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2006

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Incentives And Contract Design: A Case Study Of Farmland Lease Contracts In Us Agriculture , Keita Fukunaga Jan 2006

Incentives And Contract Design: A Case Study Of Farmland Lease Contracts In Us Agriculture , Keita Fukunaga

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

In this dissertation, I have studied farmland lease contracts in U.S. agriculture. Using the data from the 1999 Agricultural Economics and Land Ownership Survey, I investigated the empirical determinants of contract design from the perspective of the principal-agent framework, which emphasizes the role of incentives. In the empirical analyses, I found evidence that incentives indeed play an important role in contract design. In chapter 2, I investigated the role of risk, transaction costs, and endogenous matching between the landlord and tenant in contract choice. I found that both risk and transaction costs affect contract choice. Furthermore, I found evidence ...


Sustainable Agriculture And The Perceptions Of High School Agriculture Teachers In The North Central Region Of The United States , Mathew Ajuoga Muma Jan 2006

Sustainable Agriculture And The Perceptions Of High School Agriculture Teachers In The North Central Region Of The United States , Mathew Ajuoga Muma

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The debate about the socio-economic and environmental challenges associated with conventional agricultural systems in the U.S.A. in the 1980s vis-a-vis sustainable agriculture (SA) has included the definition of SA, the role of education in addressing the challenges and what should be taught about SA in high school and beyond. Proponents of SA claim education about SA can facilitate solutions to the current problems in agriculture, stimulate rural economic development and enrich scientific teaching of SA (Feldman, 1999; Sanstone, 2003/2004). The purpose of this study was to identify the beliefs of high school agriculture teachers about SA, and ...


Understanding Il-12 Responsiveness During Leishmania Amazonensis Infection , Amanda Ellen Ramer Jan 2006

Understanding Il-12 Responsiveness During Leishmania Amazonensis Infection , Amanda Ellen Ramer

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Cutaneous leishmaniasis is a vector-borne disease caused by intracellular protozoan parasites of the genus Leishmania. C3H mice challenged with L. major develop a polarized Th1 response and subsequently heal, whereas L. amazonensis challenge leads to chronic lesions with high parasite loads. This work demonstrates that infection with L. amazonensis creates a population of antigen-responsive, CD44hi CD4+ T cells that proliferate and produce IL-2 but do not polarize to an effector phenotype and exhibit limited IFN-gamma production in response to IL-12. CD44 hi CD4+ T cells from L. amazonensis-infected mice fail to accumulate in culture as compared to cells from L ...


Infectious Bovine Keratoconjunctivitis In Angus Cattle , José Eduardo Rodríguez Jan 2006

Infectious Bovine Keratoconjunctivitis In Angus Cattle , José Eduardo Rodríguez

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Infectious Bovine Keratoconjunctivitis is a contagious ocular disease that affects cattle worldwide. It is considered the most significant ocular disease in cattle. The economic impact of the disease has been well documented. The available treatments have yet to show their effectiveness in the prevention and/or control of the disease. The objectives of this study were twofold, to evaluate the effects of IBK incidence and severity on production traits such as weaning weight, yearling weight, and carcass traits and to estimate variance components associated with IBK. Our results support previous findings on the effects of IBK on weaning weight. The ...


Structural Characterization Of Ligand Binding In Hexacoordinate Hemoglobins , Julie Anne Hoy Jan 2006

Structural Characterization Of Ligand Binding In Hexacoordinate Hemoglobins , Julie Anne Hoy

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Hemoglobins are ancient proteins that predate the divergence of prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Although the most thoroughly studied hemoglobins are mammalian oxygen transporters, it has become clear that this function is a recent evolutionary advancement coinciding with the "oxygen revolution" and the development of multicellular organisms. Hemoglobins capable of oxygen transport are highly specialized structurally to maintain pentacoordination of the heme and appropriate ligand rate and equilibrium constants, while preventing autooxidation due to bound oxygen. Their predecessors however, adopt a more energetically favorable hexacoordinate conformation that precludes oxygen transport;Despite the fact that hexacoordinate hemoglobins are ubiquitous in biological organisms, little ...


