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UT One Health Initiative Announces 2023 Multidisciplinary Research Seed Grant Program Recipients

The University of Tennessee’s One Health Initiative (OHI) announced the recipients of the 2023 Multidisciplinary Research Seed Grant Program, an initiative designed to champion collaborative, One Health-related research projects throughout the UT System.

With financial support from the UT College of Veterinary Medicine Center of Excellence, Tennessee RiverLine, and the UT Humanities Center, OHI is able to allocate three $40,000 awards to multidisciplinary teams spearheading research endeavors addressing intricate challenges necessitating a One Health approach.

“The paramount strength of the One Health Initiative lies in our strategic collaborations with colleges, departments, units, and individuals across the university system. Through these synergistic partnerships, we have successfully funded research teams confronting intricate challenges—challenges that can only be effectively addressed when diverse perspectives are brought to the forefront,” said Deb Miller, OHI director. “We eagerly anticipate witnessing the impactful outcomes of this next round of projects as they apply a One Health approach to navigate these complex issues.”

Meet the Teams

Kimberly Gwinn, professor of entomology and plant pathology, and Julia Albright, associate professor of small animal clinical sciences, received an award for Mycotoxins in Cannabis: Implications for One Health.

“Consumers desire natural products such as CBD because of the belief that natural is safer.” said Gwinn. “Our inability to confirm that these are indeed safe practices makes this a significant issue that can be addressed with proper testing and hemp management practices.”

Sarah Bolivar, assistant professor of landscape architecture, Michael Ross, assistant professor of plant sciences, and Jason Brown, associate professor of art, received an award for their project Modular Landscapes: Tackling Water Quality through Arts and Science.

“Our project would be of significance to restoration ecologists, water quality scientists, stormwater management specialists, students who are interested in stream restoration and sustainability, environmental artists, the Third Creek Greenway visitor cultural experience, as well as plant and aquatic life,” said Bolivar. “By combining the arts, sciences, and spatial practices, we seek to contribute to the growing discourse on restoration ecology and water systems management.”

Stephen Collins-Elliott, assistant professor of classics, received an award for Lixus, City and Country: Environment and Sustainability in an Ancient Landscape (Larache, Morocco).

“This project aims both to apply novel modeling techniques to the field of Roman archaeology in North Africa, as well as to innovate upon previous Human Behavioral Ecology approaches through more advanced modeling and model criticism,” said Collins-Elliot. “Archaeology, as a field that deals with long-term trends and events in the domains of human behavior, material culture, and interactions with the environment, is well posed to address the questions of sustainability and optimization beyond the immediate and short-term.”