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Amelia is awarded USDA-NIFA AFRI Predoctoral Fellowship

Amelia Lovelace, has been awarded a highly competitive¬† Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Predoctoral Fellowship from the Unites States Department of Agriculture-National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA). This two year fellowship will fund both her assistantship as well as her research project, titled “Delineating Interactions Between Enterics, Plant Pathogens, and Plant Immunity.” (Proposal # 2018-07750)

The goal for her research project is to identify the factors contributing to the endophytic colonization of enteric pathogens during plant disease in a three-way interaction between host plant, plant pathogen, and human enteric pathogen. Using kale and collards as a produce crop system, she will exploit the natural and induced variation of the plant host as well as enteric E. coli O157:H7 isolates to identify conditions that are suitable for human pathogen proliferation in the context of plant disease. With this information, she hopes to construct better management strategies to control outbreaks of food-borne illnesses.

The USDA-NIFA AFRI Predoctoral Fellowship places emphasis on the professional development of the principal investigators. Therefore, Amelia Lovelace will be co-mentored by both Dr. Brian Kvitko as well as Dr. Diana Downs from the Microbiology Department in her professional development through leadership training

Amelia Lovelace
PhD Candidate
Plant Pathology

Dr. Diana Downs











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