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Infection experts gather for science and fun

Ramada Geneva LakefrontProgram in Infection and Pathobiology unites Cornell researchers for 13th anniversary

Infections can send animals and plants down a spiral of pathologic changes, from tweaking the smallest proteins to altering whole populations. Of the spectrum of scientists across Cornell University who study infections’ many facets, more than 130 convene under the umbrella of Cornell’s multi-departmental Program in Infection and Pathobiology. In October 2013 the Program celebrates its 13th anniversary with a gathering of researchers from across fields for a weekend retreat serving science with fun on the side.

Researchers interested in joining the program and retreat are invited to contact its coordinators here:

retreatThe overnight retreat, held this year at the Ramada Geneva Lakefront in Geneva, N.Y., honors the program’s history of fostering exchange of interdisciplinary knowledge. Much like a research conference, it offers a forum for research sharing and socialization among peers, expanding awareness of what others are doing in studying infection. The retreat will feature several faculty and student speakers, talks by postdocs, a research poster session, awards for the best presentation and poster, and good meals to live music in a picturesque setting.

“It’s a great time to get together in a relaxed atmosphere and see new perspectives in infection research,” said Dr. Brian Rudd, who delivered the last retreat’s opening talk shortly after joining Cornell’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the College of Veterinary Medicine. “Everyone in the program takes a different approach to work on related problems. It’s helpful to share your work and get feedback on new ideas while getting a sense of what others are doing in different facets of this field.”

retreat bandBeyond the annual retreat, the program facilitates broader interactions between departments and graduate fields that share common interests in host-pathogen interactions and hosts Seminars in Infection & Immunity, a series of talks in the fall and spring semesters drawing speakers from across campus. The program also features workshops in topics like scientific writing and supervisory training for graduate students and postdocs.

All members of the College of Veterinary Medicine’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology, which sponsors the program, participate, as do faculty from the College’s departments of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences, Biomedical Sciences, and Molecular Medicine as well as the Baker Institute of Animal Health. Other faculty, graduate student, and postdoc members hail from departments across the University, representing Cornell’s Departments of Microbiology, Food Science, Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology, Nutritional Sciences, Animal Science, Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Entomology, and the Center for Animal Resources and Education.

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