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Today's date is Friday, June 05, 2020
School of Plant Biology
 April 2014
Tuesday 01
11:30 - FESTIVAL - EnviroFest : UWA's premier environmental and sustainability festival Website | More Information
Celebrate sustainability at UWA's premier environmental event. Pat a koala and dingo and, if you're game, hold a wedge-tailed eagle and python. View up-close UWA's bees (in a safe, sealed hive panel) and sample their honey. Create beautiful flower sculptures from upcycled materials. Learn about sustainable initiatives on campus and much more. Staff, students and their families welcome.
Tuesday 08
11:00 - EXPO - Study Abroad & Exchange Fair : A festival of international study opportunities for UWA students More Information
There will be presentations by international visitors, games, prizes, a photo booth, treats on offer and lots and lots of information about exchange and study abroad opportunities for UWA students.

13:00 - ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING - Profectus UWA Annual AGM : An opportunity to find out more on UWA's first club on entrepreneurship Website | More Information
Come along to Profectus UWA's Inaugral 2014 AGM on Tuesday April 8. If you are passionate about business and entrepreneurship be sure to drop by at 1pm to learn more about our agenda. We will answer any questions you have about Profectus and events being held this semester!!!
Wednesday 09
15:30 - SEMINAR - CMCA Seminar Series: 3D Raman imaging meets AFM, SNOM and profilometry More Information
Knowledge about the morphology and chemical composition of heterogeneous materials on a sub-micrometer scale is crucial for the development of new material properties for highly specified applications. However, each analytical measuring technique has limitations, which may be overcome by their combination. Confocal microscopy has been used to reconstruct three-dimensional images of micro-objects by using a spatial pinhole to eliminate out-of focus light in specimens thicker than the focal plane. Raman spectroscopy on the other hand is able to determine the chemical compositions of materials. The confocal Raman microscope combines Raman spectroscopy with high resolution confocal microscopy. The discrimination of out of focus information used in confocal microscopy is particularly beneficial for confocal Raman imaging since it reduces the volume from which the Raman spectrum is collected. Due to the confocal principle, depth information from transparent materials can be easily obtained, leading to full three dimensional chemical reconstructions of the material’s composition. The combination of confocal Raman microscopy with SPM and true surface microscopy permits characterization of materials at submicron resolution, as well as on mm-rough surfaces across large areas. Examples from various fields of applications will be presented.
Wednesday 30
16:00 - SEMINAR - Restoration in a Changing Environment: The Ridgefield Multiple Ecosystem Service Experiment : This seminar is part of the Centre for Water Research seminar series. Website | More Information
Multiple environmental changes challenge traditional notions of ecological restoration. One option for the future may be to plant mixtures of native species to achieve desired ecosystem functions such as tightly cycling nutrients, carbon sequestration, resistance against weed invasion and prevention of soil erosion. However, it remains unknown how best to do this.

Are there trade-offs among functions? Do relationships depend on the traits of planted species? In this talk, Mike will present the theoretical and empirical foundations of the Ridgefield Experiment, which aims to shed light on these questions. He will present early results, and a broader meta-analysis of plant species effects on carbon storage led by his colleague Kris Hulvey. He will end by discussing implications for continued provision of ecosystem services into the future, and would be interested to discuss potential hydrological research questions that may be of interest to the Centre.

Bio,

Mike is an ecosystem ecologist interested in how continued system function depends on community composition and environmental change. He joined Richard Hobbs' Ecosystem Restoration and Intervention Ecology Research Group at UWA in April 2010. Together with colleagues, he established the Ridgefield Multiple Ecosystem Services Experiment in August of that year.

Prior to his move west, he looked at modelled grassland response to environmental change in Tasmania, and for his PhD, back at Imperial College London in the UK, the response of phosphorus to increases in nitrogen supply in a coupled plant-soil analytical model. Throughout his work, he aims to build and test theory through experimentation, with the aim of improving management and restoration of ecosystems into the future.

PS* This seminar is free and open to the public & no RSVP required.

