Penn State students engage with local Latino farmworker community

An innovative community service-learning course, “Community Engaged Learning with Pennsylvania Farmworkers,” offered by Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, brings students of all disciplines together to teach and engage with immigrant farmworkers living in Centre County.  

What does the detection of avian flu mean for Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania is the latest state to report a confirmed detection of highly pathogenic avian influenza, or HPAI, in a commercial poultry flock, leading state officials, industry leaders and Penn State poultry specialists to redouble efforts to contain the virus and educate producers, backyard flock owners and the public about the disease.

Troy Sutton mentioned in Wall Street Journal's Article On Avian Influenza Spreading In Birds In The US.

Contagious Bird Flu Presents Low Risk to People After Colorado Case: Avian influenza has killed millions of birds in U.S. and infected one known person

Kuchipudi receives College of Ag Sciences award for research innovation

Suresh Kuchipudi, Dorothy Foehr Huck and J. Lloyd Huck Chair in Emerging Infectious Diseases, is the 2022 recipient of the Research Innovator of the Year Award, given by Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences to recognize faculty and staff who have made notable efforts to commercialize their Penn State research.

Jasmine Morgan named 2022 Outstanding Senior in College of Ag Sciences

Jasmine Morgan, who graduated in May with a bachelor’s degree in veterinary and biomedical sciences, was selected as the 2022 Outstanding Senior in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences.  

Dr. Eva Wallner- Pendleton receives Lasher-Bottorff Award at the Annual Meeting of the AAAP (American Association of Avian Pathologists) in Philadelphia"

This award was made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Hiram Lasher in honor of Dr. C. A. Bottorff. Dr. Bottorff had an illustrious career as a poultry industry veterinarian with Lederle Laboratories and was actively involved in the early development of the AAAP. He served as vice president in 1965-66 and president in 1966-67. The first award was given in 1988. The C.A. Bottorff Award is given to recognize an avian diagnostician/technical service veterinarian who has contributed significantly to the poultry health program in North America in the past 10 years.

"Penn State professor emeritus in the College of Agricultural Sciences Emory Brown turns 101"

Emory served in World War II with the Army Air Corps. He is pictured at his birthday party with daughters Barb Kush, left, and Nancy Delricco.

Hayley Springer selected as one of three recipients of this year's Ruth and Robert O’Connor scholarship.

Hayley Springer selected as one of three recipients of this year's Ruth and Robert O’Connor scholarship.

Sougat Misra, a Recipient of Ag Science's 2022 Applied Evolution Seed Grant

Project Title: Targeting drug-tolerant persister cells of acute myeloid leukemia origins Resistance to chemotherapy is one of the major challenges in the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Unparalleled genetic diversity even within a single subtype of AML further adds to the complexity in targeted therapeutic interventions. In addition, very limited therapeutic choices exist for relapsed patients who are refractory to the conventional chemotherapy. Evolving evidence suggest ‘drug-tolerant persister’ (DTP) cells are key contributors to the emergence of drug resistance. These cells survive therapy, develop resistance, and exhibit stem cell-like properties with low proliferative indices. DTP cells remain dormant during therapy and start to proliferate upon withdrawal of the treatment. It remains particularly challenging to eliminate the persister cells that employ a multitude of genetic and non-genetic adaptive mechanisms to evade therapy. Some notable examples of non-genetic adaptive pathways are altered mitochondrial metabolism and redox-regulatory pathways. Dr. Sougat Misra, a recipient of Applied Evolution Grant from the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences and the PI of this proposal, will investigate whether the survival-promoting altered state of redox homeostasis in AML-originated DTP cells is an amenable drug target. The research team will utilize redox-reactive small molecules to investigate this in details.

What do I need to know about monkeypox now?

