XI International Congress on MPMI

July 18–26, 2003 • St. Petersburg, Russia

More than 800 scientists from around the world gathered in St. Petersburg from July 18-26, 2003 to celebrate its 300th birthday and to share their latest scientific results at the 11th IS-MPMI. The venue was the grand Hotel Pribaltiskaya on the shores of the Baltic Sea. The audiovisual arrangements were flawless. The cultural program was superb, including a private showing of Swan Lake at the Mariinsky Theater, an excursion to the extraordinary art collection of the Hermitage, boat rides on the Neva River, and a final social dinner featuring folk dancers and a balalaika band. The midnight sun contributed a spectacular backdrop.

On behalf of the Society and all plant-microbe scientists, we thank the indefatigable organizing committee, led by Igor Tikhonovich of the All-Russia Research Institute for Agricultural Microbiology, St. Petersburg. Many thanks are also due to the agencies and private companies, including UNESCO, for their sponsorship and financial support. The American Society for Microbiology paid the registration fees for 200 Russian participants. Balt Union, the designated tour facilitator, did a great job arranging excursions.

Poster Awards at the XI IC-MPMI

The presentation of many excellent posters by graduate students and postdoctoral associates made the awards decisions particularly difficult this year for the IS-MPMI Advisory Committee. There were three third prizes, two second prizes, and one first prize.
Third place prizes went to:
E. E. Andronov, M. I. Roumiantseva, Terework, K. Lindström, N. I. Dzyubenko, O. P. Onishchuk, O. N. Kurchak, and B. V. Simarov (All-Russia Institute for Agricultural Microbiology, St. Petersburg, and the University of Helsinki, Department of Applied Chemistry) for “Host plant effects on the diversity of Sinorhizobium meliloti and Rhizobium galegae populations.”
J. Staal, M. Kaliff, and C. Dixelius (Department of Plant Biology, Uppsala, Sweden) for “Defense responses in Arabidopsis to Leptosphaeria maculans.”
B. Ben Amor, S. Shaw, G. Olroyd, F. Malliet, R. Penmetsa, D. Cook, S. Long, J. Dénarié, and C. Gough (LBMRPM, France, Stanford University, U.S.A., UC Davis, U.S.A., and John Innes Centre, U.K.) for “The NFP locus of Medicago truncatula controls an early step of Nod factor signal transduction.”
Second place prizes went to:
M. M. Saad, H. Kobayashi, C. Marie, W. I. Broughton, and W. J. Deakin (LBMPS, University of Geneva, Switzerland) for “Identification of new proteins secreted by the type III secretion system of Rhizobium sp. NGR234.”
B. Schroeder, B. L. House, M. M. Mortimer, S. C. Maloney, K. Warren, S. N. Yurgel, and M. L. Kahn
(Institute for Biological Chemistry, Washington State University, Pullman, U.S.A.) for “Genetic manipulation of the Sinorhizobium meliloti 1021 genome.”
The first prize went to:
W. Ai-Jiuan, M. Durrant, R. W. Michelmore, and J. P. Rathjen (Sainsbury Lab, U.K., and the Department of Vegetable Crops, UC Davis, U.S.A.) for “Negative regulation of tomato Pto by a patch of surface-exposed residues.”