****All Welcome****

 May 2014
Thursday 01
18:00 - PRESENTATION - What's Christianity Ever Done For Science? : Taking a leaf out of "Life of Brian", this WXED talk will present the key players and principles of faith which pioneered modern science. More Information
Science and Faith seem to be arguing a lot lately, so is their long term marriage over? The accusations are not pretty, not even true. Can we afford for them to split? Taking a leaf out of "Life of Brian", this talk will present the key players and principles of faith which pioneered modern science up to today. WXED is a series of data-rich multimedia presentations on the theme "What's Christianity(WX) Ever Done(ED) for Us?"
Friday 02
11:00 - SEMINAR - Dr Roger Lawes: Is there a new twist in an old technology? : Modelling crop rotations with the Land Use Sequence Optimiser Website | More Information
Crop rotation, where a legume, pasture, fallow or oilseed is grown after a cereal crop to manage soil borne disease and on occasions fix nitrogen, is one of the oldest technologies in agriculture.  However, we are still researching the concept because plant breeding helps some crops resist certain diseases, weed management practices evolve, and fertiliser can provide a comparatively cheap source of nutrition.   Farmers reacted to these changes by growing fewer break crops, but may now need to embrace seemingly unprofitable options like fallow on their farms.  Here we demonstrate how the Land Use Sequence Optimiser (LUSO) can generate optimum land use strategies for various biotic stresses and land use options. We compare the performance of optimal sequences to those local agronomists recommend, and then explore how variable the optimal and recommended sequences are by drawing predicted crop yields from simulated distributions generated by a crop model.  When challenged with variable seasons, the optimal sequence is often suboptimal and often the crop sequence has little bearing on the financial outcome. In other situations, the crop sequence choice will heavily influence the financial outcome for the farmer.  I will discuss the deterministic and stochastic versions of LUSO, and the implications of the above findings.

Roger Lawes is a Senior Research Scientist at CSIRO who works across a range of projects in farming systems.  He has research interests in crop modelling, plant breeding, farming systems modelling, agronomy and applied statistics.  Prior to joining CSIRO 12 years ago he completed a PhD at the University of Queensland.
Wednesday 07
16:00 - SEMINAR - Animal-like learning in plants : This seminar is part of the Centre for Water Research seminar series. Website | More Information
Scientists have wondered for some time whether plants, like animals, can truly learn from the past and adjust their future behavior appropriately. We adopted the same approach used in studies of animal learning and memory and put the sensitive plant Mimosa to the test.

We found that plants too can learn, and rapidly, when circumstances demand it, but most importantly they remember what has been learnt for several weeks (at the very least). These findings demonstrate that memory is not property special to organisms with a nervous system, inviting us to re-examine the fundamental mechanisms shaping behavior across living systems.

PS* This seminar is free and open to the public & no RSVP required.

****All Welcome****
Monday 12
12:00 - Art Exhibition - The Art of Zhen Shan Ren International Exhibition : A compelling fine art exhibition reflecting the human rights situation in China (Free event) Website | More Information
The Art of Zhen Shan Ren (Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance) takes viewers through the story of Falun Dafa - from its introduction to the public in 1992, through the beauty and enlightenment of the practice, to the unjust and unrelenting persecution, moving forward through the peaceful resistance of Falun Dafa practitioners worldwide who seek to bring an end to the persecution, then through themes of karmic retribution, salvation and grace, and finishing with a moment of choice.

Storytelling has long been one of fine art's greatest joys, and this Exhibition's ability to cross cultural, lingual and ethnic barriers is highlighted each time it is shown.

Inspired by tradition and divinity, the artists paint - often collaboratively - stories either experienced by themselves or shared by fellow Falun Dafa practitioners worldwide. Realist oil painting, or Neo-Renaissance, was chosen as the style for its narrative capabilities, accessibility and, above all, its purity.

