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Effects of nutrition and ultrasound imaging on the cardiovascular system.

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
180 Bevier Hall

Brendon Smith, Nutritional Sciences Graduate Student - "Effects of nutrition and ultrasound imaging 
on the cardiovascular system."


Students Only – External Advisory Committee/Graduate Student Forum

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Bevier Commons

Students Only – External Advisory Committee/Graduate Student Forum, Commons -Bevier Hall


Where We Came From, and What We Think We’re Doing

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
180 Bevier Hall

Kyle Galbraith, Manager, Human Subject Protection office, Carle Foundation Hospital – IRBs: “Where 
We Came From, and What We Think We’re Doing

Destructive diseases of soybean: Sudden death syndrome and white mold observed in Illinois

Published August 29, 2014
A bluish-white mass of spores of the SDS fungus (Fusarium virguliforme) on a soybean root. Photo by Carl Bradley.

URBANA, Ill. - Signs and symptoms of a few soybean diseases have begun to show up in some areas of the state over the last few weeks, and two of these diseases, sudden death syndrome (SDS) and Sclerotinia stem rot (white mold), are likely to cause economic losses in some growers’ fields this year, said a University of Illinois plant pathologist.

Carl Bradley explained that symptoms of SDS that currently are being observed include interveinal chlorosis and necrosis of the leaves (veins remain green while the tissues between the veins turn yellow and then brown). “These symptoms look exactly like the foliar symptoms caused by a different disease, brown stem rot.  Brown stem rot, however, causes internal browning of the pith in soybean stems while SDS does not affect soybean stems,” he said.

On SDS-affected plants, the leaves will fall off eventually, while the petioles will remain attached to the stems and branches. In some cases, Bradley said, a bluish-white mass of spores of the SDS fungus (Fusarium virguliforme) may be observed on the roots. 

“Although the foliar symptoms of SDS are now being observed, infection by the SDS fungus occurred during the seedling stage, not long after planting. The symptoms that are now being observed are the effect of toxins that the SDS pathogen produces that are phytotoxic,” he said.

Cool and wet weather after planting along with recent rainfall received in parts of the state have been favorable for infection and disease development and are the reasons that SDS incidence is high in some areas this year, Bradley explained.

“The primary method of managing SDS is to choose the most resistant soybean varieties available. Some evidence has shown that high soybean cyst nematode (SCN) egg populations may also increase the likelihood of severe SDS; therefore, managing SCN populations through resistant varieties and crop rotation may also reduce the risk of SDS,” he said.  

White mold has also been observed in fields located in the northern half of Illinois this year. “The appearance of this disease also is weather-related. Areas in the northern half of the state that were cooler and wetter than normal after soybean plants began to flower are the areas that are affected the most severely,” Bradley said.

“Unfortunately, once white mold signs and symptoms are detected in the field, fungicide applications generally will be futile as the damage has already been done,” he added.

Bradley said that growers with severe levels of white mold may encounter some discounts at the elevator this year for high levels of foreign matter. “Some sclerotia (dark survival structures produced by the white mold fungus – Sclerotinia sclerotiorum) that are formed on plants may be similar in size to the seed, and will make their way to the hopper and eventually the elevator, where discounts may be received,” he explained.

Management of white mold was discussed in an article on The Bulletin website earlier this year (

Additional Images:

Did we miss the boat on corn plant population in 2014?

Published August 28, 2014

URBANA, Ill.  – Though some growers may be wondering if they took full advantage of this year’s high-yielding conditions, a University of Illinois crop scientist said data does not necessarily show that increasing plant population would have made for bigger yields this year.

“Did we all miss the boat by planting ‘only’ 35,000 or so seeds per acre  this year? Fortunately, we have data to answer this question,” said Emerson Nafziger.

“Since 2011, we have been running trials at a dozen sites around Illinois in which we plant six to eight hybrids at a range of populations, including planting rates of 34,000 and 42,000. Plant counts show that actual stands are very close to planted populations,” he said.

