Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/24/2000
Publication Date: 5/21/2000
Citation: EVANS, J.J. FISH WITHOUT A HEALTH PLAN ROUND TABLE. MEETING ABSTRACT. AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR MICROBIOLOGY 100th GENERAL MEETING. TALK ONLY. 2000. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Our speakers, all industrial microbiologists, will describe what they do, how they came to choose this line of work, the opportunities and ambience, and what they see as the future of their field. In one sense, the field of industrial microbiology covers all of microbiology, including the most basic research, enormous manufacturing processes, and cleanup of wastes. The biotechnology industry, one of the hottest developments in science and in the stock market in recent years, springs in a direct line from bacterial genetics and has made millionaire entrepreneurs out of some of its practitioners. Recognition of the significance of penicillin and streptomycin in curing disease led to development of a huge arm of the pharmaceutical industry, and influenced animal husbandry as well. Microbes are used in production of wines, liquors, yogurt and cheeses'after all, they invented these! Industries have sprung up to test foods and consumer products for presence of biological contaminants; these products include cosmetics, drugs, and medical devices. The bioremediation industry was started to help clean up the environment by exploiting the myriad of pathways microbes have evolved to convert chemical wastes to harmless products and energy. Microbiologists are needed when slime bacteria foul ship hulls, when microbial mats form in fuel tanks, both storage tanks and jet plane fuel lines, in industrial biosafety, in the oil industry and in microbial mining, e.g., of copper. Many of the skills used by basic researchers, academics, and clinical laboratory workers prove invaluable when applied to industrial processes and problems. We hope this Round Table will further links among microbiologists of diverse backgrounds.