The Exhibition aims to educate and draw focus to an unjust persecution - to record a moment in time when the universal principles of Truth, Compassion, Forbearance are openly opposed. It also highlights the danger of becoming involved in the persecution through state-run ventures such as forced labour and forced organ harvesting of Falun Dafa practitioners. Outlasting these sombre themes, however, is a steady message of hope and fulfilment, as the enduring courage and belief of practitioners bring positive change in numerous dark settings.

A central hope of founding artist Professor Zhang's mission is to promote, through fine art, the understanding that freedom of belief is a fundamental human right, and to raise awareness.
Tuesday 13
15:30 - SEMINAR - CMCA Seminar Series 2014: "The search for a magnetic sense in the birds and the bees ..." More Information
Many animals possess a magnetic sense, which they use as a type of biological GPS to navigate short or long distances. Despite a wealth of behavioural evidence for magnetoreception, the cellular mechanisms that must underlie such a sense await discovery. Dr Jeremy Shaw focuses on the use of cutting-edge optical, electron and X-ray microscopy techniques to explore the magnetoreception question and has contributed to new discoveries in this field with publications in the journals Nature and Current Biology. Dr Shaw’s research is now centred on the use of the honeybee Apis mellifera as a model system to search for this new sensory system and hopefully solve what is one of the great unsolved mysteries in biology.

17:00 - BOOK LAUNCH - Launch of "Personalities & Places" : Full Title: Personalities & Places on the Crawley Campus Website | More Information
This book was funded by a University Centenary Grant with detailed vignettes of 71 places named after personalities on the Crawley Campus. An initiative of the UWA Historical Society, it includes a fold-out map showing each location. Join the authors and their many supporters for the launch.

18:00 - EVENT - Do you live in fear of needles or blood? : Blood-Injection-Injury Phobia Group More Information
Do you live in fear of needles or blood? If so, read on...

Blood-Injection-Injury Phobia is a fear that is triggered by seeing blood or an injury, or by receiving an injection or other invasive medical procedure. People vary in the way they react to situations involving blood or injections. Some individuals may feel disgust, nausea, or dizziness. Some people may even faint.

The Robin Winker Clinic is a clinical psychology unit linked to the School of Psychology at The University of Western Australia. The Clinic will be running a group treatment program for Blood-Injection-Injury Phobia. The treatment is based on evidence from up-to-date research, and was co-developed by Dr Andrew Page, a psychologist and researcher from the School who specialises in anxiety disorders. The program will run for 8 two-hour sessions, plus an initial assessment session before the group commences and a follow-up session 4-6 weeks after completion. Through this program, individuals will work in a supportive environment to challenge their fears and learn coping strategies to control anxiety and be less worried when getting an injection, seeing blood, or when visiting the doctor for a medical procedure. Techniques for preventing fainting and for coping with feelings of disgust are also introduced.

What do you do now? If you or someone you know would like to take part in this treatment program, or if you would like more information, please call the Clinic on 6488 2644 or email clinic-psy@uwa.edu.au

Dates: 6-8pm, Tuesday May 13th to Tuesday July 1st. Fees: $30 per session and $35 for the assessment, 25% discount if paid up front. Reduced fees are available for full time students and pensioners. UWA Location: Robin Winkler Clinic, 1st floor, Third General Purpose Building, Myers St.
Monday 19
16:00 - VISITING SPEAKER - In Conversation with UWA Alumni : Join Bruce Abbott, Managing Director of Replants.com and CEO of Cultural Corridors, for an intimate conversation on the business of saving grass trees and sharing culture Website | More Information
Guild Volunteering is launching the first in a series of conversations with UWA Alumni who are leaders in the non-profit and community benefit sector.

Our first guest is Bruce Abbott, Managing Director of Replants.com and CEO of Cultural Corridors. Replants.com is a social enterprise that rescues native vegetation from land-clearing sites and relocates them to a new home. The profits from the business support a wide variety of initiatives, including creating community gardens for schools, fundraising for charities, and supporting public art. Most notably, Replants.com supports a variety of initiatives related to promoting indigenous culture and connection to land, of which the grass tree is particularly significant.

