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Scientist Benedikt Geier wins the MSI Award @ImaBiotech

Nov 23, 2018

Benedikt Geier, PhD student in the Department of Symbiosis at the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, was awarded this year's MSI Award for his innovative method for visualizing and investigating symbioses.

Caption: Awardee Benedikt Geier (right) and Manuel Liebeke in front of the MALDI-MS, which is at the centre of the now award-winning method. (MPIMM/F. Aspetsberger)
Caption: Awardee Benedikt Geier (right) and Manuel Liebeke in front of the MALDI-MS, which is at the centre of the now award-winning method. (MPIMM/F. Aspetsberger)

The MSI Award is presented annually by ImaBiotech, an imaging service provider to the pharmaceutical industry, and honors “brilliant ideas or works” that have been achieved using mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) techniques.

Geier receives the award for a so-called "Correlative Imaging Pipeline", which allows studying the same sample or tissue section using several imaging methods. "This enables us, for example, to visualize the partners of a symbiosis using fluorescence microscopy and simultaneously investigating their molecules using mass spectrometry on a micrometer scale", explains Geier.

Geier investigates the close interaction of bacteria and mussels in the deep sea. He is particularly interested in the link of the metabolism and the chemical communication between bacteria and animal. His award-winning combination of methods offers a new perspective to assign the chemical processes to the respective partners of the symbiosis and thus to understand their role within the symbiosis.

"I am very pleased and honoured to be the winner of this year's MSI Award," says Geier. "That would not have been possible without my colleagues and friends and their constant support. I would especially like to thank Manuel Liebeke for his excellent supervision and our department head and institute director Nicole Dubilier for her constant support throughout our many adventures during method development".

Caption: MSI (left) shows the spatial mapping of differently colored metabolite distributions, whereas fluorescent labeling (left) on the right shows the distribution of bacterial cells and host tissue. Matching both images allows the assignment of symbiotic partners and their produced metabolites. (MPIMM/B. Geier)
Caption: MSI (left) shows the spatial mapping of differently colored metabolite distributions, whereas fluorescent labeling (left) on the right shows the distribution of bacterial cells and host tissue. Matching both images allows the assignment of symbiotic partners and their produced metabolites. (MPIMM/B. Geier)

“Benedikt’s work is opening up new opportunities for us to look into metabolic interactions on cellular scale”, explains Liebeke, head of the Research group Metabolic Interactions. “Our team is using the method to understand how symbiotic microbes live and communicate within an animal, by measuring hundreds of metabolites from a spot as small as a few square micrometres.”

The MSI Award was presented for the fifth time at the MSI conference OurCon, which was jointly organized this year for the first time by the American Imaging Mass Spectrometry Society (IMSS) and the European Mass Spectrometry Imaging Society (MSIS). The conference took place from November 11 to 14, 2018, in Charleston, South Carolina. The award is endowed with 5000 US-Dollars.

Further information

Please direct your queries to:

Ph. D. Student

Department of Symbiosis

Benedikt Geier

MPI for Marine Microbiology
Celsiusstr. 1
D-28359 Bremen
Germany

Room: 

2246

Phone: 

+49 421 2028-906

Benedikt Geier

Head of Press & Communications
MD Assistance

Press

Dr. Fanni Aspetsberger

MPI for Marine Microbiology
Celsiusstr. 1
D-28359 Bremen
Germany

Room: 

3248

Phone: 

+49 421 2028-947

Dr. Fanni Aspetsberger
 
 
 
 
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