Brucella Infection And Vaccine Studies In Feral And Domestic Swine , William Conrad Stoffregen Jan 2006

Brucella Infection And Vaccine Studies In Feral And Domestic Swine , William Conrad Stoffregen

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Studies were undertaken to assess the Brucella infection status of a feral swine herd which was previously known to be enzootically infected with Brucella and to assess potential Brucella vaccines in both domestic and feral swine populations. Eighty feral swine were trapped in South Carolina. The Brucella culture positivity rate was 77.5%. Both B. suis and B. abortus were cultured from infected feral swine. Of the B. abortus isolates, B. abortus biovar 1 field isolates and B. abortus S19 were identified. The serological positivity rate was 48.8%, and the sensitivity of individual serological assays ranged from 13.1 ...


Studies Of Hypoxia Response And Regulation Of Hypoxia-Inducible Factor Hif-1 In Caenorhabditis Elegans , Chuan Shen Jan 2006

Studies Of Hypoxia Response And Regulation Of Hypoxia-Inducible Factor Hif-1 In Caenorhabditis Elegans , Chuan Shen

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

All aerobic organisms require molecular oxygen to generate metabolic energy for normal growth and survival. During evolution, multi-cellular organisms have developed and refined complex networks for adaptation to hypoxic environments at both systemic and cellular levels. Adaptation to hypoxia largely results from changes in the activity and expression of key proteins. These include proteins involved in increasing oxygen delivery to hypoxic tissues and proteins that facilitate glycolysis for anaerobic metabolism. The mammalian transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) is a master regulator of oxygen homeostasis. More than 100 target genes of HIF mediate broad systemic and local responses to hypoxia, including ...


Antigenic Epitope Composition And Protectivity Of Avian Hepatitis E Virus (Avian Hev) Orf2 Protein And Vertical Transmission Of Avian Hev , Hailong Guo Jan 2006

Antigenic Epitope Composition And Protectivity Of Avian Hepatitis E Virus (Avian Hev) Orf2 Protein And Vertical Transmission Of Avian Hev , Hailong Guo

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Avian HEV was first isolated in chickens from the USA that had hepatitis-splenomegaly syndrome in 2001. Based on genetic identity and genomic organization, avian HEV has been classified into the genus Hepevirus, family Hepeviridae, which also includes human and swine HEVs. Avian HEV ORF2 protein was predicted to have common antigenic epitopes shared by avian, human and swine HEV, but its detailed antigenic epitope composition and protectivity have not been investigated. Vertical transmission of avian HEV in chickens also remains to be evaluated;To map HEV common and non-common epitopes on avian HEV ORF2 protein, nine synthetic peptides from the ...


Bayesian Recombination Detection Modeling And Application, Fang Fang Jan 2006

Bayesian Recombination Detection Modeling And Application, Fang Fang

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

As a key evolutionary process, recombination shapes the genetic structure of virus populations. The increased availability of virus sequences provides a chance to study virus recombination through molecular data. Many statistical methods have been developed, and a lot of the methods are phylogenetic-based. My research focuses on recombination modeling and data analysis;I first apply an existing phylogenetic-base method, Bayesian dual change-point model (DMCP), to investigate the role of representative data types for recombination study. We conclude that consensus sequences are an all-around robust representative of virus genotypes. Using consensus data we study recombination of all full-length hepatitis B virus ...


The Analysis Of Global Gene Expression Related To Starch, Lipid And Protein Composition , Ling Li Jan 2006

The Analysis Of Global Gene Expression Related To Starch, Lipid And Protein Composition , Ling Li

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation provides a greater understanding of starch metabolism and its regulation by using mutants altered in starch accumulation, together with a combination of approaches such as global gene profiling, promoter::GUS/GFP analyses, and genetics;Starch debranching enzymes are critical for starch accumulation. The temporal and spatial co-expression of ISA1 and ISA2 is consistent with previous evidence that they co-function as a protein complex (ISA1/ISA2) for starch synthesis. The extensive temporal and spatial co-expression of ISA2 and ISA3 suggests they might also form a protein complex, taking part in starch metabolism. ISA3 protein is localized in leaf chloroplast ...


