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March 2020
With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has closed buildings to the general public and moved all classes to remote learning. This includes classes being held on Nebraska Innovation Campus. This has resulted in much work for faculty, staff, and students as we make the changes necessary to have a safe year and meet our obligations. At this time only activities and functions of the Department and the Center that have been deemed mission-critical are up and running for day-to-day operations. We regret to say that the annual Student Banquet has been canceled along with other events that would have large numbers of people gathered in one place. If you have questions or concerns please contact us at or 402-472-2831.
On March 12th, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Dairy Store celebrated its grand re-opening at its new space at the Food Industry Complex on the north side of the building with a small ceremony and free ice cream for visitors. The renovated space offers more seating and now faces the East Campus Legacy Plaza which will become a hub of activity for East Campus students and visitors.
Dr. Bob Hutkins writes a monthly column for the Lincoln Journal Star titled, The Food Doc. In his column, he answers questions on food science, safety, and trends. April's Food Doc is an important one as Dr. Hutkins addresses concerns around food safety and the coronavirus. You can read the article at the Lincoln Journal Star's website:
The American Oil Chemists’ Society (AOCS) Inform magazine featured a study conducted by Hefei Zhao (PhD candidate advised by Dr. Changmou Xu). The title of the study is Machine learning-driven Raman spectroscopy for rapidly detecting type, adulteration, and oxidation of edible oils  His work was selected to be presented at this year’s AOCS Annual Meeting.
Updated EHS Procedures
Environmental Health Systems has recently updated the SOPs for both sewer disposal and shipping hazardous materials.

Sewer Disposal List Added information that pharmaceuticals (e.g., prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, investigational drugs, dietary supplements, etc.) are prohibited from sewer disposal. Contact EHS to dispose of any pharmaceuticals.
Packaging and Shipping Hazardous Materials/Dangerous GoodsShipping Biological Substances and Patient Specimens

Shipping Excepted Quantities of Dangerous Goods
Shipping Infectious Substances w/wo Dry Ice
Shipping Items with Dry Ice That Are not Otherwise Dangerous Goods

All revised to remind the campus community NOT to prepare any international shipments before consulting with UNL Export Control: or call 402.472.6929.
Upcoming Events

April 6
4 PM
FDST 951
Student Presentations

April 17
4 PM
FDST 951
Student Presentations

April 20
4 PM
FDST 951
Student Presentations
Upcoming Workshops
All workshops are currently postponed. Please contact Jill Gifford at if you have any questions.

Recent Publications

Becker B, Feng X, Yin Y, Holzinger A (2020) Desiccation tolerance in streptophyte algae and the algae to land plant transition: Evolution of LEA and MIP protein families within the Viridiplantae, Journal of Experimental Botany, 2020 Feb 28. pii: eraa105. doi: 10.1093/jxb/eraa105

Orton L, Fitzek E, Feng X, Grayburn SW, Mower JP, Liu K, Zhang C, Duvall MR, Yin Y (2020) Zygnema circumcarinatum UTEX 1559 chloroplast and mitochondrial genomes provide insight into land plant evolution, Journal of Experimental Botany, 2020 Mar 24. pii: eraa149. doi: 10.1093/jxb/eraa149

Long H. Nguyen, Wenjie Ma, Dong D. Wang , Yin Cao, Himel Mallick, Teklu Gerbaba, Jason Lloyd-Price, Galeb Abu-Ali, A. Brantley Hall , Daniel Sikavi, David A.Drew, Raaj S. Mehta, Cesar Arze, Amit D. Joshi, Yan Yan, Tobyn Branck, Casey DuLong, Kerry Ivey, Shuji Ogino, Eric B. Rimm EB, Mingyang Song, Wendy S. Garrett, Jacques Izard, Curtis Huttenhower, Andre T. Chan
Gastroenterology (2020) vol. 158 (5) pp. 1313-1325

H. Zhao, Y. Zhan, Z. Xu, J. J. Nduwamungu, Y. Zhou, and C. Xu, “Machine learning-driven Raman spectroscopy for rapidly detecting type, adulteration, and oxidation of edible oils,” Am. Oil Chem. Soc. Inf. Mag., vol. 31, no. 4, pp. 12–15, Apr. 2020.

Recent Awards

Dr. Jennifer Auchtung (Lead: Dr. Janos Zemplenti), Dept of Agriculture-NIFA , Milk Exosome-Driven Evolution Of Antibiotic-Resistant Gut Pathogens, $500,000

Dr. Jennifer Clarke (Lead Dr. Ema Graham), Dept of Justice-Natl Inst of Justice, Development of a Human Virome Based Microarray as a Forensic Tool, $146,805

Dr. Yulie Meneses (Lead Dr. Christopher Neale), United Nations Food & Agriculture Organization, Services in Support of the Preparation of the 2019 Edition of The State of Food and Agriculture, $65,999

Scholarships and Fellowships

Milton Mohr Fellowship (Teaching)

Deadline: April 17, 2020
•    $3,000 award
•    Teaching experience at UNL
•    Currently have teaching or research assistantship
For application process and more information go to
FDST Student Ambassador Deadline Extended! –We are currently accepting applications for to fill the next 2-year term (2020-2022 academic years). Click here for the application and requirements.

Internships and Jobs

Lab Animal Care Assistant 

Gnotobiotic Mouse Facility

University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE

Working with mice in sterile environments; preparing the food, water, and bedding for the mice and maintaining the sterile conditions of the isolators using aseptic techniques. Performing periodic microbiological quality-control checks and assisting lab personnel with various mouse-related tasks. The position is for Fall 2017 and possibly longer. Find more details here.

To apply, contact Dr. Amanda Ramer-Tait ( Please send (1) cover letter, (2) resume, (3) schedule of available days/times to work, and (4) if you are eligible for work study. All four items must be included in your application email.

Student Research Project

Dr. Bryon Chaves, a faculty member in the Food Science & Technology Department, has a project for a student to complete through the IANR ARD Undergraduate Research Program (see above). He is seeking a student with at least one more full year left, so someone who plans to graduate in spring or summer 2021. If you are interested in this project and meet the qualifications, please email Dr. Chaves at

Animal Health Intern
Merck, Elkhorn, NE

The Future Talent Program features internships that last up to 12 weeks and will include one or more projects.  These opportunities can provide you with great development and a chance to see if we are the right company for your long-term goals. Interns will work under the direction of a supervisor and assist a team of scientists in their work toward the development of vaccines and other biologicals for use in animals. Opportunities are available for candidates enrolled in undergraduate degree programs.  Candidates must have finished their sophomore year of a four-year bachelor program in a life science discipline by June of 2020.   Candidates should be able to demonstrate their achievements in scientific coursework through academic transcripts. 

For more information and to apply please visit:

Associate Food Scientist

ConAgra Foods, Omaha, NE

Under direct supervision, researches, conducts experiments, gathers data, develops preliminary findings and prepares written reports for the development of new products beginning at conception through successful commercialization. Follows established protocols and work plans and drafts for review technical proposals and reports. This position requires a B.S. in Food Science or related field required. MS preferred and one year of experience.

To apply visit:

QA Analyst I

Nestle Purina PetCare Company, Crete, NE

Perform tests for NIR (Protein, Fat, and Moisture), Date Codes, Temperature/Condensation, Package Seals and other QA tests as required ( process and finished goods). Make recommendations and decisions on product holds and release. Monitor product formulas for accuracy.

To apply please visit: Nestle Purina Careers


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