Elm Tree Research, Profs Make Headlines

May 30, 2012 - In the News

University of Guelph research that involves cloning elm trees that are resistant to Dutch elm disease is featured in a front-page story in today's National Post. A research team led by Praveen Saxena in Guelph’s Department of Plant Agriculture has found a way to successfully clone American elm trees that have survived repeated epidemics of their biggest killer. More than 95 per cent of the population in Eastern Canada and the United States has now been wiped out by Dutch elm disease.

It is the first known research to use in vitro culture technology to clone buds of mature American elm trees. The research also involves plant agriculture professor Al Sullivan; post-doctoral researchers Mukund Shukla and Maxwell Jones; Chunzhao Liu, professor, Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing; and Susan Gosling of the Gosling Foundation, which funded the project.

The research was also featured on CBC Tv's The National May 22 and is in the latest issue of The Portico alumni magazine.

History professor Matthew Hayday is featured today in the National Post. The story looks at his research on the history of bilingualism, and the ways in which English-speaking Canadians responded to efforts to promote second-language learning and individual bilingualism
since the 1960s.

Hayday presented his findings at the annual Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences being held in Kitchener this week. The National Post is running a special series highlighting the most interesting research at the event, which attracted more than 7,000 scholars.

Hayday detailed a number of recent initiatives aimed at fostering positive attitudes to language learning and bilingualism in Canada, including board games. He is a contributor Life After Forty: Official Languages Policy in Canada, a 2011 book that examines the country’s Official Languages Act and discusses why, despite the act, bilingualism in English Canada is only slightly higher than it is in the United States.

Sylvain Charlebois
, associate dean of research and graduate studies at the College of Management and Economics, appeared on the Business News Network Tuesday night. He discussed how shareholders of Canada’s largest grain handler, Viterra Inc. voted overwhelmingly in favor of a friendly takeover bid by Swiss commodities trader Glencore International PLC. If successful, the takeover would be the biggest deal in years for the global agriculture sector.

An award-winning researcher and teacher, Charlebois is an expert in food distribution and safety. The author of two books and numerous articles, he is now writing a book on global food safety systems. He belongs to the national expert advisory committee of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Prof. Glen Filson, School of Environmental Design and Rural Development, was featured on Global Toronto news Monday night. The segment featured his recent study that found a growing demand in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) for “ethnocultural” vegetables. Filson hopes the new study will encourage local growers to produce the products. “The potential this niche market represents to Ontario’s rural economy is huge,” he said. Read more

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