and behavior, which allows for exploration and dissection of gene × environment effects and aspects of variance in phenotypes of model vertebrates, such as Japanese rich fish, rat etc.
University of Hawaii
My research interests include biochemical characterization of cubozoan (box jellyfish) venoms, elucidating the mechanisms of action of box jellyfish venom toxins, ultrastructural and cell biological studies of cnidocytes, translational deliverables aimed at reducing box jellyfish envenomation associated morbidity and mortality, biomaterials biochemistry, jellyfish fluorescent proteins, analytical chemical approaches (FTIR, MSn), and cubozoan field ecology in Hawaii, Florida, Bonaire, Puerto Rico, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. I served as a Fulbright Specialist (US State Department appointment) to conduct field and bench research involving lion’s mane (Cyanea capillata) in Ireland and to study chirodropid species in Thailand. I have been a research professor at the University of Hawaii since 1997 and have adjunct and visiting professorship appointments at 12 universities in Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines. I am actively engaged in STEM educational outreach in the ASEAN region. With grant support from local foundations, NIH, DoD and NSF I have built a pioneering translational research program focused on the critical unmet need for effective therapeutics for potentially lethal cubozoan envenomations. This effort has resulted in evidence-based commercialized sting mitigation technologies, novel purification and bioassay techniques, including dose-dependent recapitulation of acute cubozoan envenomation pathophysiology in animal models.
The University of Queensland
I am a biologist at the University of Queensland, where I work full-time as the Lab Manager and Post-doctoral Research Fellow in the Venom Evolution Lab. My current work explores venom effects on blood and nerves, antivenom efficacy, and snake behaviour. Prior to this position, I specialised in conservation biology fieldwork in remote tropical regions. Some part-time research of mine involves Palm Cockatoos and Death Adders. My ultimate purpose is to use science to promote a better world, for humans and for animals.
Sevasti – Kiriaki Zervou is a postdoctoral researcher at the laboratory of Photo – Catalytic Processes and Environmental Chemistry, at Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, National Centre for Scientific Research “Demokritos”, Greece. Dr. Zervou is a chemist with M.Sc. in Analytical Chemistry – Quality Control and PhD in Chemistry. Her research mainly focuses on environmental analysis of cyanotoxins and on identification of bioactive secondary metabolites of cyanobacteria by mass spectrometry, including the following topics: Development of novel analytical methods (SPE, LC-MS/MS) for the determination of multi-class cyanobacterial toxins and peptides in environmental matrices (freshwater, cyanobacterial cells). Investigation of the toxic profile of freshwater cyanobacteria and marine microorganisms with LC-MS/MS and LC-HRMS in combination to advanced software tools and databases. - Structure elucidation of new cyanobacterial peptides based on fragmentation mass spectra. - Identification of cyanobacterial metabolites transformation products (TPs) under environmental and water treatment conditions. - Studies on cyanobacterial peptides bioactivity.
