Three experts from across campus will each discuss their research connecting agriculture and health and respond to questions from attendees during the #FunkPanel2021. This panel presentation will be an opportunity for people to come together with the Funk ACES Library to learn about and discuss research exploring the intersection of agriculture and health.
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Dr. Hannah Holscher is an Assistant Professor of Nutrition in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, and a member of the Division of Nutritional Sciences, the Institute of Genomic Biology, and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois, where she has been a faculty member since 2015. Research in Dr. Holscher’s laboratory, the Nutrition and Human Microbiome Laboratory, integrates the areas of nutrition, gastrointestinal physiology, and the microbiome. Her research focuses on the clinical application of nutritional sciences with an overarching goal of improving human health through dietary modulation of the gastrointestinal microbiome.
Dr. Rebecca (Becky) Lee Smith is an Associate Professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine. Her work focuses on understanding, predicting, and controlling infections and disease, with a particular focus in One Health. Her lab combines mathematical and statistical modeling with epidemiologic theory and hands-on fieldwork to ask the basic question: “what can be done to make this better?” Her expertise in infectious diseases has led most recently to her key role on the university’s SHIELD Team for COVID-19 response.
Dr. Matthew Stasiewicz is an Assistant Professor of Applied Food Safety in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His work focuses on applying engineering and data analytic approaches to advance food safety microbiology. One long-standing research thrust is the identification and management of persistent Listeria monocytogenes in food environments using modern DNA sequencing and improved data analysis techniques. His lab also works on international teams to develop appropriate technology to manage mycotoxins in maize, with his contribution being single-kernel identification and sorting using relatively simple hardware. Currently the lab has a set of projects to improve sampling and testing for foodborne pathogens in food productions environments like produce fields.