Issue: 806

Ag and Life Sciences Online

The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Newsletter
Iowa State University
July 7, 2014  No. 806

College News

Progress Reports Available From Iowa Nutrient Research Center
Six-month progress reports now are available online for research projects funded through the Iowa Nutrient Research Center at ISU. More

Mickelson Receives Learning Community Award
Steve Mickelson, department chair of agricultural and biosystems engineering, is the 2014 recipient of the Corly Brooke Learning Community Advocate Award. The award recognizes an individual who has made significant contributions to the success of our students and learning communities.

Rothschild Works to Improve Goats in Ethiopia
Max Rothschild, animal science, was participating in an African Goat Improvement Network meeting in Ethiopia when he encountered a farmer plowing with oxen. The banner on the CALS home page shows him giving it a try. Researchers and extension specialists from Africa, Europe and the United States met to continue work identifying genes associated with resistance to heat stress and diseases. They also met with farmers of a community based breeding program.

Statistics Students Win Data Mining Cup Competition
A team of graduate students in statistics won the International Data Mining Competition in Berlin, Germany, last week. The 15th Data Mining Cup consisted of 125 teams from 99 universities in 28 countries. The student teams had six weeks to develop a solution for a data-mining problem on the topic of optimal return prognosis. Work was completed on May 6. Faculty advisers are Alicia Carriquiry, distinguished professor of statistics, and Stephen Vardeman, university professor of statistics and industrial engineering

CALS Communications Staff Receive ACE Awards
The Association for Communications Excellence presented four awards to CALS communications staff at the ACE annual meeting, June 24-27 in Portland.

  • Barb McBreen and Brian Meyer received the gold award for promotional writing for the displays in the Monsanto Student Services wing and the Brenton Center wing of Curtiss Hall.
  • McBreen, Meyer and Scott Helms of PUSH Branding and Design received the silver award for graphic design (exhibits) for the same displays.
  • Melea Licht received the silver award for graphic design (print one to full color) for the fall 2013 issue of “STORIES in Agriculture and Life Science.”
  • McBreen received the bronze award for script writing for the “It’s About Life” video, originally used for the Iowa Hall of Fame agriculture exhibit.

Jane Lenahan and Carol Ouverson of ISU Extension and Outreach received the bronze award for publishing (one to full-color popular publications) for the 2013 garden calendar.

Students Take Ice Cream Bar to National Competition
Oodlebar, a snack created by six food science and human nutrition students, is one of three finalists in the Dairy Research Institute New Product Contest. Ooodlebar is a vanilla-flavored novelty ice cream bar loaded with chunks of peanut butter cookie dough. The three final teams will be honored at the American Dairy Science Association joint annual meeting, July 20-24 in Kansas City.

Students Receive Awards at Poster Competition
Lei Fang and Fengdan Chang, food science and human nutrition, placed first and second, respectively, in the graduate student poster competition at the 2014 Corn Utilization and Technology Conference. Fang works with Toni Wang and Chang with Jay-lin Jane.

Student's Illustration Featured on Science-Based Design Website
Iowa State University is one of 29 universities partnering in the Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru). The alliance is committed to understanding the role of the arts and design in making institutions more vital, dynamic, creative and competitive. The July 1 website featured ISU animal science graduate MarleyBob Dobyns’ illustration of a skeletal muscle, which was featured on the January cover of the Journal of Animal Science. If you have research with a design aspect, contact Heather Sauer,

Animal Science Students Honored at Annual Conference
Animal science students in the meat science section were honored at the 2014 Reciprocal Meat Conference (the annual conference of the American Meat Science Association) on June 15-18 in Madison, Wis. Kristin Adams won first place in the RMC graduate student poster competition. Kelsey Carlson received an undergraduate scholastic achievement award. Amanda Outhouse and McKenna Powell were members of the winning team in the Iron Chef competition. Chris Foss was a member of the second place team. The ISU Meat Science Club won the T-shirt design contest.

Floods May Boost Mosquito Population
The next few weeks could bring a rise in mosquito populations as floodwaters recede across the state, warned entomologists Brendan Dunphy and Lyric Bartholomay. Recent flooding in Iowa could leave behind plenty of standing water, which is prime real estate for mosquitoes to lay eggs. More

Temple Grandin to Speak at Beef Cattle Symposium
ISU will host the fourth International Beef Cattle Welfare Symposium July 16-18. The symposium will bring together beef producers, processors, retailers, government officials, NGOs, animal scientists, veterinarians and students to discuss, debate and learn more about specific welfare issues encompassing all angles of the beef supply chain. Temple Grandin, Colorado State University, is scheduled to speak on July 17. CALS members of the organizing committee are: Patrick Gunn, Anna Johnson and Daniel Loy, animal science.

