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Microbes are everywhere, living inside and around us, often within complex and dynamic communities that underpin the health of our bodies and of natural ecosystems. The need to understand and predict microbial evolutionary dynamics has never been more urgent. The rise of antimicrobial resistance is a crisis caused by the evolutionary adaptation of microbes to our use of antibiotics. How microbes respond to global change will shape critical biogeochemical processes in oceans and soils. Solutions to these and many other emerging issues will require an in-depth understanding of the evolutionary dynamics of microbial communities, to enable us to predict and manage their responses to selective pressures and to design robust biotechnological solutions.

The meeting is intended to strengthen collaborative ties between researchers working in the diverse field of microbial evolution, both in the UK and overseas. There will be invited talks on a range of topics including drivers and dynamics of (pan)genome evolution, microbiome evolution, predicting microbial evolution, and the applications of microbial evolution. In addition, the meeting will provide opportunities for early career researchers to present their work in the form of contributed talks and poster presentations and to build their collaborative networks.

Organising committee:

  • Michael Brockhurst (University of Manchester, UK)
  • Jenna Gallie (Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Germany)
  • James Hall (University of Liverpool, UK)
  • Stineke Van Houte (University of Exeter, UK)

Key topics

  • Drivers and dynamics of microbial evolution
  • Evolution of (pan)genomes
  • Evolution of microbial communities
  • Predicting microbial evolution
  • Biotechnological applications of microbial evolution

COVID-19 Mitigations

As part of the preparations for returning to delivering in-person events, Microbiology Society Council members and members of the Virus Division have worked with Society staff to develop a framework of mitigations for the Society to apply to all of its events throughout 2022, in order to ensure that these are as COVID-secure as possible.

Implementation of this framework is a shared responsibility; shared between the Society, the venues we use for our events, and all potential attendees. Attendance at any of our events is a personal choice, but it will be incumbent on all of us to deliver these mitigations in order for us to keep all delegates and staff as safe as we can.

The framework covers the following five areas.

1. Vaccines
2. Ventilation
3. Masks
4. Testing
5. Spacing, particularly during communal activities such as lunch and poster sessions

The following mitigations will be implemented for all those attending a Focused Meeting in 2022. The Society staff will continue to consult with the organising committee in the lead up to the event and these mitigations will be kept under review and may be amended to ensure they remain appropriate as circumstances change.

Mitigation area


All attendees are required to be fully vaccinated with an approved vaccine against COVID-19 to attend a Focused Meeting in 2022. For many individuals, this will mean a primary course and booster vaccine, and with the booster administered at least 14 days before the meeting. However, if you do not meet this requirement or if you have any concerns around your vaccination status, please get in touch with us to discuss it further by emailing [email protected]

You can find further information on vaccines on the World Health Organization (WHO) COVID-19 vaccine advice page, which includes a list of vaccines that have been approved for use against COVID-19.


Best efforts will be made to promote the circulation of fresh air into each Focused Meeting venue. This will include use of air conditioning, if available at the meeting venue, or opening of doors and windows during appropriate intervals in the event programme if possible.


FFP3 masks will be provided to all individuals attending a Focused Meeting in 2022 and everyone will be expected to wear them inside the meeting venue, except when eating or drinking and except for those that have medical exemptions.


Attendees will be provided with LFT devices and are expected to test themselves daily before entering the meeting venue.


All attendees are reminded to adhere to social distancing where possible, particularly during communal activities such as lunch and poster sessions.