Arginine Vasopressin And Somatostatin Receptors In Rat Astrocytes , Nasser Syed Jan 2006

Arginine Vasopressin And Somatostatin Receptors In Rat Astrocytes , Nasser Syed

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

We studied the effects of arginine vasopressin (AVP) and somatostatin (SS) on glutamate release and characterized the receptors that mediate the effects of these two peptides from rat astrocytes.;Aginine vasopressin (AVP) acts through specific G protein-coupled receptors and not only induces [Ca2+]i' increase in astrocytes, but also has been shown to regulate astrocytic cell volume changes. Here we report a novel finding that AVP induces glutamate release from astrocytes isolated from the cerebral cortex and hippocampus. We also investigated the type of AVP receptors involved in the AVP-induced increase in glutamate release from astrocytes isolated from the hippocampus ...


Forest Dynamics In Mesic Northern Hardwoods Following Windthrow And Salvage Logging , Katharyn Dianne Derr Jan 2006

Forest Dynamics In Mesic Northern Hardwoods Following Windthrow And Salvage Logging , Katharyn Dianne Derr

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Post-disturbance, or salvage, logging is a highly debated topic within natural resource science and management as its effects on forest recovery are not well understood. We examine a 25-year forest response to a 1977 severe wind disturbance on the Flambeau River State Forest in Wisconsin, USA, some of which was salvage logged. Our results show salvage logging affects the rate of vegetation recovery, microtopography, and soil composition within this mixed broad-leaved deciduous and conifer forest. Although salvaged and unsalvaged areas are similar in tree species composition, tree biomass is higher and forest microtopography is more pronounced within the unsalvaged area ...


Exploring The Role Of Visual Selective Attention In Synesthesia , Amy L. Ramos Jan 2006

Exploring The Role Of Visual Selective Attention In Synesthesia , Amy L. Ramos

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Individuals with grapheme-color synesthesia perceive colors, called concurrents, when processing alphanumeric stimuli. Concurrents may arise from cross activation between cortical language and color processing areas. Two experiments used an attentional blink (AB) paradigm to test whether production of concurrents is an automatic or attention-demanding process. Two experiments used a visual-short-term-memory paradigm to test whether working memory (WM) representations of concurrents are capacity demanding. When target color was incongruent with concurrent color but color did not define targets, a synesthete (S1) showed delayed AB recovery compared to controls. When color defined targets and target color was congruent with concurrent color, the ...


Evaluation Of Computer Input Devices For Use In Standard Office Applications While Moving In An Off-Road Vehicle , Thorsten Baldus Jan 2006

Evaluation Of Computer Input Devices For Use In Standard Office Applications While Moving In An Off-Road Vehicle , Thorsten Baldus

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Advances in modern farming technology provide automation features that lighten the workload for operators of farming equipment. One of the many technologies incorporated in modern agricultural equipment is automated steering systems like the John Deere's Green-Star Auto-Trac System(TM), which is a hands-free steering system for straight-line driving applications. When using a machine that is equipped with one of these systems, the work load of the operator is lightened and enables the operator to perform other tasks while doing field work. Many people believe a tractor cab could become a mobile office in the near future with the operator ...


Cloning, Expression, And Characterization Of A Recombinant Bifunctional Protein -- Porcine Air Carboxylase And Saicar Synthetase , Xin Gao Jan 2006

Cloning, Expression, And Characterization Of A Recombinant Bifunctional Protein -- Porcine Air Carboxylase And Saicar Synthetase , Xin Gao

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The conversion of aminoimidazole ribonucleotide (AIR) to carboxyaminoimidazole ribonucleotide (CAIR) by phosphoribosylaminoimidazole carboxylase (AIR carboxylase) and the conversion of conversion of ATP, L-aspartate and CAIR to 5-aminoimidazole-4-(N-succinylcarboxamide) ribonucleotide (SAICAR), ADP and phosphate by phosphoribosylaminoimidazolesuccinocarboxamide synthetase (SAICAR synthetase) represent the 7th and 8th steps respectively of de novo purine nucleotide biosynthesis. For the vertebrate enzyme system, AIR carboxylase and SAICAR synthetase are combined in a bifunctional protein encoded by a single gene. Here, a porcine gene encoding AIR carboxylase/SAICAR synthetase was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. The native molecular weight of the purified recombinant protein infers an octameric ...


