U.S. Senator John Thune, U.S. Senator Mike Rounds and U.S. Congresswoman Kristi Noem, the delegation from South Dakota, met with Dr. David Songstad, SIVB Past President, on April 15, 2015 when he was in Washington, DC, at the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) board meeting.  David, who is the President of CAST, also met with Dr. Catherine Woteki, Under Secretary of Agriculture overseeing the ARS, NIFA, ERS and NASS within the USDA.  Genome editing was a topic of interest to Dr. Woteki and she was pleased that SIVB has genome editing included in our meetings over the past two years.  She is also pleased that CAST will have a forthcoming publication on genome editing.Also as part of the CAST program, Dr. Songstad participated in the Borlaug CAST Communication Award presentation at the National Press Club on April 16, 2015, in Washington, DC.  At this venue, Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam (Professor of Animal Science at UC Davis) gave a presentation entitled “Communicating Science in a Networked World” as the 2014 Borlaug CAST Communication Award winner.  As President of CAST, Dr. Songstad then announced the winner of the 2015 Borlaug CAST Communication Award, who is also a member of the SIVB, Dr. C.S. Prakash of Tuskegee University.  Dr. Prakash will receive his award at the 2015 World Food Prize in Des Moines, Iowa, this coming October, 2015.  CAST appreciates support from Pioneer/DuPont for making this award possible.

reedDr. Barbara M. Reed will retire from the USDA ARS National Clonal Germplasm Repository, Corvallis, Oregon on July 17, 2015.  During retirement she will continue to collaborate with both ARS and Oregon State University and will remain active in the SIVB.  She can be contacted at reedba@onid.oregonstate.edu.

Dr. Barbara Reed received her B.S. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, her M.S. in Botany and Plant Pathology and Ph. D. in Botany from Oklahoma State University, Stillwater. In 1985, she began a Post-Doctoral position and, in 1989, was selected as a Research Plant Physiologist with the US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, National Clonal Germplasm Repository (NCGR) in Corvallis, Oregon. During her career at the NCGR she researched and developed alternative techniques for clonal plant germplasm storage. A major part of her career was devoted to developing protocols for cryopreservation of in vitro meristems in liquid nitrogen and she edited a book of cryopreservation techniques. More recently she studied the optimization of growth media mineral nutrients for tissue culture of hazelnuts, strawberries, raspberries, pears, and blueberries and their crop wild relatives. She also developed protocols for low temperature or other slow growth storage techniques for medium-term storage of shoot cultures. She authored 110 journal publications, two books, 13 book chapters, 19 proceedings papers, two theses, four handbooks of laboratory protocols, and six web-based educational tools.  Dr. Reed advised nine M.S. and eight Ph.D. students, and provided short-term training to more than 50 visiting international scientists. Dr. Reed is a Fellow of the Society for In Vitro Biology and the Society for Cryobiology. She was an Associate Editor for HortScience for 6 years; CryoLetters for 8 years; and is an Associate Editor for In Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology – Plant, and Plant Cell Tissue and Organ Culture. Dr. Reed was a member-at-large of the Governing Board of the Society for In Vitro Biology for 4 years, Secretary for an additional 4 years, and for 8 years the Chair of Publications; she is Treasurer of the Oregon State University Chapter of Sigma Xi and a member of the Board of Governors of the Society for Cryobiology.

Dr. Kasturi Dasgupta published the article titled “Developing novel blood and cara cara-like citrus varieties” in the Summer 2015 issue of the Citrograph Magazine (Dasgupta G, Thilmony R, and Thomson JG. Developing novel blood and cara cara-like citrus varieties. Citrogaph, pages 65-69, 2015).

Please use the following link to read the published article:


NambaProfessor Emeritus, Masayoshi Namba, MD & PhD, was approved for Emeritus Membership status in the Society for In Vitro Biology by the Board of Directors in 2015.  Dr. Namba is President of the Okayama Medical Foundation and received the Society for In Vitro Biology Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009.  He recently retired from Okayama University Medical School and was awarded Professor Emeritus status. 

The Niels Bols’ lab group with 4 of Dr. Bol’s most recent PhD students, including Dr. Nguyen (Nathan) Vo (second from right) and two undergrads at the 110th Convocation at U Waterloo (June 12, 2015)

Dr. Niels Bols (recipient of the SIVB 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award) received the “Distinguished Emeritus professor” status from University of Waterloo at its recent convocation (110th convocation). This is given only to select few Emeriti professors who have had an exceptional career at UWaterloo.

Dr. Bol’s PhD student, Dr. Nguyen (Nathan) Vo, a former recipient of the Wilton Earle Award (2013), Student travel award (2013), and Cellular Toxicology award (2012), was awarded the WB Pearson Medal for the Best Biology PhD thesis for 2014-15 at the same convocation.

ShaimarShaimar R. González Morales graduated suma cum laude from Marshall University (Huntington, WV) with a research focus of Developmental Biology.  Shaimar received a NIH Summer Intramural Training Award (IRTA) and is currently working at the NEI at the unit of Neuron-Glia Interaction in Retinal Disease as part of the DIVRO internship program.


Drs. James Trosko and Brad Upham have published the paper titled “Phosphatidylcholine specific PLC-induced dysregulation of Gap junctions, a robust cellular response to environmental toxicants, and prevention by resveratrol in a rat liver cell model” in PLOS One (Sovadinova I, Babica P, Böke H, Kumar E, Wilke A, Park JS, Trosko JE, Upham BL.  Phosphatidylcholine specific PLC-induced dysregulation of Gap junctions, a robust cellular response to environmental toxicants, and prevention by resveratrol in a rat liver cell model. PLoS One. 2015 May 29;10(5):e0124454. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0124454. eCollection 2015.

Please use the following link to read the published article: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4449167/

Dr. Trosko was also recently asked to deliver a keynote address on “epigenetic toxicology” to the SETAC meeting in Barcelona, Spain. The title of his keynote address is “A new paradigm in chemical hazard assessment: Chemicals do not induce genomic mutations but are epigenetic agents”.

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