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July 29, 2010

The garden demonstration plots at Penn State's Ag Progress Days, Aug. 17-19 at Rock Springs, will be abuzz this year not just with gardeners championing the importance of pollinators, but with many of the actual pollinators themselves, drawn to the vicinity by the specialized plantings designed to do just that.

July 26, 2010

Visitors to Penn State’s Ag Progress Days Aug. 17-19 can learn about the hazards of confined-space manure storages and how to reduce the risks associated with entering them. Addressing the health and safety of farmers, Ag Progress Days also will feature farm accident rescue simulations involving agricultural equipment, including demonstration of emergency scene stabilization and patient-extrication techniques. And attendees can get information about several types of farm safety programs and agricultural emergency response resources from on-site specialists.

July 21, 2010

A study conducted by researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has shown that eggs produced by chickens allowed to forage in pastures are higher in some beneficial nutrients. In the research, titled "Vitamins A, E and fatty acid composition of the eggs of caged hens and pastured hens," which was published online this year in the January issue of Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, researchers examined how moving pastured hens to forage legumes or mixed grasses influenced hen egg omega-3 fatty acids and concentrations of vitamins A and E.

July 21, 2010

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency recently presented its Young Faculty Award to Howard Salis, an assistant professor in Penn State's colleges of Agricultural Sciences and Engineering.

July 17, 2010

The Pennsylvania IPM Program recently received a multi-year grant to continue its mission to reduce pesticide use in agricultural and urban settings.

July 15, 2010

Jellyfish moved into the oceans off the coast of southwest Africa when the sardine population crashed. Now another small fish is living in the oxygen-depleted zone part-time and turning the once ecologically dead-end jellyfish into dinner, according to an international team of scientists.

July 13, 2010

With Pennsylvania's Marcellus shale-gas epoch still in its infancy, some experts doubt we have seen one-tenth of what is yet to come and recommend that municipalities brace themselves for rapid change. "People who are not in the Marcellus areas have no clue how big this is going to be," said Kurt Hausammann Jr., planning director for Lycoming County. "This has the possibility to change our whole way of life."

July 13, 2010

Pennsylvania farmers were reeling from the effects of the recent heat wave plaguing the Northeast, according to experts in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. "The cows aren't getting a break -- even the nights are hot," said Michael O'Connor, professor emeritus of dairy science, during the peak of the steamy spell. "The hot weather is causing animals to reduce their appetites, resulting in a significant drop in production, and combined with the direct effect of increased body temperature, there is a substantial reduction in reproductive performance."

July 12, 2010

The 2010 edition of Penn State's Ag Progress Days exposition will take place from August 17-19, and organizers are planning a variety of activities of interest to agricultural producers, consumers and families, according to manager Bob Oberheim ....

July 12, 2010

A researcher in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences will lead a seven-year, $14.5-million project to fight malaria in Southeast Asia. Liwang Cui, professor of entomology, is the principal investigator for the Southeast Asia Malaria Research Center, one of 10 International Centers of Excellence for Malaria Research announced July 8 by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health.

June 28, 2010

A mechanism that regulates stem-cell differentiation in mice testes suggests a similar process that may trigger degenerative disease in humans, according to a Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences reproductive physiologist. Research involved manipulating a protein called STAT3, which is active in tissues throughout the body and is essential for life, that signals stem cells to decide whether to differentiate into a specialized type of cell or self-renew and remain stem cells.

June 28, 2010

Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture Russell Redding celebrated Dairy Month in Pennsylvania recently with a giant ice cream sundae and praise for the state's dairy industry. An economist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences said that along with the praise, dairy farmers are hoping for a little financial help.

June 16, 2010

For many, summer evokes memories of chowing down on barbeque chicken hot off the grill at the church picnic, needing a handful of napkins to get through a sloppy pork sandwich at the fire hall dinner, or gobbling a juicy cheeseburger at a youth baseball game. While these meals served at outdoor events are a wonderful way for volunteer groups to raise money and socialize, there are a few organizations that may not be using the most sanitary food practices, according to a food-safety expert in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

June 12, 2010

When raising corn, straw left in the field after grain harvesting, along with legume cover crops reduces nitrogen leaching into waterways, but may lower economic return, according to research conducted in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

June 9, 2010

A dairy nutritionist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences is conducting genetic research with mice to determine if cows can be influenced by diet to produce milk with a higher fat content. You read that right. "On the surface, it may seem like a strange concept, experimenting with mice to learn things about cows," said Kevin Harvatine, assistant professor of nutritional physiology. "But the lactating dairy cow is not amenable to transgenic approaches. The mouse offers the greatest opportunity for genomic manipulation, and we have successfully developed a lactating mouse model to investigate milk-fat depression in dairy cows."

June 7, 2010

Penn State has received a $250,000 gift to endow a graduate fellowship in entomology in the College of Agricultural Sciences. At the request of the donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, the endowment will be named the Lorenzo L. Langstroth Graduate Fellowship in Entomology, in honor of the 19th century apiarist widely considered to be the "father of American beekeeping."

June 4, 2010

For many, summer evokes memories of chowing down on barbeque chicken hot off the grill at the church picnic, needing a handful of napkins to get through a sloppy pork sandwich at the fire hall dinner, or gobbling a juicy cheeseburger at a youth baseball game. While these meals served at outdoor events are a wonderful way for volunteer groups to raise money and socialize, there are a few organizations that may not be using the most sanitary food practices, according to a food-safety expert in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

June 3, 2010

Memorial Day marked the unofficial kick-off of barbecue season, and a meat specialist in Penn State State's College of Agricultural Sciences said the watchword for 2010 is variety. Chris Raines, assistant professor of meat science and technology in the college's dairy and animal science department, said while trends run the gamut from luxury grills to the medical benefits of marinades, three significant developments can be identified.

May 21, 2010

Penn State received a $100,000 Grand Challenges Explorations grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The grant will support an innovative global health research project conducted by Consuelo De Moraes, associate professor of Entomology, titled "Scent of Disease: Diagnostic for Malaria Infection in Humans."

May 12, 2010

Semen that has been separated into male and female sperm is now available for the beef and dairy industries, a bovine specialist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences told attendees of a recent Pennsylvania Cattleman's College Purebred Breeders Workshop.