LeTourneau Lectureship: Richard Sayre Speaks About Plant Biotechnology

Thursday, November 12 2009 at 12:30 PM


Richard Sayre, director of the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Institute for Renewable Fuels and director of BioCassava Plus at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Mo., will speak about plant biotechnology during a lecture on Thursday, Nov. 12, at 12:30 p.m. His presentation is titled "The Promise of Plant Biotechnology: Innovations for Global Health and Renewable Energy." It is part of the 15th annual LeTourneau Memorial Lectureship, which brings to campus internationally known speakers in plant biology who conduct research with significant impact on science and society. The lecture is in Life Sciences Building Room 277 and is free and open to the public.

Sayre is one of the nation's leading researchers in plant biotechnology. His past research project with BioCassava was funded with grants --more than $12 million--from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and is aimed at alleviating hunger and malnutrition in Africa. His current research on renewable fuels is supported by a $25 million grant from Enterprise Rent-A-Car and a $15 million grant from the U.S. Dept. of Energy. Sayre was formerly a Distinguished Professor and chair of the Department of Plant Cellular and Molecular Biology at Ohio State University.

The LeTourneau lectureship was established in 1987 by Duane and Phyllis LeTourneau to honor his parents and to promote the understanding of advances in plant biology. Duane LeTourneau retired as a professor of biochemistry and chemistry in 1991 after a 38-year career of teaching and research at Idaho.

Lecture co-sponsors include the University of Idaho Department of Microbiology, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry and the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.