I hope this newsletter finds everyone healthy and that their semester is off to a great start.
Our IS-MPMI community has proven to be remarkably resilient during these turbulent times. The launch of several new society initiatives has been instrumental in keeping us connected and enabling us to share our exciting research from afar. Kudos to
Jeanne Harris and her team for hosting the monthly
What's New in
MPMI Virtual Seminar series highlighting research advances published in the
MPMI journal. These free events have been instrumental in engaging colleagues working on plant–microbe interactions, both society members and nonmembers, from 61 countries.
We have also received enthusiastic feedback on the
eSymposia series and
Translational Science Workshops held in 2021. Many thanks to the organizers, speakers, and moderators for their contributions. Moving forward, we aim to offer additional online events, especially during non-congress years. I encourage you to submit your suggestions for new research themes to cover in the near future. Feel free to
write to me.
Unfortunately, we had to cancel the 2022 IS-MPMI Congress planned for JeJu, Korea, due to the uncertainty of COVID-19 impacting the safety of our community. We are so grateful to the entire local organizing committee, led by Professors
Keehoon Sohn, and
Ho Won Jung and the Korean Society for Plant Pathology, for their extraordinary efforts to plan a congress during a pandemic. We hope to hold a meeting in Korea in the coming years.
Our inability to gather in-person as a society again this year has greatly impacted our junior colleagues and their professional development. To address this, IS-MPMI will be hosting two half-day virtual symposia to highlight the work of early-career researchers. The dates are June 8 and 9 and September 20 and 21, 2022. More details about the 2022 Early Career Showcase can be found
here. Please nominate your colleagues! The deadline is March 31. We will follow up with a speaker program very soon. This event is free to society members.
I am hopeful that 2023 will allow us to meet in-person. Be sure to mark your calendars for July 16–20, 2023, to join us for our 2023 IS-MPMI Congress in Providence, RI, USA.
Roger Innes will take the helm of our society in July 2022 as president and is leading efforts to organize a stimulating meeting program.
In closing, I would like to send peaceful wishes and support to our colleagues around the world, especially those who are impacted by the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. Our academic and research missions play important and long-lasting roles in the vitality of our global society.
Wishing you all the best,
Mary Beth Mudgett
The nomination period to present research at the 2022 Early Career Showcase has been extended! This new event provides the opportunity for senior graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to present important MPMI research to colleagues and industry leaders. The showcase will take place online June 8–9 and September 20–21 and is free to all IS-MPMI members—mark your calendar!
Don't miss this opportunity to showcase your work. Nominate yourself, a colleague, or a student before March 31.
Submit your nomination today!
Wonder is a fabulously
interactive tool that gives you the virtual ability to "walk around"
and network with other attendees during 2021 IS-MPMI Congress: eSymposia Series
events. It's a new way to network! Look for networking
times in the schedule and be sure to add them to your agenda.
The USWBSI has launched its FY22 Funding Cycle. Instructions for
submitting a letter of intent and/or pre-proposal for earch category are available on the website. Category 1:
Commodity-Based and VDHR-Uniform Nursery Coordinated Projects; Category 2: FHB Integrated
Management Coordinated Project; Category 3: Research Area Individual Project; and Category 4: Transformational Science Project.
To recognize the work of early-career scientists, the MPMI editorial board has implemented a new award series to honor the best paper published by a student first author. For 2020, that award goes to Sarah Pottinger for her paper “Optimizing the PBS1 Decoy System to Confer Resistance to Potyvirus Infection in Arabidopsis and Soybean.”
“I found Sarah’s work on engineering PBS1 as a modifiable decoy to be innovative and creative, and the possibility of creating novel resistance traits in crops has exciting implications for agriculture,” said Jeanne Harris, the MPMI editor-in-chief. “In addition, I appreciated the logical way she leads her reader through the reasoning behind her experiments and subsequent conclusions.”
Sarah Pottinger is currently pursuing a Ph.D. at the Roger Innes lab at Indiana University, Bloomington, where her research focuses on investigating the Arabidopsis RPS5/PBS1 decoy system to optimize plant immune responses. She is exploring the use of proximity-based labeling to identify possible signaling partners for RPS5 as well as working towards elucidating a structure for PBS1 and RPS5. She hopes to graduate in 2022 and pursue postdoctoral studies in NLR signaling and specificity.
The MPMI editorial board also identified the following papers as honorable mentions:
Structural Requirements of the Phytoplasma Effector Protein SAP54 for Causing Homeotic Transformation of Floral Organ
Marc Benjamin Aurin, et al.
Prediction and Characterization of RXLR Effectors in Pythium Species
Gan Ai, et al.
Chitin Triggers Calcium-Mediated Immune Response in the Plant Model Physcomitrella patens
Giulia Galotto, et al.
and inclusion are core values of the International Society of Molecular Plant-Microbe
Interactions. We are committed to cultivating and supporting a diverse
membership, with inclusion, openness, and respect. Diverse groups are
demonstrated to be more productive and creative and better able to answer key
questions. We encourage all interested people to explore plant–microbe
interactions, independent of their age, disability, ethnicity, gender identity,
immigration status, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, and
an international society, it is our priority to increase diversity and
facilitate change. IS-MPMI has created a Committee for Diversity and Inclusion
(CDI), who will foster an inclusive environment within our community.
To draw our community together in
a non-congress year, IS-MPMI gathered virtually on February 10 for the second
of two workshops titled Taking MPMI Discoveries to the Field. These workshops
highlighted the outstanding efforts of our members to translate molecular
discoveries to the field and address MPMI Top 10
Question #3: How can we translate basic research into emerging crop
plants? In the second workshop, Dr. Bing Yang, from the Danforth Plant Science
Center and University of Missouri, spoke about his work using genome editing to
increase resistance to bacterial blight in rice. Dr. Nik Grünwald,
from the USDA-ARS and Oregon State University, discussed bioinformatic tools
that his lab has developed to study the genomes of Phytophthora species. These useful
tools will be made available to our community soon. Dr. Hailing Jin, from the University of
California-Riverside, presented exciting new data on the role of small RNAs in
both pathogen infection and host defense strategies. Dr. Linda Johnson, from AgResearch in New Zealand,
talked about fungal endophytes and their role in plant health. The workshop was
sponsored by Microbes Biosciences,
and CEO Brian Pusch
concluded the workshop by introducing attendees to the company and discussed
the processes they use to identify beneficial microbes and incorporate them
into products used in agriculture. The event was moderated by Mary Beth Mudgett
(IS-MPMI president), Jeanne
Harris (EIC, MPMI
journal), and Dennis
Halterman (EIC, IS-MPMI Interactions).
If you attended the event, or if
you registered and were not able to attend, you can log into the IS-MPMI
website and watch a recording
of the workshop. If you haven’t already, you can still register for the event
and view the recording of the talks and discussions.
IS-MPMI is excited to announce the
2021 Congress: eSymposia Series, which will take place online with a series of three separate events starting this summer!
Abstract submissions open later in March. Stay tuned for more details about this
opportunity to share your research and network with colleagues at this virtual