UK researcher receives $1.25 million grant to study corn anthracnose

By Katie Pratt, University of Kentucky

Anthracnose stalk rot is a fungal disease of corn that can cause lodging and completely destroy a crop. It is ranked among the top three diseases that cause yield losses in corn each year. Lisa Vaillancourt, a University of Kentucky plant pathologist, has studied this disease for several years and is working toward a management solution.

Recently, Vaillancourt received a $1.25 million grant from the Plant Biotic Interactions Program, a joint venture between the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Science Foundation. The goal of the grant is to further examine an anthracnose mutant produced in her lab that is unable to cause the stalk rot disease in corn plants. Continue reading

Research assistantship working with saproxylic insects in southeastern U.S. forests

Position description and background:

The Entomology Department at the University of Georgia is looking for a PhD student (research assistantship) to work on projects addressing the diversity, ecology and conservation of saproxylic insects (those that depend on dying or dead wood) in the southeastern United States. Saproxylic insects account for at least one fifth of forest insect biodiversity, provide many important ecosystem services, and are sensitive to activities that reduce the abundance and variety of dead wood in forests. This position represents an opportunity to address some major knowledge gaps concerning this group in North America. Focal areas for this research include, but are not limited to, the following: Continue reading