Dr. Mark Windham Selected for Rose Jury Position at Biltmore Estate

Since 2011, Biltmore Estate has run international rose trials where rose breeders and growers submit new roses for a two-year trial. Winning roses from the trials are considered to be some of the best roses in the world. Dr. Mark Windham has been invited to become a permanent judge for the International Jury for the Biltmore International Rose Trials competition. Additionally, he has been selected to participate in the annual formal international judging, which is attended by rose enthusiasts from across the globe. These invitations are a very big honor in the “rose world.” Dr. Windham was not chosen for his ability to grow roses (very modest skills at best), but for his ongoing research on rose diseases and for…

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Remembering Dr. Carroll Southards

The Entomology and Plant Pathology Department was saddened by the news of the passing of Dr. Carroll J. Southards on January 2, 2019. Dr. Southards joined the department (previously called Ag Biology) in 1965 as an assistant professor in Nematology. In 1974, Dr. Southards became head of the department of Ag Biology and under his leadership, the departmental name was changed to the Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology. During Dr. Southards 20+ year tenure as department head, the department grew and flourished. Among his achievements were increasing diversity within the department and the development of departmental programs that assisted the citizenry of Tennessee. He also served as counselor to the President of the UT System from 1979-1981. Faculty, staff…

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Graduate student Ratnasri Mallipeddi wins award at ESA, ESC, and ESBC Joint Annual Meeting

Ratnasri Mallipeddi took first place in the student competition for President’s Prize for her presentation in the Physiology Biochemistry and Toxicology section 2 at the 2018 ESA, ESC, and ESBC Joint Annual Meeting, Vancouver, BC, Canada. The title of her talk was “Biochemical and transcriptome characterization of the cellulolytic system in Thermobia domestica for identification of novel enzymes with industrial applications.” The presentation was coauthored by Brian Johnson, William Klingeman, Margaret Staton, and Juan Luis Jurat-Fuentes. According to Dr. Jurat-Fuentes, “Ratnasri’s research has not only resulted in the discovery of a wide array of new plant cell wall degrading enzyme (PCWDE) genes from very primitive insects that may have applications to increase efficacy of ethanol biofuel production, but more importantly…

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UTIA scientists publish paper on role of citizen science in addressing agricultural challenges

Dr. Sean Ryan, a postdoctoral researcher in the EPP Department, Dr. DeWayne Shoemaker, and international team of more than three dozen researchers published a paper highlighting the potential of citizen science to address pressing research challenges in agriculture and food systems. One key to capitalizing on such efforts, the researchers find, may be to build stronger ties between citizen science and agricultural extension efforts. A press article summarizing the article is here and a free copy (open access) of the original paper can be downloaded from the journal web site.

Be on the lookout for grapevine leaf rust in Tennessee

Dr. Zach Hansen published an article in the November 2018 National Plant Diagnostic Network newsletter. Grapevine leaf rust was observed for the first time in Tennessee in September 2018. The disease was found on
grape seedlings at large box stores in several counties in middle and east Tennessee. Dr. Hansen suggests that growers, industry professionals, diagnosticians and extension personnel should be aware of the disease
and should be on the lookout for it. For full article, click here.