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CAFNR Research Digest
CAFNR Office of Research Newsletter // October 22, 2020 // 2(20)
Message from the Associate Dean

I’m continually impressed by the excellence of our faculty, staff and students. This spring, campus ramped down research, followed by a campus closure. Although we kept our AES farms and centers open, it essentially brought our campus research enterprise to a stop with only about 5% of our essential research personnel in labs. This small group of people, along with our AES staff, kept the animals, plants and cell lines alive and lab and field equipment running. Well, by the first week of May, we started allowing people to come back to labs, but in phases. As of July, we had nearly 43% of our researchers back to campus, and as of now the vast majority of research efforts in CAFNR are back up and running. And, this is a testament to the resiliency and resolve of our researchers in the face of a global pandemic.

There have been several bright spots during these challenging times and I would like to highlight two of them here. From April to June, during the height of COVID-19, proposal submissions to funding agencies increased 27% over the same three months last year. Although there were some initial delays in grant awards from some of the agencies, we started seeing a steady stream of awards in late summer. You will see some of them listed in this issue of the Digest. Finally, I also would like to draw your attention to the following graph showing the increasing trend of grant expenditures per research faculty FTE in our college, which is outstanding. CAFNR research enterprise is strong and together we will continue to make it stronger.

Thank you for everything you do for CAFNR,
Shibu Jose
CAFNR Associate Dean for Research 

 (click to read)
Feature Story
An Interdisciplinary Connection (click to read)
An Interdisciplinary Connection »

Tessa Jennings found a passion for plant sciences as a high school FFA student participating in career development events. That passion has continued to grow as a student at the University of Missouri – especially after being selected as a member of the Freshman Research in Plants (FRIPS) Program in 2018.

For the past two years, Jennings, a junior majoring in plant sciences, has worked in the lab of Antje Heese, an associate professor in the Department of Biochemistry.

Agricultural Research Centers
Staying Connected (click to read)
Staying Connected »

Virtual field days allow Agricultural Research Centers to continue outreach

Visit the links below to check out previous Agricultural Research Center Virtual Field Days.

Research Roars

Matthew Lucy Serves as Editor-in-Chief of New Journal

The first issue of JDS Communications, a new journal from the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA), is now available. Matthew Lucy, a professor in the Division of Animal Sciences, serves as the editor-in-chief of the new publication.

JDS Communications will offer a fresh and different publication option for dairy scientists,” Lucy said. “We are interested in high-quality research studies that are focused, hypothesis-driven and designed to answer a specific question on the production or processing of milk or milk products intended for human consumption.”

Read more at: Matthew Lucy Serves as Editor-in-Chief of New Journal

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

Stephen H. Anderson, DEAD ZONES: COMPARISON OF SOIL CHARACTERISTICS TO HELP EXPLAIN POOR TREE GROWTH, 9/9/2020-12/31/2023, $35,000, Forest Service

Stephen H. Anderson, Phospholipid Fatty Acid Analysis and Dynamic Soil Properties, 7/31/2020-8/31/2022, $60,000, Department of Agriculture

Eric Bailey, Cattle Feeding Infrastructure for MU Thompson Research Center, 7/15/2020-7/15/2021, $100,000, Department of Agriculture

Andrew Biggs, Bradford/Community and Private Land Conservation Agreement, 7/1/2020-6/30/2021, $25,000, Missouri Department of Conservation

Thomas W. Bonnot, Host Cycle II of the Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center, 9/1/2019-8/31/2021, $63,72, University of Massachusetts

Thomas W. Bonnot, Mapping Distribution & Abundance of Priority Grassland Birds Across 4 Joint Ventures in the Southeastern United States, 10/1/2020-9/30/2022, Fish and Wildlife Service

Scott Brown, Challenging the system: Are U.S. beginning farmer programs debilitating or advancing the progress of agriculture? 5/15/2020-5/14/2023, $36,605, Missouri State University

Kerry Clark, CFP FY20 Arg Pry Gastronomy Ingredients, 10/1/2020-12/31/2021, $69,875, Foreign Ag Service

Kerry Clark, Regional Food Safety Efforts in Africa, 9/7/2020-7/31/2023, $499,999, Foreign Ag Service

Kerry Clark, Strengthening East African Community Phytosanitary Priorities, 9/21/2020-9/30/2022, $149,964, Foreign Ag Service

Kerry Clark, Strengthening West African Community Phytosanitary Priorities, 9/22/2020-8/31/2022, $150,000, Foreign Ag Service

