Dr. Christopher T. Ruhland, Professor

PhD | Faculty

Address: Office | 272 Trafton Science Center S
Phone: 507-389-1323
Email: christopher.ruhland@mnsu.edu


  • PhD, Arizona State University

Research Interests

  • Adaptations of plants to a changing environment
  • The effects of ultraviolet light on plant production

My research focuses upon plant physiology and terrestrial ecology. My interests span from the cell/molecular level up to the population level with an emphasis on physiological adaptations to a changing environment.

News from the Ruhland Lab:

20 December 2019: 

Dr. Christopher Ruhland and graduate student Joshua Niere (MNSU) recently published “The effects of surface albedo and initial lignin concentration on photodegradation of two varieties of Sorghum bicolor” in Nature’s online journal Scientific Reports.

The study examines how albedo of soil surfaces can influence decomposition rates of agricultural crop remnants and stover for extended periods of time. They found that surfaces that mimic snow with high ultraviolet- and visible-radiation reflectivity can accelerate photodegradation of sorghum litter in Southern Minnesota.  READ MORE

21 June 2019:

MNSU student Andrew Hill (BS Biology, MS Geography) recently published a paper with Drs. Mitchell, Yuan (Geography) and Ruhland (Biology) in the Annals of the American Association of Geographers. The paper examines how agriculture has influenced climate in the Midwestern Corn Belt. The paper is titled "Intensification of Midwestern Agriculture as a Regional Climate Modifier and Atmospheric Boundary Layer Moisture Source." Andrew is currently a PhD student in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at the University of Delaware.   Read More

22 October 2018:

Dr. Ruhland co-authored a publication with his colleagues at Arizona State University in the journal Global Change Biology. The paper examines how soluble litter fractions and associated microbial respiration are indicators of decomposition in desert systems. The paper is titled "Desert leaf litter decay: Coupling of microbial respiration, water-soluble fractions and photodegradation."   Read More

6 June 2018:

Drs. Ruhland and Secott recently published an article with undergraduate authors Amanda Remund and Celsey Tiry in the journal Acta Oecologica. Their paper was a direct product of undergraduate research performed by Amanda and Celsey. The study examines how differences in initial lignin concentrations in plant litter influences decomposition and soil inputs in an agricultural setting. The paper is titled "Litter decomposition of three lignin-deficient mutants of Sorghum bicolor during spring thaw."   Read More

Our Lab

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