Seed Science & Technology

Webinar Schedule


Greg Lamka, PhD

Greg Lamka has over 40 years experience in the seed industry. During the first half of his career he was employed at several small seed companies and then spent 22 years at DuPont Pioneer before retirement. He acquired domestic and international experience through the multiple positions held: soybean seed production manager. . .


Phytosanitary Certification for International Seed Movement:
Past and Future

The importance of seed movement across international borders continues to increase as food systems evolve to strengthen global food security. Greg Lamka and Gary Munkvold will discuss phytosanitary regulatory systems and how they are adapting to the increasing volume and frequency of seed shipments. Certifying the phytosanitary safety of seed shipments depends on national regulatory systems and international agreements on phytosanitary standards. Regulatory systems have evolved to manage the growth and complexity of the modern seed supply system, employing accreditation programs that involve collaboration among national plant protection organizations, state agencies, the seed industry, and academia. We will discuss the status of current agreements and regulatory systems and the development of new regulatory frameworks on a global scale.

Gary Munkvold, PhD

Gary P. Munkvold is Professor of Plant Pathology at Iowa State University (ISU), specializing in Seed Pathology. He holds a PhD from the University of California, Davis, and he has worked for more than 20 years in research, extension, and teaching in the Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology. . .


Seed Health Testing to Meet New Phytosanitary Challenges

The importance of seed movement across international borders continues to increase as food systems evolve to strengthen global food security. Gary Munkvold and Charlie Block will discuss how appearance of new or re-emerging seed-borne pathogens causes challenges for certifying the phytosanitary safety of seed shipments. The safe movement of seeds relies heavily on seed health testing programs. We will discuss seed health testing methods and challenges, and we will delve into several examples of how testing programs have responded to changing pathogen populations and phytosanitary regulations.


Kan Wang, PhD

Professor Kan Wang graduated with her BS in Biochemistry from Fudan University in Shanghai, China. She was sponsored first by the Chinese government then by the Rockefeller Foundation to conduct graduate study under the supervision of Drs. Marc Van Montagu (2013 World Food Prize Laureate) and late Jeff Schell in . . .


CRISPR Genome-Editing as a
Modern B
reeding Technology:
How do we do it?

Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated (Cas) protein system is a revolutionary tool for precise genome editing. It can be used for targeted mutagenesis, precise sequence modification, transcriptional reprogramming, epigenome editing, and many more. In this webinar, we will review the mechanism and process of crop genome editing. We will compare the CRISPR technology with conventional breeding, marker-assisted breeding and GMO technologies. Finally, we will discuss the recent changes in USDA regulation on bioengineered plants and its implication for future sustainable agriculture and seed improvement.

Keri Carstens, PhD

Dr. Keri Carstens is Global Crop Protection Regulatory Strategy Leader at Corteva Agriscience. In this role, Keri leads the global team of experts responsible for regulatory strategy development and implementation for Corteva’s crop protection businesses. She also leads . . .


Plant Biotechnology Regulations:
Past and Future

Keri Carstens and Greg Lamka present an overview of the requirements for a new plant biotechnology event before it becomes deregulated and released into the commercial market. USDA-APHIS is updating these requirements through the SECURE program which will be implemented over the next year.


Stephen Smith, PhD

Dr. Smith (B.Sc. University of London), M.Sc. (Conservation of Plant Genetic Resources) and Ph.D. (Evolution of Maize), University of Birmingham (England). Research interests include genetic diversity, issues related to germplasm access and benefit sharing, use of morphological and molecular data for variety identification, . . .


Revolutions and Changes Underpinning Improved Crop Production:
Are we equipped for the future?

The most fundamental and earliest biotechnological innovation was the domestication and spread of cultivated plant species, a process that began some 8-10,000 years ago independently at several locations globally. Further revolutions had to wait millennia but soon followed upon the rediscovery of Mendel’s Laws in 1900. The discovery of the structure of the DNA molecule in 1953 then set the stage. . .

Dave Langer, MS

Dave Langer has 34 years of experience in the seed industry. His career spanned many roles at Pioneer Hi-Bred Int., Inc. including 17 years in seed production and 17 years in research. In seed production roles included production research (maximize yield, optimize quality), quality assurance (procedures to ensure quality, testing and interpretation), . . .


New Plant Science Technologies: What does it mean to Seed Companies and their Customers?

New technologies provide great opportunities along with some challenges. A seed company’s goal is to provide products that enable customers to be successful. These same seed companies need to create a profit so they can invest in research to develop superior products. We will discuss how seed companies address these challenges in today’s world of ever-increasing sophisticated technology and complexity.


Alan Gaul, MS

Alan Gaul is the seed conditioning specialist at the Iowa State University (ISU) Seed Science Center. He is a northeast Iowa native and a graduate of the ISU Agricultural Engineering program.  His experience includes student work with the ISU Ag Engineering grain quality program and later with the ISU Seed Science Center.  Subsequent work included 22 . . .


Optical Sorting:
Current Technology vs. Traditional Separation Techniques

Review of current optical sorting technology and recent developments, with a primary focus on visible spectrum seed applications and common process flow configurations. Discussion of the relative advantages of alternative technologies, including a comparison with some traditional sorting machinery for typical applications.


Mike Stahr, MS

Michael “Mike” Stahr has been manager of the Iowa State University Seed Laboratory since July 2007. He started working for the Seed Lab in 1979 as a student seed analyst and started working full time in 1981. Mike has worked in all sections of the Seed Lab and a few in the rest of the Seed Science Center (Purity, Germination, . . .


Lab Testing to Reflect Current Needs:
Industrial Hemp and Cover Crops

The cover crop program of NRCS and the wide usage of products from industrial hemp have resulted in seed lab customers less familiar with tests required for sale and use of their seeds. Hemp has been tested since the early 1900’s, but testing beyond purity and germination testing is needed today. Cover crops might only require a warm germination test, but their use or sale may require additional testing. This session examines which tests are needed and briefly looks at how those tests are conducted.

Susana Goggi, PhD

Susana Goggi is a seed physiologist with more than 25-years’ experience in seed research, teaching, and seed industry service and outreach at Iowa State University. She joined the Department of Agronomy faculty in January of 2000, after a 6-years term as Manager of the ISU Seed Testing Lab and 4-year term as a Post-Doc . . .


Interaction Between Seeds and Their Environment

In this webinar, Dr. Goggi will discuss the changes in seeds as they develop and mature in the plant, the steps orthodox seeds (most crop and horticultural seeds) undergo to survive dehydration. We will also evaluate the environmental conditions that accelerate or decelerate seed deterioration and death during seeds’ dry state, and learn how different levels of seed deterioration affect seed germination and regrowth under favorable and unfavorable environmental growing conditions. We encourage discussion and questions during this learning session.