Isolation And Characterization Of High Persistence Mutants Of Salmonella Enterica Serotype Typhimurium, Andrew Richard Slattery Jan 2006

Isolation And Characterization Of High Persistence Mutants Of Salmonella Enterica Serotype Typhimurium, Andrew Richard Slattery

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A small fraction of bacterial populations consist of "persistent" cells that are phenotypically distinct from the majority of cells by their ability to avoid killing by a variety of antimicrobial challenges. Persistence is distinct from resistance in that persistent cells are unable to grow in the presence of the antimicrobial agent or treatment, but resume growth after the selection has been removed. Presently, little is known about the genetic or physiological basis of persistence. In this study we demonstrate that Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. typhimurium) displays the persistence phenotype. To better understand persistence in this important food-borne pathogen, we ...


Food Safety Training As Adult Education: Determining Prior Knowledge In The Service Of Scientific Conceptual Change , Jason D. Ellis Jan 2006

Food Safety Training As Adult Education: Determining Prior Knowledge In The Service Of Scientific Conceptual Change , Jason D. Ellis

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A common recommendation for addressing the serious issue of foodborne illness is to train foodservice managers to handle and store foods safely. Typically, food safety education is considered successful when managers become certified through such programs as ServSafeRTM, which is offered by Cooperative Extension and other organizations. However, sustained behavior change has been limited. The research contributed to understanding the nature of the limitations of current programs, toward betterment of food safety education. The goals of the research was to describe the type and extent of conceptual understandings possessed by trained and certified foodservice workers of scientific principles relevant to ...


Energy Expenditure In Lean And Obese Women: The Role Of Posture Allocation , Darcy Larae Johannsen Jan 2006

Energy Expenditure In Lean And Obese Women: The Role Of Posture Allocation , Darcy Larae Johannsen

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Obesity occurs when energy intake exceeds energy expenditure over an extended period of time. Low resting metabolic rate (RMR), or expending less energy at rest than persons of equivalent body size, is considered a risk factor for weight gain leading to obesity. However, because obese persons tend to have greater lean mass (LM) as well as fat mass (FM) than do lean individuals, absolute RMR tends to be higher, rendering the detection of initial impairments in RMR difficult. Purposes of this study were to determine resting energy expenditure (REE) in lean and obese women who were matched for LM and ...


Plant Genome Informatics: Evaluation And Analysis Of Genomic Dna Features Involved In The Transcriptional Processing Of Protein Coding Genes , Shannon Dwayne Schlueter Jan 2006

Plant Genome Informatics: Evaluation And Analysis Of Genomic Dna Features Involved In The Transcriptional Processing Of Protein Coding Genes , Shannon Dwayne Schlueter

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

As biological data collection methods have become more cost effective and less time consuming, the necessity for computational tools to store, manage, and analyze this data has led to the creation of a broad field of research. Bioinformatics, while firmly rooted in the technology of information management, is now a mainstream component in the majority of scientific investigations. With the vast majority of effort in bioinformatics being applied to research on vertebrate species, researchers in the plant sciences have often been left with less than satisfactory tools. The research presented in this dissertation was done in an effort to advance ...


Enhancement Of Plant Performance And Biochemical Constituents In Field And Hairy Root Production Of Echinacea , Fredy Rolando Romero Orellana Jan 2006

Enhancement Of Plant Performance And Biochemical Constituents In Field And Hairy Root Production Of Echinacea , Fredy Rolando Romero Orellana

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Echinacea is a commercially important source of natural products and phytopharmaceuticals. Echinacea products currently constitute a significant portion of the rapidly growing, multi-billion dollar natural products market. This popularity has led to the expansion of commercial cultivation of Echinacea and the need to find alternative methods to meet the increasing demands of the phytopharmaceutical market. Two methods of producing biochemical constituents in commercial use include extraction from field-grown plants and in vitro hairy root production;Echinacea seeds in the wild typically show a high degree of dormancy. In order to enhance Echinacea seed germination for field production, alternative methods to ...


