Field crops pathology graduate student named Borlaug Fellow

Megan Mccaghey, a graduate student in Professor Damon Smith’s field crops pathology program, has been accepted into the U.S. Borlaug Summer Institute on Global Food Security, an annual 2-week long learning program for graduate students attending U.S. institutions who are interested in developing a holistic understanding of the conceptual challenges around global food security. Mccaghey is co-advised by Mehdi Kabbage, an assistant professor in plant pathology.

Mccaghey’s research at UW-Madison centers around Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, the causal agent of Sclerotinia stem rot (SSR), one of the most yield-limiting pathogens of soybeans in the United States and one that has been reported in various soybean producing regions including Argentina, India, Nepal and South Africa. Disease control is limited by the lack of complete resistance to SSR. With traditional breeding, Mccaghey and others are developing soybean germplasm lines, through field evaluations and additional crossing, with a high level of S. sclerotiorum resistance.

To learn more about the program, visit