‘QualitEEE’ oats

Quality has always been important when it comes to oats and oat research, and now we should consider oat 'qualitEEE' as well! The 'EEE' stands for 'Engage, Enable, and Evolve'.

An example of engagement would be the "Speaking of Oats..." ("SOO...") webinars, and I would very much like to thank Pekka Lehtinen and Ulla Holopainen-Mantila from VTT, Finland, for their presentations on oat quality on June 14th. The presentations can be seen on YouTube OR on the newsletter site – a new feature we’ve added, since some people are not able to access YouTube. Ulla also kindly provided the list of publications resulting from the OatHow study so far. The videos of all the "SOO..." webinars will be made available on this site eventually. You can find the links to past webinars and associated documents in the appropriate "Research Report" volume (divided by year), or you can use the search bar to search for a name or topic.

Engagement also involves such activities as field days, and most of these events have returned to being held in-person. For that reason, and because there seem to be so many advertised this year, I have not listed them on the calendar. Please check with your local groups and associations to see what is happening, or check the Oat Newsletter Twitter feed, which can be found at the bottom of the home page. If you do have an event that you would like advertised, please let me know (oatnewsletter@gmail.com) and I will add it to the calendar.

The International Oat Conference in Perth, Australia, this October will also provide many opportunities for engagement. This is the final call for abstract submissions! The deadline is now July 20th, and will not be extended any further. Please note that there are a number of workshops associated with the conference, including one on rust in Sydney, on the other side of the continent. You can read more about the conference in this recent news article.

The conference and these workshops will enable a great deal of collaboration amongst researchers. Robert Park, who is hosting the rust workshop, has recently published a paper with a number of others titled "Breeding oat for resistance to the crown rust pathogen Puccinia coronata f. sp. avenae: achievements and prospects". This work will be a valuable tool for breeders and discusses how future breeding in oat may evolve.

Rust resistance is, of course, a topic of great interest world-wide, and the latest issue of the USDA-ARS’s "Cereal Rust Bulletin" is now available. Don’t forget to send in your rust samples if you are in the USA!

For oat research to continue to evolve, we need more people to share the workload, and the USDA-ARS Cereals Research Unit in Fargo, ND, is still looking for a food chemist to work on oat quality. The position is open to US citizens and nationals and the deadline to apply is July 11th! A position is also available with the GrainGenes team at the USDA-ARS in Albany, CA. This is for a SCINet Postdoctoral Fellowship in Machine Learning, Protein Structure, and Functional Annotations, and the deadline to apply is September 30th.

For more news on how research and farming is evolving in Canada, the June issue of the Prairie Oat Growers Association’s "Oat Scoop" newsletter is out. The CROPDIVA project’s June newsletter has also been published. Susanne Vogelgsang’s lab at Agroscope, in Switzerland, is featured in this issue.

The summary of a second article published by Ziya Dumlupinar’s group this year can be found in the "Research Reports" section. The publication in "Nature" of three oat genome sequences by Kamal, Renhuldt, et al., was mentioned in the last update, and the article is now in print (Volume 606 Issue 7912, 2 June 2022). Why is this exciting? Because the article is featured as the cover story! A. longiglumis accession CN 58138 was sequenced in that work, and a second A. longiglumis accession (PI 657387) has also been sequenced, this time by Liu, et al.. That article is currently available as a preprint.

Finally, the next "SOO..." webinar will be held in September. This session will be used to discuss the past, present, and future of the Oat Newsletter, the "SOO..." webinar series, and Oat Global. Details will be provided in August, but please start thinking now about how we can better engage with the community, enable more collaboration, and assist with the evolution of oat research!