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CAFNR Research Digest
CAFNR Office of Research Newsletter // May 9, 2019
Message from the Interim Associate Dean for Research
 (click to read)

It’s my pleasure to announce the formation of the CAFNR Research Council (CRC), an advisory body for the CAFNR Office of Research. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the following colleagues who have graciously agreed to serve CAFNR in this important role. They plan to elect a chair at the next meeting and work on the CRC charter and bylaws over the next several months. I look forward to working with CRC very closely as we implement the CAFNR Strategic Plan and drive CAFNR research enterprise to distinction.

  • Anna Ball, Professor, Division of Applied Social Sciences
  • David Davis, Superintendent, Forage Systems Research Center
  • Felix Fritschi, Professor, Division of Plant Sciences
  • Scott Gerlt, Senior Research Associate, Division of Applied Social Sciences
  • Frank Johnson, Doctoral Student, School of Natural Resources
  • Mengshi Lin, Professor, Division of Food Systems and Bioengineering
  • Tony Lupo, Professor, School of Natural Resources
  • Allison Meyer, Assistant Professor, Division of Animal Sciences
  • Benjamin Spears, Postdoctoral Fellow, Division of Plant Sciences
  • Jack Tanner, Professor, Division of Biochemistry

Thank you!

Shibu Jose
Interim Associate Dean for Research
Interim Director, MO Agricultural Experiment Station

Research Highlights
Spencer Elected to National Academy of Sciences (click to read)
Spencer Elected to National Academy of Sciences »

Curators Distinguished Professor of Animal Sciences is 10th MU faculty member elected to prestigious academy

DNA Day (click to read)
DNA Day »

In this feature from “DNA Day,” Wes Warren, professor of animal sciences and investigator at the Bond Life Sciences Center, shares insight on this discovery

Agricultural Research Centers
Thompson Research Center (click to read)
Thompson Research Center »

For years, the Thompson Research Center, near Spickard, Mo., has been home to a very defined breeding plan for its straightbred, commercial Angus cattle herd. That plan contains a variety of objectives, including reproductive and genetic goals. With the strong success of that plan, a team from the University of Missouri Division of Animal Sciences is looking to expand and bring cattle breeding plans to several more MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources’ Agricultural Research Centers. Read more >>

Graduate Student Spotlight
Christine Sanders, Applied Social Sciences (click to read)
Christine Sanders, Applied Social Sciences

What is your research focus?
I am a PhD student in CAFNR’s Division of Applied Social Sciences (DASS), with a research emphasis on the sociology of sustainability. I am interested in the sustainability programs of large organizations with urban-rural networks — specifically how these firms are responding to and involved with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals agenda, how technology is being relied upon by the firms in these efforts, and how the firms’ workforces in local communities of operation are being engaged in the process.

Why does this field interest you?
To give you a short answer to a very complex question, it’s part of my past (organizational systems) and of course everyone’s future (sustainability)! I’ve had the privilege of working in industries with urban-rural operations and the dynamics and modes of engagement across them are very intriguing. This is the foundation of my interest in operational sustainability within and across firms. My broader interest in sustainability comes from a combination of having an agricultural background, a career spanning food, performance goods manufacturing and commodity-linked financial services, and a general belief that we all share the planet and have a responsibility to care for it. So, why shouldn’t we work together to combat shared threats such as climate change and preserve it for future generations? And the data is there – industry can/should be active partners in such endeavors and work closely with the communities they operate in to do so. I want to assist with their plans.

Why did you decide to come to Mizzou?
I picked Mizzou because of the Rural Sociology/Sustainable Development program in DASS/CAFNR. It offered the subject matter expertise and faculty I wanted to work with for my personal development and research journey. And because I live in Kansas City and was born and raised in central Missouri. Go Tigers!

Who is your advisor?
I have co-advisors, Dr. Hua Qin and Dr. Mary Hendrickson. They are fantastic!

What are your future career plans?
I’m completely open to possibilities regarding a future career path. It’s my priority objective to become a great researcher, spend as much time as possible with key mentors and the literature on sustainability, then see where the road takes me. And, of course, I want to work on sustainability programs and policy.

Research Roars

CAFNR faculty members have received the following recent grants (listed by Principal Investigator):

Thomas W. Bonnot, Development of Landscape Health Index (LHI) for Missouri Priority Geographies, 4/15/2019 – 6/20/2021, $46,000, US Geological Survey

Kevin W. Bradley, Monsanto Service Order #101, 3/15/2019 – 3/14/2020, $6,650, Monsanto

Kevin W. Bradley, Investigating Dicamba Movement and Injury to Soybean, 3/1/2019 – 2/28/2020, $40,000, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Kevin W. Bradley, Off-setting Herbicide Resistance: Future Weed Control Options for Missouri Soybean Production, 3/12/2019 – 3/11/2020, $31,500, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Michael Chapman, Adeno-Associated Virus Gene Therapy Vectors: Molecular Interactions on Cell Entry, 8/1/2018 – 7/31/2019, $120,224, NIH National Institute of General Medical Science

Pengyin Chen, Breeding Productive, Pest Resistant, Conventional and Herbicide Tolerant Group IV and V Soybeans, 7/1/2019 – 6/30/2020, $387,500, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Michael Gold, Tree Improvement Program, 7/1/2018 – 6/30/2019, $16,500, Missouri Department of Conservation

Matthew C. Lucy, Functional Significance Of Growth Hormone Receptor Promoters, 4/15/2019 – 4/14/2023, $499,938, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Henry Nguyen, Isolation and Characterization of Novel Resistance Genes for Sustainable Control of Soybean Cyst Nematodes, 4/15/2019 – 4/14/2021, $455,000, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Kevin Rice, Monitoring System Using Sticky Traps for Multiple Stink Bug Species, 4/1/2019 – 3/31/2020, $8,775, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Andrew M. Scaboo, Characterizing Value-Added QTL from Wild Soybean for Enhancement of Germplasm Resources, 7/1/2019 – 6/30/2020, $65,000, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Andrew M. Scaboo, North Missouri Soybean Breeding Program, 7/1/2019 – 6/30/2020, $457,500, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Andrew M. Scaboo, Utilizing Molecular Markers for Soybean Variety Development, 7/1/2019 – 6/30/2020, $100,000, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council

Thomas Spencer, Exosomes/microvesicles: Novel Mediators of Conceptus-Maternal Interactions, 1/15/2016 – 1/14/2021, $50,000, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Provided by the MU Office of Research

In the News

Hunting for morel mushrooms? Watch out for flooding.
Columbia Missourian

MU professor Thomas Spencer elected to National Academy of Sciences
Columbia Missourian

Next-Gen Pig Farmers Challenged to Share Their Story
Farm Journal’s Pork

US farmers count cost of catastrophic ‘bomb cyclone’ in midwest
The Guardian

Bee crisis: Pollinators endure countless threats in Florida
The Sacramento Bee

Earth Day challenge for gardeners: Don’t poison bees
CBS News

Featured Photo

Bond Life Sciences Center hosted the Spring Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievements Forum Tuesday, April 23. CAFNR students participating included Lacy Fitzpatrick, who presented her research on CAFNR student organizations.