The Pisum Genetics Association (PGA) is a non-profit, unincorporated organization established to foster genetic study of the pea, to facilitate the exchange of information and to ensure preservation of valuable genetic stocks. Pisum Genetics (formerly The Pisum Newsletter) is the principal means of meeting these aims. Published annually in one issue, Pisum Genetics contains reports of research finding and other information of interest to researchers studying the genus Pisum. The PGA currently has 115 members throughout the world. (A list of members is included as the final pages of this volume.)

Later this year, a supplement to volume 30 of Pisum Genetics containing an index to volumes 15-30 will be sent out to all members receiving volume 31.

Membership in the PGA is open to all interested persons and organizations. Dues are $15 U.S. per annum. These dues are used to help defray the costs of publishing and mailing Pisum Genetics. Members are encouraged to pay dues for two or more years to simplify bookkeeping. Members are also requested to send checks or bank drafts in U.S. currency only. Such efforts avoid bank charges, which can exceed $10.00 per check in some currencies. Please make checks payable to Pisum Genetics Association and send to Dr. N.F. Weeden, Department of Plant Sciences, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA. Pisum Genetics will be sent upon receipt of dues.

The move of our operations base to Montana State University is complete, and the editor is now on a PC-based system using Word 7.0. Unfortunately, both the layout and printing process proceed more efficiently using PageMaker. Hence, occasional changes in format of tables or figures will occur during the conversion of this material into PageMaker. Although no data are lost in this process, the presentation of the material may look different on the hard copy of Pisum Genetics compared to the electronic copy maintained by Dr. Serge Rozov at Novosibirsk, Russia.

The wonders of modern electronics and word processing programs have greatly simplified the handling of manuscripts. The editor wishes to thank the great majority of authors who submitted manuscripts electronically. Nearly all were submitted in Word, making them particularly easy to handle. The editor would also like to thank the reviewers of manuscripts in the volume, including Noel Ellis, Ian Murfet, Jim Myers, Neil Polans, Serge Rozov, and Gail Timmerman-Vaughan. The suggestion and correction made by the reviewers significantly improved the quality of the manuscripts, and both the editor and the authors greatly appreciate their efforts.

Manuscripts will continue to be accepted and processed in two formats, research papers and brief communications. Manuscripts submitted as research papers will be subjected to peer review and revision or rejection if not of the quality expected by Pisum Genetics. Such research papers should be written concisely, with a short introduction presenting the background to and aim of the study, a materials and methods section with essential details and references to techniques, a results section and discussion section interpreting the results and integrating findings with those of other workers. Section headings are not obligatory. Length should be kept under five journal pages, but longer papers will be considered on their merits. Such research papers must be treated similarly to submissions to other refereed journals in that they should contain original work not currently submitted to any other journal.

Brief communications are to encourage a rapid sharing of new results that may not meet the standards of a research paper (i.e., allelism tests not completed, map locations only approximate, experiments lacking an appropriate control). Brief communications will not be subjected to peer review, although the editor reserves the right to screen papers for appropriateness and to review submissions for clarity and brevity. Such submissions will be limited to approximately one page and should be narrowly focused. Otherwise, the format of brief communications (tables, references, etc.) should correspond to that of a research paper. Publication of a brief communication in Pisum Genetics should not preclude publication of a full paper on the same subject in a later issue or in another journal.

Other types of communications are also accepted. Review articles are usually obtained by invitation. However, the editor would welcome inquiries or suggestions regarding possible review topics. Abstracts may be submitted of work to be published elsewhere. Issues of interest to members may be discussed as a forum topic or raised as letters to the editor. Papers will not be rejected because the English is not fluent, but the meaning must be clear, the science sound and the presentation logical.

In August, in conjunction with the 22nd EUCARPIA Fodder Crops and Amenity Grasses meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia, Dr. Igor Tikhonovich hosted a conference entitled, “Pisum sativum L. —a Tool for Studying Plant–Microbe Interactions.” We are fortunate to be able to publish short papers from the presentations given at this workshop. This collection of papers provides a very current summary of our knowledge of the rapidly developing topic of symbiosis in pea. Much of the recent progress has been made by the several research groups in St. Peterburg and has yet to appear in western journals. Because the material arrived on the editor’s desk considerably past the deadline for manuscripts, they have been included with only minor editorial changes intended to help clarify the meaning. Readers are encouraged to contact the senior authors directly if there are ambiguities with regard to intended meaning. The authors have not been given the opportunity to correct the edited manuscripts, and the editor apologizes for any inaccuracies introduced by the changes.

The Coordinating Committee warmly welcomes Mr. Mike Ambrose to its ranks. Mike replaces Dr. Stig Blixt as the germplasm consultant on the committee. Dr. Blixt, one of the founding members of the PGA, stepped down this year after 30 years of service on the committee.

The linkage map of pea continues to develop (see the paper by Rozov et al. in the proceedings from the St. Peterburg conference) and researchers interested in the topic are encouraged to contact Dr. Noel Ellis, current map coordinator, with new information or questions. Dr. Ellis’ address is: John Innes Institute, Colney Lane, Norwish NR4 7UH, UK; fax 44 1603 507846; email:

Volume 30 of Pisum Genetics is now available electronically at The maintenance of this web site and the posting of each new volume of Pisum Genetics is solely due to the efforts of Dr. Serge Rozov and his staff. Special thanks to Serge and his crew who have to reformat much of the material from PageMaker back into Word to put it on the WWW. Serge also served as Associate Editor for Pisum Genetics, assembling and formatting the proceedings of the conference at St. Petersburg.

Members are reminded that Mike Ambrose is Coordinator of Gene Symbols and that those proposing new gene symbols please check with him as to the availability and appropriateness of the symbol. Mike’s address is: John Innes Institute, Colney Lane, Norwich NR4 7UH, UK; fax 44 1603 456844; email:

Dr. Ian Murfet is recovering from heart surgery to replace a damaged valve. We send him our best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Dr. W.K. Swiecicki’s father, Dr. Viktor Swiecicki, lupin breeder and geneticist, passed away last month. He will be sadly missed.

The financial report for the period Oct 1 1998 to Sep 30 1999 is presented below. The chair is happy to report that the Pisum Genetics Association is in excellent economic health, with sufficient funds in its US account to cover costs of printing and mailing of volume 31. The balance of funds held at Hobart will eventually be transferred to Bozeman, Montana, as certificates of deposit mature.

Hobart balance brought forward (AU$)
          Bank interest (net of duties and fees)
Total income



    Transfer of funds Hobart to Geneva, NY (US$1,500.00)
Total expenditures


Hobart balance as at September 30, 1999 (AU$)
    Commonwealth Bank a/c 767102.5002314
    Commonwealth Bank a/c 7104 5001 6807
    Cash on hand

Geneva balance brought forward (US$)
        Sale of back issues
        Bank interest
        Transfer from Hobart
Total income





    Cover drawing
    Printing costs
Total expenditures




Geneva balance as of September 30, 1999
    Savings Bank of the Finger Lakes a/c 01-11030029



N.F. Weeden, for the Coordinating Committee:

M. Ambrose F. Muehlbauer S. Rozov
N. Ellis I. Murfet W.K. Swiecicki
O. Kosterin J. Reid N. Weeden