Economics propelling population shifts in spite of climate-driven risks

January 12, 2024

People are willing to live in locations where there is a greater risk of climate-driven extreme weather and natural disasters if there is an increase to their overall economic well-being, according to a study by a Penn State researcher.

One Health Microbiome Symposium to convene experts for innovative discussions

January 9, 2024

Penn State’s One Health Microbiome Center will host the One Health Microbiome Symposium on May 30-31, 2024, at the Huck Life Sciences Building on the University Park campus.

Why are bees making less honey? Study reveals clues in five decades of data

January 3, 2024

Honey yields in the U.S. have been declining since the 1990s, with honey producers and scientists unsure why, but a new study by Penn State researchers has uncovered clues in the mystery of the missing honey.

Growing Impact podcast discusses how climate, agriculture impact Colorado River

January 3, 2024

The latest episode of Growing Impact discusses how climate change and overuse of the Colorado River have significantly decreased the volume of the fifth largest river in the U.S.

Q&A: Why small organisms can make big impacts on climate, emissions

December 15, 2023

Mary Ann Bruns, Penn State professor of soil microbiology and biogeochemistry, co-authored a new report that advocates for greater recognition of the microbial processes involved in methane production and consumption as society seeks solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change.

Crab-eating monkey one of Florida’s greatest threats to ecosystems, human health

December 15, 2023

A first-of-its-kind study for North America accumulated a list of potential invasive species for the state of Florida, with 40 species determined to pose the greatest threat to residents’ well-being. One species received the highest possible ranking for likelihood of invasion and threat to human health: the crab-eating macaque monkey.

Novel tool informs land use and nutrient control in troubled waters

December 7, 2023

In watersheds degraded by runoff of nutrients from farmland, land managers may struggle to pinpoint the best locations to install riparian buffer strips along streams or other pollution-reduction practices, but a new technology devised by Penn State scientists could potentially make the search for those sites easier and less expensive.

New USDA grant to support graduate reproductive microbiome training program

December 6, 2023

The Graduate Training in the Reproductive Microbiomes program will focus on interactions between the microbiome and animal reproductive cells/tissues in agriculturally important species, including chickens, cows, pigs, as well as insect populations that can devastate livestock health and production.

Helping non-clinical staff identify problematic sexual behaviors among children

December 5, 2023

A Penn State research team partnered with the U.S. Department of Defense to develop an easy-to-use tool to help non-clinically trained staff members, such as classroom aids, lunchroom workers and teachers, identify problematic sexual behaviors so that they can be more immediately addressed.

NSF program takes environmental resource management student to Montana

November 29, 2023

Second-year student Sylvie Alexander, an environmental resource management major in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, spent last summer conducting research on the Flathead Indian Reservation located in western Montana. Her work was sponsored by the National Science Foundation's Research Experience for Undergraduates program.

Study of sourdough starter microbiomes to boost bread quality and safety

November 21, 2023

People with celiac disease, or intolerance to dietary gluten, may soon have more food options, thanks to an unlikely source: sourdough bread. Sourdough contains less gluten than other breads, making it more tolerable for people with gluten sensitivities. Now, Penn State and Colorado State University researchers are studying whether bacteria in the yeast starter needed to make sourdough bread might help reduce gluten in other bread products.

Researchers predict climate change-driven reduction in beneficial plant microbes

November 20, 2023

An international team of researchers that includes Penn State faculty has characterized the abundances and distributions of plant beneficial bacteria from soils collected across the globe — and modeled how climate change may impact their numbers in the coming century. They published their findings in Nature Food.

$7M grant funds project to develop new ways to protect mushroom crops

November 16, 2023

A new grant for more than $7 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture will fund an upcoming project led by Penn State researchers, who aim to develop new pest management tools for mushroom crops.

NASA awards multi-institutional team $1M grant to inform US forest management

November 15, 2023

A research team led by a Penn State ecologist has received a $1 million grant from NASA to integrate satellite data into predictive modeling to anticipate change in recruitment — the process by which new trees emerge — within forests across the eastern United States.  

