Microbiome: a new journal to demystify the role of microbial communities in the biosphere

A new peer-reviewed publication has launched focusing on microbiome research in environmental, agricultural, and biomedical areas. Myself and Eric Wommack from the University of Delaware’s College of Earth, Ocean and Environment are the Editors-in-Chief of Microbiome, a BioMed Central (BMC) publication. The first issue was launched today (www.microbiomejournal.com)

From the press release:

The new publication reflects the growing importance of the need for studying communities of microorganisms – microbiomes –  and their function in their natural environment whether that environment is the human body, the ocean, or any other habitat. 

“Microbiology was once thought of as two exclusive subdisciplines – clinical microbiology and environmental microbiology – but the substantial technological advances, particularly over the past decade in DNA sequencing and analysis, have given scientists new common and interdisciplinary research interests,” explains Dr. Ravel, who is studying the effect of the human microbiome on women’s health, and is part of the NIH-funded Human Microbiome Project (HMP).

 “Microbiome will facilitate the cross-fertilization of ideas, research methods and analyses, and theory between clinical and environmental microbiologists exploring the emergent impacts of microbial communities on the ecosystems they inhabit,” says Dr. Wommack, a University of Delaware professor who researches the inner workings of microbial communities.

The central purpose of Microbiome is to unite investigators conducting research on microbial communities in environmental, agricultural, and biomedical arenas. Topics broadly addressing the study of microbial communities, such as, meta-genomics surveys, bioinformatics, other ‘-omics’ approaches and surveys, and community/host interaction mathematical modeling will be covered.

The first issue of Microbiome features several innovative research papers from scientists at various institutions worldwide. For example, a team from the University of Guelph in Canada, summarized their novel stool substitute transplant therapy research. The team treated two patients with Clostridium difficile using a bacterial strain cocktail in an attempt to alleviate this difficult infection of the lower GI tract.  Other innovative genomic research approaches are also featured in the first issue.

Here are some web coverage of the study:

The journal includes a new section, “Microbiome Announcementsthat will contain short reports describing microbiome datasets and their associated clinical or environmental data.

A prestigious international editorial review board that includes leading interdisciplinary scientists from the U.S., France, Australia, China and other countries, who represent academic centers, private and environmental research centers, as well as federal agencies, has been assembled to work with the journal's editors. 

Microbiome is published online by BioMed Central, based in the UK. The website will also feature many online tools, such as RSS feeds, and robust advanced search capabilities. For more information: http://www.microbiomejournal.com/