analysis with genome analysis—so-called phylogenomics. Previously, he applied this phylogenomic approach to cultured organisms, such as those from extreme environments and those with key properties as they relate to evolution or global climate cycles. Currently he is using sequencing and phylogenomic methods to study microbes directly in their natural habitats (i.e., without culturing). In particular, he focuses on how communities of microbes interact with each other or with plant and animal hosts to create new functions. Dr. Eisen is also coordinating one of the largest microbial genome sequencing projects to date—the “Genomic Encyclopedia of Bacteria and Archaea” being done at the Department of Energy (DOE) Joint Genome Institute, where he holds an adjunct appointment.
In addition to his research, Dr. Eisen is also a vocal advocate for “open access” to scientific publications and is the academic editor-in-chief of PLoS Biology. He is also an active and award-winning blogger/microblogger (e.g., http://phylogenomics.blogspot.com, http://twitter.com/phylogenomics). Prior to moving to UC Davis he was on the faculty of The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Rockville, Maryland. He earned his Ph.D. in biological sciences from Stanford University, where he worked on the evolution of DNA repair processes in the lab of Philip C. Hanawalt and his undergraduate degree in biology from Harvard College.
E. Peter Greenberg, Ph.D., received his bachelor’s degree from Western Washington University, his master’s from the University of Iowa, and his Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts. After a postdoctorate at Harvard, he joined the faculty at Cornell University, eventually moved back to the University of Iowa, and finally returned to the Pacific Northwest as a member of the University of Washington Medicine Microbiology faculty. He is an elected fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American Academy of Microbiology. Dr. Greenberg has spent his scientific career uncovering the world of microbial social behavior. Due in part to his efforts we now understand that bacteria possess a chemical language for communication and we understand mechanisms of bacterial communication. Bacterial communication controls virulence in a variety of pathogenic bacteria and has thus become a target for development of new therapeutic strategies. Bacteria have also become models for studies of selection for and evolution of cooperative behavior.
Jo Handelsman, Ph.D., is Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at Yale University. She received her Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Wisconsin (UW)–Madison in 1984 and served on the UW faculty from 1985 until moving to Yale in 2010. Her research focuses on the genetic and functional diversity of microorganisms in soil and insect gut communities. She is one of the pioneers of functional metagenomics, an approach to accessing the genetic potential of