2nd annual CFANS Research Symposium highlights projects across the College

March 27, 2024
2024 Research Symposium

The University of Minnesota's College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS) held its 2nd annual Research Symposium on Thursday, March 14, 2024, at the St. Paul Student Center. The Symposium featured posters and oral presentations by CFANS undergraduate students, graduate students, postdocs, researchers, and faculty. More than 90 researchers participated from across the College to showcase their work. 

This year, the Symposium partnered with the Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center to celebrate 10 years of work.

"Hundreds of lakes in Minnesota are invaded by one or more aquatic invasive species. These species have diverse and drastic impacts on aquatic ecosystems. Knowing where they are can help assess management effectiveness, enable early detection and possible control, containment," said faculty member Gretchen Hansen in her plenary address entitled, “Invasive zebra mussels: What we know, what we don't know, and what we can do about it." 

The Symposium provided an opportunity for CFANS students and researchers to present their work and engage with their peers and faculty members. Presenters covered a wide range of topics, including agricultural economics, animal science, entomology, food science, and plant pathology, representing multiple research areas across CFANS. 

A number of projects were featured as oral presentations during the symposium:

  • Yang Zhe Kang, “Oat Protein Profiling of Genetically Diverse Lines Grown in Two Geographically Distinct Locations”
  • Madison Elizabeth Bacon, “Behavior and stress of primiparous horned and dehorned dairy cattle in the milking parlor”
  • Jacob Kundert, “Comparing Methods for Soil Carbon Accounting in a Perennial Crop Rotation”
  • Andrew Benjamin Carter, “Sensory Considerations of Novel ‘Microflora-Based’ Dairy Foods”
  • Pitchaya Santativongchai, “Development of turkey reproductive tract epithelial organoids as an in vitro model for reproductive biology research”
  • Jose Efrain Ortiz Solorzano, “Developing methods to study tar spot, an emerging disease threatening corn production in the U.S.”
  • Ayoub Kechchour, “In-Season Diagnosis of Corn Nitrogen and Water Status Using UAV Multispectral and Thermal Remote Sensing”
  • Julian Scott Cooper, “An RGB based deep neural network approach for field-based high throughput phenotyping of Fusarium Head Blight in wheat”
  • Fabio Miguel Fuhr, “Potential for chemical control of the soybean tentiform leafminer (Lepidoptera: Gracillariidae), a new pest of soybean”
  • Kathleen Kay TanMarkham, “A new way of pathotyping Phytophthora sojae, a pathogen threatening Minnesota soybeans”

View all of this year's abstracts (PDF)

Seven Distinguished Presenter award recipients were selected by a panel of judges that included CFANS faculty members, researchers and alumni. These awards recognized the top presenters in each category based on the quality of their presentation. 

Distinguished Poster Presentations:

  • Noor Huma, "Regular Consumption of Kombucha Alleviates Depression Symptoms and Modulates the Gut Microbiome in Mice"
  • Caitlin Klaeui, "(-)-Epigallocatechin-3-gallate does not affect Lawsonia intracellularis infection of McCoy cells or swine enteroids"
  • Diana Lopez Arias, "Rose black spot resistance: from loci detection to KASP marker development for breeding"
  • Hannah Rusch, "Production and economics of dual use intermediate wheatgrass [Thinopyrum intermedium(Host) Barkworth & D.R. Dewey]"
  • Eric Yu, "Emergence Periodicity of Six Weed Species as Impacted by Cereal Rye Cover Crop"

Distinguished Oral Presentations:

  • Andrew Benjamin Carter, “Sensory Considerations of Novel ‘Microflora-Based’ Dairy Foods”
  • Julian Scott Cooper, “An RGB based deep neural network approach for field-based high throughput phenotyping of Fusarium Head Blight in wheat”

Thank you to all participants and attendees for making the 2nd annual Symposium a success. We look forward to seeing you at the 2025 Research Symposium on March 20, 2025!

The CFANS Research Symposium is a collaborative effort of the Postdoc Board and the office of the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs. The 2024 organization committee included Sean O’Mara, chair of the CFANS Postdoc board; Mary Buschette, director of alumni and Constituent Relations; Milena Saqui-Salces, Interim Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs. The committee wants to acknowledge the invaluable support from Libby Silverman, Tram Le, Liv Klemek, and all others that volunteered as judges and to support this event.

If you have any questions, please contact the co-chairs:
Mary Buschette (mbuschet@umn.edu)
Milena Saqui-Salces (msaquisa@umn.edu)