The ASM Biofilm Conference is viewed as the world's premier microbial biofilm meeting. It brings together U.S. and international researchers from different scientific disciplines in academia and industry and provides a platform for them to present their research on biofilms in different systems. It also provides a forum for them to discuss and exchange ideas about the biofilm life style and its detrimental or beneficial impacts on natural and anthropic environments. This meeting has been held every three years since 1998. This three-year frequency allows for a timely presentation of major scientific advances in a highly dynamic field, as attested by the high publication rate in biofilm research. The 8th ASM Conference on Biofilms, one of the few conferences still sponsored by the American Society for Microbiology, will be held in Washington, D.C. from October 7 to 11, 2018. Because ASM's contribution is not sufficient to fully support this conference, funding is requested to secure attendance by internationally recognized scientists as well as students and minorities. The 2018 conference will explore state of the art advances in the field of biofilm biology and will have both depth and breadth, covering biofilm molecular mechanisms as well as applied aspects of biofilm research. It will also cover important challenges that remain as roadblocks for the development of new strategies for treatment of biofilm-based infection and prevention of biofilm biofouling in industrial systems. There will be twelve sessions covering a variety of biofilm topics, including biofilms in nature, mechanistic studies of biofilm development, biofilm infections, biofilm resistance to antimicrobials, anti-biofilm strategies, biofilms in medicine and industry, and the contributions biofilms make to microbe-host and microbe-microbe interactions. Of note, the 2018 will include a focus on the newly emerging topic of biofilm mechanics as well as of the role of the microbiota in biofilms. The 2018 meeting will be chaired by Jean-Marc Ghigo (Institut Pasteur, Paris, France) and co-chaired by Karen Visick (Loyola University Chicago, USA). In addition to talks given by prestigious scientists from around the world, we invited promising early-career scientists; we also reserved many slots for speakers, corresponding to scientists who are new to the field, post-doctoral fellows, and students, who will be selected from submitted abstracts. As in previous editions, the 2018 Biofilm conference will be preceded by three optional and highly attended technical workshops focused on new techniques for biofilm investigations. Finally, incorporated into the program are opportunities for attendees to mingle and interact to facilitate collaborations and the generation of new ideas on biofilm research.
Biofilms are communities of microorganisms that interact with surfaces, and are known to display unique properties that differentiate them from free-floating, individual microorganisms. While biofilms are widespread and play many positive roles in all environments, they also play negative roles when they form on surfaces such as wounds, pipes and medical devices, and are particularly problematic due to their high tolerance to all types of stress. The Biofilms 2018 meeting will provide an international forum for researchers from academia and industry, to come together and share their understanding of biofilms and functions associated with the biofilm lifestyle and discuss ideas, new concepts and approaches to study and control biofilms.