More than 10,000 cases of monkeypox have been reported in the United States since May, triggering the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to declare the outbreak a public-health emergency. As the fall semester begins, many are wondering if they should be concerned about monkeypox. Suresh Kuchipudi, the Huck Chair in Emerging Infectious Diseases at Penn State and an expert on emerging and zoonotic viruses, explains what is known about monkeypox and how to protect yourself.

What are potential animal reservoirs for monkeypox?

Penn State researchers will study the monkeypox virus to understand the potential for it to spill over from humans to animals, as its pathogenesis — or disease development — in animal and human cells in vitro. In addition, they will study potential targets for therapeutics to treat the monkeypox disease.

Microbiome Center announces inaugural Interdisciplinary Innovation Fellows

The first-ever round of Interdisciplinary Innovation Fellowships will support the work of Microbiome Center members and allow them to acquire knowledge and techniques to then share with other University colleagues.

Metabolomics Core Facility continues to expand while pushing scientific bounds

The primary goal of Penn State’s Metabolomics Core Facility, established a decade ago and housed in the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences, is to identify and quantify the small molecules (or metabolites) in plant and animal biofluids, cells and tissues.

No-till management may reduce nitrous oxide gas releases, fight climate change

Scientists have long known that no-till farming reduces erosion and lessens water and nutrient runoff from crop fields, but now a new study by a team of Penn State researchers suggests that limiting soil disturbance may also diminish releases of nitrous oxide.

CMTC Partnered with Indigo Biosciences to Present an Educational Program entitled “Nuclear Receptor and Cancer Research: Current Trends and Applications”

Nuclear receptors have long been a focus in cancer research. The role of dysregulated nuclear receptor mediated signaling pathways in tumorigenesis has been well documented in a variety of cancers. This makes nuclear receptors important therapeutic targets for identifying new therapies to combat cancer. In this webinar, learn about cutting edge research from distinguished professors from Penn State University as they talk about the role of specific nuclear receptors in cancer, including: Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor (AhR) Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR) Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptors (PPARα, PPARδ and PPARγ)

Ashley Shay appointed as Affiliate Professor in the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences

Dr. Ashley Shay, Director, Metabolomics Core Facility at the Huck Institutes for Life Sciences has been appointed as an Affiliate Professor with The Pennsylvania State University in the College of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences effective November 1, 2022. Congratulations Ashley!

Two VBSC Students Receive CRD Poster Awards At the 2022 Penn State Cancer Institute's Cancer Research Day

For the first time, CRD poster awards were given, thanks to the involvement of PSCI Affiliate Members on the planning committee and faculty evaluators. Two of the winners are from the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences. Fenghua Qian, PhD Pathobiology Graduate Student in Dr. Sandeep Prabhu's lab and Jingze Xu, an IID Undergraduate Student, Congratulations to both of these students!

Pathobiology Program Applications Are Now Being Accepted Until December 15th, 2022

Pathobiology Applications are now being accepted until December 15th, Applications received after December 15 will still be evaluated, provided that the positions have not all been filled. The final deadline for submissions is February 1st. Students who are admitted will begin the program at the start of the Fall semester. For additional information please visit the Pathobiology link on the Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences website.

Please join the College of Agriculture Sciences and the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences in welcoming Jessica Linder, VBSC Major and Class of 2016 - November 11th from 8:30-10:00am, VBSC Majors and Advisors Meet and Greet/Q&A, 106 AVBS Building

Dr. Linder will be joining us as part of the College of Ag Office of Multicultural Affairs Minority Alumni Visit. Upon graduating from Penn State, Dr. Linder graduated with a DVM from Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 2020. Thereafter, she completed a small animal medicine and surgery rotating internship at the University of Florida. She has now returned to Purdue where she has completed a neurology specialty internship and is currently completing a residency in neurology and neurosurgery

