The Microbial Genomics Group (MGG) contributes expertise and leadership in national and international collaborative projects. It also develops research in a wide array of microbiological models taking advantage of innovative approaches in functional and evolutionary genomics, bioinformatics and molecular microbiology. Located at the Centro de Genómica y Bioinformática at the Universidad Mayor, our team works with public and private national and international research agencies to explore key questions in microbiological systems using the refined analytical tools now available including next generation sequencing and cutting-edge biocomputing technologies. Our group focuses on the study of the interactions between microorganisms and their environment, together with understanding how those complex networks of interactions have contributed to their adaptation and evolution to favor their survival. The main areas of research and development are related with the study of host-pathogen interactions, extremophile biology, structural and evolutionary genomics, microbial and fungal diversity and astrobiology. The MGG also works synergistically in the generation of efficient data-driven research solutions and develops a wide range of training and outreach activities.
The Genomics and Health group aims to bridge the gap between fundamental research and clinical care through the characterization and development of tools and biomarkers to improve health outcomes of patients. One key objective is to accelerate progress in genomic research in pathogenomics and human health by cultivating a common framework of standards for effective genomic and health-related data analysis. This group is actively searching and/or identifying new therapeutic targets to prevent and cure diseases from both the pathogen and host perspectives.
The Bioinformatics and Computational Biology group is a highly flexible interdisciplinary team that conduct research in computer, biological and mathematical sciences.
The group’s strategy is to integrate computational approaches to explore data sets generated by high throughput technologies (OMICS technologies) in order to develop new concepts, tools and knowledge to study biological processes and their evolution. Research laboratories are focused on the study the sequence-structure-function relationship, understanding the nature of self-regulatory dynamics and evolution of individuated multicellular organisms, how do biomolecules have expanded and diversified and how genome novelty can explain phenotypic diversity under different environmental conditions.
Plants are key organisms in our ecosystems and are the basis of nearly all of food chains. For humans, more than 50% of food comes from plant sources. Crop productivity is heavily impacted by the current scenario of climate change, together with the appearance of new pests. This leads to an unbalance between food supply and growing population, that raises concerns about present and future food security. In order to tackle these problematics, the plant genomics group aims to: 1) Unveil the molecular mechanisms by which plants sense and respond to environmental cues. 2) Characterize the microbial communities associated with extreme plants and the mechanisms of plant communication with other species 3) Preserve and understand the basis of biodiversity of our flora by sequencing the genomes of native plants from Chile.