Microgreens Episode 4 is the first of a three-part series featuring
Jennifer Lewis, an adjunct professor at the University of California Berkeley. Lewis leverages the field's current knowledge in genetics and bioinformatics to discover potential methods to fight the devastating citrus greening disease, also known as huanglongbing (HLB).
Listen to the podcast
here or find
Microgreens on your preferred podcast platform, where you can subscribe to be notified when the next episode comes out in September. Keep reading to meet podcast cohost
Elizabeth (Tess) Deyett.
1. Tell us about yourself and how you got involved in
Hi, I'm Elizabeth (Tess) Deyett, Ph.D. I'm a current postdoc at the University of California Riverside. I work as a bioinformatician and data scientist exploring plant-microbe interactions. During the start of the pandemic, I grew increasingly aware of the scientific literacy crises in the world, so I started my own science communication business
microbigals.com and later started my own podcast
The Microbe Moment. Around this time, I was also given the opportunity to become an assistant feature editor for the
Phytobiomes Journal and
MPMI journal. It has been a wonderful experience so far.
In these roles, I have been able to develop not only my writing, editing, and reviewing skills but had the chance to cohost the
Microgreens podcast. I love learning about the ways microbes affect our world, whether it be through crops or the environment. More importantly, I love learning about the researchers behind these discoveries. Being a cohost of
Microgreens gives me the opportunity to engage with researchers throughout the MPMI community and share their stories with all of you! My life goal is to research the limitless potential of the microbial world and share the unique microbe moments everyone has.
2. You're involved with two podcasts—what draws you to this medium?
I've been listening to podcasts for about six years now, and it is a wonderful platform to learn something new while you are commuting to work, working out, or cleaning around the house. It allows me to escape from some of these mundane tasks and make these moments feel more meaningful. For me, podcasts have made me feel less isolated throughout the pandemic, broadened my horizons, and taught me a lot about the world in which we live.
Being a podcaster is like being a storyteller—you're an entertainer with the goal of educating. I hope as a podcaster, I am helping others the same way my favorite podcasts have helped me, even if it's just helping others get through the dishes. I really do hope that if you are listening to the
Microgreens podcast it helps you feel a little more connected and part of the MPMI community.
3. Who should listen to your three-part series on Jennifer Lewis?
The three-part series on Jennifer Lewis, while short, is extensive in its reach and really has something for everybody. The first part is on her research using comparative genomics to find novel ways to combat the devastating citrus pathogen HLB. I found Jennifer Lewis to not only be a great researcher, but an amazing person with some wonderful initiatives. This is more than a story about how science can save the citrus industry. It's a story about how Jennifer Lewis manages her lab, not for the sake of surviving the "publish or perish" system, but for the sake of inspiring and mentoring the next generation of scientists. It's a story about how she promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion in her lab as the foundation of scientific excellence. Even though this is a three-part series on a single researcher, each episode is unique, with a different tone and message. I think everyone in academia, especially plant scientists from undergraduate students to tenured professors, will enjoy listening to this series.
4. What's next for
Raka Mitra and I are very excited for what's next for
Microgreens! One of our biggest projects is creating podcasts for each of
The Top 10 Unanswered Questions in MPMI. The first episode of this series is already out, and you can listen to it
here. We will have one podcast exploring each of the Top 10 Unanswered Questions in MPMI. These podcasts will be released throughout the remainder of 2021 and 2022—if you don't want to miss them, make sure you subscribe to
Microgreens on your favorite podcast app or follow us on Twitter:
The 2022 MPMI special issue will focus on the next question of
importance identified by the community—Top 10 question number 2: What Is the
Role of the Abiotic Environment on the Interactions Between Plants and
Microbes? Learn more.
The MPMI journal is now included in the Directory of Open Access
Journals (DOAJ)! The community-driven DOAJ indexes and provides access to high-quality,
open access, peer-reviewed journals from around the world. The DOAJ database
includes more open access journals than any other major indexing service and
currently represents 80 languages, 126 countries, and 11,775 journals.
MPMI's admittance to
the database confirms its compliance with many open access initiatives around
the world, including Plan S in Europe and Capes/Qualis in Brazil, that may
require authors to publish in journals that meet the requirements of the DOAJ.
The journal will also be more discoverable, with increased visibility in search
Learn more about DOAJ or the MPMI journal.
Sources: https://doaj.org/apply/why-index and https://doaj.org
IS-MPMI represents an international
community—the last IS-MPMI Congress was attended by scientists from more than
50 countries—and this diversity is reflected in the authorship of articles in the
MPMI journal. Changes in the publishing landscape, both in the ways
authors publish their work and the ways readers access content, as well as a
growing awareness that research should be available to teachers, students, and
colleagues worldwide, have led to the decision to turn MPMI into
a gold open access journal. Beginning January 2021, all MPMI content
will be fully available to everyone.
