Abstract Guidelines and FAQs

What You Need Before Submitting Your Abstract

  1. Abstract Title: Please use a short and concise title that indicates the content of the abstract. (Note: the title is not included in the total character count of 2,200).
  2. Abstract Body Text: Your abstract may have up to 2,200 characters, which does not include title, authors, groups, and affiliations. Tables and graphics (maximum of 500 characters) are included in the character count. Spaces are not counted. Do NOT include abstract title, authors or keywords in abstract text. Abstract text may be submitted using either of the following methods: Copy/paste, direct entry keystrokes, or file upload. Your abstract may be written without the use of the following bolded headers (e.g., Background, Methods, Results, Conclusion). However, follow the abstract guidelines to ensure all required information about your study is provided in your abstract.
  3. Author(s) Information: Author(s)'s name(s), institution(s), location(s), title(s).
  4. CE Disclosures: Relative to this activity, instructors, planners, content reviewers and managers who affect the content of a CME/CE activity are required to disclose relevant financial relationships they have with commercial interests (i.e., any entity producing, marketing, re-selling, or distributing health care goods or services consumed by, or used on, patients). (Please note: FEMS submitters will not need to submit a CE Disclosure during abstract submission.)
  5. Abstract Language: Abstract/Grant/Award submissions should be in English.

For more detailed information, and step-by-step instructions on how to submit your abstract for World Microbe Forum, please visit the Abstract Submission Site.

Technical Support 
If you have any questions regarding use of the abstract submission site, please contact technical support at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

General Abstract Guidelines


  • Abstracts for submission must be submitted before May 7, 6 p.m. EST/12 a.m. CET.
  • Accepted abstracts will be published on the event website and online iPoster portal.
  • It is preferred that World Microbe Forum  be the first major presentation of the abstract.
  • A presenter may be a presenter on more than one abstract.
  • Approval of all co-authors must be obtained before placing their names on an abstract.
  • Submission of multiple overlapping abstracts is discouraged.


  • It is the responsibility of all investigators that all studies are performed with respect to national legislation, international legislation, and ethical guidelines both with regards to humans and animals. FEMS/ASM reserve the right to reject any submitted abstract that is believed to violate these principles.

Accepted abstracts

  • The presenting author must register as an active participant at World Microbe Forum at the latest 14 days after acceptance of an abstract.
  • The FEMS/ASM Secretariat reserves the right to exclude any abstract that is not followed by a participant registration at the latest 14 days after notification of acceptance.

Withdrawing abstracts

  • Withdrawal of abstracts can only be accepted if notified in writing and subsequently confirmed by the FEMS/ASM Secretariat.
  • It is only possible to withdraw an abstract until 14 days after notification on acceptance.

ASM Abstracts

  • Clinical Tracks (AAR, CPHM, CIV, POM):
    • The reason for the study or how the study came about (e.g. hypothesis, discovery or central question) should be clearly stated.
    • Methods must be included.
    • Data must be objectively gathered, analyzed and reported.
    • Data must support the stated conclusion(s).
    • All presentations dealing with the isolation, purification, structure-activity relationships, mechanisms of action, in vivo/in vitro microbiology, PK/PD in animals and Pre-US IND or non-US early phase I studies must include meaningful data (e.g., producing organism, purification steps, physical-chemical characterization, structures, MICs, ED50s to describe new compounds and their properties, and that chemical structures of lead compounds will be included as part of the poster presentation. Please note: Any posters or talks dealing with a specific small molecule antimicrobial agent must provide a chemical structure, or a literature reference to the structure, in order to be presented at the meeting. Abstracts describing biological data on an antimicrobial agent whose chemical structure has not been defined should be submitted to the HMB track.
    • Scientific presentations at World Microbe Forum will be expected to transparently report a study’s scientific rigor, including, but not limited to the following: 1) experimental design; 2) methodology; 3) data collection; 4) analysis; and 5) interpretation and report of results. Other key components of scientific rigor included, if applicable, are sample size, randomization, blinding, and replication.
  • Basic Science Tracks (AES, EEB, HMB, MBP):
    • The reason for the study or how the study came about (e.g. hypothesis, discovery or central question) should be clearly stated.
    • Data must be objectively gathered, analyzed and reported.
    • Data must support the stated conclusion(s).
    • Conclusion(s) should be made, but the study does not need to be fully complete (the standard to present at Microbe is not the same as to publish in a journal).
    • Abstracts describing biological data on an antimicrobial agent whose chemical structure has not been defined should be submitted to the HMB track.
    • Scientific presentations at World Microbe Forum will be expected to transparently report a study’s scientific rigor, including, but not limited to the following: 1) experimental design; 2) interpretation and report of results.

Examples of ASM Abstracts that May be Rejected

  • Abstracts that are general descriptions of a new product or commercial
  • Abstracts that read like advertisements
  • Abstracts that are a general description of managerial innovation
  • Case reports (unless truly remarkable)

FEMS Abstracts 

  • No identifying features such as names of authors, hospitals, medical schools, clinics, or cities may be listed in abstract text. Inclusion here may result in rejection of the abstract.
  • The abstract must include the following: Background, Objectives, Methods and Results
  • The title should be as brief as possible but long enough to clearly indicate the nature of the study.
  • All abbreviations must be defined in first use.

Abstract FAQs

Does the presenting author have to be a member of ASM or FEMS?
ASM or FEMS Membership is not required to submit or present an abstract. However, membership of ASM is required to apply for and receive an ASM Award or FEMS-ASM Award. For a FEMS Congress Attendance Grant, membership is nt required.
May I submit more than one abstract?
Yes, you may submit up to two abstracts per submitter. However, if you are listed as the presenting author on more than one accepted abstract which are scheduled at the same presentation times, a co-author(s) will be required to make one or more of your presentations.
Should the presenting author be the submitter of the abstract?
Whenever possible, yes. Contact information is collected for the submitter and the presenting author. ASM/FEMS prefers to correspond with the presenting author of the accepted abstract. This policy ensures that the presenter knows when and where to present the abstract. 
Note: If you and a colleague are both submitting an abstract, there is no guarantee that both will be placed into the same session(s), if accepted. Due to the size of the meeting and the number of presentations, we will not accept special scheduling requests for abstract presentations.
The abstract I submitted has three authors from two different affiliations, but my on-line view of the author block of my abstract shows three different affiliations. Did I do something wrong?
Yes. If you and your co-authors come from more than one affiliation, be sure to type common affiliations in exactly the same manner. Review the author block when displayed to see if the correct numbers of affiliations are displayed.
If I am submitting through ASM’s website, how can I save a copy of my abstract submission?
We recommend that you prepare and save a copy of your abstract in your personal electronic files before going to the abstract submission web page. After your submission is complete, you will receive a confirmation email.
Is there a limit on how long my abstract can be?
Yes. Your abstract may have a maximum limit of 2,200 characters which includes tables/graphics (spaces not counted). Title, authors, groups, and institutions do not count towards the character count maximum.

A Times New Roman Font is NOT recommended. Avoid use of fonts specific to the software application you use. This is particularly true for symbols as some character sets do not translate well resulting in lost information.
Note: An additional entry line has been added to the electronic submission to accommodate credits, footnotes, etc.; a character limit of 300 is applied to this field but does not count towards the character count of the abstract body.

How do I apply for an ASM abstract award or FEMS Grant?
You can apply for an ASM abstract award or FEMS Grant via the abstract submission site. To be considered for an ASM abstract award/FEMS grant, in addition to the specific eligibility qualifications, you must have a complete, accepted abstract. However, this does not guarantee you receive an ASM abstract award/FEMS grant.
How do I know that my abstract submission was received?
The Abstract Submission system will provide a control number as soon as you complete the affirmations and provide a title for your abstract. As you complete individual steps in the process, the system will display the results. At the end of the process, a final summary page will be immediately displayed with all information successfully received. You may edit your abstract until the submission deadline of Mar. 18, 2021, 6 p.m. EST/12 a.m. CET. Thereafter, no further changes can be made.
The summary page states that my abstract is complete. Does this mean that my abstract has been accepted?
No. If your abstract is complete, it means you have completed all the steps required to be reviewed. Abstracts are assigned to the Reviewers in March. Disposition letters will be e-mailed to submitters by mid-April 2021.
If my abstract is rejected, can I address the reviewer’s concerns and ask for a new review?
Programming decisions are final.
What is the deadline for withdrawal without penalty?
To withdraw your abstract without incurring a penalty, you must do so by June 1. You can withdraw your abstract by sending an e-mail or letter to ASM or FEMS at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
If my abstract has been previously published in any journal or presented at a Meeting/Conference, will my abstract still be accepted for World Microbe Forum?
You may submit an abstract that has been previously published or presented at another national or international meeting but the abstract must first go through a review process and be accepted. It is preferred that World Microbe Forum be the first major presentation of the abstract.

Is there a registration deadline for abstracts?
All abstract presenters must be registered to participate in the meeting. Abstracts submitted by March 19 must register by May 11.  General Abstracts/Late-breaker abstracts submitted by May 7 must register by June 1.

Abstract Embargo Policy

All World Microbe Forum abstracts will be embargoed until 24 June 2021. Some abstracts will be embargoed to coincide with the times they are presented at the meeting. Embargo times and dates will be clearly marked on all press releases.

Additionally, press releases and other promotional activity by third parties must coincide with the date and time of the presentation.

When asking for outside comment on press releases or news stories before the embargo has lifted, journalists are requested to ensure that the embargo is respected. ASM/FEMS reserves the right to ban any journalist from the meeting who breaks the embargo or breaches the media policy in any other way.

If your research has already been published, please contact the ASM communications office to discuss how to handle promoting your abstract at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For FEMS abstracts please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Plagiarism will not be tolerated in submitted abstracts. All submitted abstracts identified with plagiarism will be sent to the Program Committees for review and handling.

Please refer to the NIH ORI publication, Avoiding Plagiarism, Self-plagiarism, and Other Questionable Writing Practices, for additional information. 

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