Kerry Clark, Evaluation of Promising Quinoa Lines in the Midwest for Enhanced Food Security and Sustainability, 5/1/2020-3/31/2023, $103,262, Lincoln University

Pengyin Chen, Screening and Breeding Soybeans for Resistance to Mature Soybean Seed Damage, 10/1/2020-9/30/2021, $55,702, Mississippi State University

Pengyin Chen, Identification and confirmation of natural tolerance to off-target Dicamba damage in non-Xtend soybeans, $125,000, Smith Bucklin and Assoc

David D. Diamond, Developing a Habitat Classification Tool for Arkansas, 10/1/2020-9/30/2022, $35,000, Fish and Wildlife Service

Michael Gold, Agroforestry and Specialty Crop Development for Resource Stewardship, Livelihoods and Vibrant Communities across Missouri, 9/15/2018-9/30/2021, $27,103, Department of Agriculture

Patrick E. Guinan, Task Order S2020-128, 3/7/2020-4/6/2021, $8,550, Synoptic Data PBC

Joe L. Horner, McKaskle Family Farms LLC Popped Sorghum Feasibility, 7/1/2020-6/30/2021, $58,060, McKaskle Family Farms LLC

Benjamin O. Knapp, Effects of adaptive silviculture for climate change on fuel characteristics, fire behavior, and fire effects in longleaf pine ecosystems of southwestern GA, 8/1/2020-7/31/2022, $21,852, Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center

Pei Liu, Development and implementation of a customized and culturally-sensitive FSMA supplemental training program for Hmong farmers: A community outreach project, 9/1/2020-8/31/2022, $274,670, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Ryan Milhollin, Local Salads from Epperson Farms Hydroponic Greenhouses and Prison Worker Release Program, 8/25/2020-6/30/2021, $24,825, Epperson Farms

Seth Meyer, Improvements to the USDA Baseline Models, Projections and Process, 9/18/2020-8/31/2025, $425,000, Department of Agriculture

Robert Myers, North Central Region Professional Development Program, 12/1/2020-11/30/2021, $250,986, University of Minnesota

William H . Meyers, CFP 20/21 Bosnia Ag Policy & Int’l Trade, 10/1/2020-12/31/2021, $57,063, Foreign Ag Service

Henry Nguyen, Next generation soybeans with durable resistance to multiple soybean cyst nematode (SCN) races through genome engineering of Rhg4, 10/1/2020-9/30/2021, $150,000, Smith Bucklin and Associates

Henry Nguyen, Protein trait associations in the soybean pangenome, 9/1/2020-12/31/2023, $1,715,827, Syngenta Crop Protection Inc

Andrew M. Scaboo, Breeding for High Oleic/Low Linolenic Acid Soybeans with Competitive Yield, 10/1/2020-9/30/2021, $503,977.00, SMITH BUCKLIN AND ASSOC

Peter C. Scharf, Protecting Soil After Soybean, 9/1/2020-12/31/2021, $19,792, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council (MSMC)

Michael C. Stambaugh, Oak Woodlands & Forests Fire Consortium 2019 to 2021, 8/26/2019-9/30/2021, $10,000, Forest Service

William Stevens, Improving Efficiency of Water and Nitrogen Applications in Furrow Irrigated Rice, 8/8/2019-9/30/2021, $63,479, Department of Agriculture

Thomas Spencer, Gene-editing Technologies in Livestock, 8/15/2020-8/14/2021, $336,603, Agricultural Research Service

Mitchell Weegman, Quantifying decision-making by mid-continent white-fronted geese using state-of-the-art tracking devices over the annual cycle for holistic conservation planning, 9/14/2020-9/13/2022, $120,525, Fish and Wildlife Service

Joanna Whittier, Research for Development of a Decision Support Tool to Guide Management of the Missouri National Recreation River, 5/1/2020-4/30/2021, $40,988, Geological Survey

Xi Xiong, Efficacy of HM0814 for annual bluegrass population on creeping bentgrass putting green, 9/1/2020-8/31/2022, $12,012, Marubeni Corp

Xi Xiong, Monsanto Service Order #130, 7/1/2020-6/30/2021, $24,900, Monsanto Co

Provided by the MU Office of Research

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The header photo shows pink pumpkins at Jefferson Farm and Garden, located in Columbia, Mo. Jefferson Farm and Garden will host a drive-through Alisha’s Pink Pumpkin Painting Party with a pumpkin pick-up from 3-6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22, at the Research Center. Individuals can donate to the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center Mammography Fund, as well as pick up a pumpkin and decoration package to take home. Alisha Moreland will host a virtual event through Facebook for everyone to decorate together if they are interested.