List of accepted submissions (24)
Differential toxicity of viperid (Macrovipera) venoms and neutralisation by antivenoms and enzyme inhibitors
Submitted: 31 May 2022
Abstract: Show Abstract
Species within the viperid genus Macrovipera are some of the most dangerous snakes in the Eurasian region, injecting copious amounts of potent venom. Despite their medical importance, the pathophysiological actions of their venoms have been neglected. Particularly poorly known are the coagulotoxic effects and thus the underlying mechanisms of lethal coagulopathy. In order to fill this knowledge gap, we ascertained the effects of venom upon human plasma for Macrovipera lebetina cernovi ,M. l. lebetina, M. l. obtusa, M. l. turanica, and M. schweizeri using diverse coagulation analysing protocols. All five were extremely potent in their ability to promote clotting but varied in their relative activation of Factor X, being equipotent in this study to the venom of the better studied, and lethal, species Daboia russelii. The Insoserp European viper antivenom was shown to be highly effective against all the Macrovipera venoms, but performed poorly against the D. russelii venom. Reciprocally, while Daboia antivenoms performed well against D. russelii venom, they failed against Macrovipera venom. Thus despite the two genera sharing a venom phenotype (Factor X activation) driven by the same toxin type (P- IIId snake venom metalloproteases), the surface biochemistries of the toxins differed significantly enough to impede antivenom cross- neutralization. The differences in venom biochemistry were reflected in coagulation co-factor dependence. While both genera were absolutely dependent upon calcium for the activation of Factor X, dependence upon phospholipid varied. The Macrovipera venoms had low levels of dependence upon phospholipid while the Daboia venom was three times more dependent upon phospholipid for the activation of Factor X. This suggests that the sites on the molecular surface responsible for phospholipid dependence, are the same differential sites that prevent inter- genera antivenom cross- neutralization. Due to cold-chain requirements, antivenoms may not be stocked in rural settings where the need is at the greatest. Thus we tested the efficacy of enzyme inhibitor Prinomastat as a field-deployable treatment to stabilise patients while being transported to antivenom stocks, and showed that it was extremely effective in blocking the Factor X activating pathophysiological actions. Marimastat however was less effective. These results thus not only shed light on the coagulopathic mechanisms of Macrovipera venoms, but also provide data critical for evidence-based design of snakebite management strategies.
The simplified synthesis of AFB1-lys/ AFG1-lys to produce analytical standards for human exposure analysis
Submitted: 02 Jun 2022
Abstract: Show Abstract
Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is a carcinogenic mycotoxin that can be found contaminating crops such as maize and ground nuts worldwide. It is a carefully monitored for mycotoxin with 99 countries, accounting for 87% of the global population, having in place systems to monitor for AFB1. The most common estimate for human exposure to aflatoxin is by urinary excretion of the hydroxylated AFB1 metabolite AFM1 however it only provides an estimate of recent AFB1 exposure. Chronic AFB1 exposure can be measured by quantifying the AFB1-human serum albumin adduct. This is reported with techniques like ELISA, HPLC, or LC-MS/MS and measures the amount of AFB1-lysine released after proteolysis of serum albumin. Although measuring this toxic is very important from a human health perspective, analytical standards and reference materials are not commercially available. This work goes outlines a simplified synthesis of, unlabelled and isotopically labelled, AFB1-lys without the production of AFB1-lysine epoxide, a potent carcinogen. Additionally, the stability of these standards under long-term storage was determined. We also synthetically linked AFB1 to human serum albumin in order to make reference material.
Neutral or not: identifying drivers of venom evolution
Submitted: 21 May 2022
Abstract: Show Abstract
Variation within species can result from adaptive processes in response to abiotic or biotic variables; however, the importance of neutral processes and population structure when considering intraspecific variation are often ignored. When investigating a trait that is assumed to be under selection, it is essential to test whether variation in the trait is concordant with genetic variation resulting from neutral demographic processes. When discordance is observed between trait variation and neutral variation, selection may be occurring and variables driving variation can be investigated. Here, we compared neutral genomic and venom expression divergence in the Red Diamond Rattlesnake (Crotalus ruber) to understand if and how biotic and/or biotic factors may be driving venom evolution. We assembled a high-quality reference genome of C. ruber to test for neutral variation and estimate venom gland transcriptome expression in multiple individuals. We found discordance between neutral genomic and venom expression variation, suggesting that selection is, at least in part, contributing to trait evolution in this system. We also found significant clinal variation in venom expression for two venom gene families: Snake Venom Metalloproteases and C-type lectins; however, the remaining six venom gene families did not demonstrate significant clinal variation. This suggests that the expression of these venom families is either not variable, or their variation is driven by other factors besides neutral processes. We conclude that abiotic factors are likely not as important in explaining venom variation and that venom variation is most likely affected by biotic variables in C. ruber.
