The role of novel red yeast rice formulations to modulate lipid metabolism and reduce dyslipidemia and vascular disease in the JCR:LA-cp rat.

The primary objective of this MITACS study is to utilize a novel animal model with high blood lipids to assess the potential lipid lowering efficacy of red yeast formulations developed by SinoVeda Canada Inc. The intestine is the first-pass organ for the metabolism of dietary lipids and has an important role in whole body cholesterol homeostasis.  While the intestine is known predominantly to absorb and secrete cholesterol and contributes to faecal sterol removal, it has also been proposed to contribute to the regulation of plasma cholesterol concentration.  Funding from my NSERC Discovery

Management, host pathogenicity, and rapid identification of Magnaporthe poae, causal agent of summer patch on annual bluegrass and Kentucky bluegrass turf.

This project is designed to determine best management practices for a devastating disease of turfgrass that is currently controlled primarily by multiple fungicide applications. By assessing appropriate cultural practices aimed at reducing disease development it is our hope that we can reduce fungicide applications for this disease.

Estimation of Production Cost for Chicken Broiler Producers in Saskatchewan

The objective of this research is to estimate the total production cost and its components for chicken producers in Saskatchewan, with different technologies and size, using a survey analysis. The results of this research are expected to provide a ranking on efficiency of different technologies and scales of production (efficiency in terms of both total production cost as well as the cost of different factors like feed, medicine…). Thus, the results can indicate to what extent the chicken broiler industry in Saskatchewan is profitable and economically efficient.

Assessment of Possible Physiological Cold Tolerance Mechanisms of Miscanthus

The generation of agricultural biomass is a key component of Ontario’s emerging bioeconomy. Miscanthus, a warm-season, perennial grass is being considered as a bioenergy crop due to its high yield potential and favourable combustion qualities. One of the primary obstacles to commercializing and establishing miscanthus in Ontario is the poor cold tolerance of some of the genotypes under consideration.

Optimizing new thinning strategies with a mathematical model to increase yields and control biennial bearing of Honeycrisp apple trees

The recently introduced variety, Honeycrisp, is well-suited to the Annapolis region. Already planted in over 350 acres, Honeycrisp sells for four times the price of other apples. Unfortunately this variety has a major flaw - a tendency to biennial bearing through a strong tendency of producing only spurs and no substantial shoot growth. We need to understand this negative growth habit and develop innovative fruit management techniques to stabilize and increase yield.

Investigating Spring Barley Mixtures for Ontario

The research project involves examining spring barley purelines and mixtures of purelines through yield trials at multiple locations across Ontario. The data from the trial will be analyzed with the appropriate analysis of variance, enabling Hyland Seeds to adapt the current barley breeding program to a program that selects the best barley mixtures. The benefits to Hyland Seeds will be a higher yielding, stable product that is novel to the Ontario feed barley market. It will limit seed saving as well as extend the life of products.

Development of a Commercial Preservation Technology to Minimize Physiological Injury and Assure Quality Attributes of Apple Fruit

The ripening of fleshy fruits such as apple, pears and tomatoes results in a coordinated change in texture, nutritional characteristics, color, flavor and aroma, and initiates senescence processes that reduce shelf life. Fresh market apples are often treated with 1-methylcyclopropene and stored under controlled atmosphere conditions to delay ripening and extend the supply period to consumers. However, there is always some degree of economic loss due to external injury and flesh browning of the fruit.

Mitigating Poor Precocity and Biennial Bearing of Northern Spy Apples to Meet Increasing market Demand in Ontario

The project will focus on providing methods to secure the supply of Northern Spy apples for Chudleigh’s Ltd, an major international bakery located in Southern Ontario. Northern Spy, an apple cultivar discovered in the state of New York nearly 200 years ago, has a number of desirable attributes for baking, most notably for pie making. Chudleigh’s Ltd. will partner with the University of Guelph to conduct research on overcoming the slow to bear production nature of this cultivar, and its alternate bearing from one year to the next.

Utilizing Key Performance Indicators to Increase the Production Efficiency of Ontario Cow Calf Operations

The Ontario beef industry is a significant part of the agricultural economy, accounting for the highest farm cash receipts in the sector. Through linkages to other parts of the economy, beef production employs thousands of Ontarians and generates $1.4 billion for the provincial economy. The industry is under threat, however, from such challenges as trade restrictions, higher feed costs and changing food preferences. The most effective medium term solution to ensure the viability of the industry is to increase efficiency at the farm level.

Understanding the importance of “timing” in pesticide application and studying the volatilization of individual components of botanical pesticides on surfaces and their effects on pests

This internship is with EcoSafe Natural Products Inc., a consulting and contract R&D company specializing in research and development for companies in pesticides, fertilizers, personal care and other specialty areas of industry. In this project, the research team will study the vitalization of different constituents of botanical pesticides over time; the emission pattern and persistence of these pesticides on different surfaces within different environmental conditions, and also the behavioural responses of difference pests to different products.