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Conference: Quest for Orthologs 4

The quest for Orthologs

Conference program

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CRG Barcelona

Quest for Orthologs 4

May 25th to 27th in Barcelona, Spain

Conference Summary

Proteins and functional modules are evolutionarily conserved even between distantly related species, and allow knowledge transfer between well-characterized model organisms and human. The underlying biological concept is called ‘Orthology’ and the identification of gene relationships is the basis for comparative studies.

More than 30 phylogenomic databases provide their analysis results to the scientific community. The content of these databases differs in many ways, such as the number of species, taxonomic range, sampling density, and applied methodology. What is more, phylogenomic databases differ in their concepts, making a comparison difficult – for the benchmarking of analysis results as well as for the user community to select the most appropriate database for a particular experiment.

The Quest for Orthologs (QfO) is a joint effort to benchmark, improve and standardize orthology predictions. In 2009, there was a first meeting of groups working on orthology detection and phylogenomic databases, titled "Quest for Orthologs". This meeting was successful in defining a community of researchers with shared goals, who decided to collaborate on benchmarking and sharing reference datasets. This was followed by meetings in 2011 (Hinxton) and 2013 (Lausanne), during which work on benchmarking continued, with fruitful discussions on the evolution of gene function between orthologs, the need for increasingly clear evolutionary definitions, and emerging new methods.

The QfO is an international scientific meeting that covers all aspects of orthology prediction, benchmarking, and application. Participants are Principal Investigators and leading experts in the field. Results of the meeting are likely to have a direct impact on the provision of high-quality orthology predictions by phylogenomic databases and the design of trend-setting concepts for future applications.

The meeting will take place from Monday May 25th (starting at 1pm with lunch) to Wednesday May 27th (finishing at lunch time, with lunch included).
The focus will be on the following topics, among others:

The meeting will focus on the following topics:

6 years QfO: Results

  • Orthology Benchmarking: Results, Interpretation, New Ideas
  • Standards: Reference Datasets, Representative Species, Formats
  • Homology and gene relationships: Definitions, Predictions, Confidence

>35 Ortholog Databases - Meeting the User ?!

  • Content and Structure of Ortholog Databases
  • Application of Orthology

Practical organization


The scientific organizers request that you submit an abstract when registering. Some abstracts will be selected for poster presentations and some will be selected for oral presentations. Please have your abstract ready to be copied in the Comment section during application. Abstracts should be less than 400 words, including references. They will not be formally published nor circulated outside of the Quest for Orthologs workshop without authorization, to encourage the presentation of unpublished results and of work in progress. Abstract deadline: April 14, 2015.


Open until April 14, 2015.

Please use the following link

Application form

Travel information

The closest airport to Barcelona is Barcelona - el Prat. There are buses and trains that go from the airport to the city center in roughly half an hour. Aerobuses go from both terminals every five minutes starting at 05:30 am and till 01:00 for terminal T1 and from 06:00 am till 12:30 am for terminal T2.

Tickets can be bought at the bus itself ( The buses stop at Plaça España and Plaça catalunya from where different metro lines are available. Alternatively there are trains going from terminal T2. To go from terminal T1 to terminal T2 there is a bus service.

The train goes every 30 minutes starting at 5:42 am till 23:38 pm and it will drop you off at Passeig de Gracia from where different metro lines can be taken.

An alternative way to reach Barcelona is to fly to Girona airport. From there you can take a bus to Barcelona. It will take over one hour to arrive to the main bus station in Barcelona (Estació del Nord).

Conference venue

The conference will take place at the PRBB ( which is located at:

C. doctor aiguader, 88

08003, Barcelona


There are plenty of accommodations in Barcelona, though we recommend you book in advance due to the high number of tourists that can be found in Barcelona at any given time.

Here is a list of hotels that are located close to the place where the conference will take place. List of Hotels)

Public transport

Moving around Barcelona is easy with public transport.

The easiest way to travel is taking the metro which will allow you to move around the most common areas of the city. There are also many buses available. All information about public transport can be found

For further questions, Please contact

Copyright © 2015 Ernst Thuer