Further information will be announced in the build up to the meeting on our social media channels and you can follow us on Twitter @MicrobioSoc using the hashtag #MicroEvo22




Session View
Lecture View

The programme of invited speakers for the meeting include:

  • Helen Alexander (The University of Edinburgh, UK)
  • Aude Bernheim (INSERM (French National Institute of Health and Medical Research), France)
  • Alita Burmeister (Yale University, USA)
  • Katharine Coyte (University of Manchester, UK)
  • Elze Hesse (University of Exeter, UK)
  • Ville Friman (University of York, UK)
  • Elisa Granato (University of Oxford, UK)
  • Christian Kost (University of Osnabrück, Germany)
  • Peter Lind (Umeå University, Sweden)
  • Ville Mustonen (University of Helsinki, Finland)
  • Siobhan O'Brien (University of Liverpool, UK)
  • Alvaro San Millan (Spanish National Research Council, Spain)
  • Tiffany Taylor (University of Bath, UK)
  • Hildegard Uecker (Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Germany)
  • Lucy Weinert (University of Cambridge, UK)
  • Fiona J. Whelan (University of Nottingham, UK)
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Álvaro San Millán

Álvaro San Millán, D.V.M., Ph.D., is a Group Leader in the National Centre for Biotechnology in Madrid. He obtained his doctorate at the Complutense University of Madrid in 2010, working on plasmid-mediated antibiotic resistance in zoonotic bacteria. As a postdoc, he worked for 4 years at the Department of Zoology of the University of Oxford, analysing the evolutionary bases of plasmid-mediated antibiotic resistance. In 2016, he started his research group in the Department of Microbiology at Ramon y Cajal University Hospital in Madrid, where he started a project focused on the study of the evolution of plasmid-mediated antibiotic resistance in patients and the hospital setting. In 2020, Dr San Millán joined the Spanish National Centre for Biotechnology as a Tenured Scientist in Plasmid Biology. Dr San Millán is interested in understanding the role of plasmids as catalysts of bacterial evolution, with a special focus on the evolution of plasmid-mediated antibiotic resistance in clinical settings.

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Ville Friman

My lab is interested in eco-evolutionary dynamics of species interactions in multi-trophic communities. We use two main study systems in our research. First, model cystic fibrosis lung microbiomes that focus on understanding the evolution of Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacterial pathogen by antibiotics, other co-occurring bacteria and lytic phages. Second, a tomato rhizosphere microbiome model that focuses on elucidating the ecology and evolution of bacteria-phage-plant interactions in the rhizosphere, using Ralstonia solanacearum plant pathogenic bacterium, a causative agent of bacterial wilt disease, as the focal species. Studying these eco-evolutionary processes is important for understanding bacterial disease dynamics in agricultural and medical contexts and developing new ways to control infections. To achieve this, we combine experimental evolution with environmental and clinical sampling, field and greenhouse experiments, genome sequencing, omics and bioinformatic analysis.

Twitter: @FrimanScience


Registration is now open and Early bird discounted rates are available until 11 October 2022.

Registration fees

Online registration for the Understanding and Predicting Microbial Evolutionary Dynamics meeting is now open. Microbiology Society members get heavily subsidised registration fees for focused meetings, annual conference and other society events. Join now to enjoy these discounts and many other opportunities that are designed for microbiologists at all stages of their career.

  Early Bird Full rate
Student member £210 £260
Concessionary member £300 £350
Full member £355 £405
Non-member £455 £505
What’s included in your registration fee?
  • Admission to all scientific sessions
  • Access to scientific poster sessions
  • Lunch and break-time refreshments
  • Tickets for the drinks reception
  • Ticket to the meeting dinner on Tuesday evening
  • A delegate bag and printed programme
  • Electronic certificate of attendance
Registration confirmation
Upon registration you should receive an automated confirmation email. Please contact [email protected] if after 24 hours this has not been received.
Payment Information
All registration fees must be paid in full before arrival at the conference. Any outstanding registration fees must be paid before admittance will be granted to the conference.
Visa applications
If you require a letter of invitation to support a visa application, we will be happy to supply this after we have received full payment.
It is the policy of the Microbiology Society not to supply an invitation letter to any delegate that has not registered to attend the meeting and paid the registration fees in full.
Requests for invitation letters should be sent to [email protected] after registration has been completed.
Please note that all meeting delegates are responsible for their own travel and visa arrangements.
We are aware of ongoing uncertainty around event attendance as the pandemic continues. In order to give delegates the most confidence and flexibility, we will refund all registration fees in full if you cancel your booking, for whatever reason, at any time in the lead-up to the event. If you wish to cancel your booking and request a refund before the event, please email [email protected]
Abstracts & Posters

Abstract submission for the Understanding and Predicting Microbial Evolutionary Dynamics meeting is now open. Abstracts are welcome in all areas of research in microbial evolution and ecology.

