The ultimate goal of the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture is to excel in fulfilling the land-grant mission that sets it apart from other institutions within Tennessee and across the nation. The mission of UT AgResearch is to advance science in agriculture and food systems, natural resource management, and family and community sciences. A goal of UTIA AgResearch is to resources effectively to deliver service for the public good through solutions to problems facing agricultural producers and businesses, natural resource managers and industries, and the public. This is accomplished through knowledge discovery, innovation of these discoveries into new products and processes, and the application of these innovations to enhance the lives of citizens of Tennessee and the world.

Achieving AgResearch’s mission hinges on both a commitment of faculty members to research excellence and active participation of the AgResearch administration in accomplishing three key outcomes, which include achieve sustained, superior short and long-term scientific research performance; engage and maintain a satisfied and loyal clientele; and attain a culture of highly engaged and loyal faculty, staff and students with a passion for high performance


  • Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Molecular Interactions
  • Organismal Biology, Ecology, and Systematics
  • Sustainable Disease and Integrated Pest Management Systems

Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Molecular Interactions

Bioinformatics, genomics and molecular interactions encompass the study of the fundamental molecular components that build life and the relevance of their interactions to physiological and pathogenic processes in plants, insects, nematodes, and microbes. This area includes diverse, state-of-the-art research techniques to examine how inherited information and basic molecular building blocks yield organismal phenotypes, behaviors, adaptations and evolution.

Faculty with specialization in Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Molecular Interactions include:

Organismal Biology, Ecology, and Systematics

Organismal biology, ecology, and systematics includes the study of the plant and animal life histories, including interactions within communities and with the environment. Topics include biology and ecology of plant associated insects, nematodes and microbes; plant, human and animal disease vectors; arthropods associated with humans and their structures; host-pathogen, host-parasite, and host-parasitoid interactions; plant, insect, and nematode microbial symbioses; pollinator biology and ecology, and forensic entomology.

Faculty with specialization in Organismal Biology, Ecology, and Systematics include:

Sustainable Disease and Integrated Pest Management Systems

Sustainable disease and integrated pest management (SDIPM) systems provide economic means to reduce pest and disease losses while minimizing negative impacts on the environment. SDIPM systems provide the solutions to positively impact food production and meet the increased global demand. SDIPM systems also improve plant and animal health in forests, parks, landscapes and other natural systems. These systems incorporate many disciplines, including entomology, nematology, plant pathology, weed science, animal science, veterinary medicine, public health, and food science and technology.

Faculty with specialization in Sustainable Disease and Integrated Pest Management Systems include: