August 6, 2015
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Dear Friends,
Welcome to LabNotes, the Institute’s monthly newsletter for staying on top of everything BTI.
Summer is in full swing, and at BTI that means peak season for advanced STEM education initiatives. Our 14th annual internship program welcomed 20 undergraduates and seven high school participants from the U.S., Puerto Rico and Brazil. Additionally, each year the Institute hosts a week-long plant science curriculum development program for teachers. When I presented a perspective on the future of algae-derived bioproducts to students and colleagues of BTI teacher “graduate” Pushpa Ramakrishna at Arizona’s Chandler-Gilbert Community College this past spring, I experienced first-hand the ripple effects that our teacher education programs generate nationwide.
Read on for exciting work from Drs. Klessig and Schroeder on plant-nematode interactions. They find that plants can protect themselves from parasitic roundworms—and other threats—by activating their immune system when they sense worm pheromones in the soil. As a scientist and a farmer, I look forward to potential agricultural applications.
One of my primary summer activities has been laying the groundwork for the recently awarded NSF Research Coordination Network (RCN) for the plant sciences. The ultimate goal is to parlay unity and vision among a broad cross section of plant scientists into increased federal and private support for research that will address grand challenges involving food, water and the environment.
Enjoy the rest of summer!


David Stern
BTI President and CEO

Nematode pheromones boost plant immunity

When plants detect pheromones from nematode worms, they activate their immune system against the worms and bacterial, fungal and viral infections. Read more

Machi Dilworth promotes gender equality in science

BTI Board member Machi Dilworth has accepted a new position at Japan's Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST).  Read more

Curriculum Development Projects extend BTI reach

Each summer, master teachers gather to learn from BTI scientists and develop curricula to teach challenging new topics in plant biology to their students.  Read more

Bioenergy & Bioproducts fire up teachers

BTI co-hosted the Bioenergy and Bioproducts Education Program national conference to culminate 5-year USDA grant.   Read more

Learning and inspiration

Save the date: ART@BTI reception, September 16, 5-7 PM. Botanical mandala collage artist Daniel McPheeters and Cornell scientist Michael Scanlon will give short talks. Read more

From hay bales to biotech

“Any career that involves plant research will be fulfilling for me,” said intern Tawni Middleton, whose interest in agriculture brought her to BTI Assistant Professor Van Eck's lab. Read more
Mission: To advance and communicate scientific knowledge in plant biology to improve agriculture, protect the environment, and enhance human health

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