Issue: 206

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C O L L E G E N E W S

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RESERVE A SPACE ASAP FOR THE 2002 CSREES GRANTS WORKSHOP

The College is offering to pay the registration fee and transportation to the CSREES Grants Workshop Sept. 18. The University of Minnesota will host the workshop at the Radisson Hotel in Roseville, Minn. The workshop is designed for an audience of researchers, extension and education professionals as well as university grant administrators to hear new developments and special issues that affect all competitive grants program and Higher Education Program funding and grants administration. Prospective applicants to CSREES Competitive Programs are encouraged to attend the workshop. College administration will cover participants' registration fee and group transportation costs. For more information, please contact Elena Palouchkina at 4-8493 or elenap@iastate.edu

DEADLINE FOR SPRING OFF-CAMPUS COURSES JULY 19

Faculty who plan to offer a credit or noncredit course off-campus next spring semester are asked to notify their DEOs or departmental coordinators, or contact Neena Bentley at nbentley@iastate.edu by July 19 to prepare a course initiation form and establish preliminary course budgets.

REGENTS APPROVE FOOD SAFETY UNDERGRADUATE MINOR

The Board of Regents, State of Iowa, last month approved the creation of a food safety interdepartmental undergraduate minor. The departments involved include food science and human nutrition, microbiology, animal science, hotel restaurant and institution management, veterinary diagnostic and production animal medicine. The food science and human nutrition department has taken leadership because it offers the core courses. The need for a food safety minor evolved from discussions with interested faculty; the deans of agriculture, family and consumer science and veterinary medicine; and interest from students majoring in food science, in animal science and in microbiology and allied majors. It also complements the educational goals of the proposed Food Safety and Food Security Center, one of the Presidential Initiatives proposal finalists. The minor will better prepare graduates for employment in agricultural, medical and veterinary medical agencies, strengthening undergraduate career placement with state, national and international businesses.

A BURGER A DAY KEEPS THE CHOLESTEROL AWAY

Researchers in the food science and human nutrition department have found that burgers with added soy plant sterols reduced cholesterol levels in young men. The study is featured on the Science Technology News Network (STN2) web page and a video story was sent to ABC affiliates last Friday. To view the story go to the website. The research was published in June and the study was conducted with funding from ConAgra to test if adding plant sterols to popular foods could reduce cholesterol.

SUMMER ENROLLMENT IN COLLEGE ABOVE LAST YEAR

Summer enrollment in the College of Agriculture is 1,022, an increase of 24 from last summer. Undergraduate enrollment was 496, compared to 475 in the summer of 2001. Graduate enrollment was 526, compared to 523 a year ago. The university's summer enrollment is a record 10,007 -- 178 more students than last summer.

SYMPOSIUM on MOLECULAR TARGETS FOR DIETARY INTERVENTION IN DISEASE

The annual Growth Factor and Signal Transduction Conference is being sponsored Sept. 19-22 by the Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology and the Cell Biology Program at the Mayo Clinic. The conference, which will take place at the Scheman Building, will focus on the impact of diet on the prevention and development of heart disease, cancer and inflammation. The deadline for abstracts is Aug. 5. Registrations for Iowa State attendees are due Aug. 19. Funding is being provided by the National Institutes of Health and the Office of Biotechnology.

For registration information:

ISU STUDIES CONTINUE TO ADDRESS LIVESTOCK AIR-QUALITY ISSUES

Air-quality research at Iowa State University continues to address questions about the impact of livestock confinement facilities on the environment and people who live and work nearby. Dwaine Bundy and Steven Hoff, researchers in the agricultural and biosystems engineering department, are leading three on-going projects. The projects are important because they will provide actual emissions data from a variety of livestock production facilities and under a mix of weather conditions, Bundy said. Learn more about the three projects:

IOWA STATE AGRONOMY DEPARTMENT CELEBRATES 100 YEARS

The Iowa State University agronomy department is celebrating its centennial throughout 2002. The theme for the department's 100th birthday is "Celebrating a Century of Excellence and a Foundation for the Future." The study of agronomic topics had been occurring at the Iowa Agricultural College and Model Farm since it was established in 1858. It was in 1902, however, that classes in farm crops and soils were combined with the Experiment Station’s departments of practical agriculture and agricultural chemistry to form the agronomy department. Read more about the department’s history and its celebration plans:

ISU STUDY QUESTIONS THE EFFECTIVENESS OF SPECIAL TAX DISTRICTS

In an effort to spur economic development, Iowa cities have steadily increased their use of a special type of tax district. Yet an analysis in the economics department questions whether the benefits outweigh the public's costs. Research scientists David Swenson and Liesl Eathington studied the growth of tax increment financing (TIF) districts in Iowa. "The TIF ultimately is supposed to increase and enrich the tax base through job growth, population retention or growth, earnings gains and trade enhancement. But between 1989 and 1999, our analysis shows TIF-increment spending at the county level has not yielded measurable and distinct fiscal, economic or social outcomes," Swenson said. Learn more:

