The American Phytopathological Society, in cooperation with related organizations, will present the 2009 National Soybean Rust Symposium, Dec. 9-11, in New Orleans.

The symposium is a national forum at which knowledge acquired during the first five years of soybean rust research will be discussed and strategic plans for research and response in future years will be defined.

Leaders representing the soybean commodity through the Iowa Soybean Association, North Central Soybean Research Program, United Soybean Board, Certified Crop Advisors, industry, numerous soybean pathologists from land grant universities across the South and Midwest, and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, as well as representation from Canadian counterparts from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, have worked closely with APS to plan this symposium.

In November 2004, soybean rust was discovered in the continental United States for the first time in a 5-acre production soybean field on a research farm near Baton Rouge, La.

In 2009, soybean rust was found earlier in the season than it has been in previous years and at higher levels in several locations across the southern United States.

APS held the first National Soybean Rust Symposium in 2005 and has been a leader in organizing and disseminating information on this critical disease in the years that followed.

Questions still remain on the future of soybean rust and the 2009 National Soybean Rust Symposium will gather stakeholders in one place to learn of new breakthroughs, progress on initiatives, and key issues for the future.

The symposium program will feature presentations and discussions for scientists and practitioners on such topics as the status of soybean rust in the United States, as well as poster viewing and sessions on challenges in the 2010 sentinel plot system; advances in monoclonal antibody development; wheat rust/soybean rust similarities; prediction of yield loss from soybean rust; alternative methods to manage soybean rust, and more.

Online registration will remain open through Nov. 30. After that date, registration will be available onsite in New Orleans. To register, go to http://www.apsnet.org/online/sbr/register.aspx.

Poster abstracts must be submitted online by Oct. 31. Go to www.apsnet.org/online/sbr/subguidelines.aspx for submission guidelines and instructions.

Hotel reservations must be made by Nov. 10 in order to guarantee the discounted meeting rate at the Astor Crowne Plaza in New Orleans. After Nov. 10, all room reservations are subject to space and rate availability. Go to www.apsnet.org/online/sbr/hotel.aspx for complete housing information.

The American Phytopathological Society (APS) is a nonprofit, professional scientific organization. The research of the organization’s more than 5,000 worldwide members advances the understanding of the science of plant pathology and its application to plant health products.