By: Kathleen Phillips

Writer: Kathleen Phillips, 979-845-2872, [email protected]

Contact: Dr. Craig Nessler, 979-845-8486, [email protected]

When the names of two researchers were called as top innovators at the recent Texas A&M Technology Commercialization banquet in College Station, officials at Texas A&M AgriLife beamed.

“It was gratifying to see that our efforts to attract and support the best scientists was noticed and honored,” said Dr. Craig Nessler, director of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, the agency that yielded both winners — Dr. Gregory Sword and Dr. Joshua Yuan. “And we’re also proud that so many of the others honored hail from AgriLife Research and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.”

Research results by Sword and Yuan have connected with private industry and with the federal government in ways that not only pay off for further studies but ultimately benefit producers and consumers, Nessler said.

They weren’t alone. AgriLife Research scientists annually produce scores of novel  developments, from new crop varieties to biological methods aimed at improving the nation’s supply of food, feed and fiber, according to the citations.

“Science isn’t just about discovering facts that previously were unknown,” Nessler said. “To truly make a difference in the world, science has to take a step beyond the lab or field and consider ways to bring these discoveries to the people.”

Among the other AgriLife Research innovations recognized were certificates by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Plant Variety Protection Office for:  

— J. Creighton Miller Jr., Douglas C. Scheuring and Jeffery Koym, “‘Reveille’ Russet Potato.”

— Russell L. Sutton, Amir Ibrahim, Bryan E. Simoneaux, Dirk B. Hays, Lloyd R. Nelson, Jackie C. Rudd and Jason A. Baker, “‘TAMO411’ Oat.”

— Michael R. Baring, Brian D. Bennett, Mark D. Burow, John M. Cason and Charles E. Simpson,  “‘Webb’ Peanut.”

Seed pigmentation in Blackhawk arrowleaf clover is linked to seedling disease resistance
Blackhawk arrowleaf clover's resistance to seeding diseases is linked to seed pigmentation. (Texas A&M AgriLife Research photo by Robert Burns
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— Gerald R. Smith, Indre J. Pemberton and Francis M. Rouquette, Jr.,  “‘Blackhawk’ Arrowleaf Clover.”

— Jackie C. Rudd, Ravindra N. Devkota, Jason A. Baker, Amir Ibrahim, Russell L. Sutton, Bryan E. Simoneaux,  Joseph M. Awika, Shannon Baker, Shuyu Liu and Lloyd Rooney, “‘TAM 114’ Wheat, Common.”

New wheat cultivar released by Texas &M AgriLife researchers.
Texas A&M AgriLife's wheat breeding program has submitted TAM 114 wheat for release.

— Jackie C. Rudd, Jason A. Baker, Ravindra N. Devkota, Lloyd R. Nelson, Bryan E. Simoneaux, Russell L. Sutton, Amir Ibrahim, Shannon Baker, Joseph Awika, Shuyu Liu and Clark Neely,  “‘TAM 204’ Wheat, Common.”

AgriLife Research scientists recognized for patents granted for their research results were:

— Luc R. Berghman, “Compositions and Methods of Enhancing Immune Responses

— Leslie Garry  Adams, Allison R. Ficht and Thomas A. Ficht, “Controlled Release Vaccines and Methods for Treating Brucella Diseases and Disorders

— Sword,  “Fungal Endophytes for Improved Crop Yields and Protection From Pests

— Paul J. De Figueiredo, Martin B. Dickman, Eliezer S. Louzada,  Zivko L. Nikolov and Brian D. Shaw,  “Transformation of Glycerol And Cellulosic Materials into High Energy Fuels

— Tushar Surva Bhowmick, Mayukh Das, Carlos F. Gonzalez and Ryland F. Young Iii, “Method for Treatment and Control of Plant Disease

— John E. Mullet, William L. Rooney, “Method for Production of Sorghum Hybrids with Selected Flowering Times

— Ambika Chandra, Anthony Dennis Genovesi and Benjamin G. Wherley, “St. Augustinegrass Plant Named ‘Dalsa 0605’”