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Report from the 5th Annual Conference of NORBIS

15. October, 2019

Entrance to the fortress

 

The 5th Annual NORBIS Meeting began with a ferry ride across the fjord to Oscarsborg fortress. The boat looked extremely serious as it approached us with the island and fort in the background, reminding us of the history of Oscarsborg! We then were off to a strong start, with Sushma Grellscheid giving us an excellent, memorable talk on cytoplasmic phase separation, before dinner and the first evening poster session.

 

Left: Sushma Grellscheid, right: poster session

 

The next morning, Kjetill Sigurd Jakobsen started our day discussing the Earth Biogenome Project before we had our first round of student talks, where we were lucky enough to get a private showing of two Forsker Grand Prix talks from our very own NORBIS contestants; Joseph Diab and Christian Schulz. After the PhD student forum and discussions across lunch, we headed to the lawn in the centre of the fortress to compete against each other in various challenges, where our problem solving and teamwork skills were put to the test!

 

Winners of the team-building contest

 

To make up for the afternoon spent in the sun, we had another round of student talks and the final poster session before closing the scientific aspect of the day. At dinner that evening, there were smiles all around as the winners from the afternoon activities and the student poster sessions were announced and the room was introduced to our new student representatives. The food and the discussions were excellent, and many of us found ourselves continuing the evening at the bar.

The final morning concluded our conference extremely well, with Jukka Corander giving an engaging talk on bacterial pathogen evolution before our final round of student talks. Our own Ines Heiland then gave the closing talk of the conference, allowing us to finish on an outstanding note. After a final hearty lunch, we took the ferry back across the fjord and said our goodbyes as the coach took us back into civilization (Oslo).

 

Written by Chloe Rixon (IEMR, UiO)

All photos by Kari M. Ersland

Report from the NORBIS summer school 2019

21. August, 2019

A great week at the University of Tromsø!
 
We started the week with an in-depth perspective into the importance of metabolomics, courtesy of our guest lecturer Hans Stenlund from the Swedish Metabolomic Centre, university of Umeå. He ensured we gained a detailed understanding of how we can attempt to study and capture the metabolome, and most importantly, analyse the resulting data!
 
Our evenings allowed us to regain some energy spent understanding these complicated concepts, first of all with an invigorating hike (or cable car ride) up Fløya mountain, and secondly, with a very competitive (and fun) round of mini-golf and beers and Storgata Camping.
 
On top of Fløya mountain. Photo: Joseph Diab
 
The third day was spent recuperating from both the drinks and the metabolomics, as we delved into proteomics; translating some of the concepts into reality with a fascinating visit to the proteomics lab at UiT’s IFA.
 
   
Photo: Joseph Diab
 
Thursday was the last day of lectures, where Ines and Joseph tied the week together by covering systems biology and pathway modelling/analysis as a whole, and we spent our last evening together having pizza and drinks, migrating from Pepe’s pizza to Tromsø’s historical Ølhallen.
 
Ines Heiland giving a presentation. Pizza in the sun! Photo: Joseph Diab
 
On the last day, Friday, I think we all had a lot of new information to take in and were feeling inspired to apply the theory that we had learnt during the week. This was especially clear when listening to the presentations which some brave attendees had volunteered to give, showing us what they had put together in the practical sessions during the week.
 
All in all, the summer school had a very enjoyable, informal and friendly atmosphere, mixed with informative lectures on very useful topics, making for a great week in a beautiful location! Thank you NORBIS, Hans, Ines and most of all Joseph for organizing the week!

Register now for the “Metabolic pathway analysis” course

9. August, 2019

Registration is now open for the NORBIS course “Metabolic pathway analysis”, which will take place at NTNU, Trondheim, 4-8 November 2019. This course will provide an introduction to computational analysis and reconstruction of both small and genome-scale metabolic networks, and is organised by Ines Heiland.
 
You will find more details about the course and how to register hereRegistration ends September 15, and successful applicants will be notified shortly after this date. Note that external students must register here before September 15 to get credits for this course.

Register now for “Bioinformatics for functional metagenomics”

28. June, 2019

 
We are pleased to announce that registration is now open for the NORBIS course Bioinformatics for functional metagenomics, which will take place at NMBU, Ås, 4-8 November 2019. This course will include an array of contrasting tools to decrypt microbial communities, including those that assess community structure (metagenomics, predictive genome-reconstruction) and function (metatranscriptomics, metaproteomics), and is organised by Phil B. Pope.
 
 
You will find more details about the course and how to register hereRegistration ends 15 September, and successful applicants will be notified shortly after this date. Note that external students must register here before September 1 to get credits for this course.

Want to organise a course or a workshop with support from NORBIS?

24. June, 2019

Do you carry an idea for a course or a workshop within the fields of bioinformatics, biostatistics or systems biology? Want to invite international experts to give lectures at this event? Once again it is time for NORBIS to ask you to propose a course or a workshop to be organised with financial and administrative support from us. We welcome brand new ideas, as well as adaptations of already existing courses and workshops.

Our financial support will cover travel related expenses for invited and internal lecturers as well as participating student members, for both courses and workshops. For courses, we will in addition give a flat sum of 60 000 NOK per course to the responsible department, to compensate time spent preparing and teaching the course. Our administrative support may help during both planning and execution of the course or the workshop, and will ease the process of making a course available across institutions.

Please visit this page to get an overview of the activities that we already offer, and to read our guidelines.

Our members currently have the following topics on their wish list (among many other!):

– proteomics analysis (statistics and bioinformatics)
– basic and advanced statistics on molecular data (in high demand!)
– high dimensional data analysis
– evolutionary genomics
– network biology
– machine learning
– clinical NGS analysis
– open source data

You are of course free to propose other topics within the scope of NORBIS.

 

We aim for our courses to be organized in a biannual fashion. We therefore encourage organisers of previous NORBIS courses to apply with an updated proposal, and to kindly add a summary of the participation and evaluation from the last round, as well as a note describing any updates and changes.

 

Please read more and register your proposal here: by  September 9 2019.

Registration now open for our 5th annual conference – September 30 – October 2

20. June, 2019

 

We are happy to invite you to this year’s annual conference of NORBIS, the national research school in bioinformatics, biostatistics and systems biology. Our fifth conference takes place in beautiful surroundings at Oscarsborg fortress, situated on an island in the Oslo fjord, on September 30 – October 2. Join us there for great talks by international experts and PhD candidates, poster sessions, team building activities and an opportunity to build your network and hang out with a great group of people sharing many of your interests.

The conference is open to everyone. We cover travel and accommodation costs for all PhD students, while master students and post docs can apply for support. We also want to encourage supervisors and other researchers to join our conference, both to facilitate discussion across several levels of experience, to inspire our students, and to increase your own national network.

Read more here and register by August 26th