International Seminar: “Introducing CrAssphage: Discovering virus that is present in half the people in the world!”


May 17th, 2016

We are surrounded by bacteria and their viruses, and those microbes have evolved alongside us. The human microbiome projects around the world seek to explore the microbes in both healthy people and those with diseases. By sampling different body sites and different time intervals we can identify changes in the microbiota that may correspond to different diseases. Despite hundreds of years of culturing bacteria from people, many of the sequences in the human microbiome do not map to any known organisms, and remain unidentifiable. Comparing samples from different people living in different places around the world using a technique called Cross Assembly, we identified a completely new phage that has never been cultured before. We introduce crAssphage, a ubiquitous intestinal inhabitant that is present in approximately half of the people in the world, and accounts for almost 90% of the data in some of the experiments. This ~100kb Bacteroidetes phage is a previously unknown player in the ecology of human intestines and may be responsible for the regulation of growth of Bacterids and its role in our health and disease.

Rob Edwards, PhD, Professor
Department of Computer Science
Department of Biology
San Diego State University, San Diego

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016


Auditorium 4th Floor
Fundación Ciencia & Vida
Avenida Zañartu 1482, Ñuñoa, Santiago