$1.45M NSF grant to fund new research into how grasses thrive in dry climates

November 14, 2023

A new $1.45 million grant from the National Science Foundation will allow Penn State researchers, including undergraduate students, to explore how pores on plant surfaces work and might be engineered to enhance photosynthesis and efficient water use.

Dangerous bee virus less deadly in at least one US forest, researchers find

November 9, 2023

This year’s cold and flu season is bringing good news for honey bees: Penn State researchers have found that the deadly deformed wing virus may have evolved to be less deadly in at least one U.S. forest.

Collaborative landscape design approach may improve resiliency, human well-being

November 6, 2023

A framework called regenerative landscape design may improve how complex, interconnected environmental and social challenges, such as climate change and biodiversity loss, are addressed, according to a new study led by Penn State researchers.

'Growing Impact' examines landscape restoration in Malawi

November 2, 2023

The latest episode of the "Growing Impact" podcast discusses landscape restoration as a potential natural climate solution for Africa.

Convincing consumers to love ‘imperfect’ foods with new USDA grant

October 30, 2023

A new grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture will fund a new project aiming to reduce food waste by finding opportunities for foods that were previously considered undesirable to enter grocery stores and other sectors of the market across the United States.

Predicting nationwide crop water availability by understanding soil influences

October 24, 2023

A team of researchers in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences has received a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to generate knowledge and tools, such as national-level predictive models, to develop a better understanding of how changes in soil texture and structure influence the availability of water for crops.

Dietary selenium may help fight acute myeloid leukemia, researchers report

October 24, 2023

Selenium-enriched diets may help ward off myeloid leukemia, and a new study led by researchers in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences has described the mechanism by which this occurs.

Gene integral to initiating, sustaining sperm cell development identified

October 23, 2023

With male infertility a mounting global concern impacting approximately 12% of men, according to the National Institutes of Health, a Penn State research team has discovered a gene that plays a key role in initiating and sustaining spermatogenesis. The finding, they said, may open a door for future therapies to boost sperm counts. 

Replacing 3D printing plastics with plant-derived materials

October 20, 2023

A sustainable resin material comprising agriculturally derived components could potentially replace plastics used in large-format 3D printing, which can produce furniture, boats and other similarly sized objects, according to a team of Penn State agricultural and biological engineers.

USDA grant awarded for study on soil health, weed control in organic operations

October 17, 2023

A nearly $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded to Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences will support research on soil health and weed suppression in organic farming.

Honey bees may inherit altruistic behavior from their mothers

October 12, 2023

True altruism is rare behavior in animals, but a new study by Penn State researchers has found that honey bees display this trait. Additionally, they found that an evolutionary battle of genetics may determine the parent they inherit it from.

TikTok may help farmers cultivate empathy around climate change

October 4, 2023

Farmers are used to growing crops and producing other goods, but a new study led by Penn State researchers suggests the social media platform TikTok may help them cultivate something new: empathy around the issue of climate change.

Ruffed grouse population more resilient than expected, genetic study finds

October 4, 2023

Despite decades of decline, a genetic analysis of ruffed grouse reveals that Pennsylvania’s state bird harbors more genetic diversity and connectivity than expected. The findings suggest that the iconic game bird could be maintained in persistent numbers if appropriate protections are implemented. The study, led by Penn State and Pennsylvania Game Commission researchers, published in the journal Molecular Ecology.

Penn State partners with Monash University for Australia water quality research

October 4, 2023

A group of Penn State students recently traveled to Australia as part of a partnership between Penn State and Monash University to conduct research aimed at better understanding sources of decreased water quality in watersheds, in addition to finding possible solutions.

New project to focus on health impacts of climate change

October 3, 2023

A $574,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health will help support a new climate change and health research area in Penn State’s Population Research Institute.

Penn State's 'Stories from the Field' returns with fall lineup

October 2, 2023

Penn State’s “Stories from the Field” conversation series is returning with two fall sessions. Speakers will share stories and lessons learned from programs devoted to farmers’ mental health and workers affected by substance use disorders.

Office for Research and Graduate Education


217 Agricultural Administration Building
University Park, PA 16802-2600

Office for Research and Graduate Education


217 Agricultural Administration Building
University Park, PA 16802-2600