Jeanne Harris, MPMI editor-in-chief, envisions
the journal as a place to tackle the big questions in molecular plant–microbe
interactions. “We want to position MPMI to be a place where the
community discusses these big questions. Not just what we’ve done but looking
forward at the big questions that face us.” She sees this move to open access
as a way to foster inclusion, drawing all voices into the discussion.
took over as editor-in-chief in 2018, MPMI has transitioned from being a
print publication to online-only delivery and made all technical advances
freely available, which were important first steps toward becoming open access.
“Plants live all over the world; microbes live all over the world,” Harris
said. “When we look at the people who make up our IS-MPMI community, we see
that the members are from all over the world, and not every place has
subscription access. It was clear that MPMI had to go open access to
reach our entire community.”
According to Krishna Subbarao,
chair of The American Phytopathological Society’s Publications Board, it was
“especially vital that MPMI move to open access because many of the
journals in the molecular area were already gold open access,” and some
European authors were prevented from publishing in journals without full open
access due to constraints from funding agencies or institutions. Subbarao
states, “We hope that the European authors will welcome this change and that
this move to gold open access attracts authors from every part of the world.”
MPMI currently makes both resource announcements and technical
advances open access so that they can be a resource for the community, and
review articles are freely available for a month. However, Harris has
championed the move toward fully open access. “These ideas and the findings
really should be shared,” she said.
With the gold open access launch in 2021,
the MPMI journal will become more accessible than ever and can serve as
a community meeting place for all. Authors are
encouraged to submit their articles now to be included in the first open access
issues. Articles submitted today will be openly available for everyone in
our community as they are published. Learn more about the journal.
The free virtual seminar series What’s New in MPMI! launched on June 10 with a presentation
by Matt Neubauer from the Roger Innes lab. Since then, there have been
six installments in the series, each featuring a 25-minute talk and a Q&A
session. This series was conceptualized and is hosted by Jeanne Harris,
the editor-in-chief of MPMI, who shares her thoughts on the value of
virtual seminars for the IS-MPMI community.
I think there’s a real hunger for
connection right now. We’ve always been a far-flung society with members across
the world, but with the increased isolation that the pandemic brings, along
with the cancellation of conferences, seminars, and classes, people really want
to connect, learn about new findings, and think about new ideas. Many IS-MPMI
members do not have colleagues at their home institutions who share their
interests in plant–microbe interactions. For us, attending conferences or
hosting colleagues from other institutions gives us a chance not only to learn
new things but also to develop our own thinking.
I’m excited about the What’s New in MPMI!
virtual seminar series, because it provides new ways for the IS-MPMI community
to connect and for MPMI to engage with readers and authors. The
interaction is outside the regular publication cycle and is much more personal,
giving readers and listeners the chance to directly interact with the authors.
Listeners can ask questions and learn more about how the research happened and
where it’s going, as well as technical details. Presenting a published MPMI
paper in this way is also exciting for authors as they get to hear what readers
think and talk directly to people all over the world about their findings.
This series also strives to build
connections within our international community and to foster inclusion. Because
our seminar series is free—no subscription, membership, or
registration fee is required—it is accessible to everyone. We are
alternating presentations between two times to appeal to different time zones.
As a result, we draw participants from around the globe to each live session.
Because each session is recorded, it makes
it possible for people in different time zones or who have conflicting
commitments to access the entire seminar, including the extensive Q&A. The
recording makes it easier for people for whom English is not a first language,
as they can relisten to different sections. The extended Q&A session gives
people time to formulate and type questions and opens the opportunity for
everyone to engage with the speaker.
To increase the ability of listeners to
engage with the MPMI journal, each article that is presented is freely
available to read through the end of the year, an important step in our
transition to making the journal gold open access starting in January 2021! Providing full access to the paper gives
listeners a chance to dive more deeply into the data or check out the methods.
Since this series launched, we have hosted
six seminars and have more scheduled. We’ve received positive feedback from
around the world. People are excited to have a way to interact with the authors,
and some have told me that they plan to use the videos as teaching tools in
their graduate seminar discussions.
This new venture has been one of the most
personally satisfying aspects of being editor-in-chief—opening up the research
in MPMI to new audiences and deepening engagement with our community.
You can find all the recordings and upcoming seminars here. Please join us!
With many conferences and regular seminar
series cancelled, and many courses being held remotely this fall, the MPMI
virtual seminar series, What’s New in MPMI!, is being used by teachers looking for
scientific seminars for their students or additional content for a course. Each
virtual seminar is given by the author of a recent MPMI article,
highlighting that article. Thus, students or faculty wanting more depth can
follow the link to the paper itself and dive into the details. All seminars are
freely available, and the corresponding papers are open access through the end
of the year, when the entire journal is going gold open access. Because all
talks are recorded, they can be used throughout the fall semester and are
especially helpful for students for whom English is not their first language,
who can relisten to especially difficult sections. Recordings of previous talks
can be found on the IS-MPMI
YouTube channel. The
schedule for upcoming seminars is available online here.
Do you use What’s New in MPMI! for
your teaching? Tell us how you use it. What have you found most useful? What
would you like to hear more about? Use the comments section below to let us
know what you think, or contact Jeanne