2017 marks the 40th anniversary of the discovery of hydrothermal vents

In 1977, scientists made a stunning discovery on the bottom of the Pacific Ocean that forever changed our understanding of planet Earth and life on it.

6th International Symposium on Chemosynthesis-Based Ecosystems (CBE6)

Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA
August 27 – September 1, 2017

Please join us in Woods Hole on beautiful Cape Cod as we celebrate the 40th anniversary of the discovery of deep-sea hydrothermal vents at the Galapagos Spreading Center in 1977. This has forever changed our perception of life on Earth and has sparked a new line of research to investigate the role of chemosynthesis in various ecosystems, from cold seeps and organic falls to the extensive oxygen deficient zones of the oceanic water column. The discovery of deep-sea hydrothermal vents 40 years ago has thrust the process of chemosynthesis into the limelight. However, it is only more recently that chemosynthesis has been identified to be an important driver for many environmentally relevant processes on a global scale.

CBE6 represents the 6th iteration of a successful symposium series that started back in Funchal, Madeira, Portugal in 1997 and has since been held in Brest, France (2001), San Diego, USA (2005), Okinawa, Japan (2009), and most recently in Victoria, BC, Canada (2013), ever broadening in scope from an initial focus on the biology of deep-sea hydrothermal vents.

We look forward to hosting an exciting meeting that will highlight the newest discoveries and developments in studying chemosynthesis-based ecosystems and their societal relevance, while at the same time also evoking the early days of deep-sea vent discovery – in a way connecting the past with the present, with a glimpse into the future!

The program will be as diverse as the ecosystems being studied, and will include topics such as biogeography, biogeochemistry, chemosynthetic habitats and society, community structure and dynamics, evolution and evolutionary history, metapopulation and metacommunity (including connectivity and resilience), microbiology, physiology and adaptation, symbiosis, and trophic interactions, including chemosynthetic energy transfer. We look forward to seeing you in Woods Hole!

Important Information

There is still room for non-presenting  participants



  • All abstracts have been accepted.
  • Decisions on whether requests for a talk can be honored have been made.


Due to space limitations, the number of attendees will have to be limited to 210. Depending on interest, a registration waiting list may have to be established. Oral and poster abstract quality, and the time of abstract submission, will play a role in the selection criteria. Registration will be offered first to those whose abstracts have been accepted, and then to non-presenting registrants.

Registration fees are the following:

  • Regular rate: US$ 375.00
  • Student rate: US$ 225.00
  • Late registration after July 14, 2017:
    • Regular rate: US$ 475.00
    • Student rate: US$ 275.00

Local Organizing Committee:

      • Stefan Sievert, chair (WHOI)
      • Lauren Mullineaux (WHOI)
      • Colleen Cavanaugh (Harvard)
      • Breea Govenar (Rhode Island College)
      • Tim Shank (WHOI)
      • Andrew Daly (Symposium Coordinator)

Scientific committee:

      • Elizaveta Bonch-Osmolovskaya (Winogradsky Institute of Microbiology, Russia)
      • Nicole Dubilier (MPI for Marine Microbiology, Germany)
      • Chuck Fisher (PennState, USA)
      • Kim Juniper (U Victoria, Canada)
      • Nadine Le Bris (UPMC Banyuls-sur-Mer, France)
      • Lisa Levin (Scripps IO, USA)
      • Crispin Little (U Leeds, UK)
      • Ashley Rowden (NIWA, New Zealand)
      • Fengping Wang (Shanghai Jiao Tong U, China)
      • Hiromi Watanabe (JAMSTEC, Japan)

Questions? Comments?

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