CAFNR Research Symposium

Oct. 12-13, 2022

During the two-day event held at Stotler Lounge in Memorial Union on the University of Missouri campus, you’ll hear from CAFNR faculty and students as they showcase their latest research and highlight what their research findings mean to the food, agriculture and natural resources communities locally, nationally and globally.

You will have a chance to interact with CAFNR researchers and symposium attendees through the following events:

  • Research showcase presentations
  • Research poster sessions
  • Poster contest for MU students and postdocs
  • Networking reception

RSVP to attend one or both days. Registration is requested for planning purposes, but not required.

For questions about the CAFNR Research Symposium please contact Rhonda Turner ( and copy Felix Fritschi, PhD, (, Chair, CAFNR Research Council.


Wednesday, Oct. 12

  • 1 p.m. Opening remarks
    • Shibu Jose, Associate Dean for Research, CAFNR
    • Christopher Daubert, Vice Chancellor & Dean, CAFNR
    • Tom Spencer, Vice Chancellor for Research, University of Missouri

Session 1: Moderator, Antje Heese

  • 1:10 p.m. Debbie Finke, Plant Science & Technology: Insect Ecosystem Services in a Changing World
  • 1:40 p.m. Jaume Padilla, Food, Nutrition & Exercise Sciences: In the hunt for new therapeutic targets and strategies to insulin re-sensitize the vasculature in obesity and type 2 diabetes
  • 2:10 p.m. Lightning Talks/Speed Posters
  • 2:25 p.m. Break

Session 2: Moderator, Amanda Paz Herrera

  • 2:50 p.m. Barituka Bekee (PhD student, DASS): Livelihood resilience of rural households: Insights from a multidisciplinary literature
  • 3 p.m. Alani Antoine-Mitchell (PhD student, Biochemistry): Towards improving plant nutrient deficiency for sustainable agriculture: Novel roles for vesicular trafficking proteins in the iron deficiency response
  • 3:10 p.m. Ranjita Sinha (Postdoc, DPST): Differential regulation of flower transpiration during abiotic stress in soybean
  • 3:20 p.m. Colby A. Redifer (PhD candidate): Lactation performance and calf growth after late gestational nutrient restriction in beef heifers
  • 3:30 p.m. Samniqueka Halsey, School of Natural Resources: Understanding the role of tallgrass prairie restoration in the emergence of tick-borne disease
  • 4 p.m. Reception/Poster Session

Session 3: Moderator, Mallory Rahe

  • 5:30 p.m. Charlene Finck, Farm Journal President

Thursday, Oct. 13

Session 4: Moderator, Mengshi Lin

  • 1 p.m. Rob Myers, Director of the Center for Regenerative Agriculture: A new $25 million project to catalyze climate-smart farm practices and reduce greenhouse gases
  • 1:45 p.m. Scott Peck, Biochemistry: How studying stealth plants led to a new pathway that alters iron uptake
  • 2:15 p.m. Lightning Talks/Speed Posters
  • 2:30 p.m. Break/Poster Session

Session 5: Moderator, Nilesh Salvi

  • 3:10 p.m. Samantha Carter (PhD student, SNR): Indigenous People, Land, and Natural Resources Rights
  • 3:20 p.m. Samantha Morris (MS student, Food Science): Developing clean-label ice cream using dairy protein particles
  • 3:30 p.m. Wes Warren, Animal Sciences: The evolution of the feline genome
  • 4 p.m. Michelle Segovia, Division of Applied Social Sciences: Using economic experiments to understand choice, behavioral motivations, and inform policy
  • 4:30 p.m. Closing remarks – Shibu Jose