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UT Obesity Research Center

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Home » Faculty » Dr. Gina Pighetti

Gina Pighetti

Associate Professor
Department of Animal Science


PhD in Pathobiology, The Pennsylvania State University
MS in Pathobiology, The Pennsylvania State University
BS in Dairy Production, Minor in Business, The Pennsylvania State University

Research Area:

My long-term research goals seek to improve animal health and subsequent food safety by elucidating genetic-based mechanisms that contribute to disease susceptibility. Once these mechanisms are identified, improved preventive and therapeutic strategies can be developed to counteract ‘weak-links’ in an animals defense system. 

Research Description:

Most of my research centers on mastitis, an inflammation of the mammary gland commonly caused by bacteria.  In the United States alone, the costs associated with this disease are estimated at $2 billion a year! Mastitis not only impacts animal health and productivity, but also impairs milk safety by increasing the potential for transfer of foodborne pathogens and antibiotic resistance. Therefore, identifying means of reducing the incidence and severity of mastitis are critical for improving dairy cow health and milk quality.

Dr. Gina Pighetti

Contact Information:

Department of Animal Science
2640 Morgan Circle
114 McCord Hall
Knoxville, TN 37996-4588
Phone: 865-974-7225
Fax: 865-974-9043

Complete Bio