Fundamentally Replants aims to gently challenge the mainstream relationship with land. Replants.com supports the creation of a contemporary Australian Culture that draws heavily on indigenous ways of seeing and being and has as its primary reference point caring for country and the people, plants and animals it sustains.

Bruce Abbott is a UWA Alumni and this conversation is an opportunity to see the experiences, values, and philosophy that has informed the creation of this unique social enterprise.

We look forward to having you join us for our first in Conversations event.

This is a free event. To book: Staff and members of the public: email aden.date@guild.uwa.edu.au Students: go to www.bitly.com/iCBruce
Thursday 29
12:00 - EVENT - UWA Friends of the Grounds Plant Sale Website | More Information
The UWA Friends of the Grounds will hold their 'Annual Plant Sale’ on Thursday 29 and Friday 30 May from 12-2pm at the Taxonomic Garden - near the Botany glasshouses.

There will be exotic and native plants as well as succulents and herbs for sale.

Sales are cash only and prices are around $5 and under. Please bring your own carry bags if possible.

Come and join us and bring your friends and colleagues along to purchase some treasures for your garden!

Please support the Friends with funds going towards the redevelopment of the Taxonomic Garden.

 June 2014
Wednesday 04
16:00 - SEMINAR - Climate change adaptation: water conservation and crop production in south-western Australia and the Loess Plateau of China : this seminar is part of the Centre for Water Research seminar series. Website | More Information
Climate simulation models suggest that mean temperatures on the Loess Plateau of China will increase by 2.5 to 3.75°C by 2050, while those in the cropping region of south-west Australia will increase by 1.25 to 1.75°C. The rainfall in south-west Australia rainfall is predicted to decrease by 20 to 60 mm, rainfall on the Loess Plateau of China is not expected to change.

Farming systems in both regions differ markedly in scale, but both have adopted water conservation techniques that benefit crop yields. In south-west Australia zero tillage and adequate use of fertilizers have enabled farmers to increase their rainfall use efficiency and yields of cereals, canola and legumes, while on the Loess Plateau, mulching with plastic, gravel and residues, crop sequence, fertilizer/organic manure application and supplementary irrigation have improved precipitation use efficiency and yields of several crops and enabled the production of maize in areas of the Loess Plateau where temperatures limit its production.

The implications of climate change and adaptation strategies such as agronomic management and crop breeding in the two regions will be discussed in relation to future improvements in water productivity and food production.

Further reading:

Turner, N.C., Li, F.-M., Xiong, Y.-C., and Siddique, K.H.M. (2011). Climate change and agricultural ecosystem management in dry areas (Guest editorial). Crop and Pasture Science 62: i-ii. Gan, Y., Siddique, K.H.M., Turner, N.C., Li, X.G., Niu, J.Y., Yang, C., Liu, L., and Chai, Q. (2013). Ridge-Furrow Mulching Systems - An innovative technique for boosting crop productivity in semiarid rain-fed environments. Advances in Agronomy. 117: 429–476.

Chai, Q., Gan, Y., Turner, N.C., Zhang, R.Z., Yang, Y., Niu, Y. and Siddique, K.H.M. (2014). Water-saving innovations in Chinese agriculture. Advances in Agronomy 126: 149-201.

Liu, C.A., Zhou, L.M., Jia, J.J., Wang, L.J., Xi, L., Pan, C.C., Siddique, K.H.M. and Li, F.M. (2014). Maize yield and water balance is affected by nitrogen application in a film-mulching ridge-furrow system in a semiarid region of China. European Journal of Agronomy 52:103-111.

PS* This seminar is free and open to the public & no RSVP required.

****All Welcome****



Thursday 05
13:30 - EVENT - IOA Postgraduate Showcase - Frontiers in Agriculture : 9 PhD students present their diverse agriculture-related research Website | More Information
The Institute of Agriculture's annual Postgraduate Showcase brings together some of UWA’s best PhD students at an advanced stage of their research. This year, nine presentations covering a wide range of disciplines will highlight some of the research and progress underway at UWA in the area of agriculture, food science and natural resource management. The event also provides opportunities for students to interact with industry representatives and future employers.

