The Sixth Molecular Methods in Food Microbiology Workshop




The overall goal of the Molecular Methods in Food Microbiology Workshop is to identify and address knowledge gaps regarding molecular detection and subtyping of foodborne pathogens and spoilage organisms for industry professionals and graduate students being trained to work in the food industry. In order to realize this goal, we have assembled an advisory committee to identify the challenges the industry faces today with respect to molecular methods.

POSTPONED until 2015 in Lubbock, Texas

Workshop Faculty & Keynote Speaker

Texas Tech University Faculty: Drs. Kendra Nightingale, Marie Bugarel, Guy Loneragan, and Mindy Brashears
Texas Tech University Staff: Miles Harris and Peter Cook
Workshop Coordinator: Samantha Stewart, Email:
Cornell University Faculty: Dr. Martin Wiedmann
Purdue University Faculty: Dr. Haley Oliver
NEXIDA/bioAdvantage: Dr. Patrice Arbault
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Eric Brown, Director, Division of Food Microbiology, U.S. FDA

Industry Advisory Board

Food Safety Net Services
General Mills
Maple Leaf Foods
National Cattleman's Association
North American Meat Association

Program Overview 

Download the Workshop Brochure

The 6th Molecular Methods in Food Microbiology Workshop will be held at Texas Tech University from October 6 through 10, 2014. The workshop will focus on the use of molecular genetics approaches in food microbiology; antibody-based technologies (e.g., ELISA, etc.) will not covered in depth.  This one-week workshop includes a two-day lecture series (unlimited registration) as well as a two-and-a-half-day hands-on laboratory session (registration limited to 30 people). The lecture series will provide the fundamental knowledge and core concepts behind molecular methods to detect and characterize food-associated microorganisms along with the detailed understanding required to and accurately interpret results from molecular detection and subtyping assays. The lecture series will also include hands-on activities and case studies. The hands-on laboratory session will allow participants to not only become familiar with performing commercial molecular detection and subtyping systems, but also allow them to learn how to interpret and troubleshoot results. 

The 6th Annual Molecular Methods in Food Microbiology Workshop will include lectures on the fundamentals of molecular biology and microbial taxonomy, as they apply to molecular detection of foodborne pathogens, along with lectures and case-studies on considerations for application of molecular detection methods (e.g., sensitivity/specificity, sampling/enrichment, DNA extraction, troubleshooting, and interpretation of results). In addition, the symposium will contain two hot topic sessions on (i) recent advances in detection of non-O157 shiga toxin encoding Escherichia coli (STEC) and (ii) isothermal and other non-PCR based molecular detection methods. The two-and-a-half day hands-on laboratory session will include the development of a custom conventional PCR assay (i.e., primer design, assay development, and troubleshooting/optimization),16s rDNA sequence-based identification, application and interpretation of select commercially available multiplex real-time PCR assays, application and interpretation of emerging non-PCR based isothermal assays to detect foodborne pathogens. This course is thus appropriate for both, people who have attended our previous workshops and for people who have not previously attended one of our workshops.

Registration Information

There is no registration limit for the lecture series. The two-and-a-half day hands-on laboratory session will be limited to 30 participants. Registration is available will be guaranteed upon full payment, participants will receive notification of registration confirmation. 

Registration fees: 
Lecture series only– Graduate student ($250); Professional ($500)
Lecture series and hands-on laboratory session – Graduate student ($1,250); Professional ($1,500)

Refund/cancellation policy:A 75% refund of registration fees will be made available if cancellation is made at least two weeks before the symposium and workshop begin (by 5:00 p.m. on September 22), and no refunds will be made after this time. 

Letter of invitation:
Registered participants may contact Kendra Nightingale via email ( or phone 1-806-392-2815 if you require a letter of invitation to secure a visa to enter the United States for attending the symposium and workshop.

Symposium Exhibitors

We invite companies that manufacture and market assays for detection of foodborne pathogens and spoilage organisms to set-up a table-top exhibit on Monday, October 6 - Tuesday, October 7, 2014.  Workshop participants will be encouraged to visit exhibitors during coffee breaks, over lunch and during evening social gatherings.

Each exhibitor will be required to register for the symposium in order to set-up a table-top exhibit.

Please contact Kendra Nightingale for more details.

Phone: 806-742-2805, ext. 244

Symposium and Workshop Sponsorship

We invite companies to sponsor the workshop at three different levels, including platinum, gold, and silver.

Platinum level sponsor: Contribution of $5,000 (includes table-top exhibit, technical presentation, and two complementary registrations for the lecture and laboratory series).
Gold level sponsor: Contribution of $2,500 (includes table-top exhibit, technical presentation, and one complementary registration for the lecture and laboratory series).
Silver level sponsor: Contribution of $1,500 (includes table-top exhibit and technical presentation).

**Complementary registrants must be food industry clients**

2013 Sponsors/Exhibitors: 3M, Bio-Rad, Dupont, Food Safety Net Services, Life Technologies, Merieux NutriSciences, Neogen, Pall GeneDisc, Qiagen, Roka BioScience

Please contact Kendra Nightingale for more details.
Phone: 806-742-2805, ext. 244

Location and Lodging

The Lecture Series will be held at the Texas Tech Club in the West Side of the Jones AT&T Stadium, while the Hands-on Laboratory session will be held in the Experimental Sciences Building room 353.

A block of 35 rooms has been reserved at the Overton Hotel and Conference at a discounted rate for workshop participants. The Overton Hotel is short walk of the Texas Tech University Main Camus.  Participants can mention “Molecular Methods Workshop” to receive a discounted rate or register online at the discounted group rate. The group rate also includes complementary breakfast at the hotel restaurant. The Overton Hotel and Conference Center is located approximate 8 miles from the Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport.  They offer a shuttle service to and from the Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport.

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