University of Nebraska - Lincoln Welcomes You to


June 17-21, 2018 | Register Now

Important Dates Coming Up

May 20

Abstract Due Date

April 16 - May 31


June 1 – June 18

Late Registration

Conference Week Overview

june 17, 2018 - june 23, 2018


17jun5:00 pm10:00 pmAVW9 Welcoming Reception5:00 PM - 10:00 PM

18junalldayMount Posters

18jun9:00 amSession I – Topic: What is an aquatic virus?9:00 AM - 1:30 PM

18jun1:30 pmSession II – Topic: What is an aquatic virus?1:30 PM - 3:00 PM

18jun3:10 pm5:20 pmSession III – Topic: How do aquatic viruses move?3:10 PM - 5:30 PM

19jun9:00 am1:30 pmSession IV – Topic: How do aquatic viruses replicate?9:00 AM - 1:30 PM

19jun11:20 am12:30 pmPoster Presentations11:20 AM - 12:30 PM

19jun2:00 pm5:00 pmExcursions2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

19jun5:00 pm9:00 pmJazz in June5:00 PM - 9:00 PM

20jun9:00 amSession V – Topic: What are the consequences of aquatic virus infections?9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

20jun1:00 pmSession VI – Topic: What are the consequences of aquatic virus infections?1:00 PM - 4:00 PM

20jun6:00 pmAVW9 Banquet6:00 PM

21jun9:00 am1:30 pmSession VII – Topic: Why are aquatic viruses successful?9:00 AM - 1:30 PM

21jun1:30 pm4:50 pmSession VIII – Topic: Why are aquatic virologists successful?1:30 PM - 4:50 PM

Click on Date to see events

Welcome to AVW9

We invite you to participate in the 9th International Aquatic Virus Workshop (AVW9) to be hosted and held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus, June 17-21, 2018. The Workshop provides a forum for the discussion of viruses infecting microbes and protists of aquatic systems in all parts of the planet. Our intention is to promote discussion and collaboration among the world’s leading scientists in many dimensions of virology, including virus discovery and characterization, as well as the role of viruses in aquatic ecosystems functioning. The AVW9 will honor one of the founding members, James L. Van Etten of the University of Nebraska, for his significant contributions to algal virology.

About the Workshop

What is the Aquatic Virus Workshop?

We welcome you as we craft yet another engaging Aquatic Virus Workshop where you will see old friends and meet new ones, be inspired by your colleagues’ significant contributions to virology, microbial ecology and aquatic systems of the Planet. We intend to make this AVW a wonderfully memorable experience. It is a truly exciting time to study aquatic viruses and we know that the AVW9 will be “the place” to share and learn about why this topic shares a full measure with the great sciences of our time. It is with great pride and a full heart that we welcome you to Lincoln and the AVW9.

Five Great Questions of Aquatic Virology

Our Guiding Principles

What is an aquatic virus?

How do aquatic viruses move?

How do aquatic viruses replicate?

What are the consequences of aquatic virus infections?

Why are aquatic viruses successful?

Featured Speakers

Guillaume Blanc

Presentation: Fertilization of eukaryotic genomes by viruses

Guillaume Blanc

Professional affiliation:
Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography Aix-Marseille Université France

My main research interest is the study of marine protists and their interactions with their viral and bacterial environments. I combine genomics, bioinformatics and molecular evolution studies to decipher how microbial communities function and evolve. I am currently developing a research project drawing on paleovirology (i.e., the study of fossils of viral genetic fragments which were integrated into host genomes) to explore the hidden diversity of Nucleo-Cytoplasmic Large DNA viruses (NCLDV) and their contribution to the evolution of eukaryotes.

Steven Wilhelm

Presentation: Resolving Virus-Host Relationships From Environmental Metatranscriptomes

Steven Wilhelm

Professional affiliation:
The Aquatic Microbial Ecology Research Group, Department of Microbiology, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA

Steve is the Kenneth and Blaire Mossman Professor & Associate Head of the Department of Microbiology. In 2016 he became a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology as well as a Sustaining Fellow of ASLO. In 2018 he was also named a James R. Cox Professor at the University of Tennessee. His group studies synergies between microbial communities and biogeochemical cycles in lakes and oceans. Lab members use biomolecular tools – DNA and RNA sequencing, metabolomics, and PCR-based quantitative analyses – to study viruses, bacteria, cyanobacteria and algae.

