Conference Day One

Wednesday 29th March 2023

7:30 am
Morning Registration & Refreshments

8:20 am
Chairperson Opening Remarks

8:30 am Panel Discussion: Industry Leaders Update their Highlights from the Last 12 Months in Maternal & Infant Research
Moderated By: Mike Johnson

  • Adam Baker Associate Professor - Neuroscience, Chr. Hansen A/S
  • Richard insel Global Head of Healthy Baby Initiative & World Without Disease Accelerator, Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc
  • Mike Johnson Chief Executive Officer, Infinant Health


  • Hearing what progress has been made by maternal-infant microbiome experts over the last year
  • Outlining a range of industry perspectives across therapeutic and nutritional products
  • Identifying what’s to come in the maternal-infant microbiome field

Assessing the Impact of the Maternal Microbiome on Infant Health to Identify Nutritional & Therapeutic Targets

9:00 am Assessing Maternal Diet & Perinatal Stress to Unravel Effects on the Microbiome

  • Mary Kimmel Assistant Professor & Co- Director, Perinatal Psychiatry Program, UNC School of Medicine


  • Delving into data looking at differences in diet (e.g., consumption of dietary fiber) from an assessment of postpartum individuals of their diet over the past year
  • Assessing how these differences associate with psychiatric history
  • Identifying the maternal diet at three time points in relation to microbiome composition

9:30 am Emerging Maternal & Infant Research – the Microbiome Takes Center Stage

  • Adam Baker Associate Professor - Neuroscience, Chr. Hansen A/S


  • Appreciating the importance of microbiome science from the moment we are born
  • Outlining the key role of the mother in infant microbiome seeding
  • Deep diving into the mechanisms of bifidaobacteria action in the infant microbiome

10:00 am Longitudinal Profiling of the Infant Gut Microbiome, Mycobiome, Resistome, and Functional Pathways with the CosmosID-Hub


  • Findings from 1600+ longitudinal shotgun sequenced samples from the infant gut
  • Analysis of microbiota and opportunistic pathogen colonization in caesarean section vs vaginal birth
  • Demonstrate the importance of strain-level taxonomic resolution and functional analysis

10:15 am
Speed Networking & Morning Refreshments


As the maternal-infant microbiome community is reunited, this valuable session will ensure you can reconnect with your peers in the room to make new and lasting connections.

All attendees will have the opportunity to meet and network with their academic and industry colleagues

11:15 am Navigating the Maternal-Microbiome to Understand Differences in Weight Gain During Pregnancy


  • Discovering contributors to differences in pre-pregnant weight and inappropriate gestational weight gain
  • Examining the contribution of the maternal microbiome to weight gain
  • Outlining the role of the gut microbiome and bidirectional signaling between gut and the brain leading to alterations in weight

Birth, Establishing the Early Infant Microbiome & Links to Later Life

11:45 am Infant-Microbiome Development: Mom Matters

  • Noel Mueller Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


  • Addressing the importance of maternal microbiota, including vaginal and fecal microbiota, for the development of the infant microbiota
  • Reviewing the impact of C-section on mother-to-newborn transmission
  • Assessing how we can restore a disrupted infant microbiota

12:15 pm Fireside Discussion: Vaginal vs C-section Delivery

  • Lydia Mapstone Chief Executive Officer & Co-founder, Booby Biome
  • Noel Mueller Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


  • Analyzing the differences between the microbiomes of C-section/naturally delivered infants
  • Are these differences important and what are the short and long-term impacts?
  • How can these differences be addressed?

12:45 pm
Lunch Break & Networking

1:45 pm Targeting the Vaginal Microbiome to Impact Maternal Health

  • Kristin Wannerberger Director - Research & Development,Alliance Management, Ferring International Center SA


  • Exploring the microbiome in RMMH (Reproductive Medicine and Maternal Health)
  • Understanding Ferring’s approach to the microbiome alliances in the maternal space
  • Sharing results on vaginal studies

2:15 pm Exploring How Early Life Stress & Maternal Condition Impact the Developing Brain & Gut of Offspring

  • Marcy Kingsbury Assistant Professor & Principal Investigator - Pediatrics Mucosal Immunology & Biology Research Center, Harvard Medical School


  • Outlining how activation of the mother’s immune system during pregnancy impacts the developing gut, brain, and social behaviour of offspring
  • Determining how caesarean section impacts cellular stress in the brain and gut of offspring in the early postnatal period
  • Identifying impacts in later life

2:45 pm Illuminating the Microbiological Signature of Neonatal Leaky Gut to Understand Microbial Targets

  • Bing Ma Assistant Professor, University of Maryland


  • Understanding the role of breastmilk-driven gut microbiome in early intestinal barrier maturation
  • Outlining the neonatal leaky gut and its implications
  • Exploring microbial biomarkers associated with improved neonatal leaky gut

3:15 pm
Afternoon Coffee Break & Networking

Exploring the Infant Microbiome & Links to Disease

3:45 pm Early Immune System Priming: A Potential Preventative Strategy Against Childhood Leukemia and Other Immune-Mediated Disorders

  • Rachel Gallant Assistant Professor of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology, University of Southern California


  • Exploring the natural history of childhood leukemia and early life risk factors for childhood leukemia, type 1 diabetes, and allergies
  • Navigating the gut microbiome in childhood leukemia compared to that of type 1 diabetes and allergic conditions
  • Modelling prevention strategies

4:15 pm Investigating the Maternal and Infant Microbiome in Populations at High- & Low-risk for Allergic Disease

  • Richard insel Global Head of Healthy Baby Initiative & World Without Disease Accelerator, Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc
  • Erin Davis Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Rochester


  • Discovering how the maternal gut microbiome and metabolome during pregnancy differs in traditional farming and urban communities and the association with differing allergic disease outcomes in infancy
  • Understanding how maternal microbial and metabolic signatures during pregnancy potentially prime the infant immune system towards a tolerogenic phenotype
  • Assessing the developmental trajectory of bifidobacterial species and HMO utilization capacity over the first year of life in farming and urban infants

4:45 pm
Chairperson’s Closing Remarks