Olivera Plays Major Role in Wheat Rust Pathology Training

October 18, 2017

Plant Pathology Pablo Olivera Wheat Rust Training

Photo courtesy DGGW, Cornell University

Last month, Pablo Olivera visited Ethiopia to participate as a trainer at the Wheat Rust Pathology Training organized by the Delivering Genetic Gain in Wheat (DGGW) Project at Cornell University and the Ethiopian Institute for Agricultural Research (EIAR). In collaboration with local and international scientists, Pablo was involved in developing and implementing a five days theoretical and practical training on wheat rusts.

The Wheat Rust Pathology Training was held at Kulumsa and Debre Zeit National Research Centers in Ethiopia on September 18th – 22nd, and was offered to 20 wheat junior scientists coming from seven EIAR research centers. The purpose of the training was to provide trainees with experiential learning on methodologies for the study of the three wheat rust diseases; stem, leaf, and stripe rust.

Pablo Olivera Ethiopian Wheat Rust Training

Photo courtesy DGGW, Cornell University

The training was based on experiential (hands-on) learning. It emphasized laboratory, greenhouse, and field activities where trainees gained practical experiences in working with wheat rusts. Practice was complemented by classroom activities (lectures and group discussions) that provided trainees with theoretical foundations on the biology, ecology, epidemiology, diagnosis, and management of wheat rust diseases. During the five days of training, scientists learned and practiced the methodologies and protocols of 1) rust survey and sampling; 2) race identification; 3) germplasm evaluation at the seedling and adult stages; and 4) increase and storage of wheat rusts.

The Wheat Rust Pathology Training is one component of the DGGW talent pipeline that is focused on developing scientific capability in Ethiopia. From this training, five to six Ethiopian scientists will be selected to participate in a 4-week summer training that will be held on the St. Paul Campus in 2018. Pablo will be responsible for developing and implementing this training. Pablo will also participate in another 5-days training on wheat rusts that will be held in Ethiopia in 2019.