February 26-28, 2018
North Carolina, USA

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Speakers

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Jane Fife
CSO
3Bar Biologics

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

16.00 | Panel Discussion: Formulation, The Secret “Art” of Transitioning a Promising Laboratory Result into a Commercially Viable Product

Bruce Caldwell
CEO
3Bar Biologics

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

17.05 | Panel Presentation: Advancing Science, Machinery and Technology to Increase Grower Adoption of Microbial Products

Roy Chen
Formulation Team Lead
ADAMA US

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

16.00 | Panel Discussion: Formulation, The Secret “Art” of Transitioning a Promising Laboratory Result into a Commercially Viable Product

Rebekah Kelly
Trait Discovery Lead
AgBiome

Rebekah Deter Kelly is a Molecular Biologist at AgBiome. Rebekah began her career at Athenix where she worked in the MiDAS group, and in the Vectoring group. After working for 6 years at Athenix, she left to continue her education and received her M.S. in Plant Biology at University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana in 2012.

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

13.50 | Genomic Discovery Technology for Rapid Screening of New Trait Leads

Megan Lyman
Director, IP, Regulatory and Product Development
AgTech Accelerator

Megan Lyman brings experience in creating and supporting IP portfolios for entrepreneurs, small businesses, and Universities to AgTech Accelerator.  Starting her legal career at Jones Day, Ms. Lyman practiced in IP litigation and prosecution before opening her own practice.  With a focus in the life sciences, Ms. Lyman assists scientists and business people alike in determining a comprehensive IP strategy.  Her clients are guided from the initial stages of patent landscaping and freedom to operate, to patent prosecution, and through Inter Partes Review.  Ms. Lyman also provides IP diligence, licensing, and trademark support.  
Ms. Lyman obtained her B.S. in biology from Allegheny College, a Masters in molecular biology from the University of Colorado, and J.D. from Pepperdine University.

Workshop A

Monday 26th February 2018

09.00 |

Patentability of the Plant Microbiome: From Metagenomics to Consortia

Jade Stinson
Chief Scientific Officer
AgTech Accelerator

As CSO of AgTech Accelerator, Jade Stinson Ph.D brings to the company more than 10 years of Chemical Manufacturing, Technology Management and Product Launch Excellence experience. Dr. Stinson’s AgTech experience includes doctoral research and publications for the UK’s Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, combined with Technology Management and Head of Global Operations for BASF’s Professional and Specialty Solutions business.  As the Head of Global Operations Dr. Stinson provided Operations leadership for Manufacturing and Technology Management. Dr. Stinson managed selection of manufacturing sites, formulation technology, contract manufacturing and accelerated technology transfer from R&D.   Dr. Stinson holds a Ph.D in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Manchester, UK, an MBA from Manchester Business School, UK, an MS in Instrumentation and Analytical Science from The University of Manchester Institute for Science and Technology (UMIST), UK and an BS in Biomedical Science from the University of Sunderland, UK.

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

11.50 | Agtech Accelerator - Discovering and Developing Emerging Agricultural Technology Companies

Ramesh Venkatramesh
VP, Discovery Research
Agrinos

Mylavarapu Venkatramesh has more than three decades experience in plant pathology, soil microbiology, plant biochemistry and metabolic engineering, including 17 years leading biotechnology discovery research. Prior to joining Agrinos, Dr. Venkatramesh served as the New Technology Leader for the Seeds and Biotechnology Platform at Dow AgroSciences. He has also served in roles across engineering, project management and research and development functions at Exelixis Plant Sciences, Monsanto and Renessen. Dr. Venkatramesh received his Bachelors of Science from Bangalore University followed by a Masters of Science in Botany from Madras University and a Doctor of Philosophy in Botany from S.V. University. Dr. Venkatramesh came to the U.S. for postdoctoral research in plant biochemistry and biotechnology, which included a 2-year visiting scientist position in Germany through an Alexander Von Humboldt Foundation fellowship.

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

11.30 | Enhancing Crop Nutrition by Functional Design of Microbial Consortia

Ry Wagner
CEO
Agrinos

Douglas Ry Wagner joined Agrinos in 2013 from Dow AgroSciences, where he was a leader in New Projects and Technology. Before joining Dow, he spent 16 years in research and 10 years leading newly created companies. Dr. Wagner spent 3 years as a researcher in the Division of Plant Industry, CSIRO in Australia before joining the University of Oregon, where he was Professor of Biology. He then went on to business as Vice President of Plant Genetics & Biotechnology and as Director of Exelixis Plant Sciences. Dr. Wagner has a degree in botany and plant pathology from Michigan State University and a Ph.D. in genetics from the University of Washington.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