For catering purposes, please RSVP by 26 May to ioa@uwa.edu.au
Wednesday 11
16:00 - SEMINAR - How a hijacked protein became a gateway to studying the evolution of proteins : This seminar is part of the Centre for Water Research seminar series. Website | More Information
A few years ago we stumbled upon an interesting peptide biosynthesis in sunflower seeds. A small peptide was buried inside another protein and the peptide emerged from its hiding place by hijacking the protein processing machinery of the 'host' protein. This system has become a lead-in to studying the evolution of proteins.

It recently allowed us to trace the biochemical steps that we think led to the 'birth' or de novo evolution of a protein. With it for example, we can also ask how easily new proteins might be created and how they manage to mimic other proteins. We recently found the processing machinery that was hijacked has evolved a dual functionality. I will discuss the biosynthesis and what it's teaching us, but I promise not to get too detailed!

Bio

Assoc. Prof. Mylne (PhD, Botany) worked at the John Innes Centre in the UK (2001-2005), using molecular genetics to study proteins that accelerate flowering in response to prolonged cold (vernalization). In 2006 he moved to the Division of Chemistry & Structural Biology at The Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB, UQ) where he held a QEII Fellowship (2008-2012) and was the inaugural John S. Mattick Fellow (2010-2012).

In 2013 he joined the faculty at The University of Western Australia and took up an ARC Future Fellowship in the School of Chemistry & Biochemistry and The ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology. His research interests are protein evolution and the molecular mechanisms underlying the biosynthesis of bioactive peptides.

www.uwa.edu.au/people/joshua.mylne

PS* This seminar is free and open to the public & no RSVP required.

****All Welcome****



Tuesday 17
15:30 - EVENT - CMCA Seminar Series: 'Coral reefs go viral'. Speaker: Dr Karen Weynberg More Information
Viruses are the most abundant biological agents in the global oceans, with numbers typically averaging ten billion per litre. The ability of viruses to infect all organisms indicates they most likely play a central role in marine ecosystems. Corals form an obligate symbiotic relationship with the dinoflagellate genus Symbiodinium, upon which the coral relies heavily for nutrition and calcification. Disruption of this symbiosis can lead to loss of the symbiotic algae from their host and if the symbiosis cannot re-establish, death of the coral colony. Viruses that target the algal symbiont have been reported and we examined whether Symbiodinium in culture is host to virus(es) that switches to a lytic infection under stress, such as UV exposure or elevated temperature. Analysis using techniques including flow cytometry and TEM, revealed prevalent viral activity. This talk will present recent results and potential for future development of probes for rapid detection of viruses in field samples to help monitor and assess the role of viruses in coral and reef health.
Friday 20
12:00 - SEMINAR - Education Researcher Seminar : “The age of my participants keeps getting younger!” A personal journey into science education research with young children Website | More Information
Science education has long been the poor second cousin to literacy and numeracy. Australia’s Chief Scientist has recognised the urgent need for improving science education at all levels to make Australia competitive in innovative and economic terms. However, fewer students are studying science at the high school and tertiary level. One strategy to address this problem is to instil a love of science in the early years.

This presentation will outline the processes and outcomes of an ALTC Competitive Grant and ARC Linkage Grant to achieve this goal. These include 1) developing science resources with scientists and early childhood pre-service teachers for early childhood teachers and 2) understanding and improving parents’ and young children’s interest and engagement in science through the implementation of Scitech’s newly developed Early Childhood Outreach program delivered to playgroups.
Thursday 26
1:00 - SEMINAR - Life as an Instrument of Art : School of Animal Biology Seminar Series. More Information
Realising that (the concept of) life is going through some radical transformations; artists have been experimenting with ways of articulating these shifts. This talk would cover the some of the strategies and projects that artists at SymbioticA have employed to deal with life as both raw material and an ever contestable subject of manipulation. Looking at all levels of life – from the molecular to the ecological this talk would attempt to present the need to develop a new cultural language where words seems to be no longer appropriate.

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