Molecular Biologist (Plants)
Research Molecular Biologist
Daren Brown is a molecular biologist and chemist. He received his BSc (1988) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and his PhD (1993) from Albany Medical College. He conducted postdoctoral research at Texas A&M University supported by a USDA Fellowship and was a Staff Scientist at TerraGen Discovery in Vancouver, British Columbia. He joined the Mycotoxin Prevention and Applied Microbiology Research Team at the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research in Peoria, IL in 2000. The Brown lab is primarily interested in reducing the negative impact Fusarium secondary metabolites have on our food supply. Fusarium is a very diverse fungal genus that can cause disease on virtually all crop plants. Fusarium verticillioides is among the most agriculturally important species of Fusarium because it occurs worldwide on corn and contaminate grains with fumonisins. The risk these toxins pose to both human and animal health is a critical concern to food/feed producers and regulatory agencies. Brown’s research is focused on identifying the molecular genetic processes controlling expression of Fusarium toxin synthesis and host metabolites which impact fungal growth and toxin synthesis. To address these challenges, he is pursuing multiple lines of research including improving Fusarium genomic resources for assessing mycotoxin production potential; identifying components of maize-fungus interactions that affect mycotoxin synthesis; and understanding how fungal meiotic drive elements can be harnessed to reduce toxin contamination.
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Innovative Food and Feed Safety Research to Eliminate Mycotoxin Contamination in Corn and other Crops In-House Appropriated (D) Accession Number:438647