Minority Alumni Panel Presentation - November 10, 2022 1:45 - 3:00 p.m. 106 AVBS

From success in class to success in life: What does it take to get there? We will have 5 successful minority alumni visiting the College on Thursday and Friday the 10th and 11th. All faculty, staff, administrators, and students are invited to Room 106 Animal, Veterinary, and Biomedical Sciences Building on Thursday the 10th for a panel presentation and opportunity to engage with professionals who have successfully completed our college programs. Refreshments will be provided. Please see the attached flyer and mark your calendars. Patreese Ingram On Behalf of the Diversity Coordinating Council

Faculty in College of Ag Sciences recognized for research achievements

Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences lauded outstanding accomplishments in research during the college’s inaugural Research Awards Ceremony, held Oct. 25 at the Hintz Family Alumni Center on the University Park campus.

2020-22 Teaching and Learning with Technology Faculty Fellows reflect on work

Eight Penn State instructors from two campuses and six colleges worked in teams with Teaching and Learning with Technology over the past two years as part of the 2020-22 TLT Faculty Fellows program.

College of Ag Sciences minority alumni return to campus, discuss their journeys

Four graduates of Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences recently returned to campus to discuss success in class to success in life as guest speakers on a minority alumni panel, hosted by the college’s Office of Multicultural Affairs.  

Congratulations Fall 2022 Graduates!

Congratulations and best wishes to all of our Fall 2022 Pathobiology Graduate students. We are so proud of ALL of you!!

Controlled, localized delivery of blood thinner may improve blood clot treatment

Heparin has long been used as a blood thinner, or anticoagulant, for patients with blood clotting disorders or after surgery to prevent complications. However, the medication remains difficult to dose correctly, potentially leading to overdosing or underdosing. A team of Penn State researchers combined heparin with a protein fragment, peptide, to slow down the release of the drug and convey the medication directly to the site of a clot.

Two College of Ag Sciences faculty among highly cited researchers in 2022

Andrew Patterson and Jonathan Lynch in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences were recognized recently as highly cited researchers by the Clarivate Analytics Web of Science Group.

Suresh V. Kuchipudi Receives 2020F TSF CURE Award

Congratulations to Agricultural Sciences faculty member Suresh Kuchipudi on his $1.4m Tobacco CURE project ‘Molecular Epidemiology of One Health Pathogens’ through Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences.

Workshop series to focus on workforce development in animal agriculture

An interdisciplinary team of educators and faculty from Penn State Extension and Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences is investigating methods to improve skill sets and increase diversity in the livestock production workforce, with the goal of eliminating workforce barriers and enhancing secure food animal production. As part of this work, Penn State Extension is offering a free monthly workshop series, from March to May, focused on workforce development in animal agriculture.

Immune Cells Hold Clues to Vitamin D Absorption, Study Suggests

In laboratory studies, Margherita Cantorna, distinguished professor of molecular immunology in the College of Agricultural Sciences, and Juhi Arora, former pathobiology doctoral student in the Cantorna lab, used flow cytometry, a lab test that analyzes characteristics of cells or particles, to perform highly sensitive assays or analyses to determine the composition of substances. These assays categorized particular immune cells based on whether or not they express the vitamin D receptor. Immune cells include cells such as monocytes, T cells and B cells — all of which perform critical roles in the immune system, protecting the body from infection.

Ernest Hovingh to lead Penn State Animal Diagnostic Laboratory

Ernest Hovingh, Research Professor, and Veterinary Extension and Field Investigation Team Leader in the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences at Penn State University has been named Resident Director of the Animal Diagnostic Laboratory (ADL) effective March 1, 2023. The ADL, part of the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences in the College of Agricultural Sciences, is a member of the Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostic Laboratory System (PADLS).