17.05 | Panel Presentation: Advancing Science, Machinery and Technology to Increase Grower Adoption of Microbial Products

Terry Stone
VP, Regulatory Affairs and Sustainability Programs
Agrinos

Terry Stone joined Agrinos as Vice President, Responsible for Regulations and Sustainability Programs in 2015. Stone brings more than 30 years of experience in plant biotechnology, regulations and sustainable agriculture to his position in Agrinos. As Vice President, Responsible for Regulations and Sustainability Programs, Mr. Stone directs all regulatory initiatives for Agrinos, working closely with regulatory agencies globally. Prior to joining Agrinos, Stone held leadership positions at Syngenta, The Scotts Company and Monsanto in matters of global regulation, biotechnology, sustainability and industry relations. He obtained a Master in Business Administration in International Business from the University of St. Louis.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

12.50 | Panel Discussion: Understanding the Regulation of Microbial Products to Support Future Agricultural Practice

Steven Vandenabeele
Chief Scientific Officer
Aphea Bio

Steven Vandenabeele holds a PhD in biotechnology (University of Ghent) and has more than 15 years of experience in plant biotech (VIB Department of Plant Systems Biology, Rockefeller University, BASF Plant Science). Steven has worked in the ag-biotech industry for 10 years: he worked at BASF Plant Science as a group leader Technology Management, as the coordinator for the high-throughput phenotyping platform, and most recently as research manager of the global rice yield project.  Serving in these functions, he has gained strong experience in people, process and project management.

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

13.30 | High-Throughput Microbial Extract Screening for the Discovery of Novel Biopesticides

Marcus Meadows Smith
CEO
BioConsortia

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

11.30 | High-Throughput Microbial Screening to Identify New Biologicals with Complementary Modes of Action

Adrian Duehl
Research Entomologist
Bayer Crop Science

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

10.00 | Panel Discussion: Demonstrating the Power of Microbials Through Effective Field Trial Design and Analysis

09.40 | Serenade as a Case Study: Bayer Steps Back into Microbials

Rob McBride
Co-Founder
Boost Biomes

Rob co-founded Boost Biomes, which began operations in January 2017, to commercialize an exciting new technology for engineering microbiomes. He has spent the last eight years in industry focused on leveraging the power of microbes to tackle key challenges. Prior to co-founding Boost Biomes, he was a Director at Triton Algae Innovations, a company focused on harnessing the power of microbes to catalyze the conversion of organic carbon into high value recombinant proteins for sustainable nutrition. Before Triton he was an Associate Director at Sapphire Energy, a leading algae biofuel start-up company focused on harnessing the power of microbes to catalyze the conversion of carbon dioxide into renewable fuel. He received his graduate and postdoctoral training in evolutionary microbiology at University of Houston and Yale University respectively.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

11.50 | Novel Approaches to Discovering Biosolutions for Agriculture

Richard Broglie
Research Director, Global R&D Strategy
Dupont Pioneer

Richard Broglie is a Research Director in Trait Discovery and Optimization at DuPont Pioneer.  He received his PhD in microbiology and was a postdoctoral fellow and Assistant Professor in the Laboratory of Plant Molecular Biology at The Rockefeller University.  He has led trait discovery programs for modified fatty acid profiles in soybean and canola oils and for pest resistance in corn, soybean, wheat, rice and sugarcane.  He served as Vice President of Research and member of the Board of Directors of InterMountain Canola, a joint venture between DuPont and DNA Plant Technology.  Rich has broad experience in international agriculture markets, and has worked in a wide range of economically important crops.  His most recent research involves the discovery and development of microbials that control soil borne pests and improve crop performance and yield.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

09.20 | Translating Microbial Complexity into Rational Products

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

10.00 | Panel Discussion: Demonstrating the Power of Microbials Through Effective Field Trial Design and Analysis

Kellye Eversole
Executive Director
International Alliance for Phytobiomes Research

K. Eversole is president of Eversole Associates, a full service consulting firm working with biotechnology & agricultural companies, NGOs, scientific societies, and governmental agencies. Eversole specializes in working at the triple helix of innovation; i.e., bringing academic, governmental, and industry entities together to produce agricultural solutions. K. Eversole has been at the forefront of international efforts to develop genome sequence enabled foundations for economically important agricultural plant, animal, & plant-associated microbial species and worked to ensure the rapid application of genomics tools in downstream breeding programs. K. Eversole currently serves as the executive director of the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium (www.wheatgenome.org), a public-private effort to sequence the most widely grown crop in the world. K. Eversole currently serves as a consultant for the AACC International (cereal chemists), the American Phytopathological Society, and the Specialty Crop Regulatory Assistance initiative. K. Eversole also serves as the chief S&T officer for IE-Strategic Crop Services, a small start-up IT company focused on developing mechanisms that will assist public-sector, SMEs, and specialty or niche market crop developers of genetically engineered crops to gain regulatory clearance for their crops. K. Eversole has more than 22 years of experience in the development and implementation of agriculturally-related strategic visions, roadmaps, & plans; scientific projects (from basic to applied); scientific training programs; and general scientific educational and advocacy initiatives. While headquartered in the US, K. Eversole has worked extensively at the international level, particularly in Europe.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

