COLLEGE STATION -- Dr. Tanya Pankiw, Texas Agricultural Experiment Station assistant professor, has been awarded the 2006 National Research Initiative Discovery Award. The award was presented Jan. 9 at the 2007 Texas A&M University Agriculture Conference in College Station.
Colien Hefferan, U.S. Department of Agriculture Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service administrator, and Dr. Gale Buchanan, USDA deputy undersecretary for research education and economics, presented the award.
"Dr. Pankiw's work demonstrates the high-impact science supported by the National Research Initiative, and the Discovery Award illustrates the importance of that science on our nation's agriculture," Buchanan said.
Pankiw's project, "Pheromone Regulation of Brood Rearing in the Honey Bee," competed against 30 nominations. She will be given $10,000 in research grant money.
Her research centers around honey bee pheromones and their effects on individual bees and colonies. Pheromones are chemical substances used in conveying information between, and generating responses in, certain animals.
Pankiw teaches a course on honey bee biology in the department of entomology at Texas A&M.
She earned bachelor's and master's degrees in plant science and entomology from the University of Manitoba and a doctorate in biology from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada, in 1996.
According to http://honeybee.tamu.edu , bees pollinate about 130 agricultural crops in the U.S. This includes fruit, fiber, nut and vegetable crops. Bee pollination adds about $14 billion dollars annually to improved crop yield and quality, according to information on the Web site.