Recently, the DWS Travel Grant allowed Onnicha Leelastwattanagul, a 2nd year PhD student working with Professor Lesley Hoyles at Nottingham Trent University, to give an oral presentation on her work at the Anaerobe 2023 meeting in Cardiff, Wales 12–14 July.
Onnicha’s work involves genomic characterisation of Collinsella aerofaciens. C. aerofaciens is a core member of the human gut microbiota and an obligate anaerobe. For her cultivation work on over 200 isolates, Onnicha used a Whitley A35 Anaerobic Workstation. To properly analyse the genomic data she has generated for her isolate collection, Onnicha has had to accurately define the taxonomy of the class Coriobacteriia. She has shown that the taxonomy was poorly defined and has updated the classification scheme to include cultivated and uncultivated representatives. This curation and the findings from Onnicha’s work will greatly improve our understanding of Coriobacteriia associated with the human gut microbiota. The take-home message from Onnicha’s work is that we need to take greater care when incorporating novel species identified from culturomic and metagenomic studies into existing taxonomic frameworks.
We thank Onnicha for sharing her work with us and wish her all the best with her work moving forward. If you are interested in the DWS Travel Grant and are currently using a Whitley Workstation in your work, head over to the webpage for more information.