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Controlling mosquitoes

Climate, genetics can affect how long virus-carrying mosquitoes live

Published: July 9 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- It’s just math: The longer a mosquito lives, the better its odds of transmitting disease to humans or animals.

The new bacterial disease affecting some crape myrtle varieties in commercial nursery settings causes circular leaf lesions with a yellow halo, later leading to severe yellowing and defoliation. Researchers say the disease, so far, has been contained at the commercial nursery level and does not affect home gardeners.

Beloved crape myrtle in nurseries now susceptible to bacterial leaf spot, researchers say

Published: July 8 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- It’s enough to send gardeners into conniptions.

IFAS assistant professor Andrea Lucky and her citizen science specimen collection project, known as the School of Ants.

With a little help, citizen scientists can be good proxies, research shows

Published: July 7 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Anyone can collect ant data as accurately as experts, if they have a bit of guidance and the right tools: cookies, index cards and plastic zip-top bags.

UF/IFAS study shows promise for antioxidants extracted from grape seeds, skin

Published: June 17 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Soaking muscadine grape seeds or skins in a solution of enzymes can boost antioxidants extracted from the fruit, creating possible new uses for grape leftovers, which are loaded with nutrients, a University of Florida study shows.

Perennial corn crops? It could happen with new plant-breeding tool developed at UF/IFAS

Published: June 10 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- Since the first plant genome sequence was obtained for the plant Arabidopsis in 2000, scientists have gene-sequenced everything from cannabis to castor bean.

Retracing citrus’ earliest roots to find clues for healthier future

Published: June 9 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- That orange you’re enjoying may have been grown in Florida, but its deepest ancestral roots stretch back more than 5 million years, all the way to two wild citrus species from Southeast Asia.

UF/IFAS researchers find chemicals that treat citrus greening in the lab

Published: June 4 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- A University of Florida research team is cautiously optimistic after finding a possible treatment in the lab for citrus greening, a disease devastating Florida’s $9 billion citrus industry. It is the first step in a years-long process to bring a treatment to market.

UF/IFAS finding could help farmers stop potato, tomato disease

Published: June 3 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A University of Florida scientist has pinpointed Mexico as the origin of the pathogen that caused the 1840s Irish Potato Famine, a finding that may help researchers solve the $6 billion-a-year disease that continues to evolve and torment potato and tomato growers around the world.

UF/IFAS researchers start to pinpoint biological control for Brazilian peppertree

Published: May 13 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A South American insect could help control the invasive Brazilian peppertree in places where it supplants critical habitat for many organisms, according to University of Florida and U.S. Department of Agriculture scientists.

UF/IFAS researchers target eucalyptus as source of fuel for biomass production

Published: May 6 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences researchers working to produce ethanol from plant material are taking a hard look at eucalyptus as a possible source for the clean fuel.

Surprising find: UF/IFAS discovers citrus greening affects roots before leaves

Published: April 30 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Although citrus greening enters trees through their leaves, University of Florida researchers have discovered that the deadly disease attacks roots long before the leaves show signs of damage – a finding that may help growers better care for trees while scientists work to find a cure.

Nanotubes made from plants could allow delivery of DNA into cells, improve chemotherapy treatment

Published: April 3 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Researchers with the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences took what some would consider garbage and made a remarkable scientific tool, one that could someday help to correct genetic disorders or treat cancer without chemotherapy’s nasty side effects.

UF/IFAS finds way to reduce E. coli in cows, improving food safety

Published: March 24 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A new biological treatment could help dairy cattle stave off uterine diseases and eventually may help improve food safety for humans, a University of Florida study shows.

UF/IFAS researchers help to sequence genome for loblolly pine major source of lumber, paper

Published: March 20 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — To look at the humble loblolly pine – grown in neat rows on large farms throughout the southeastern U.S. and milled for things like building lumber and paper – you would never think that its genetic code is seven times larger than a human’s

Water management district, UF/IFAS, UF Water Institute team up to examine springs

Published: March 18 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. –The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is joining forces with two entities as part of a $3 million, three-year contract to provide scientific data to help protect and restore the state’s springs system. UF/IFAS’ partners in the effort are the St. Johns River Water Management District, which is funding the project, and UF’s Water Institute.

UF/IFAS part of $4.9 million national child obesity study

Published: March 17 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – University of Florida students will create obesity prevention programs for their peers and later, for high school students, as part of a $4.9 million federal research and extension grant awarded last week.

Healthier processed food? Essence of strawberry could be the key

Published: March 3 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — University of Florida scientists believe they have pinpointed the exact compounds in strawberries that give the fruit its delightfully unique flavor – findings that will allow UF breeders to create more flavorful varieties even faster.

UF/IFAS researchers demonstrate improved appeal of sterile flies that save crops

Published: February 26 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Irradiated, sterile flies dropped over seaports and agricultural areas to mate with unsuspecting females save food crops and millions of dollars in prevented infestations and the ensuing eradication efforts.

UF researchers find genetic cause for citrus canker, putting them a step closer to a cure

Published: January 30 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Researchers from the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences at the University of Florida are closer to finding a possible cure for citrus canker after identifying a gene that makes citrus trees susceptible to the bacterial pathogen

UF/IFAS study helps researchers better estimate citrus crop yields

Published: January 27 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Citrus crop-yield estimates may be more accurate, thus ensuring higher productivity and more revenue, if an algorithm proves as successful as it did in a recent University of Florida study.Wonsuk “Daniel” Lee’s study, published in the January issue of the journal Biosystems Engineering, could eventually help Florida’s $9 billion-a-year citrus industry.