Tilmann HTS

Professor Tilmann Weber on High Tech Summit: ‘I look forward to extending my network!’

Tuesday 09 Oct 18


Tilmann Weber
DTU Biosustain
+45 24 89 61 32


Anne Wärme Lykke
Communications Officer
DTU Biosustain
+45 21 12 37 70

High Tech Summit is being launched tomorrow. Professor Tilmann Weber is giving a Tech Talk and hopes to extend his network amongst the 4000 visitors.

“It is the first time I’m going to High Tech Summit, and I am simply impressed how big this event is. I am really looking forward to networking with peers and people from DTU and industry,” says Professor Tilmann Weber from The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability (DTU Biosustain). He is one of the more than 5000 participants from industry and academia visiting High Tech Summit, which is held on 10-11 October at DTU.

Tilmann is especially hoping to run into software engineers and potential future users to talk about his many software tools and platforms, which he, his staff and international collaborators are maintaining and developing further.

One of the software tools is called antiSMASH – a fully automated pipeline to dig through bacterial and fungal genome data for so-called secondary metabolite gene clusters. Molecules encoded by these gene clusters often have antibiotic or anti-cancer activities. Therefore, they are lead compounds for many drugs like antibiotics.

“At the moment, our public antiSMASH web-site runs 100,000 genomes pr. year submitted by scientists all over the world, so we had to move from scientific software prototypes to production quality code,” Tilmann says.

Nature’s most complex molecules

Tilmann’s Tech talk is called “The DNA treasure hunt: Mining large genetic data to find novel antibiotics”.

This talk is part of the 'Small Microbes - BIG Data' track, which is organized by Center for Microbial Secondary Metabolites (CeMist) – a Center of Excellence funded by the Danish National Research Foundation, and lead by Professor Lone Gram from DTU.

"It is the first time, I’m going to High Tech Summit, and I am simply impressed how big it is"
Professor Tilmann Weber, DTU Biosustain

The aim of CeMist is to find out why bacteria and fungi make huge numbers of complicated bioactive molecules, whose function in nature is still largely unknown:

“These molecules are some of the most complicated compounds in nature, but it is unknown why the organisms produce them. But they cost a lot of energy and resoruces to produce for the microorganisms, so the molecules must play an important role in their natural environments. Our aim is to elucidate this role and look for interesting applications,” Tilmann says.

The application of such compounds is also a central aim of Tilmann’s NNF funded project called 'iimena', where he and his colleagues collaborate with groups in Spain and South Korea in order to find new antibiotics.

Hence, he also hopes to run into people from industry interested in the development of new antibiotics.

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