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Research Impacts from the 2012 Chancellor's Report  |  Part 1

The North Carolina Agricultural Research Service:
Who We Are

The North Carolina Agricultural Research Service (NCARS) is the principal state agency responsible for agricultural and life sciences research, providing the scientific foundation for CALS Academic and Extension programs.

Collaborators include CNR, PAMS, COE, CHASS , CVM and the School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences at NC A&T State University.

The NC Research Campus at Kannapolis involves collaborations among NCSU, UNC-CH, UNC-G, UNC-C, NCCU, NC A&T, ASU and Duke University.

Research Facility Activity

  • Development continued at two aquaculture research and demonstration sites
  • We are in the final stages of developing a funded agreement with the Biofuels Center of North Carolina for field research space at Williamsdale Biofuels Field Laboratory
  • The integrated NCSU Dairy Enterprise System is completing its second year of operation, including completion of its new, modern milking parlor and development of a tractor leasing arrangement with a local distributor.
  • Continued progress was made on renovations to move aquatic species from the Biological Resources Facility to the Grinnells laboratory
  • The NSF-ARI-R2 funded renovation of the Phytotron is progressing. This project should be complete in 2013 and provide a state-of-the-art controlled environment facility with containment for investigating high-risk plant pathogens and other microbes.

Introducing  Our People, Grants, Fundraising & Knowledge Contributions

NCARS personnel, supported by federal, state, grant and/or gift funding, include the following, m
any of which joint appointments with Academic Programs and/or Extension:
  • 368 research scientists;
  • 634 graduate students, researchers, research assistants and post-doctoral students;
  • 490 technicians and support staff.
Research Projects & Grants
The faculty and support personnel oversee 501 federal, state and regional research projects, supporting over 70 commodities, related agribusinesses and life sciences industries.

  • CALS scientists submitted 990 funding proposals, requesting a total of $224,895,317;
  • 711 proposals were awarded, totaling $79,489,588.
  • Research expenditures totaled $134,291,468
NCARS development activities generated over $3 million in endowments and other support for college research; pending requests total $8.1 million to support AMPLIFY, the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS), the Sweet Potato Campaign, the dairy program and other research functions.

Intellectual Property
Faculty filed 41 invention disclosures; 11 new plant varieties were released; 22 patents were issued and 37 commercialization agreements were executed on NCARS inventions and technologies.
Plants for Human Health Institute,
NC Research Campus, Kannapolis

Multidisciplinary Research Focus
The Plants for Human Health Institute (PHHI) focuses on research and extension programs designed to:

  • enhance nutritional value of fruits, vegetables & related compounds
  • improve human health
  • prevent disease
  • contribute to the economic viability of NC agriculture.
The PHHI supports faculty from:

  • Horticultural Science
  • Food, Bioprocessing & Nutrition Sciences
  • Plant Biology
  • Genetics
  • Agricultural & Resource Economics
Funding Accomplishments
Since opening, the institute has received $2.1 million in gift donations, $7.8 million in federal and private competitive grants, including $200,000 from the Golden LEAF Foundation, $1.42 million from the NC Tobacco Trust Fund Commission, $2 million from NCDA&CS and USDA, $780,000 from UNC General Administration, and $1.05 million from commodity groups and other private sponsors. This funding is in addition to state appropriations.

Staff & Facility Improvements
This summer the institute will add one faculty member in systems biology; one post-doctoral fellow specializing in NMR technology; one greenhouse operations technician supporting the plant breeding program; two research specialists; five new graduate students; four Kannapolis Scholars, five visiting scholars; and 22 interns, bringing the total number of faculty, staff, graduate students and support personnel to 75. In addition, the institute will add 12,000 square feet of greenhouse space and nine walk-in growth chambers.

Dr. Steve Lommel (NCARS)
Dr. Mary Ann Lilia (Food, Bioprocessing & Nutrition Sciences)

updated 10-4-2012