Sonny Perdue Confirmed as Agriculture Secretary

Last evening, the Senate voted 87-11 to confirm Sonny Perdue as Secretary of Agriculture.  Despite being one of the last cabinet nominees named, Perdue experienced a relatively easy confirmation process with considerable bipartisan support.  Senate Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) used floor debate prior to the vote to endorse the candidate.  The Trump … Read more

March for Science – the next steps

Over the weekend thousands of scientists and supporters of science across the world took part in March for Science events from Washington, DC to Sydney, Australia. (Please see community statement, which ASPB joined, applauding the March for Science.)  Plant scientists and ASPB staff marched in support of the countless contributions science has made and will … Read more

Jenna Gallegos Awarded 2017 ASPB/AAAS Mass Media Fellowship

Jenna E. Gallegos, from the University of California, Davis, has been selected to represent ASPB as the 2017 ASPB/AAAS Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellow. She will spend 10 weeks this summer training as a science journalist at the Washington Post in Washington, D.C. In June, Jenna will earn her PhD in plant biology with … Read more

Fungal Frenemies in the Plant World

The fourth major symposium of Plant Biology 2017, organized by Barbara Valent from Kansas State University, entitled “Plants and Fungi: Friends or Foes”, will highlight current research on the interactions between fungi and living plant cells and their applications for improving sustainability in agricultural systems. Rice blast and wheat blast are two of the most … Read more

What We’re Reading: April 7

Note: See Why We’re Writing “What We’re Reading” Review: Ammonium as a signal for physiological and morphological responses ($) Ammonium is one of the major forms in which nitrogen is assimilated. Besides being a nutrient, it also acts as signal that affects gene expression and root system architecture. Some ammonium-induced genes are also induced by … Read more

Why we’re writing “What We’re Reading”

In Episode 36 of the classic comedy television show I Love Lucy, Lucy and her friend Ethel get a job wrapping chocolates in a candy factory. Their boss warns, “If one piece of candy gets past you and into the packing room unwrapped, you’re fired!” Naturally, as the candy conveyer belt moves faster and faster, … Read more

Recognizing featured Plant Cell first authors, February 2017

Masanori Izumi, featured first author of Entire Photodamaged Chloroplasts Are Transported to the Central Vacuole by Autophagy Current Position: Assistant Professor, Frontier Research Institute for Interdisciplinary Sciences, Tohoku University. Education: Ph.D. (2012), Graduate School of Agricultural Sciences, Tohoku University, Japan. Non-scientific Interests: Playing tennis, Travel to Japanese hot springs. When I was an undergraduate student, … Read more

What We’re Reading: March 31

Review: Wheat genomics comes of age Due to its highly repetitive, polyploid genome, wheat genomics has lagged behind that of other cereals, but new tools promise to begin closing that gap.  Uauy reviews these new tools, which include access to full genomes of several wheat varieties, gene expression data from hundreds of publicly available RNA-sequencing … Read more

Celebrating Achievement at Plant Biology 2017

In the Awards Symposium at Plant Biology 2017, delegates will be treated to lectures from 2016’s prize-winning scientists and cheer this year’s winning crop of plant scientists making a difference in the field of plant biology and beyond. Pioneering Plant Science: The Stephen Hales Prize Named for a British reverend who, in 1927, published pioneering … Read more

Share your fascination of plants by organizing an event on May 18

Plant Science * Agriculture * Forestry * Plant Breeding * Biodiversity * Nourishment and Nutrition * Plant Protection * Environmental Conservation * Renewable Resources We invite you to organize a fascinating activity related to plants on May 18, 2017! Contact the USA National Coordinator by email at plantday@aspb.org to discuss and access all supporting materials … Read more

Announcing the 2017 ASPB Award Winners

The American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2017 awards, which honor excellence in research, education, outreach, and service.   ASPB Innovation Prize for Agricultural Technology Luca Comai, University of California, Davis, CA Rick DeRose, Syngenta Crop Protection, Research Triangle Park, NC Georges Freyssinet, BIO-EZ, France Ganesh Kishore, … Read more

What We’re Reading: March 24

Have you seen an exciting new paper you’d like to summarize for the community? Contact Mary Williams to inquire about contributing to this series! Reviews: Nature Insight: Plants ($) Nature journal published a special “Plant Insights” section featuring several excellent reviews.  Zipfel and Oldroyd review Plant signalling in symbiosis and immunity (10.1038/nature22009), Bevan et al. … Read more

A community repository of plant illustrations

Guest post by Erin Sparks, Guillaume Lobet, Larry York and Frédéric Bouché It is midnight on a cold winter evening and you are scheduled to give a seminar at 8 am the next morning. All you are missing to complete your presentation is one last graphic to illustrate your conclusions. You wearily open Adobe Illustrator, … Read more

President’s Letter: How Should We Speak Up?

Now that we have all had a chance to learn a bit more about the Trump administration and its positions on science, it is time to launch the inevitable conversation about how best to respond. The appointment of Robert F. Kennedy to lead a task force to evaluate the safety of vaccines (Phillip et al., … Read more

What We’re Reading: March 17

Review: Methods of cell-specific hormone analysis ($) Plant hormones are active at very small quantities and often act differently in different cell types. Various methods, primarily involving mass spectrometry and sensors, have been developed to identify and quantify hormones with cellular-level precision. Novák et al. review these methods and discuss their strengths and limitations, as … Read more

Introducing Plant Direct

As the editor-in-chief, I am excited to introduce Plant Direct (plantdirectjournal.org), a new journal from Wiley and the societies behind Plant Physiology, The Plant Journal, and The Plant Cell. Although there is a crowded landscape of journals to choose from, we believe that Plant Direct fills an unserved role for the plant community. We seek to be the … Read more

Engineers, plant biologists, and data scientists assembled in Tucson for the inaugural Phenome 2017 conference

The inaugural Phenome 2017 conference was held February 10-14, 2017 in beautiful Tucson, AZ. The theme, “Connecting the Bioeconomy,” was developed as a direct outcome of the Plant Science Decadal Vision publication (2013) and was organized by the National Plant Science Council and the North American Plant Phenotyping Network, with meeting management provided by ASPB. … Read more