KwangCheol Casey Jeong, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Project Director, Molecular Microbiologist
Dr. Jeong will provide oversight of experimental design, coordinate data collection, and coordinate between research teams. Dr. Jeong has tremendous experience in working with human and animal pathogens, including E. coli O157:H7, non-O157 STEC, Vibrio, Acinetobacter, Legionella, Aspergillus,Coxiella in physiology, molecular microbiology, and cell biology. Dr. Jeong’s current research focuses on pre-harvest food safety and animal health to understand prevalence, persistence, and transmission of pathogens that can lead to develop intervention technologies. He will lead this multidisciplinary research team to accomplish the proposed research and extension goals. He is jointly appointed between the Animal science department and the Emerging Pathogens Institute, providing an excellent working environment to lead this integrated project.
J. Glenn Morris, Jr., M.D., Professor, Project Consultant, Infectious Disease Epidemiologist
Dr. Glenn Morris assumed the position of Director of the Emerging Pathogen Institute at the University of Florida in August 2007. He was recruited from the University of Maryland, Baltimore, where he was a professor and chairman of the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive medicine in their School of Medicine, as well as an interim dean of their School of Public Health. In addition to his position as EPI Director, Dr. Morris is a professor of infectious diseases in the UF College of Medicine. Current research initiatives at EPI include work with vector-borne diseases (malaria, West Nile, equine encephalitis, blue-tongue (a major animal pathogen), and citrus greening, tuberculosis, multi-antibiotic resistant bacteria (such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus or MRSA), and food safety and diarrheal infections (including cholera and E. coli O157:H7). Studies range from very basic work on evolutionary genetics through use of real-world data and bioinformatics to develop predictive mathematical models for disease transmission within populations. Morris received his B.A. from Rice University in Houston in 1973, and his M.D. degree and a master’s degree in public health and tropical medicine from Tulane University, New Orleans, in 1977. He is board certified in both internal medicine and infectious diseases.
Judy Johnson, Ph.D., Professor, Co-PD, Clinical Microbiologist
Dr. Judy Johnson researches microbial pathogenesis, antibiotic resistance, and pathways of transmission of bacterial species and genes within and between clinical, community and agricultural settings. She specializes in the bacterial genera Vibrio and Staphyloccocus. Dr. Johnson is also the director of core laboratory services in the University of Florida’s Emerging Pathogens Institute, acting as a conduit between researchers in the human health sciences and the Emerging Pathogens Institute. In a broad sense, Dr. Johnson’s work investigates the causes of bacterial pathogenicity, and she specializes in researching the many different expressions and compositions of the polysaccharide surfaces that coat bacteria. She examines how the surface coating is constructed, how different constructions alter a bacterium’s environmental interactions, and how the structures evolve. She is also interested in what toxins are present and how toxins are transferred both between individual bacteria (horizontal gene transfer) and between bacterial species.
G. Cliff Lamb, Ph.D., Professor, Co-PD, Animal Scientist
G. Cliff Lamb is currently the Assistant Director and Professor at the North Florida Research and Education Center at the University of Florida. He received his B.S. in Animal Science from Middle Tennessee State University in 1992. He completed the requirements for the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees at Kansas State University in 1996 and 1998, respectively. His primary research efforts focus on applied reproductive physiology in cattle emphasizing synchronization of estrus in replacement heifers and postpartum cows. In 2013, Dr. Lamb and 6 colleagues received the USDA-NIFA Partnership Award for Multistate Efforts for their Extension efforts in reproductive management. He also was recently awarded the University of Florida Research Foundation Professorship, received the Florida Association of County Agricultural Agents Specialist of the Year Award, and was named University of Florida Department of Animal Science Graduate Student Mentor Awardee. His programs have received more than $9 million in grant funds or gifts. He has published more than 88 refereed journal articles, along with more than 370 extension and research reports. In addition, he has served as advisor or co-advisor to 15 graduate students and on the committees of another 14 students.
Nicolas DiLorenzo, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Co-PD, Animal Scientist
Dr. Nicolas DiLorenzo received his degree in Agricultural Engineering from the Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Argentina, in 2002. He moved to the U.S. in 2002 to pursue graduate studies at the University of Minnesota, where he obtained his Master degree in 2004 and his PhD in 2008, both in Animal Science with emphasis in beef cattle nutrition. From 2008 to 2010 Dr. DiLorenzo worked as a postdoctoral Research Associate at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX, conducting research in the area of feedlot nutrition and management. In 2010 he joined the University of Florida as an Assistant Professor in Animal Sciences at the North Florida Research and Education Center in Marianna. His primary research and extension interests are in the area of beef cattle nutrition, with the objective of improving the efficiency of use of forages minimizing the environmental impact. His research focuses on ruminal metabolism and fermentation, emissions of greenhouse gases, and nutrient excretion in cattle systems.
Sebastian Galindo, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Project Collaborator, Agriculture Communication Specialist
Dr. Galindo is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Agricultural Education and Communication (AEC) of the University of Florida (UF). He earned his PhD degree from AEC in 2009, with a concentration in extension program development and evaluation, and had previously received the MS degree from the Department of Animal Sciences at UF and the DVM degree from the School of Veterinary Medicine at the Universidad Veracruzana (Veracruz, Mexico). Dr. Galindo is currently responsible for designing and executing the evaluation components for a variety of multidisciplinary projects in collaboration with a number of scientists inside and outside UF. His experience also includes being a consultant on methodology and evaluation for products conducted by the Rehabilitation Outcomes Research Center of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Southeastern National Tuberculosis Center, and the Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants at UF.