12.30 | From Simple to Complex – Phytobiomes and the 2050 Vision for Agriculture

Peter Christey
Co-Founder and CEO
General Automation Lab Technologies, Inc

Peter Christey has spent the last 20 years commercializing research instruments for a variety of applications. Before co-founding GALT, Christey led the DNA Sequencing Business Unit and DNA forensic product line for Life Technologies. He has also commercialized new products for Guava Technologies, Chiron Corporation and Applied Biosystems. Christey has a B.Sc. in biochemistry from the University of Otago, New Zealand, a Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Cambridge, England, and an M.B.A. from INSEAD, Fontainebleau, France.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

12.10 | Driving the Tidal Wave of Microbiome Discovery – a next Generation Platform for Exploring the Microbiome

Barry Goldman
Head of Discovery
Indigo

Barry Goldman is the Vice President and Head of Discovery at Indigo. Using novel computational, sequencing and laboratory technologies, he is responsible for identifying the microbes that enable Indigo’s first generation of products.
Barry brings more than 20 years of experience in agriculture and life sciences. Most recently, he was the Head of Microbial Discovery at Monsanto, where he was responsible for developing high-throughput pipelines for identifying bacteria that could be mined for genes of interest. Prior to this, Barry was the Head of Computational Biology at Monsanto where he led the integration of next generation sequencing data for decision making. He was also responsible for enabling the company to move research data analytics to a cloud-based platform. Barry holds PhD in Microbiology from the University of Utah. He has over 30 peer-reviewed publications as well as 8 patents. Having grown up in the Chicago area, Barry has finally reaped the rewards of being a third generation Cubs fan.  

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

09.00 | Plant-Microbiome Engineering to Influence Agricultural Practices

Eda Reinhot
VP, Head of Regulatory, Quality and Bioprocessing
Indigo

Eda's experience and expertise in the biologicals and specialty chemicals industry includes over 20 years of market-driven and customer-focused product development and commercialization globally and regionally, technology transfers, integration of acquisitions, leadership and organizational development, and work in technical, business, and trade organizations.
Eda lead global research and products development for Becker Underwood which was acquired by BASF in 2012. She was responsible for its BioStacked technology platform development and technical aspects of commercialization. At BASF Eda was responsible for Seed Solutions technologies integration, directing Seed Solutions developments in Americas and technical collaborations with strategic customers. Eda has lead collaborative initiatives with US EPA, Health Canada PMRA and participated in OECD working groups. She has served as a President and Board member of Association of Natural Biocontrol Producers. She is a Vice Chair of Board of Directors of Biopesticide Industry Alliance. Eda has MBA from Iowa State University College of Business and MS in Chemistry from Tartu University, Estonia.  

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

12.50 | Panel Discussion: Understanding the Regulation of Microbial Products to Support Future Agricultural Practice

Indigo Representative 3, Commercialization

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

17.05 | Panel Presentation: Advancing Science, Machinery and Technology to Increase Grower Adoption of Microbial Products

Aaron Waltz
Director, Field Trials and Nutrition
Inocucor

Dr. Waltz is an accomplished agronomist and agrotechnologist, with expertise in crop protection, plant breeding, transgenic traits and chemical manufacturing (adjuvants) with leading agriculture companies Exacto, Inc., DuPont Pioneer and American Cyanamid. During his nine years as a senior research manager at DuPont Pioneer, he led field evaluations and germplasm characterization for transgenic corn herbicide traits. Dr. Waltz grew up in rural Nebraska, working on his uncle’s corn, soybean, and farrow-to-finish hog farm. He holds M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Agronomy and Horticulture from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

10.00 | Panel Discussion: Demonstrating the Power of Microbials Through Effective Field Trial Design and Analysis

