Rising population size, changes in land-use, introduction of novel and invasive pests and diseases, and global changes in climate and atmospheric composition pose significant challenges to maintaining and improving future agricultural production and global food supply. Two global changes that directly affect crop productivity are rising carbon dioxide concentration ([CO2]) and rising tropospheric ozone concentration ([O3]). While elevated [CO2] stimulates photosynthesis and productivity of C3 crops, rising tropospheric [O3] negatively impacts photosynthesis and subsequent growth and production. The focus of Dr. Ainsworth’s research is to understand and integrate the molecular, biochemical and physiological responses of plants to global change.
Dr. Leakey’s research program is focused on improving mechanistic understanding of: 1) Plant responses in natural and agricultural ecosystems to global environmental change; 2) Adaptation of food and fuel crops to global environmental change; and 3) Sustainability of biofuel feedstocks. This will enhance understanding of how the environment impacts ecosystem goods and services including biodiversity, productivity, water cycling and food supply.
Adrienne Gulley is an IGB Outreach and Communications Specialist. She received her B.S. and M.S. in Agricultural Communications from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. As the Outreach Specialist, Adrienne helps to promote the cutting edge work conducted at the IGB and a better appreciation of science in general. She collaborates in managing the Fox Family Innovation and Entrepreneurship Lecture series, "Genomics for" workshops, Pollen Power day camp for middle school girls and the Mammoth ROCHSS project.” Prior to arriving at the IGB, Adrienne was the Outreach Specialist for the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant College Program on the campus of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign where she focused on water quality issues. Adrienne will begin pursuing a PhD in Education Policy, Organization and Leadership with a specialization is Social Sciences and Education Policy in Fall 2018 at the University of Illinois.
Courtney Cox is the Outreach Activities Manager at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology. She received her Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2015 under the direction of Douglas Mitchell. Her dissertation research was focused on creating a method to quickly identify novel antibiotics.
Since joining the Outreach staff, Courtney has managed several of the IGB’s outreach projects, such as the Pollen Power day camp for middle school girls, the annual Genome Day event at Champaign’s Orpheum Children’s Museum, a course on business applications of genomics for Illinois MBA students and after school activities for children K-8.
IGB Core Facilities Staff
The Core Facilities at the IGB is a state-of-the-art resource for biological microscopy and image analysis. The core mission of the facility is to provide IGB researchers, as well as faculty, post-docs, and students from across campus with the tools and expertise to meet their imaging goals. The Core Facilities trains over one hundred new users a year on one or more instruments.