Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

Provided by the center

Condensed from the State of the Center report to the community.

When we started, I dreamed, perhaps romantically, that our center would be part of a major human adventure of the 21st century. We would try to make the most of the wonderful human desire to know how the world really works, in our case how plants really work. This drive to understand, shaped through its evermore powerful modern offspring, science, can help hold off potential environmental disaster. In doing so, we hoped also to bring benefits and perhaps even a little credit to our home community.

(Courtesy of the Danforth Plant Science Center)

The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center announced Friday it has hired four new lead researchers.

Each of the new hires will have a team of at least another 10 scientists working for them, which means the research center could soon add an additional 40 new positions.

Danforth president Jim Carrington says the new scientists will focus on new technologies such as robotics, as well as bolstering the center’s existing research.  

(Courtesy of the Danforth Plant Science Center)

The Danforth Plant Science Center is adding another 79,000 square feet and eventually another 100 jobs.

The St. Louis research institute announced the $45 million dollar project Monday.

The center’s president, Dr. James Carrington, says the new space will be more flexible.

He says that that means cabinets and benches won’t be bolted down, giving room for new research that include automation and robotics.

Last summer’s drought in the United States, and particularly here in the Midwest, would lead one to ask if there is enough water to meet the world’s needs.  According to Dr. Roberto Lenton, Professor of Biological Systems Engineering and Executive Director of the Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Institute at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, the answer is “yes.”

Alex Heuer / St. Louis Public Radio

Sandra Fluke is an attorney and women’s rights activist.

One year ago this month, Fluke was a law school student at Georgetown University and found herself immersed in a contentious national debate over the role of contraceptive coverage and whether coverage should be mandatory.  Opponents of mandatory coverage cited religious objections.

Sandra Fluke testified about the issue before Democrats in Congress.  After that, conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh called her a “slut” and made other derogatory comments.

Alex Heuer / St. Louis Public Radio

George Will is a Pulitzer Prize-winning political journalist and author.  He is perhaps most well-known for his conservative columns in the Washington Post, which have appeared in the paper since 1974.

Will is scheduled to deliver the fall 2012 keynote speech for the John C. Danforth Center on Religion & Politics at Washington University.

(via Flickr/Alternative Heat)

The National Science Foundation has awarded a local researcher $1.3 million to study the genetics of how corn plants take up nutrients.

The ultimate goal is to reduce the amount of fertilizer needed to grow the ubiquitous crop.

Ivan Baxter, a U.S. Department of Agriculture research scientist and assistant member at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, will lead the research.

Flickr/ChrisEaves.com

Quinn and lawmakers reach deal on state facilities

A budget deal reached among Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and lawmakers will save seven state facilities and the jobs at those locations, at least for now.  The plan won General Assembly approval Tuesday.  Quinn had targeted a handful of developmental centers, prisons and psychiatric hospitals for shutdown after the legislature failed to provide enough money to keep them operating. 

Quinn’s budget director, David Vaught, says the deal to shift money in the budget is a better solution…

Courtesy Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon was in St. Louis again Tuesday touting the state's growing biotech sector and says a new package of economic incentives will continue to bring more hi-tech jobs to the state.

Nixon was in St. Louis County to welcome SyMyCo, the latest tenant of BRDG Park, the research and development wing of the Danforth Plant Science Center.

The company's President Mike Amaranthus says $1 million in quality jobs tax credits as well as a $250,000 low-interest loan were a key part of their decision to locate in Missouri.

(Donald Danforth Plant Science Center)

An event starting Monday at the Danforth Plant Science Center is looking to match up investors with emerging agricultural technology companies from across the globe.

The third annual Ag Innovation Showcase will draw international venture capitalists and corporate agricultural investors like Monsanto, Syngenta and Dupont.

Showcase organizer Mark Gorski says sixteen agricultural start-ups from the Netherlands, India, and a number of other countries will be vying for their attention.

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