Submissions close on 30 August 2022.

Submit your abstract


Both members and non-members of the Microbiology Society are welcome to submit an abstract for the meeting. All offered oral presentations and posters will be selected from the abstracts submitted. Once submissions are closed, they will be reviewed by the organising committee and submitters will be notified of the outcome by email on 20 September 2022.

By submitting an abstract to this meeting, you are indicating to the session organisers your commitment to attend the event.

Abstract guidance

Abstracts must be a maximum of 250 words. The Society has produced a guide to give delegates some tips on how to write a great abstract, which can be downloaded below:

How to write a great abstract


Please note that the abstract is the only information session organisers use when deciding whether to accept your work for presentation as an offered oral or poster. If accepted, it will also be published in the abstract book for the meeting – so think carefully about what needs to be included.

Microbiology Outstanding Science Prize

Microbiology is pleased to provide the Outstanding Science Prize to a scientific poster at the ‘Understanding and Predicting Microbial Evolutionary Dynamics’ meeting. The winner, selected by members of the organising committee, will win a cash prize and be featured on the Microbe Post. All posters displayed at the meeting are automatically entered for the prize.

Venue, Accommodation and Travel
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Hyatt Regency Manchester

The meeting will take place at the Hyatt Regency Manchester, an elegant, modern hotel set in the heart of the innovation district with easy access to the city.
The Hyatt’s stylish meeting and event spaces offer a range of flexible rooms with natural daylight on a purpose-built exclusive meeting and events floor.
55 Booth Street West
Manchester, UK
M15 6PQ
Venue Accessibility
Hyatt Manchester was built with full accessibility in mind. There is a level access route from the pavement outside the front door. There are lifts with Braille buttons to all floors and level access to all public spaces, including meeting rooms, bedrooms, bars and restaurant.
Our Reception desk has a low level for guests using wheelchairs to complete their registration card and Porter service is available to assist guests with their luggage. There are accessible toilets on both the ground and second floor.


Hyatt Regency Manchester is located in the bustling Oxford Road Corridor, an exciting Innovation District situated south of Manchester city centre.
The hotel is a short walk from each of the following train stations:
Manchester’s Oxford Road (0.5 mile)
Deansgate (0.6 mile)
Manchester Piccadilly (0.8 mile)
Join from the M62 onto M60,
At jct. 12, exit onto M602 towards Salford.
Continue to follow A57
Take the 3rd exit onto Princess Rd/A5103.
Take the A5103 exit towards Airport/M6/Birmingham/Hulme/Moss Side.
Turn left onto Stretford Rd/A5067
Turn right onto Boundary Ln.
Turn left onto Booth St. West
Hyatt Regency Manchester advises guests to use the following secure public parking facilities, located a short walk from the hotel. There are a number of charging points for electric vehicles within the car park.
The University of Manchester - Car Park D
Booth Street West, M15 6AR
Parking fees are from £2 per hour to £15 for 24 hours.
Opening hours: 06:00 - 23:45, Monday - Friday
06:00 - 22:45, Saturday & Sunday
There is easy access to the hotel from Manchester Airport (20-minute drive). Manchester Airport is approximately 8 miles away from the hotel.


Accommodation options for this Focused Meeting will be announced in due course.
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Grants & Professional Development

Support is also available for members requiring support for caring costs associated with conference attendance. Further information about these grants and where to apply will be advertised shortly.

If you are a member who is not eligible for a Society Conference Grant, please apply via the Travel Grant scheme.

Exhibition & Sponsorship

Please contact [email protected] to enquire about exhibition and sponsorship opportunities.