Expert Exchange: Training on Molecular and Computer-based techniques
Europlanet 2024 RI’s Expert Exchange Programme aims to support the planetary community to share expertise and best practice, and to prepare new facilities and services. The programme provides funding for short visits (up to one week).
Ermias Balcha from Addis Ababa Science and Technology University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, visited Karen Olsson-Francis and Dr Michael Macey at the Open University, UK, from 18-24 October 2022.
The purpose of expert exchange was for Ermias Balcha to receive training in a combination of molecular and computer-based techniques to catalogue the diversity of microbes in samples collected from hyper-saline environments in the Afar Depression in Ethiopia. Ermias’s studies aim to identify the presence and diversity of novel antimicrobial and their associated production pathways, and potentially identify novel antibiotics within these extreme environments. This is the first time that these microbial communities, which often host unique metabolic adaptations due to their extreme nature, have been characterised in terms of the potential medical applications.
The visit was very successful: the data analysed will contribute to two or three data chapters of Ermias’s PhD thesis, and training has reinforced the exchange of experience between scientific communities in Europe and Africa.
Expert Exchange Objectives covered by this visit: Early Career Support, Widening Participation.
Find out more about the Europlanet Expert Exchange Programme.
Next Call For Europlanet Expert Exchange Programme
The call is now open with a deadline of Wednesday 17 January 2024. Visits should take place between 1 February and 15 May 2024.