Saturday, 15 December 2018


The National Potato Council (NPC) announces that Adrienne Gorny, a fourth-year doctoral student in Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology at CornellUniversity, is the recipient of the 2017-2018 NPC Academic Scholarship.

The USD10k award is provided annually to a graduate student with a strong interest in research that can directly benefit the potato industry. Gorny’s work focuses on the quantitative epidemiology of Northern root-knot and lesion nematodes in potatoes.
Her work involves frequent collaboration with New York-based potato growers for on-farm trials and her research is squarely focused on helping the potato industry make informed decisions about nematode control measures.
“Growers have the most insight into the problems they face. They provide me with research ideas and I do experiments to test those ideas,” said Gorny.
She wants to quantify yield loss due to nematodes by measuring pre-plant density of the nematode population. “[…] I’m measuring the DNA of nematodes in the soil, extracting DNA from soil and measuring bar code regions. It is faster than the traditional method and potentially more accurate,” she explained. Ultimately Gorny plans to create a pre-planting soil test, so that growers whose soil is above threshold for the nematodes can take action early and those below the threshold could save money by not taking unnecessary action.  

According to Dr. Sarah Pethybridge, the supervisor for Gorny’s graduate studies, “her unique project achievements for the U.S. potato industry will leave her ideally positioned to impact scientific research and support the profitability and productivity of the industry far into the foreseeable future.”  

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