Network and activities
We are made up of an active and diverse network of around 30,000 professionals who are committed to advancing microbiology for the benefit of society in the areas of health, energy, food, materials, and the environment. Set up in 1974, today we are a growing coalition of 54 Member Societies from 38 countries. Around half of those in our network are early career researchers, and others are business partners, scientists or campaigners.
We nurture this network with a variety of knowledge development and network-building activities:
- We publish five highly regarded journals – Articles from our journals are downloaded over 2.5 million times annually (2014). Together, they provide the revenues that support our charitable activities, enabling us to continue investing in science. We thank and acknowledge the hard work and dedication of every contributor to this process: the Editorial boards, Editors, Authors, Reviewers and our publisher, Oxford University Press (OUP) who together make this possible
- We hold a biennial scientific congress – This event is hosted in different European locations and hosts some of the biggest names in microbiology, attracting around 2,000 participants.
- We provide small research and meeting grants – We give out more than 250 grants worth over EUR 250,000 every year to members of our Member Societies
- We recognize excellence by giving out awards – Our first awards program was set up in 1999. We now have 5 awards programs running, including the Måkåla-Cassell Award with the American Society of Microbiology (ASM).
- We promote education and continuing professional development (CPD) – our Education Network runs sessions at our Congress and inspired the Professional Development section in FEMS Microbiology Letters.
- We initiated and fund the European Academy Microbiology (EAM), a leadership group of around 150 eminent microbiology experts.
Lactic acid bacteria constitute a diverse group of industrially significant, safe microorganisms that are primarily used as starter cultures and probiotics, and are also being developed as production systems in industrial biotechnology. The aim of this paper is to provide a brief overview of the potential of lactic acid bacteria as biological catalysts for production of different organic compounds for food and non-food sectors based on their diversity, metabolic- and stress tolerance features, as well as the use of genetic/metabolic engineering tools for enhancing their capabilities.