Corina Brussaard

Presentation: Two decades of algal viral ecology

Corina Brussaard

Professional affiliation:
*Research Leader, Dept. Marine Microbiology and Biogeochemistry, NIOZ Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research & Univ. Utrecht, The Netherlands
*Professor Viral Ecology, IBED, University of Amsterdam (UvA)
NIOZ Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research PO Box 59, 1790 AB Den Burg, Texel, The Netherlands

Corina Brussaard is a biological oceanographer whose research focusses largely on the ecological role of viruses in, the microbes dominated, marine biomes. Her research contributed crucial developments in novel algal virus isolations, virus enumeration and virus-induced mortality rate measurements that established not only the qualitative but also the quantitative importance of viruses for biogeochemical cycling and the functioning of the ecosystem. Her latest research revolved around the influence of environmental factors on microbial host-virus interactions, with particular emphasis on the effects of global climate change-induced alterations. Her research in microbial oceanography allows her to perform her exciting research literally from pole to pole. Her research has made key improvements to our understanding of how globally important viruses are as drivers for biodiversity and overall ecosystem productivity. Brussaard is currently president-elect of the International Society for Viruses of Microorganisms (ISVM), and secretary of the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR).

Jean-Michel Claverie

Presentation: Giant viruses: a paradigm change?

Jean-Michel Claverie

Professional affiliation:
Director, Structural & Genomic Information Laboratory
Head, Mediterranean Institute of Microbiology (CNRS- Aix-Marseille University)
Professor of Medicine – Genomics, Bioinformatics, Public Health – Aix-Marseille University School of Medicine

Jean-Michel Claverie is Professor of Genomics and Bioinformatics at the School of Medicine of Aix-Marseille University, director of the Mediterranean Institute of Microbiology, and head of the Structural and Genomic Information Laboratory, a joint unit of the French National Research Center (CNRS) and Aix-Marseille University he founded in 1996. Following the serendipitous discovery of Mimivirus, the first “giant” virus in 2003, he focused on the search for more giant and/or unconventional viruses in increasingly exotic environments. In the last ten years, his laboratory described four new families encompassing the largest known viruses in terms of particle and genome sizes: the Megaviruses, the Pandoraviruses, the Pithoviruses, and Mollivirus, the latter two revived from 30,000-year-old Siberian permafrost. Besides exploring new environments for more exotic viruses, his laboratory is increasingly involved in deciphering the biology and mode of evolution of these giant viruses that may represent a legacy of the pre-LUCA era and of vanished ancestral proto-cellular lineages.

Nigel Grimsley

Presentation: Prasinovirus infection is firstly furtive, then furious, but phytoplankton fight.

Nigel Grimsley

Professional affiliation:
CNRS UMR7232 BIOM (Integrative Biology of Marine Organisms) Laboratory
OOB, Avenue de Pierre Fabre

Nigel Grimsley received his MA (Natural Sciences) in and PhD (Genetics) from the University of Cambridge, UK, finishing in 1978. During this period and his first post-doctoral studies with the Royal Society and BBSRC fellowships in at the Universities of Mainz (Germany) and Leeds (UK) he developed the moss model Physcomitrella patens, before becoming very interested in plant-microbe interactions. After a short stay at the Max-Planck Institute un Cologne (Germany) he went on with an EMBO fellowship to collaborate with scientists at the Friedrich-Miescher Institute in Basel (Switzerland) for before moving to the Plant-Microbe Interactions Laboratory (LIPM) near to Toulouse in France in 1990, winning a position in CNRS. He moved to the Integrative Marine Biology Laboratory (BIOM) at the Sorbonne University Marine Station of Banyuls sur Mer in 2005, and has since been working on host-virus interactions in the Mamiellales, a widespread group of eukaryotic phytoplankton.

Ruth-Anne Sandaa

Presentation: Reluctant affairs – algal virus-haptophyte relationship in the ocean

Ruth-Anne Sandaa

Professional affiliation:
Department of Biology – University of Bergen

Ruth-Anne Sandaa is a professor at the University of Bergen, Norway. She has more than twenty-five years of knowledge of microbial ecology focusing on microbial population dynamics and biodiversity. The last 15 years her research has focused on marine viruses and mechanisms controlling host-viral relationships and understand how this interaction regulates host -viral dynamics and diversity, viruses infecting phytoplankton, the role of viruses in the Arctic microbial food web.

