Annual Conference 2019 and 2020

Issue: Metabolism, Health and Disease

07 May 2019 article

Annual Conference 2019

8–11 April, ICC Belfast, UK

In April the Microbiology Society welcomed over 1,300 delegates to its flagship Annual Conference, which took place in Northern Ireland for the first time in the Society’s history. The line-up of expert speakers from across the globe presented over four days on a wide range of topics. The event included:


•    29 scientific sessions

•    Talks from 130+ invited speakers

•    Over 290 offered talks

•    Over 600 posters

•    Five sessions dedicated to professional development:

  • CV workshop
  • Managing a research laboratory
  • Peer review
  • Research and publishing ethics
  • Resilience in careers

•   Two Hot Topics:

  • Creating a path – how single cells can solve mazes, see round corners, and find out where they ought to go by Professor Robert Insall, Cancer Research Institute, UK.
  • Paralytic disease caused by enteroviruses: the role of non-polio serotypes by Javier Martin, National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC), UK.

•   Four Poster Prizes: Microbiology Society Journals’ ‘Most Promising Science’ Prize, Early Career Microbiologists’ Forum Poster Prize, Peoples’ Choice Poster Prize , and the Howard Dalton Young Microbiologist of the Year Prize.

If you presented work at our Annual Conference 2019, why not submit your article to one of our journals to continue to support the work of the Microbiology Society and the microbiological community? Visit the Microbiology Society journals platform to find out more.

Watch some of the videos from year’s Annual Conference on the Microbiology Society YouTube Channel.


Annual Conference 2020

30 March–3 April, EICC Edinburgh, UK

Preparation is now well underway for our Annual Conference 2020 at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC). The event will take place for an extended five days as part of our 75th anniversary celebrations.

On the first day of Annual Conference 2020, the Microbiology Society will be hosting a special day-long series of Fleming Lectures organised by an appointed committee of previous Fleming Prize winners, chaired by Nobel Prize winner Sir Paul Nurse. The day is designed to provide value to everyone in the microbiology community, including early career scientists. You will be able to attend this day for free when registering for Annual Conference 2020.

Abstracts will open in August 2019 for the Annual Conference sessions running from the Tuesday until the Friday, and the submissions deadline will be Monday 9 December 2019.

Destination Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a diverse and vibrant city, steeped in history. The backdrop of Arthur’s Seat, the Pentland Hills and Edinburgh’s waterfront make the city an exciting event destination. If you extend your stay after Conference, there are plenty of attractions to visit, such as Edinburgh Castle, the National Museum of Scotland, the Scottish Parliament and the Royal Yacht Britannia. Visit for further information.


Edinburgh is a popular destination and we therefore highly recommend you secure your accommodation as soon as possible to ensure you have a place to stay. To support you with this, our booking agent Reservation Highway ( has secured a range of accommodation options to suit all budgets throughout Edinburgh, at discounted rates.


As always, Annual Conference is designed to cover the breadth of microbiology research and its comprehensive scientific programme has over 30 sessions taking place in a range of formats:

Fleming talks
  • Genetic control of mosquitoes
  • Orchestrating gene regulation across the genome and across the cell
  • Palaeomicrobiology: what ancient DNA can tell us about pathogens from the past
  • Predatory Bdellovibrio bacteria – 58 years of understanding them as allies against AMR infections
  • The expanding virosphere
  • Visualising bacterial nanomachines in situ by electron cryotomography
Main Symposia
  • AMR
  • Back to the future
  • Bacteroidetes
  • Bioproduction and biomaterials
  • Dynamic cell
  • Epigenetics
  • Exploring the eukaryotic tree of life
  • Genes on the move
  • Marine microbiology
  • Novel eukaryotic drug targets
  • Outer layers of microbiology
  • Phage biology
  • Public health microbiology
  • Viruses that get under your skin – virus infections of skin and associated epithelia
  • Toxins and antitoxins
  • Veterinary microbiology
  • Virus modulation of cell stress
  • Environmental and applied microbiology forum
  • Genetics and genomics forum
  • Microbial infection forum
  • Microbial physiology, metabolism and molecular forum
Virology Workshops
  • Cell stress and viruses
  • Clinical virology
  • DNA viruses
  • Negative strand viruses
  • Positive-strand and double-strand RNA viruses
  • Retroviruses
Professional Development Sessions
  • Bioinformatics
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Fellowship
  • Teaching Microbiology in Higher Education Symposium
  • Unconscious bias

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Images (Annual Conference 2019): I. Atherton.

Image of Edinbugh (Annual Conference 2020). rabbit75_ist/Thinkstock.