Over 277 comparisons from the past three years show that the difference in yield between these two populations was only about a tenth of a bushel, and Nafziger said there was no indication that the response got larger as yield level increased.

“In fact, the line drawn through the points shows slightly lower yield differences as yield level increased,” he said.

At yield levels less than 150 bushels per acre, Nafziger said that 42,000 plants yielded 9 bushels more than 34,000 plants, with a range of -62 to +48 bushels. At yields above 250 bushels per acre, 42,000 plants yielded a half bushel less than 34,000 plants, and the range was -24 to +24 bushels.

“This reinforces what many of us know – that low-yielding conditions tend to make yield less consistent, with more differences due to factors like hybrid stress tolerance water-holding capacity within fields,” he said.

Nafziger said that these data give no support to the idea that a corn crop planted at populations in the mid-30,000 range is incapable of taking full advantage of high-yielding conditions. He added that the data also confirm that risks of having populations too high for the conditions increases when there are not conditions for high yields.

“Because we don’t know what conditions will be at the beginning of the season – the 2012 season started off great and would have been a good season to raise populations at planting, but with very negative outcomes as conditions stayed very dry – it makes no sense to push populations above 40,000 in hopes that we’ll get the weather to make this pay off. In fact, the response of yield to population tends to be fairly flat over the range of the lower to the upper 30,000s, regardless of yield level or conditions,” he said.

Nafziger added that there are occasional yield increases ranging from the lower to upper 30,000s. “The 2014 growing season has been so outstanding that this could be one of those times. But such increases tend to be modest, and they don’t always pay for the additional seed,” he said. “Today, it takes nearly a bushel of added yield to pay for 1,000 more seeds. While responses of this size are possible, they are not common at population levels that most producers already use.”

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New web-based decision tools for dairy producers

Published August 28, 2014

URBANA, Ill. – In place of milk price and revenue support programs, the 2014 Farm Bill has created the Margin Protection Program for Dairy Producers (MPP), allowing a dairy operator to self-select coverage options to protect the farm against declines in national average production margins. A web-based decision support tool and companion educational materials have been developed to help dairy operators make key coverage decisions for both the MPP and the Livestock Gross Margin-Dairy (LGM-Dairy) insurance program.

The tool can be found at: and

Researchers at the University of Illinois led the National Coalition for Producer Education (NCPE) to develop the tools along with the USDA Farm Service Agency and the National Program on Dairy Markets and Policy (DMaP-

“The MPP decision tool is designed with farmers in mind,” said U of I agricultural economist John Newton. “Tool users need only input their milk production history, and then in just four clicks of a mouse, farmer-specific MPP registration forms can be generated.” Newton said that the tool is also optimized to run on a wide platform of electronic devices.

“With the MPP decision tool, dairy farmers can use farm-specific milk production variables in conjunction with daily CME Group futures prices as part of the consideration for coverage-level choices under MPP and LGM-Dairy,” Newton said.

“To highlight the strategic thinking that needs to occur during the registration and coverage modification process, dairy farmers using the MPP decision tool have the ability to analyze historical U.S. milk and feed prices,” Newton said. “This feature is for research purposes only, but provides the opportunity for dairy farmers to go back in time to determine how MPP would have worked as a risk management instrument had it been in place during prior years.”

Newton said that for dairy operators who would like to use their own expectations of milk, feed, and margin price risk, the MPP decision tool will soon include an advanced interface that will allow dairy operations to self-select all 48 milk and feed prices to determine how MPP may function to smooth dairy production margins.

“Another helpful feature is that when dairy operators use the MPP decision tool, with one click of the mouse they can easily toggle between the MPP web tool and the LGM-Dairy Analyzer ©, which they can use to examine forthcoming insurance contract offerings and anticipated premium costs,” Newton said. 

In partnership with NCPE, DMaP will host five Train-the-Trainer workshops across the United States, including one on Sept. 11 in Chicago.

For more information and educational material, visit and .





News Source:

John Newton, 217-300-1051