Matt Sullivan

Presentation: Tracking viruses in nature: Patterns, processes and paradigms

Matt Sullivan

Professional affiliation:
Department of Microbiology and Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering, The Ohio State University

Sullivan’s research aims to quantitatively explore the roles of microbial viruses in global ocean biogeochemical cycling, thawing permafrosts and humans. As a Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Investigator, he has helped lay the foundation for modern, quantitative viral ecology. Specifically, he has helped develop a quantitative viral metagenomic sample-to-sequence pipeline and community-available informatics platforms to analyze such data, significantly expanded our understanding of the global virosphere through illuminating ‘viral dark matter’, and pioneered numerous experimental and informatic approaches to link and explore virus-host interactions. Sullivan is recognized as a senior editor at Nature Publishing Group’s ISMEJ, as well as a Kavli Frontiers in Science Fellow, a Fulbright Fellow, a Beckman Foundation undergraduate mentor, and a Beckman Foundation post-doctoral mentor.

Curtis Suttle

Presentation: The Life Aquatic – A Journey Through the Virosphere

Curtis Suttle

Professional affiliation:
Departments of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences, Microbiology & Immunology, and Botany, and The Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, University of British Columbia

Curtis Suttle is one of the World’s leading marine virologists, and is among a small group of researchers credited with launching the field 25 years ago. His research focuses on aquatic viruses, their diversity and the roles that they play in the global system. His studies have shown that viruses are the most abundant and among the most genetically diverse lifeforms, and are major agents of mortality, killing an estimated 20 % of the living material in the oceans, by weight, each day. He has been a leader in the development and use of new approaches to estimate the diversity and impact of viruses in nature, and many of these techniques have become standard tools in the field.

Karen Weynberg

Presentation: Back to the Future: Aquatic Virology in the 21st Century

Karen Weynberg

Professional affiliation:
CSIRO/ School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences, University of Queensland

Karen completed her PhD in virology at the University of Warwick and Plymouth Marine Laboratory, UK, where she discovered novel prasinoviruses that infect marine microalgae. More recently, Karen was an ARC Super Science Fellow at the Australian Institute of Marine Science, Townsville, where she researched coral reef-associated viruses on the Great Barrier Reef. Her research helped to reveal some of the roles viruses play in coral health, bleaching and the adaptation of corals to climate change. In August 2017, Karen began a CSIRO Synthetic Biology Future Science fellowship, held jointly at CSIRO and the University of Queensland. This new research will use synthetic biology to develop phage therapy for the control of antibiotic-resistant bacterial biofilms. She also recently entered an online competition for funding for women scientists in STEM in Australia.

Click to see her entry in the online competition

Jim Van Etten

Presentation: Four Decades Of Following The Unusual Genes Of Giant Viruses

Jim Van Etten

Professional affiliation:
Department of Plant Pathology and the Nebraska Center for Virology
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, Nebraska, NE, USA

The Van Etten laboratory works on a wide range of topics associated with the molecular biology, biochemistry, physiology and bioinformatics of viruses that infect certain unicellular, eukaryotic chlorella-like green algae. Chloroviruses are found in freshwater all over the world and they have many interesting and unexpected properties. One property is that the chloroviruses are among the largest viruses known, containing as many as 16 tRNA genes and 400 protein-encoding genes, including many not previously seen in viruses, e.g., genes encoding DNA restriction and modification enzymes, hyaluronan biosynthetic enzymes, polyamine biosynthetic enzymes, and ion channel and transport proteins. The proteins encoded by many of these viruses are either the smallest or among the smallest proteins of their class. Consequently, some of the viral proteins are the subject of intensive biochemical and structural investigation.

About The Location

The conference will be held on the campuses of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, adjacent to the dynamic downtown region of Lincoln. The University provides excellent infrastructure, including newly opened housing, dining and conference facilities. Social functions will be held in iconic venues including, Opening Reception at Morrill Hall and Jazz in June at the Sheldon Art Museum. Lincoln is well known for its cultural diversity, music, arts, restaurants and craft beer venues. It is also a great environment for pedestrians and cyclists. We welcome you to join us at the AVW9 in Lincoln.

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Options for Your Stay

Stay Directly on Campus

Important: If you would like to stay on campus, you will sign up for that as you complete your registration for the conference.
This residential center with suite-style rooms is across the street from the Cather Center where the conference scientific sessions will be held. More details about living arrangements are found in the link below.

Learn More

Stay Nearby in a Hotel

Important: Our block of rooms are currently sold out.
We’ve also secured rooms for our guests at the Embassy Suites. This hotel is approximately 8 blocks (1/2 mile) from the Cather Center where the conference scientific sessions will be held.  A conference rate has been negotiated for the AVW9.

Schedule Now

Options for Flying in

Fly Into Lincoln

Fly directly into the city of Lincoln

Fly into Omaha

A little further away but a larger airport

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Register for AVW9

Click below to register for Aquatic Virus Workshop 9 hosted in Lincoln, Nebraska. Remember if you would like to stay on campus to select that option in the registration. Also if you are having any issues signing up, click the contact button