Emøke Bendixen

Emøke Bendixen

Talk title: We are not alone: The roles of farm animal proteomes for human health.


PhD. Associate Professor

Emøke Bendixen is an associate professor at Aarhus University, Denmark. Her group focus on integrated genome and proteome research for improved farm animal health.
She studied biology at Aarhus University, did a Phd in cell biology and biochemistry at Mt. Sinai Medical Center, NY,USA, and held post doc positions at dept. of Animal Physiology,
Aarhus University, and at the Agricultural University of Norway.
Since 2005 she has led the farm animal proteome laboratory at Aarhus University.

Her community works include being a founding member of the Danish Proteome Society (DAPSOC). She is the current vicepresident of EuPA, and the current chairman of the iMOP initiative of HUPO.
She has in the past served on the executive boards of DAPSOC, HUPO and EuPA.


Institute for Molecular Biology and Genetics, Aarhus University, Aarhus, DENMARK

The OneHealth perspective reminds us that human life and health depends on the health and biology of countless animals, plants and microbes. This has become particularly urgent and clear with the rapid spread of microbial resistance to antibiotics (AMR), which currently poses a major threat to global human health. AMR is a direct consequence of a massive use of antibiotics both for humans and farm animals. With around 70 % of the total global antibiotics consumption being used for farm animals, solving the antibiotics crisis will depend on solving the current crisis in farm animal health. Moreover, 60 % of all human pathogens originate from animals., and while some instances are highly publicized such as SARS and H5N1, the area of zoonosis is largely neglected. Comparative studies between humans and animals will be essential to deliver the best possible measures to control infectious diseases. Research that leads to fundamental understandings of processes such as host response to pathogens in farm animals is of key importance. Funders and scientists must prioritize farm animal health research at the same level as human health research, to protect future antibiotic resources. Today this is very far from reality.
Meeting the need for new antibiotics and reducing the use of current antibiotics requires new lines of research, including fundamental research into zoonosis, studies of pathogen biology and comparative infection studies of humans and animals. For this, proteome research of farm animal species is clearly needed, in part to study specific host-pathogen crosstalk at the molecular level, but also for making available panels of accurate health measures for monitoring the health state of relevant animal models and for delivering proof of concept when new drugs, or alternatives like pre- and pro-biotics are being tested for their efficiency in protecting both animals and humans against pathogens. This talk will present our long time studies of host pathogen interactions in cows and pigs, including studies of milk pathogens in cows, and gut pathogens in pigs. One example is a recent study of how porcine FUT1 gene variants affect pigs resistance to E. coli F18 infections, by influencing health, growth, microbiome and glycan structures in the pig gut. Such pig models also provides the opportunity to study comparative host pathogen interactions in pigs and humans, and to study e.g. virulence factors of E. coli.