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Predictive health symposium will focus on human microbiome

The Seventh Annual Symposium on Predictive Health, to be held on Friday, Dec. 2, 2011, will focus on health and the human microbiome. The human microbiome consists of the microscopic organisms, such as bacteria, fungi and viruses, which reside throughout the body.

Study of the microbiome's impact on human health is gaining attention across the United States, including a major federal initiative underway to characterize the microbial communities found at several different sites on the human body, and to analyze the role of these microbes in human health and disease.

The Emory-Georgia Tech symposium will focus on the microbiome's connection to chronic disease, inflammation and immunity.

The symposium will be held in the Claudia Nance Rollins Building in the Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, 1518 Clifton Road, Atlanta, GA 30322.

View the full agenda and registration.

Distinguished speakers include

  • Stanley Hazen, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University
  • Andrew T. Gewirtz, PhD, Georgia State University, Center for Infection, Inflammation, and Immunity
  • Lita M. Proctor, PhD, coordinator, Human Microbiome Project, National Human Genome Research Institute, National Institutes of Health
  • Todd Golde, MD, PhD, director, University of Florida College of Medicine, Center for Translational Research in Neurodegenerative Disease
  • Joshua S. Weitz, PhD, assistant professor, School of Biology and Physics, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Bali Pulendran, PhD, professor, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine

"There's increasing information that the human microbiome is a critical player in many of the chronic diseases we're interested in," says Ken Brigham, MD, director of the Emory/Georgia Tech Predictive Health Institute. "The information about the human microbiome and its relationship to disease is exploding."

Predictive health is a new paradigm that defines the unique characteristics that predict health status for individuals and populations, and uses new discoveries in biomedicine to emphasize health maintenance and health recovery rather than treatment of disease.

"The predictive health model allows us to tailor a personalized approach to each patient's disease risk, prevention, detection, and treatment," says Wright Caughman, Emory University executive vice president for Health Affairs, CEO of Emory's Woodruff Health Sciences Center and chairman of Emory Healthcare. "It's a more deliberate, proactive, and specific approach to meeting each patient's unique needs."

Caughman, Brigham and Bud Peterson, PhD, president of the Georgia Institute of Technology, will lead the symposium.

The symposium is sponsored by The Emory/Georgia Tech Predictive Health Institute and the Atlanta Clinical and Translational Science Institute.

One of the cross-cutting initiatives in Emory's strategic plan, the Predictive Health Institute includes not only medicine, public health and nursing, but also anthropology, ethics, behavior, health policy, law, business and religion.


Contact: Jennifer Johnson
Emory University

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