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Pre-Conference Workshop Day

Tuesday March 24, 2020

Workshop A - 9:00-12:00

Understanding the Role of Synthetic Bacteriophages in Agriculture and How This Can Assist with Human Therapeutics

With antibiotics becoming less effective and new government policies reducing the use of antibiotics, the livestock and agriculture industry suffer millions of dollars in losses each year from diseased animals and crops. One solution to help overcome this global phenomenon is to use bacteriophages which are specifically designed to destroy certain bacterial organisms— overcoming the limitations that natural occurring phages have. This workshop will discuss the advantages of using synthetic phages and developing them for use in agriculture, animal, and food safety.

  • Benefits of using bacteriophages in agriculture and food safety
  • Creating targeted bacteriophages to help alleviate the need for antibiotic use in agriculture and food safety
  • How bacteriophages can be used as an alternative to antibiotics in animal and food safety
Steven Theriault - Cytophage

Steven Theriault
CEO & CSO
Cytophage Technologies

Dr. Steven Theriault is a synthetic biologist with 20 years research and entrepreneurial experience in generating biological solutions for biological problems. Early in his career, he was a member of the team that created the reverse genetic systems critical to the development of the Canadian Ebola vaccine as well as many novel and innovative diagnostic tools to aid in the fight against Ebola. As Chief of the Applied Research Program at the Canadian Science Centre for Human and Animal Health, Dr. Theriault worked extensively at the global level on issues related to the efficacy of microbicides in outbreak zones and containment laboratories. Recently, Dr. Theriault research interests have turned to combating antimicrobial resistance with synthetic bacteriophages. Cytophage Technologies Inc., unlocks the potential of nature’s elegant and harmless antibacterial solution – phages.

Workshop B - 13:00-16:00

Development of a Universal Phage Library

As the field strives to develop a greater understanding of phages, a tool to enable information to be shared between individuals in the field would be highly beneficial. However, is it possible to create a universal library with restricted knowledge of the phage genome as mutations are inevitable? This workshop will explore the viability of a universal library, what would be required to do so and the challenges associated with it.

  • Do we need a universal phage library?
  • Using past experiences to create a universal phage library
  • What are the consequences of creating a phage library
  • Common mistakes to avoid when creating a phage library
Liesl Jeffers-Francis - North Carolina A&T State University

Liesl Jeffers Francis
Assistant Professor
North Carolina A&T State University

Liesl K Jeffers-Francis, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor at North Carolina A&T State University. With 10+ years of experience of translational scientific research, Jeffers-Francis specialises in Virology, Infectious Diseases, Oncology and Oral Diseases. Now, Jeffers-Francis is working on developing a phage library for Escherichia coli through research being undertaken in athletes at North Carolina A&T State University.