Agricultural Drainage Techniques to be Presented Aug. 19
ISU Extension and Outreach will hold a three-day school beginning Aug. 19 to teach how to plan, layout and install subsurface drainage systems. More:…

ISU Research Highlighted in NIFA Impacts Report
USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture has released its 2014 impacts report. One project highlighted to show how NIFA funding contributes to significant achievements in food, agricultural, natural resources and human sciences is the Sustainable Corn Project. NIFA has provided $20 million in funding to sustain one of the nation’s most important farm crops through weather extremes. ISU is leading a wide range of researchers from 10 land-grant universities and USDA’s Agricultural Research Service to mitigate and adapt the Midwest “Corn Belt” to climate change. Lois Wright Morton, sociology, is the project leader.

Research Results Available for Leopold-Funded Projects
Research results are available on the Leopold Center’s website for six completed projects. A multipage summary of the findings, a one-page brief and links to related information are available for each grant project.

Xin's Honor Featured in American Egg Board Newsletter
Hongwei Xin, agricultural and biosystems engineering and director of the Egg Industry Center, has been named Charles F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor in Agriculture and Life Sciences. The American Egg Board shared Xin’s honor with its readers in the June 2014 issue of its “Incredible News” newsletter.

Funding Opportunities

Cayuse 424 Training Seminars in July
The Cayuse 424 product support team has scheduled seminars for July. The webinars are sent to everyone who registers, and this allows access at a later date for individuals who cannot participate at the stated times.

NIH Trips for Writing a Strong Multiple PI Leadership Plan
The NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases notes that time and attention are needed in developing an effective leadership plan for a multiple-PI application. Reviewers judge the plan's scientific merit, the appropriateness and quality of the plan, and whether it promotes enough coordination and communication among PIs. More:…

Funding Information, Opportunities and Deadline Reminders
Dates listed are application deadlines. Contact: Roxanne Clemens,
Additional information is posted at CALS Funding Resources

July 25: U.S.-Chile Trade-related Environmental Cooperation Energy Efficiency in Chile. More

Aug. 1: Unilever Sustainable Living Young Entrepreneurs Awards; age 30 and under.

Aug. 6: USDA-NRCS-Iowa State Office Wetland Restoration Assistance Program.  More

Sept. 1: USDA Request for Proposal to Collect Positive Samples for Foot and Mouth Disease, African Swine Fever and Classical Swine Fever. More

Sept. 30 (letter of intent): NIH Development of Novel Therapeutics for Select Anaerobic Protozoa (R21/R33).  More

Oct. 1: 2015 National Academy of Science Awards.

Oct. 12: Cancer Prevention, Control, Behavioral Sciences and Population Sciences Career Development Award (K07). More

Nov. 5: NSF Energy for Sustainability. More


Carillon Concert Tomorrow Night, July 2
The summer carillon concert series continues tomorrow night, July 8, at 7 p.m., with Andree-Anne Doane playing a recital on the Stanton Memorial Carillon. Doane is Carillonist at the Oratory at Saint-Joseph’s Oratory, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Join the Iowa Culture Conversation in July
The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs impacts Iowans through the State Historical Society of Iowa, the Iowa Arts Council and Product Iowa – State Office of Media Production. As the department looks to revitalize the State Historical Building in Iowa, they invite input through community conversations held around the state during July.

Internal Voices

Swenson: Iowa a Draw for Data Centers
Iowa has become home to data centers or server farms for some of the biggest players in the tech industry. Dave Swenson, economics, says Iowa’s cheap energy prices are a major draw for the facilities. “These companies consume an unbelievable amount of electricity. They’re monsters. They eat electricity. That’s how they run, they require massive amounts of power,” Swenson says. More

External Voices

Register's Op Ed Cites ISU Research
The Des Moines Register published an editorial in its July 4 issue on the “superweed” Palmer amaranth that may be resistant to popular herbicides used by Iowa farmers. “Chemical companies are working on new herbicides to tackle superweeds. But there is another way,” the article states. “A better answer, especially for the long term, scientists say, is to rotate corn and soybeans with other crops, such as wheat, oats or alfalfa, and put more acres into conservation reserve. That improves soil health and disrupts the life cycle of weeds. And recent research by Iowa State University shows it improved yields.” More

Ag and Life Sciences Online

Julie Stewart, (515) 294-5616

Ag and Life Sciences Online, the newsletter for faculty and staff in Iowa State University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is e-mailed every Monday. To subscribe, send your name, title, organization, email address and the message "Ag and Life Sciences Online subscribe" to To unsubscribe, send your name and email address to "Ag and Life Sciences Online unsubscribe."


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