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Latest Agricultural Research Service Stories

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2010-08-20 09:40:55

A comprehensive study of pollutants in a major Chesapeake Bay tributary revealed troublesome levels of nitrogen and copper that could flow into the Bay, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists and their cooperators.Scientists with USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and their collaborators conducted the study as part of the Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) for Maryland's Choptank River Watershed, which flows into the Chesapeake Bay. CEAP began in...

2010-07-27 23:57:36

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists have developed a new tool for deciphering the genetics of a native prairie grass being widely studied for its potential as a biofuel. The genetic map of switchgrass, published by Christian Tobias, a molecular biologist at the ARS Western Regional Research Center in Albany, Calif., and his colleagues, is expected to speed up the search for genes that will make the perennial plant a more viable source of bioenergy. Switchgrass is now grown as a...

2010-07-21 23:08:36

Fast-growing farm-raised salmon and trout that are sterile can now be produced using a method developed by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists. Blocking reproduction can enhance growth, and is important for fish being reared in situations where reproduction is undesirable. The method allows researchers to more efficiently and reliably produce fish that have three sets of chromosomes, instead of the usual two sets. Fish with the extra set of chromosomes can't reproduce, so the...

2010-07-21 13:23:27

Two tips for preventing Johne's disease on dairy farms: Use stainless steel water troughs and add chlorine to the water. That's according to Kim Cook, an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) microbiologist at the agency's Animal Waste Management Research Unit in Bowling Green, Ky. Cook did the research with Carl Bolster, a hydrologist at Bowling Green, and other colleagues. Stainless steel troughs are expensive, but not as expensive as Johne's disease. Caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium...

2010-07-16 14:12:13

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) chemist Thomas Wang, who specializes in cancer prevention research, has reported evidence that for some dietary compounds, length of exposure over time may be key to whether or not ingestion leads to a beneficial, or detrimental, effect. Scientists do not know exactly why one person develops cancer and another does not. But they do know that certain nutrients might increase or decrease cancer risk. There are "layers" of factors involved in the development...

2010-07-15 15:38:31

Armed with dart guns and medical pellets, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists are vaccinating bison in and around Yellowstone National Park against brucellosis. Researchers from the ARS National Animal Disease Center (NADC) in Ames, Iowa, are using a vaccine known as RB51. By vaccinating the wild bison, scientists hope to prevent the disease from spreading to nearby livestock. Currently, no cattle herds in the U.S. are known to be infected, although some near Yellowstone have been...

2010-07-13 15:26:34

Using molecular techniques, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and collaborating scientists have shown how the subversion of a single gene in wheat by two fungal foes triggers a kind of celular suicide in the grain crop's leaves. Fortunately, the team has also developed DNA molecular markers that can be used to rapidly screen commercial cultivars for the gene, Tsn1, so it can be eliminated by selective breeding. This, in turn, would deprive the fungi of their primary means of killing off...

2010-07-12 08:30:00

MUNDELEIN, Ill., July 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Z Trim Holdings, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: ZTHO), manufacturer of multifunctional dietary fiber ingredients for the food industry, today announced that its corn fiber ingredient will be featured in a cheesecake display at the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) booth (#3229 in the Process Expo) at the Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting & Food Expo (IFT AMFE), July 18-20, 2010 in Chicago. Samples of the cheesecake...

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2010-07-07 10:15:38

There's no substantial quality difference between organically and conventionally produced eggs. That's one of a number of findings in an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) study examining various aspects of egg quality. ARS food technologist Deana Jones and her team in the agency's Egg Safety and Quality Research Unit in Athens, Ga., found that, on average, there was no substantial quality difference between types of eggs. So, no matter which specialty egg is chosen, it will be nearly the...

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2010-07-07 07:47:19

Deworming lambs can be minimized with rotational grazing and checking the animals' eye color, according to an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) study. Animal scientist Joan Burke at the ARS Dale Bumpers Small Farms Research Center in Booneville, Ark., and colleagues made this finding as part of a continuing collaboration with scientists, veterinarians, and extension agents from the Southern Consortium for Small Ruminant Parasite Control. The consortium was formed in response to the threats...