Genomics And Molecular Biology Approaches To Plant-Parasitic Nematode Biology And Parasitism , Axel Armin Elling Jan 2006

Genomics And Molecular Biology Approaches To Plant-Parasitic Nematode Biology And Parasitism , Axel Armin Elling

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The plant-parasitic nematodes Pratylenchus penetrans and Heterodera glycines are of major economic importance worldwide. Here, we present a survey of over 1,900 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) for P. penetrans and of almost 22,000 ESTs for H. glycines. Furthermore, we conducted microarray expression profiling for over 6,800 H. glycines genes throughout the life cycle. We identified over 600 H. glycines genes that encode secretory proteins and provide microarray data for all known H. glycines parasitism genes as well as for H. glycines genes with similarity to known plant and microbe sequences. In order to extend these studies, we ...


Understanding The Pathogenesis Of Porcine Circovirus Type 2 (Pcv2)-Associated Diseases , Tanja Ilse Opriessnig Jan 2006

Understanding The Pathogenesis Of Porcine Circovirus Type 2 (Pcv2)-Associated Diseases , Tanja Ilse Opriessnig

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) is associated with several disease manifestations in pigs including postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS). The hallmark microscopic lesions of PCV2-infection are lymphoid depletion or granulomatous lymphadentitis (or both) and the presence of PCV2 antigen or nucleic acids associated with the lymphoid lesions. PCV2 alone is limited in its ability to induce the full spectrum of disease and lesions associated with PMWS in pigs;PCV2 is widespread in the global swine population and in order to establish a PCV2 model in conventional pigs it was necessary to identify a method to derive pigs free of PCV2 ...


Controlled Integration Of The Ty5 Retrotransposon In Saccharomyces Ceverisiae [I.E. Cerevisiae] , Junbiao Dai Jan 2006

Controlled Integration Of The Ty5 Retrotransposon In Saccharomyces Ceverisiae [I.E. Cerevisiae] , Junbiao Dai

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

One essential step in the life cycle of retroelements is the stable integration of a copy of retroelement cDNA into the host genome. Random integration is potentially hazardous and could have deleterious genetic effects to the host. Therefore, elements and their hosts have coevolved mechanisms to regulate retroelement integration. In the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the Ty5 retrotransposon preferentially integrates into domains of heterochromatin. Targeting to these locations is determined by interactions between an amino acid sequence motif at the C-terminus of Ty5 integrase (the targeting domain) and the heterochromatin protein Sir4p. New Ty5 integration hotspots are created when Sir4p ...


Neonatal And Adult Lung Antigen Presenting Cells: Examining Phenotype And Functional Responses To Bovine Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection , Sasha Jean Fach Jan 2006

Neonatal And Adult Lung Antigen Presenting Cells: Examining Phenotype And Functional Responses To Bovine Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection , Sasha Jean Fach

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Respiratory syncytial virus is the most prominent viral pathogen in infants and children causing severe lower respiratory tract infections and pneumonia. To date, there are no vaccines available and the immune response mounted to virus is ineffective due to recurrent infections throughout childhood. There is a need for neonatal models of natural infection with RSV and the data reported in this dissertation is derived from a neonatal lamb model of bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) infection. Given the central importance of antigen presenting cells (APCs) in the initiation of the host immune response, these studies described here examined modulation of ...


The Mechanism Of Arabidopsis Immutans Variegation , Aigen Fu Jan 2006

The Mechanism Of Arabidopsis Immutans Variegation , Aigen Fu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The Arabidopsis immutans (im) is variegated with green sectors and white sectors containing defective plastids due to a nuclear gene mutation. IM is a plastid terminal oxidase (PTOX) sharing similarity with mitochondrial alternative oxidase (AOX). In order to better understand IM's biological roles and variegation mechanism of im, I characterized im plants at different levels;A structural model of IM, in which the diiron reaction center is composed of two conserved histidine and four glutamate residues, was tested by mutagenesis in vitro and in planta. It that these six conserved residues were found essential for IM activity and do ...