Ellie Abraham (Plant Biology Graduate Student) in Josh Kellogg's Lab has been awarded the NIH’s Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award

As the demand for medicinal plants and botanical dietary products increase, so do the incentives to adulterate products for economic gain, at the expense of product efficacy and consumer safety. However, plant-derived products are inherently complex, and also come in many different forms (dried herbs, extracts, tinctures, dried formulations, etc.); this complexity hinders traditional methods of authentication and quality control. Furthermore, identifying the molecules of interest that underpin the desired bioactivity is a long-known challenge of natural product discovery. Ellie’s project aims to employ advanced machine learning models and multi-omics approaches to better classify unknown samples, as well as improve the ability to detect bioactive molecules from botanicals. Using basil (Ocimum spp.) as a model organism, the study will employ molecular and genetic methods to characterize known samples, and then apply that model to unknown commercial samples to test its rigor and applicability in real-world situations. This will improve herbal product authentication, an important task considering misrepresentation of products can result in a loss of medicinal effect, consumer trust, and potentially jeopardize consumer safety. Furthermore, the ability to identify compounds quickly and reliably with multiple medicinal properties will contribute to the discovery of therapeutic compounds from a variety of natural product sources. To address these challenges, Ellie Abraham has been awarded the NIH’s Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (F31 predoctoral fellowship) from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Congratulations Ellie!!

Vaccination for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI)

Why vaccinate? As the 2022-2023 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) outbreak continues, there is growing concern that "stamping out" programs alone are expensive and labor intensive, and therefore not sustainable. This has led to growing interest in AI vaccines, perhaps allowing vaccines to become an additional "tool in the toolbox" to combat HPAI. The advantages and disadvantages of vaccinating are being closely evaluated by the USDA and other stakeholders here in the US and around the world.

Agricultural Sciences Major, Jada Spady Nominated for 2023 Celebrating Women in Toxicology Award.

Jada Spady an Agricultural Sciences Major was nominated for the 2023 "Celebrating Women in Toxicology Award" at the SOT 62nd Annual Meeting and Tox Expo in Nasville, Tennessee which was held March 19–23, 2023. Jada is a part of a large special interest group of women in the Toxicology field, and was nominated for her research experience and work at Johnson & Johnson as a Consumer Toxicology Co-op.

Broccoli consumption protects gut lining, reduces disease, in mice

Broccoli is known to be beneficial to our health. For example, research has shown that increased consumption of the cruciferous vegetable decreases incidences of cancer and type 2 diabetes. In a recent study, researchers at Penn State found that broccoli contains certain molecules that bind to a receptor within mice and help to protect the lining of the small intestine, thereby inhibiting the development of disease. The findings lend support to the idea that broccoli truly is a "superfood."

T-cell vaccine for COVID-19 may last longer than current vaccines

The current COVID-19 vaccines are designed to trigger an antibody response to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, which is vulnerable to mutations that could make the vaccine less effective over time. Focusing on the T-cell instead, Penn State researchers partnered with Evaxion Biotech on a study that was the first to demonstrate the effectiveness of an artificial intelligence-generated vaccine in a live viral challenge model. Such a vaccine may provide long-lasting immunity against future emerging variants and could be used as a model for other seasonal viral diseases like the flu.

Newly discovered immune system mechanism suppresses parasitic infection

Type I interferon, a protein that is important for the body’s defense against viruses, plays a critical role in suppressing inflammation in mice infected with the schistosome parasite, Penn State immunology researchers have found. The discovery may lead to effective therapies for those suffering from schistosomiasis, second only to malaria as the most prevalent parasitic disease globally. Parisa Kalantari, assistant professor of immunology in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, and co-authors recently published these findings in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Newly discovered immune system mechanism suppresses parasitic infection

Type I interferon plays a critical role in suppressing inflammation in mice infected with the schistosome parasite, Penn State immunology researchers have found. The discovery may lead to effective therapies for those suffering from schistosomiasis, second only to malaria as the most prevalent parasitic disease globally.  

Penn State College of Ag Sciences presents awards for diversity achievements

Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences recently announced the recipients of the 2023 Dr. William Henson Diversity Achievement Award, which recognizes distinctive and outstanding teaching, research, extension or creative work that advances diversity in the college.