Kudos to Burke lab post-doc Jennifer Mandel! The work she did as a graduate student is having an impact on the management and protection of an endangered species of sunflower. Jennifer stated, "the US Fish and Wildlife Service is about to list the species and much of their data presented for listing the species is the work I did as a graduate student (i.e., they cite our publications on the taxon)".
See the story Vanderbilt did on the plant back in 2007 http://www.vanderbilt.edu/exploration/stories/whorled.html
See also a recent article by the Tennessean on the proposed new listing: http://www.tennessean.com/article/20130805/NEWS11/308050026/Two-Tennessee-wildflowers-could-put-endangered-list