Song Liang, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Co-PD, Environmental Epidemiologist
Dr. Liang’s research interests include environmental epidemiology and dynamic modeling of water- and vector-borne infectious diseases; environmental determinants and control of neglected tropical disease; water quality, sanitation, and food safety; environmental burden of diseases; one health and eco-health approach to infectious disease control and global environmental health.
Babette Brumback, Ph.D., Professor, Project Collaborator, Biological Statistician
Babette Brumback, Ph.D., is Professor and Associate Chair of the Department of Biostatistics at the University of Florida. Her professional activities include serving in 2015 as Chair of the American Statistical Association Section on Statistics in Epidemiology and serving from 2011-2015 as a member of the National Institutes of Health Study Section on Clinical and Integrative Cardiovascular Sciences. She has also served as Associate Editor of Biometrics and as Statistical Editor of Psychosomatic Medicine. Her statistical research has concentrated on methods for longitudinal data analysis, causal modeling, bias adjustment, and analysis of data from complex sampling designs. She has also collaborated extensively on public health and medical studies concerning a broad array of research areas. Dr. Brumback received her PhD in Statistics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1996, followed by postdoctoral training in Biostatistics and Epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health from 1996-1999.
Ray Mobley, VMD, Professor, Co-PD, Veterinarian
Dr. Ray Mobley is licensed to practice veterinary medicine in Florida and is a Diplomat of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. He is affiliated with numerous professional organizations to include the American Veterinary Medicine Association, The America Extension Veterinary Medicine Association, Association of Small Ruminant Practitioners, and Food Hygiene Veterinarian. Dr. Mobley currently serves as the director of extension programs at Florida A&M University.
Keawin Sarjeant, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Co-PD, Food Safety Specialist
Dr. Keawin Sarjeant is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Animal Science at Florida A&M University. He is also a recognized expert in the field of food safety. He will be involved in extension component of this research to disseminate outcomes of this proposal. He will also work closely with UF post-harvest meat food safety faculties to enhance food safety. Dr. Sarjeant will lead to disseminate outcomes of this research to small farmers in Florida and educate pre-veterinary and veterinary students at FAMU.
Mauricio Elzo, Ph.D., Professor, Co-PD, Animal Geneticist
Dr. Elzo leads a national and international research program on genetic improvement of unibreed and multibreed populations of beef cattle, dairy cattle, buffalo, and swine for traits of economic importance (fertility, growth, feed efficiency, carcass, and meat quality). His research covers theoretical, computational, and applied genetic and genomic areas using experimental, field, and survey data from the United States and cooperating countries (Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ethiopia, Mexico, Thailand).
Volker Mai, Ph.D., Co-PD, Associate Professor, Molecular Epidemiologist
Dr. Mai and his lab at the University of Florida Emerging Pathogens Institute investigate the complexity and dynamics of naturally occurring microbial communities inhabiting the digestive tracks of humans. Individuals typically have their own unique composition of intestinal microbiota, but Mai’s studies seek to determine predictable patterns of species complexity and dynamics that can evaluate an individual’s susceptibility to disease. He and his lab analyze gut microbiota for associations between its composition, the host’s diet, and the host’s state of health or disease. Dr. Mai’s lab also examines whether or not an individual’s intestinal microbiota composition affects their susceptibility to intestinal pathogens (particularly those causing diarrheal diseases), and if manipulation of this microbiota can help to prevent disease frequency or severity.
Soohyoun Ahn, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Co-PD, Food Scientist
Dr. Soohyoun Ahn is an Assistant Professor at the University of Florida. Her research interests involve the development of rapid and sensitive detection assay for pathogens and biological toxins in foods is critical for food safety, bio-security and clinical diagnosis. Dr. Ahn’s research interest is to develop rapid, inexpensive and simple assays for simultaneous detection of multiple pathogens in foods or in the environment. For the development of these assays, she utilizes various techniques, including immunomagnetic separation, ELISA, multiplex PCR, lateral flow assays, bead-based sensors and microarray. She is particularly interested in building a small, portable microfluidic platform, which will be ideal for field assays. Current research projects include: (1) development of bead-based suspension microarrays for simultaneous detection and characterization of multiple foodborne pathogens, (2) development of immunofluorescence assay for simultaneous detection of Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7, and (3) Study of STEC prevalence in small-sized cattle farms.
Chad Carr, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Co-PD, Meat Scientist
Dr. Chad Carr is an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist at the University of Florida. Dr. Carr’s role as State Meat Extension Specialist includes developing and implementing extension education to ensure the safety and wholesomeness of muscle foods and to improve the production, utilization, value, and sustainability of muscle foods. Additionally, he develops and administers youth programming in meat-animal agriculture, to develop responsible and productive youth to secure the future of our industry. The primary goal of his research program is to produce well-trained graduate students who can go on to be leaders in our industry or academia. His primary research interest is to take questions directly from industry professionals and apply them in a controlled research setting. The focus of Dr. Carr’s research program has been to determine the impact of the utilization of low cost by-product feedstuffs on growth and carcass merit of red meat animals and determine antemortem/pre-harvest management strategies to improve red meat animal well-being and value