Designer microbial communities for fermented milk products: a systems biology approach

Microbial communities are ubiquitous in nature, found everywhere from soil to the human gut. These communities have the potential to directly impact the environment, human health and biotechnology. However, our understanding of the structure and function of these communities has remained poor due to a lack of tools for discovering inter-species interactions. To address this knowledge gap, the SysMilk project will develop new experimental and computational technologies for microbial community analysis. The new technologies will be developed and tested using kefir, a natural fermented milk drink, as a model system. The SysMilk consortium includes four top academic research institutes, a small-scale company and a partner from industry that is a market leader in fermented milk products. This multi-disciplinary constellation will enable the efficient transfer of the new SysMilk technology to the dairy products industry, facilitating the design of customized yogurt starter cultures.

Project consortium coordinator: Dr. Kiran Patil, European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Germany 
Swiss consortium partner: Prof. Uwe Sauer, ETH Zurich


Prof. Uwe Sauer
Institute of Molecular Systems Biology
ETH Zurich
Wolfgang-Pauli-Str. 16
CH - 8093 Zurich
phone +41 44 633 36 72