Venomic adaptations of prey specialised spiders
Submitted: 31 May 2022
Abstract: Show Abstract
Venom represents an important trait of countless animals, including many predators. Predatory venoms are usually very effective against certain prey as the result of evolutionary arms races. Nevertheless, many venomous animals remain understudied, including spiders, one of the most diversified groups of venomous predators. The vast majority of spiders are generalists who prey on a wide range of prey. However, a small proportion of spiders are prey-specialists that preferentially hunt only one prey type, often represented by dangerous prey, such as termites, ants or other spiders. They utilise morphological, behavioural and venomic adaptations to subdue such prey. Despite the current evidence suggesting that prey-specialised spiders immobilise prey with potent venom, their venoms haven’t been investigated in detail. In the research of our lab, we discovered that stenophagous prey-specialised spiders have smaller venom glands and less complex venoms compared to euryphagous generalists, as the venoms of specialists have presumably evolved to target only one prey type. Moreover, our laboratory bioassays revealed that the venoms of specialists are prey-specific. We also investigated the venom composition of one spider-eating specialist, the white-tailed spider (genus Lampona). The proteo-transcriptomic analysis identified more than 200 compounds in the Lampona venom. The main components were Cysteine-rich lampotoxins represented by peptides containing 8 to 10 Cysteine residues. Overall, we confirmed that prey-specialised spiders possess venomic adaptations allowing them to quickly subdue dangerous prey. Many aspects are still not explored, such as the venom composition and the mechanisms of prey-specificity of the majority of specialists, and I aim to investigate these features in my current research.
Barriers to Dispersal Explain Discordant Venom and Neutral Divergence Patterns in an Island Population of the Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus)
Submitted: 27 May 2022
Abstract: Show Abstract
The relative importance of neutral processes and selection in driving rapid trait differentiation is often unclear. Determining which of these contributing factors is more important would allow us to make more accurate predictions regarding how within-species evolution occurs. To study this relationship, venomous snakes have emerged as a convenient system because the link between venom genotype and phenotype is tractable. The present study focuses on the contributions of neutral and adaptive processes to venom evolution in distinct northern and southern populations of the Eastern Diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) on Jekyll Island in Georgia. To better understand the contributions of these evolutionary drivers, we examine two factors: whether State Road 520 prevents snake dispersal between populations and whether venom phenotype differs between populations. Radiotracking data reveals that State Road 520 may prevent movement of snakes between populations and limit gene flow, thus maintaining or driving the observed population genetic differences. Characterization of venom using reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography does not show significant differences between venom phenotypes of the two populations. Our results suggest that northern snakes underwent rapid adaptive convergence to acquire a venom phenotype resembling that of southern snakes, and that venom adaptation on Jekyll Island may be repeatable.
S1. Venomous Animals
With presentation examples including:
- Any animal which produces a secretion in specialized cells that is delivered to a target animal through the infliction of a wound and that disrupts endophysiological or biochemical processes in the receiving animal to facilitate feeding, defense, or competition by/of the producing animal
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S3. Toxic Fungi
With presentation examples including:
- Those which are toxic by ingestion, such as certain mushrooms
- Those which are lethal to wildlife, such as chytrid fungus
- Isolated toxins, such as mycotoxins
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S5. Toxic/Pathogenic Aquatic Microorganisms
With presentation examples including:
- Harmful algae and cyanobacteria
- Toxins such as saxitoxin and ciguatoxin
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S6. Pathogenic/Toxic Bacteria
With presentation examples including:
- Antibiotic resistant bacteria
- Septicemia inducing bacteria
- Dysentery causing bacteria such as Shigella dysenteriae or diarrhetic bacteria such as Vibrio cholerae
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S9. Diagnostics and Therapeutics From Natural Toxins
With presentation examples including:
- Lupus diagnostic kits using snake venoms
- Novel painkillers from cone snail venoms
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S10. Public Health Considerations of Toxic Organisms
With presentation examples including:
- The socio-economics underpinning the global snakebite crisis
- Strategies for managing human-wildlife conflict such as the controversies surrounding the relocation of venomous snakes
- The impact of traditional healing and non-conventional first-aid measures upon snakebite
- How human behaviour creates and potentiates pandemics
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