09.00 | Presentation Reserved: Please Check Back for Final Details

Tuval Ben-Yehezkel
CEO
Loop Genomics

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

14.30 | Next Generation Microbiome Profiling

Amit Vasavada
SVP, R&D and CTO
Marrone Bio Innovations

Dr. Amit Vasavada is the Sr. Vice President of R&D and Chief Technology Officer at Marrone Bio Innovations in Davis, California. He received his doctorate degree in Applied Microbiology from University of California, Davis. Since his doctoral training, he has been involved in Translational R&D, Process Development and Manufacturing of Bio-based products in Agriculture, Industrial and Pharmaceutical sectors. Prior to Marrone Bio Innovations, he gained valuable experience in biotechnology at industry leaders such as Monsanto, Chiron (Novartis), and Diversa over the last 30 years. His experience spans utilization of native and recombinant microbes such as yeasts, bacteria, fungi and microalgae for the production of commercially relevant products. Currently, he leads Marrone BioInnovations’ R&D efforts to discover, develop and deliver smart, natural and sustainable biological pesticides and plant health products as part of the integrated pest management programs for Agriculture.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

17.50 | From Freezers to Farm: Advancing Biological Assets to Farm-ready IPM Solutions

Adil Anjem
Pipeline and Innovation Lead
Monsanto

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

14.45 | Presentation Title To Be Confirmed

Maggie Wagner
NSF Posdoctoral Fellow
NC State University

Maggie Wagner earned her Ph.D. in Genetics and Genomics in 2016 from Duke University, where she researched how microbiomes influenced the evolution of a wild perennial mustard species and vice versa. She is now a NSF Plant Genome Postdoctoral Fellow based at NC State University, studying how various breeding strategies interact with the maize microbiome.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

10.00 | Patterns and Consequences of Breeding-Induced Microbiome Variation in Maize

Manuel Kleiner
Assistant Professor
NC State University

Manuel Kleiner joined NC State in August 2017 as a Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program cluster hire in Microbiomes and Complex Microbial Communities. Kleiner, an assistant professor in the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, studies the metabolism, physiology, and evolutionary ecology of microbial symbioses and uncultured microorganisms. He also develops new mass spectrometry-based methods (metaproteomics) to characterize the physiology and metabolism of large numbers of species in complex microbial communities.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

15.05 | Assessing Metabolism and Interspecies Interactions in Microbial Symbioses and Microbial Communities via Metaproteomics

Jacob Parnell
Senior Scientist
Novozymes

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

10.00 | Panel Discussion: Demonstrating the Power of Microbials Through Effective Field Trial Design and Analysis

09.20 | Successful Field Trial Strategy and Analytics for Improved Microbial Understanding

Todd Leister
Agronomy Lead
Novozymes

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

17.05 | Panel Presentation: Advancing Science, Machinery and Technology to Increase Grower Adoption of Microbial Products

Michael Barnhart
Scientist II
Novozymes

Dr. Michael Barnhart is a microbiologist with Novozymes, specializing in bacterial-plant interactions and bacterial genetics. He works in Durham, NC within the Monsanto/Novozymes BioAg Alliance working on application development of potential inoculants.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

16.45 | Following Microorganisms in Furrow and Field

Mariola Kopcinski
Director, Scientific Alliances
Plant Health Care

Dr. Mariola Kopcinski worked in the US and Europe in research, strategic marketing, business management, new business development and licensing.  She successfully led multinational and cross-functional teams in AgBio area to transform a product concept to a well-defined post harvest business of over $100MM.  Leadership role in turning around declining $200MM fungicides product portfolio into $350MM in less than three years.  R&D Strategy Development at two major agricultural companies, DuPont and Syngenta.  AgChem and Biological Product Development and Portfolio Management at FMC.  Currently leading efforts for development and licensing of biological peptides, plant elicitors, at Plant Health Care, AgBiological and Biostimulants start up company.   Member of Credentials Advisory Council, Sustainability Institute at AICHE, Chairman of Sustainability Body of Knowledge Team for AICHE certification and CSTP, member of IFS Managing Board.   Ph.D. and M.S. in plant pathology and biochemistry in Seed Biocontrol, post-doctoral from Cornell University in biocontrol, MBA in finance from the University of Rochester.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

12.50 | Panel Discussion: Understanding the Regulation of Microbial Products to Support Future Agricultural Practice

Day Two

Wednesday 28th February 2018

13.10 | Using Peptides to Contribute to Fungicide and Nematicide Programs

Gabriel Castrillo
Postdoctoral Researcher, Dangl Lab
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

09.40 | Determining Microbial Contributions to Plant Phosphate Accumulate Phenotypes Using Controlled Simplified Communities

Mustafa Morsy
Professor of Biology
University of West Alabama

Mustafa Morsy is an Associate Professor in the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences at the University of West Alabama (UWA). He received his PhD from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. Following Post-Doctoral work at the University of Nevada, Reno, and the Samuel Robert Noble Foundation, he joined the faculty of UWA. Morsy laboratory at UWA investigates the role of fungal symbionts in increasing plant growth and adaptation to various environmental stress.

Day One

Tuesday 27th February 2018

10.20 | Can a Single Fungal Endophyte Improve Crop Productivity and Stress Tolerance?