This is his exit seminar. Borowiec received his doctorate in entomology in June, studying with major professor Phil Ward. He is now a postdoc in the lab of evolutionary biologist/ant specialist Christian Rabeling of Rochester, N.Y. The lab will be moving to Tempe, Ariz. in January.
"Ants are the world's most successful eusocial organisms." Borowiec says. "Long history, high species diversity, and extreme variety of life histories make them an excellent group in which many evolutionary questions can be addressed."
His research interests include phylogeny, taxonomy, biogeography, and natural history of ants. Before enrolling at UC Davis, Borowiec received his master's degree in 2009 from the Department of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Taxonomy, University of Wroclaw, Poland.
"My focus has been primarily on ant diversity and evolution and in my research I combine field work, morphology, molecular phylogenetics, and comparative methods," Borowiec says. "I am also interested in computing and phylogeny estimation from next-generation sequencing data."
His dissertation research at UC Davis focused on building a taxonomic and phylogenetic framework for the research on army ant evolution. "Although army ants include very charismatic species, they belong to a larger group, the subfamily Dorylinae," he noted. "In addition to the army ants, dorylines comprise many cryptic ants whose biology and even taxonomy have been neglected. Partly as a result of this, even phylogenetic relationships of the army ants are not well-understood. The first step to advancing evolutionary research in the group was thus to examine the morphological diversity within this lineage. This resulted in a generic revision of the subfamily, published open-access in ZooKeys. Expertise gained during this work allowed me to design robust taxon sampling for a phylogeny of the dorylines based on next-generation sequencing data (ultraconserved elements or UCEs), currently in preparation."
This was the inaugural meeting of the Grand Challenges in Entomology Initiative. ESA is committed to thinking and acting more globally, enhancing its influence by establishing a science policy program, identifying attainable challenges for entomology that could lead to sustainable solutions for some of the world's important insect-based problems, and more effectively communicating what entomologists do to improve the human condition. At the invitation-only Summit, the participants explored “three broad issues of major global importance to which entomology can make a unique and powerful contribution”:
- Sustainable agriculture – global hunger, food security, and natural resources preservation
- Public health related to vector-borne diseases
- Invasive insect species – global trade, biodiversity, and climate change
ESA president May Berenbaum, professor and department head, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Zalom welcomed the crowd.
Zalom co-chaired the Summit with
- Silvia Dorn, professor of applied entomology, ETH Zurich; past president of the Swiss Society of Phytomedicine; and fellow of the ESA, Royal Entomological Society, and International Society of Horticultural Sciences.
- Le Kang, director of the Institute of Zoology and president of Beijing Institutes of Life Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences; current president of the Entomological Society of China; and fellow of ESA and TWAS (formerly Third World Academy of Sciences)
- Antônio R. Panizzi, senior scientist, Embrapa and professor, Federal University at Curitiba; and former president of the Entomological Society of Brazil
- John Pickett, Michael Elliott Distinguished Research Fellow at Rothamsted Research; immediate past president of the Royal Entomological Society; and fellow of ESA and Royal Entomological Society
Introductory comments on behalf of the co-chairs emphasized that “leadership meetings such as this one provide an opportunity for connectivity among the world's entomology societies."
This was the very first International Entomology Leadership Summit at an ICE meeting. It was aimed at connecting leaders from the entomological community worldwide and discussing how entomologists "can make unique and powerful contributions toward solving some of the world's insect-based problems, a goal that can be achieved only through collaborative, international efforts," officials said. The last ICE meeting held in the United States (Washngton, D.C.) took place 40 years ago.
Chemical ecologist Walter Leal, distinguished professor in the UC Davis Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, co-chaired ICE 2016 with Alvin Simmons, research entomologist with the United States Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (USDA/ARS), U.S. Vegetable Laboratory in Charleston, South Carolina.
Leal said that 6,682 delegates from 102 countries attended the historical ICE 2016 meeting in Orlando. “Alvin and I were very glad to hear about the level of satisfaction: 87 percent,” Leal said, adding that "we worked very hard to prepare for the Congress and promised it would be a historic event: mission accomplished!”
The cover features a photo of feeding injury caused by the three-cornered alfalfa hopper, Spissistilus festinus. Last year the Zalom team hypothesized that the three-cornered alfalfa hopper could transmit the Grapevine red blotch-associated virus, GRBaV, based in part on phylogeneic analysis of coat protein sequences of 23 geminiviruses that revealed that GRBaV-CP was most similar to that of another geminivirus that was transmitted by another treehopper. Their research, published in the journal, confirmed that the alfalfa hopper “was able to both acquire the virus from a grapevine infested with GRBaV and transmit the virus to healthy grapevines in the laboratory.”
“In commercial vineyards, lateral shoots of grapevines girdled due to feed injury by the adult three-cornered alfalfa hopper also tested positive for the virus using digital PCR,” the scientists noted in their abstract. “These findings represent an important step in understanding the biology of GRBaV and develop management guidelines.”
The disease, first noticed in 2008 and attributed to a newly identified virus in 2012, is present in many major grape production regions of the United States and Canada. It can reduce fruit quality and ripening.