PLANT SCIENCES INSTITUTE AWARDS START-UP FUNDS

Iowa State University's Plant Sciences Institute has awarded start-up funding to six Iowa State research projects. Each project received approximately $25,000 for one or two years. "Identifying promising research projects and helping them get started is one of the most important activities of the institute," said Stephen Howell, director of the institute. Learn more about the research projects:

GRAIN PRODUCERS WARNED OF INCREASED PRICE/WEATHER SENSITIVITY

The USDA June 28 planted acreage and grain stocks reports cleared up some of the uncertainty in the grain supply situation, according to Robert Wisner, ISU extension economist. "The two reports are a caution to grain producers that both corn and soybean prices may be more volatile this summer than in recent years," he said. Wisner said producers may want to consider some forward pricing of crops on price rallies and purchases of call options to retain upward price flexibility in case summer weather problems continue. Details:

HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PIZZA

EZ Crust, the winning entry in the NASA Food Technology Commercial Space Center’s 2002 Product Development competition for a team of Iowa State food science and human nutrition students, will be presented to scientists at the Johnson Space Center in November. Last month, the EZ Crust product was presented at the Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting and Food Expo. EZ Crust was developed from okara, a high-fiber, high-protein byproduct of soymilk and tofu production. It may one day form the base of astronaut pizza. More info:

ISU CROPS TEAM MEMBER WINS NATIONAL COMPETITION

An ISU student crops team member won the National Association of College and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) crops contest held in April at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona. Bart Boehm, a senior in agronomy from Greenfield, won overall individual competition and teammate Mindy DeVries, a graduate student from Monroe, placed second. The team placed third overall and included: Dustin Hoeft, Emily Rottinghaus and Erik Christian. The team placed second in the math and third in the lab practical and agronomic exams. The team is supported by the Iowa Crop Improvement Association.

DEADLINES AND REMINDERS

July 9: Field day, Rhodes Research and Demonstration Farm, Rhodes

July 16: Field day, Muscatine Island Research and Demonstration Farm, Fruitland

Aug. 8-18: Iowa State Fair, Des Moines

Aug. 15: Field day, Allee Research and Demonstration Farm, Newell

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C O M M U N I C A T I O N S K I O S K

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HEAD'S UP ON RESEARCH RESULTS

Faculty are strongly encouraged to inform department and college leaders on plans to publish findings they believe to be unique or groundbreaking, or that have the potential for high visibility. Early notification will enhance public communications on the work's significance and better prepare university leaders to address questions that may arise.

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I N F O G R A Z I N G

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WANTED: IDEAS FOR STORIES ON SUCCESSFUL SUSTAINABLE RURAL DEVELOPMENT IN IOWA

Submit your nominations by Aug. 1 for inclusion in “Renewing the Countryside,” a new web site and book on sustainable rural development in Iowa. The best examples will show how rural Iowans can make a living while supporting local communities and protecting the natural environment. Subject categories include sustainable farming, direct marketing, product innovation, conservation, tourism, community and renewable energy. Forty of the best stories from the web site will be included in a book to be published in the coming year. The Iowa edition of “Renewing the Countryside” is part of a larger, regional project spotlighting examples of innovation and positive change in rural areas. Collaborators include The Leopold Center, the Iowa Rural Development Council, the Great Plains Institute for Sustainable Development and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. For more information, contact Shellie Orngard at 4-6998 or sorngard@iastate.edu.

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M A R G I N A L I A

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SLUGS CAN’T STAND CAFFEINE

The stimulant that helps millions of people face the day is deadly when sprayed on slugs and snails. Researchers from the Pacific Basin Agriculture Research Center in Hilo, Hawaii said it has potential as an environmentally acceptable alternative toxicant for the control of slugs and snails on food crops. Scientists at the USDA's research center were testing the effects of caffeine on other pests in Hawaii when they discovered that it killed slugs and snails. (Reuters, June 26)

Next issue: July 15 Deadline: July 12

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AG ONLINE

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EDITORS

Ed Adcock, edadcock@iastate.edu, and Brian Meyer, bmeyer@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-5616 Web site: http://www.ag.iastate.edu/aginfo/

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Ag Online, the newsletter for faculty and staff in Iowa State University's College of Agriculture, is e-mailed every Monday. To subscribe, send your name, e-mail address and the message "Ag Online subscribe" to edadcock@iastate.edu. To unsubscribe, send "Ag Online unsubscribe."

Iowa State University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, sex, marital status, disability or status as a U.S. Vietnam Era Veteran. Any persons having inquiries concerning this may contact the Director of Affirmative Action, 1031 Wallace Road Office Building, Room 101, (515) 294-7612.

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