Aaron D. Gross has been named assistant professor of entomology in the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

He is one of a number of new faculty members hired in the college this academic year. New positions were identified to bring talent to the college's focus areas, including food, health, the environment, and community viability. The new faculty members are distributed across teaching, research, and Extension.

Gross' research program focuses on controlling arthropod pests that have a significant impact on human health, animal health, and agriculture. His research interests focus on the discovery and mode of action of natural and synthetic pesticides at underutilized targets (GPCRs and ion channels). Additional research interests include investigating the mechanisms involved in host-vector interaction.

Gross received a U.S. EPA-STAR fellowship to investigate the mode of action of natural terpenoids against ticks. Additionally, he received the American Chemical Society's (Agrochemical Division) New Investigator Award for research on the mode of action of a pyrazole oxime at mosquito muscarinic acetylcholine receptors.

Gross received his bachelor's degree in biochemistry and biomedical sciences from St. Cloud State University, both his master's degree in toxicology and his doctorate in toxicology from the Iowa State University of Science and Technology, and postdoctoral training from the University of Florida's Emerging Pathogens Institute.