The research team consisted of Zalom, distinguished professor, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology; Sudarshana, USDA/ARS research biologist based at the UC Davis Department of Plant Pathology; Brian Bahder, then a postdoctoral researcher in the Zalom lab and now an assistant professor and insect vector ecologist with the University of Florida; and Maya Jayanth, then a student in the Sudarshana lab.
Zalom, a past president of the 7000-member Entomological Society of America, Sudarshana, and UC Cooperative Extension farm advisors Rhonda Smith and Lynn Wunderlich published a National Pest Alert on the Grapevine Red Blotch-associated virus earlier this year.
In the Pest Alert, Zalom noted that “red leaf symptoms that differed from other known red leaf diseases affecting grape foliage” were first noticed in red wine grape cultivars in Napa County, and subsequently in many other California grape growing counties as well.
“Leaf symptoms first appear approximately mid-summer; however, timing of symptom expression differs among grapevine cultivars and year,” Zalom wrote. “In red-fruited cultivars, common symptoms include red blotches originating from the leaf margin or within the leaf blade and primary and secondary veins that often turn red. In white fruit cultivars, symptoms appear as pale green to pale yellow patches.”
Zalom noted that symptoms usually start on basal leaves and progress up the shoot. In some cultivars, such as Chardonnay and Zinfandel, “marginal burning may occur similar to severe potassium deficiency. In some red-fruited cultivars such as Malbec and Mourvèdre, the entire blade may turn red by harvest.” Grapes produced on infected vines are characterizes by reduced brix and other changes that can seriously impact wine quality.
“Foliar symptoms are generally distinct from those of grapevine leafroll disease (GLD) early in the season, but leaf blade coloration may resemble those of GLD by late fall,” Zalom pointed out. “At this time, red blotch disease is not known to kill grapevines.” However, the effect of the virus infections on yield and fruit quality varies and no cure exists at this time.
For more information on the Grapevine Red Blotch-associated virus, access https://www.ncipmc.org/action/alerts/redblotch.pdf.
Three-cornered alfalfa hopper, Spissistilus festinus (Viticultural Information, UC Davis)
Phylogeny of Geminivirus Coat Protein Sequences and Digital PCR Aid in Identifying Spissistilus festinus as a Vector of Grapevine Red Blotch-Associated Virus. (Phytopathology journal)
See here also in PubMed U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health
Faculty and graduate students with the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology--and others associated with an ENT/NEM lab--got together for a retreat, held Friday, Oct. 14 through Sunday, Oct. 16 at Sagehen Creek Field Station in Truckee.
Doctoral candidate (and photographer) Sandy Olkowski shared some of her photos of the activities, including insect collecting and dinner preparation. She also took a photo of deer at the campsite.
The participants got to know one another and also enjoyed the natural areas around the field station.
Sagehen Creek Field Station in Truckee is approximately 2 hours from Davis. It also the site of Professor Phil Ward's popular "Bug Boot Camp."
Dr. Goodrow joined the environmental diagnostics group in the Entomology Department and participated in the inaugural UC Davis/National Institute of Environmental Sciences (NIEHS) Superfund Research and Training Program, an interdisciplinary program directed by Bruce Hammock, distinguished professor in the Department of Entomology and Nematology. The program was formed 30 years ago.
“Marvin was proud to have worked with Donald Cram who won the Nobel Prize in 1987,” Hammock recalled. “He carried out key organic chemistry for preparation of numerous immunoassays for pesticides and other environmental contaminants. He was an enthusiastic mentor of young scientists.”
In addition to his research with the Superfund Program, Goodrow worked with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Farm Worker Health Program.
“Marvin also provided support for the synthesis of soluble epoxide hydrolase inhibitors at the beginning of the urea project; his compounds were key for early SAR (structural-activity relationship) on sEH inhibition,” said Christophe Morisseau, a researcher in the Hammock lab.
Dr. Goodrow's family recalled that “he utilized his free time to pursue his passion as a research chemist at UC Davis, where he participated in a superfund research program.” His work was published in numerous professional journals, including the Journal of Organic Chemistry.
Born in San Fernando Valley on Sept. 27, 1930, Marvin received a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Pomona College, Claremont, and a doctorate in organic chemistry from UCLA. He served as a teaching assistant in organic chemistry at UCLA and an instructor at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. In 1964, he relocated to Modesto, and worked as a research chemist for Shell Development Company. In 1968 he joined the Modesto Junior College as a chemistry instructor, retiring in 1991.
Dr. Goodrow was a member of the American Chemical Society, Alpha Chi Sigma, a chemistry and engineering professional fraternity, and Phi Lambda Upsilon, a chemistry honor society.
He was the son of the late Cecil and Dorothy Goodrow, and husband of the late Virginia Goodrow. He is survived by his son and daughter, Jonathan and Elizabeth Goodrow;his brother, Richard Goodrow and numerous nieces and nephews
A funeral service was held Wednesday, Oct. 5, at Park View Cemetery, Manteca.