CBTE Symposium

Kewaunee Flyer


12:00pm-2:00pm Lunch and Poster session

2:00pm-2:30pm Networking Event and Award Counting

2:30pm-2:45pm CBTE Update & Awards - Tatiana Segura

2:45pm-3:15pm Faculty Talk #1 Andrew Jones

3:15pm-3:45pm Faculty Talk #2 Jatin Roper

3:45pm-4:15pm Faculty Talk #3 John Hickey

4:15pm-4:45pm Coffee break- Networking 

4:45pm-5:00pm Kewaunee Intro - George Truskey

5:00pm-6:00pm Kewaunee Lecture- Laura Niklason


Andrew Jones

"Synthetic Biofilm"


Abstract: Biofilms are responsible for ~80% of all hospital acquired infections, leading to 1.6 million infections and 80,000 deaths at a cost of $16.8 to $27.2 billion dollars in the US. Bacterial biofilms are agglomerations of bacteria, proteins, sugars, eDNA. Clinical treatment for biofilm infections can be mechanical (surgical removal) followed by chemical (antibiotics) or solely chemical. However, antibiotic resistance has been increasing and few new antibiotics have been translated into clinical practice in the last 20 years. Some of antibacterial resistance mechanisms include binding in the biofilm and biofilm dispersal. Synthetic biofilms have been used to understand biofilm mechanics and biofilm chemical interactions. Alginate hydrogels are primarily used as synthetic biofilms because it is a key biofilm component and readily available. However, alginate is much stiffer and has fewer metal binding ligands than whole biofilm. To overcome this, we developed a nanocellulose hydrogel with divalent cations that mimics the mechanical properties of biofilms. We produce nanocellulose using a novel ionic salt solution of urea and sodium hydroxide at much lower temperatures than other methods. Magnesium modification produces the closest mechanical mimic to a biofilm followed by calcium. Visually the produced nanocellulose more closely resembles bacterial nanocellulose structure. In addition to aiding antibiotic transport and mechanical shearing research, bacterial nanocellulose has been proposed as a biomaterial for wound healing and engineered tissues but suffers from low yield. Thus this process may be a useful substitute for natural bacterial nanocellulose. 


Jatin Roper

"Mechanisms of intestinal homeostasis in health and disease"

The intestine is composed of specialized cells called epithelial cells that have several essential functions,including nutrient absorption, hormone production, and responding to pathogenic and commensalmicrobiota. Stem cells, located at the base of intestinal crypts, proliferate rapidly to populate alldifferentiated cell types of the intestinal epithelium. One common theme in intestinal diseases such asinflammatory bowel disease or cancer is dysregulation of intestinal stem cell function. In this talk, I willdiscuss our ongoing research on how intestinal stem cells respond to external stimuli to maintain tissuefunction, and how these processes are dysregulated in disease.


John Hickey

"From molecules to multicell modules: Immune-mediated tissue restructuring"

Advancements in single-cell multiplexed imaging coupled with sophisticated computational algorithmshave greatly augmented our views into complex tissue microenvironments. In this seminar, I will presentthe approaches we have developed to deconstruct intricate tissue datasets and connect them acrossscales from molecular to multicell modules. Particularly, I will share three vignettes of cell organizationalrules we found within 1] the healthy human intestine, 2] progression from metaplasia to cancer inBarrett’s esophagus, and 3] melanomas treated with effective and ineffective T cell therapies.

To register, email Jessica Canning: Jessica.Canning@duke.edu