As the annual C. elegans meeting rapidly approaches, I’ve been starting to think more about what it means to be a “worm person.” A shift in model organism always comes with a shift in the sorts of questions people ask with said organisms. I’ve heard a lot about how different worm meetings are from other meetings I usually go to in terms of content, but really had no concrete idea of what to expect. In my experience, worm people tend to be a lot more medically and biochemically oriented than I’m used to.

I guess the proof is in the pudding (or… conference in this case).

But that doesn’t have to be the case… why wait until the conference to figure out what sort of topics will be covered? Well, I started by sifting through the Schedule of Events and, while there do look like a lot of interesting talks, there also appear to be very few in my particular field. Five, specifically (though the Ecology and Evolution section is a little bigger than that).

If you’re curious what the distribution looks like, I made a pretty(ish) new plot (using Python and Tableau) to describe the primary and secondary sessions that people self-reported in their abstracts.

And there you have it! Even though I’m in a pretty small minority, I’m really looking forward to getting to know the worm community a little better. Hopefully I come back with lots of exciting stories about worms (as much as one could hope for, anyway)…