||Marlene Janes and Lucina Lampila, both associate professors in the Department of Food Science in the LSU AgCenter, are part of a group called the USDA-NIFA Food Virology Collaborative that received a $25 million award from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture for their grant titled, "Building Capacity to Control Viral Food Borne Disease: A Translational, Multidisciplinary Approach." The grant will be used to strengthen food safety by studying human noroviruses across the food supply chain in an effort to design effective control measures and reduce the number of virus-caused food-borne illnesses. Human noroviruses are the most common cause of food-borne disease, responsible for more than five million cases in the United States each year. The project has six core objectives: developing improved methods of studying human noroviruses and their role in food-borne illnesses; developing and validating rapid and practical methods to detect human noroviruses; collecting and analyzing data on viral food-borne illnesses – including how they are transmitted – and providing risk and cost analyses; improving the understanding of how human noroviruses behave in the food-safety chain in order to develop scientifically justifiable control measures; developing online courses and curricula for food safety and health professionals and food service workers, and providing information to fresh produce and shellfish producers and processors on the risks, management and control of food-borne viruses; and developing a public literature database, building virus research capabilities in state public health laboratories, and developing graduate-level curricula to educate masters and doctoral students trained in food virology. North Carolina State University will serve as the lead institution for the USDA-NIFA Food Virology Collaborative, which consists of more than 30 collaborators from academia, including Janes and Lampila; industry; and government.