Dr. Kopsell received his Ph.D. and M.S. in Horticulture from the University of Georgia in 1999 and 1995, respectively. He received a B.S. degree in Agribusiness-Horticulture from Illinois State University in 1992. Dr. Kopsell joined the Plant Sciences Department in August of 2004. Prior to coming to UT, Dr. Kopsell was an assistant professor in the Department of Plant Biology at the University of New Hampshire.
Dr. Kopsell's research program emphasizes cultural, environmental, and genetic influences on the phytonutritional value of vegetable crops. Current research projects have focused on genetic and environmental factors that affect the accumulation of lutein/zeaxanthin and beta-carotene carotenoids in the leafy vegetable crops of kale, spinach, parsley, and basil. Data showing genetic and environmental effects on phytochemical content in vegetable crops is promising and may lead to changes in production practices. Dr. Kopsell's research program includes collaboration with food scientists and nutritionists to help identify bioavailability and impacts of phytonutritionally enhanced crops. Other areas of interest include the enhancement of essential mineral elements (such as Ca, Fe, K, Mg, Se, and Zn) in economically important vegetable crops.
Information on Dr. Kopsell's research program and highlights from past studies can be found at http://luteinlab.unh.edu