Use Of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D3 And Vitamin E And Manipulation Of Dietary Calcium To Improve Tenderness Of Beef , Kristen Marie Carnagey Jan 2006

Use Of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D3 And Vitamin E And Manipulation Of Dietary Calcium To Improve Tenderness Of Beef , Kristen Marie Carnagey

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Tenderness is one of the most important quality characteristics of beef. Inconsistent tenderness of beef costs the U.S. beef industry millions of dollars annually. Therefore, a practical method of improving tenderness could increase consumer satisfaction and willingness to purchase beef, which could lead to increased profits to producers. Calpain, the enzyme responsible for postmortem proteolysis, is calcium-dependent; so, increasing intracellular calcium concentrations presumably will result in increased proteolysis and, subsequently, more tender beef. We hypothesized that 500 mg of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 (25-OH D3) administered as a single oral bolus seven days before harvest would increase calcium concentrations in plasma ...


Use Of Linkage Disequilibrium For Quantitative Trait Loci Mapping In Livestock , Honghua Zhao Jan 2006

Use Of Linkage Disequilibrium For Quantitative Trait Loci Mapping In Livestock , Honghua Zhao

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The goal of quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping in livestock is to find genes underlying traits of economic importance for genetic improvement through marker assisted selection (MAS). The studies presented in this thesis address several important issues in QTL detection and fine mapping using candidate gene analysis and linkage disequilibrium (LD) mapping using high density genotyping. Tests for candidate genes in F2 populations for QTL mapping were developed and evaluated. Results show that the extensive between-breed LD that is present in a cross can result in significant associations for candidate genes at considerable distances from the QTL. Tests that removed ...


An Analysis Of Pre-Service Teacher Preparation And Instructional Supervisory Practices In Agricultural Education , Moreetsi Thobega Jan 2006

An Analysis Of Pre-Service Teacher Preparation And Instructional Supervisory Practices In Agricultural Education , Moreetsi Thobega

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation contained three articles that explored teacher preparation in Agricultural Education. The first article was a descriptive-correlational study; it described the relationship between pre-service teachers' performance on PRAXIS II (initial teacher licensing examination) and their performance on college academic measures. The study utilized existing records from the Department Agricultural Education and studies at Iowa State University. Professional education GPA explained significant variability in principles of learning and teaching (PLT) scores. Males scored higher than females on the Agriculture content (AgC) test. Agriculture GPA did not explain significant variability in AgC scores. Additional research should be conducted to determine whether ...


Release Of Human Brain Hexokinase From The Mitochondrial Membrane , David Andrew Skaff Jan 2006

Release Of Human Brain Hexokinase From The Mitochondrial Membrane , David Andrew Skaff

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Type I hexokinase (HKI) is the pacemaker of glycolysis in the brain and red blood cell. Recent work has tied hexokinase association with the mitochondrial membrane to the prevention of apoptosis. With increased hexokinase activity and expression in tumor cells, the importance in understanding the release of HKI from the membrane has become extremely important. Glucose 6-phosphate and nucleotides have been shown to effectively release HKI from the membrane; however, the mechanisms by which these molecules can induce release have never been studied;Expressed recombinant HKI protein was lacking the N-terminus that is required for binding to the mitochondrial membrane ...


Three Essays On Food Quality And Transaction Costs , Chengyan Yue Jan 2006

Three Essays On Food Quality And Transaction Costs , Chengyan Yue

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Product quality and product differentiation have become increasingly important to producers and policymakers for explaining consumer choice over food products. Consumers are often willing to pay large price premiums for products with preferred attributes. Heterogeneity in quality increases the diversity of goods for consumers and can improve welfare. However, variation in quality also leads to higher transaction costs for consumers, producers and policymakers because quality attributes are hard to identify precisely and vary when the state of the world changes. The first essay addresses the issue of food-quality attributes driven by protectionist policy that inhibits exchange between two countries. Technical ...