This year’s Burris lecture series at South Dakota State University will be presented by Dr. Ivan Baxter, principal investigator and associate member of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, on Friday, Oct. 12, 2018.
Baxter’s research uses high-throughput elemental profiling to measure the elemental composition of plant tissues including soybeans and corn. These data are used to perform genetics and modeling to understand how the interactions of elements, genes and the environment determine the elemental composition of plants and allow plants to adapt to different environments.
The lecture series is open to the public and includes two seminars and a reception with Baxter.
The series will begin at 3:00 p.m. with a technical seminar titled, “Complex interaction between plant genetics and the environment determines the elemental content of our food.” The seminar will be held in room 103 in the Edgar S. McFadden Biostress Laboratories building as part of the Life Science Seminar Series, which is jointly run by the Departments of Biology and Microbiology and Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences.
A reception is to follow at 4:30 p.m. where there will be opportunities to talk with Baxter. The reception will be in the atrium of the Edgar S. McFadden Biostress Laboratories building.
At 5:00 p.m. Baxter will present a public seminar titled, “It’s Elementary! What dictates the elemental composition of our food?” The seminar will be held in room 103 in the Edgar S. McFadden Biostress Laboratories building and is part of the University Fall Seminar Series.
In the public seminar, Baxter will discuss how improving the elemental nutrient content of plants can greatly affect human health since plants comprise the major part of the human diet. He will also explain what factors influence elemental composition of crops such as soybeans and corn, and how it can be improved.
There are opportunities to meet with Baxter while he is on campus. If interested contact Sen Subramanian at Senthil.Subramanian@sdstate.edu.
The Burris distinguished lecture series is made possible by generous funds donated by Dr. Robert and Mrs. Burris to South Dakota State University. The lectureship is jointly sponsored by the Departments of Chemistry & Biochemistry and Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science.
Burris received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from SDSU in 1935. He obtained a master’s and doctorate degree in bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He remained at Wisconsin serving in both the bacteriology and biochemistry departments. Burris was Chairman of the Biochemistry Department from 1958 to 1970, after which he returned to research. In 1984, he was honored as the W.H. Peterson and Hilldale Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry. He has written more than 300 articles for scientific journals in the subject areas of biological nitrogen fixation, photosynthesis, plant respiration and organic acid metabolism.