VIP Mentors

Faculty mentors in the Veterinary Investigator Program represent a wide range of research areas and come from a number of departments within the College and the University.  As an intense summer research experience is the cornerstone of the VIP, it is important that prospective applicants give careful consideration to the faculty mentor with whom they wish to work.  Below is a list of previous VIP mentors. 

  • Note that you are not limited to the list of mentors below, but can select any mentor at the College of Veterinary Medicine.  More information about our faculty and the research they conduct can be found here: Research Specialties
  • When you submit your VIP application, you will need to identify three (3) prospective faculty mentors with whom you wish to work. This does not guarantee the student will be matched with a faculty member they choose.
  • If you have any specific questions, the Program Director, Dr. Robert Weiss, can assist you in identifying faculty with interests compatible with yours.

Previous VIP Mentors

Faculty Member
Department Affiliation
Research Interests
Altier

Craig Altier

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Molecular basis of Salmonella pathogenesis; the genetic and environmental control of epithelial cell invasion
Name goes here

Douglas Antczak

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. Microbiology & Immunology

Pregnancy immunology; immunogenetics; equine immunology

Avery August

Microbiology & Immunology

Regulation of T-cell activation, development and function; T-cell differentiation; mast cell function and eosinophil function
Erica Behling-Kelly

Erica Behling-Kelly

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Lipoproteins as markers and modulators of disease in domestic species, vascular biology, hemostasis and thrombosis, molecular determinants of aggressive biological behavior in neoplastic cells.
Rodrigo Bicalho

Rodrigo Bicalho

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Postpartum uterine diseases of cows, specifically puerperal metritis, clinical and subclinical enometris; bovine metritis as a model to study female urinary tract infection; epidemiology of lameness in dairy cattle

Adam Boyko

Biomedical Sciences

Genomic investigation of dogs as a model of genetic disease and evolutionary genetics
Faculty member

Elizabeth Bunting

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Improving release survival in captive reared endangered salamanders, investigating the potential impact of a newly discovered retrovirus on wild turkeys, reducing mortality from heavy metals and rodenticides in raptors, or developing new diagnostic tools for identifying pathogens in amphibians

Bynoe

Margaret Bynoe

Microbiology & Immunology

Cellular and molecular medicine; infectious diseases; molecular basis of antigen-induced immune suppression; modulation of innate immune system response in immunity against cancer

Richard Cerione

Richard Cerione

Molecular Medicine

Signal transduction growth factor receptors; protein structure; drug design and chemical biology; signaling cues that direct cell proliferation, differentiation and development
Dr. Jonathan Cheetham

Jonathan Cheetham

Clinical Sciences

Regenerative medicine; peripheral nerve injury and repair; laryngeal function

Paula Cohen

Biomedical Sciences

Etiology of spontaneous birth defects in mammals; mechanisms of meiotic recombination; DNA repair proteins in meiosis and recombination; germ cell development; ovarian development

Scott Coonrod

Scott Coonrod

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. Biomedical Sciences

Reproductive physiology; molecular and cellular physiology; epigenetic reprogramming during the egg-to-embryo transition; mechanisms by which specific histone modifications are dynamically regulated during hormone-dependent gene transcription in breast cancer cells

Cummings

Bethany Cummings

Biomedical Sciences

Use of mouse modeling, molecular biology, biochemistry and genomics approaches to understand the molecular underpinnings of cardiometabolic and gastrointestinal disease
Kevin Cummings

Kevin Cummings

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences 

Application of epidemiologic approaches to investigate the ecology and transmission of Salmonella and other foodborne pathogens among a wide variety of hosts
Charles Danko

Charles Danko

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. of Biomedical Sciences

Medical genetics and genomics and cancer biology research
Michelle Delco

Michelle Delco

Clinical Sciences

Investigating how joint injury leads to arthritis in horses and humans by looking at mitochondria, the energy-producing centers of the cell, as a link between cartilage trauma and osteoarthritis.

Felippe

Julia Felippe

Clinical Sciences

Cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in B cell response; neonatal immunology and response to vaccination; immunomodulation using biologic response modifiers; cancer immunotherapy; characterization of primary and secondary immunodeficiencies
Joseph Fetch

Joseph Fetcho

Neurobiology & Behavior

Control of movements by the hindbrain and spinal cord
picture of Dr. Lisa Fortier

Lisa Fortier

Clinical Sciences

Osteoarthritis and the link between insulin-like growth factor-I and the small G-proteins, Cdc42, Rac, and Rho
Laura Goodman

Laura Goodman

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Pathogen discovery and surveillance, with focus areas on tick-borne disease and antimicrobial resistance; exploring the underlying mechanisms of infectious disease emergence and identifying biomarkers to detect and prevent emerging threats to humans and animals

Yrjo Grohn

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Veterinary epidemiology; production medicine; public health; epidemiological and economic methods; risk analysis, communications, and policy
Kelly Hume

Kelly Hume

Clinical Sciences

Cancer biology; veterinary oncology; clinical oncology; molecular oncology; DNA damage; chemosensitivity and novel therapeutics
Heather Huson

Heather Huson

Animal Science

Improving overall dairy cattle performance; Criollo cattle ancestry and trait improvement; African goat improvement project
Name goes here

Katie Kelly

Biomedical Sciences

Pathophysiology of cardiovascular disease; effects of inflammation on cardiac function; comparative pathology

Kotlikoff

Michael Kotlikoff

Biomedical Sciences

Muscle biology; mouse genetics; molecular imaging; ion channels; physiological genomics; cellular signaling; genetic cell sensors; conditional gene targeting

picture of Ursula Krotscheck

Ursula Krotscheck

Clinical Sciences

Elbow dysplasia pathophysiology and treatment modalities; Cranial cruciate disease treatment modalities; Forceplate gait analysis, specifically for evidence-based medicine, joint and lameness evaluation

Natasza Kurpios

Natasza Kurpios

Molecular Medicine

Tissue morphogenesis; cell shape and architecture; organ development; gut morphogenesis; mammary gland biology; breast cancer
Dr. Cynthia Leifer

Cynthia Leifer

Microbiology & Immunology

Understanding innate immunity from the receptors that detect microbes to how innate immune cells react to changes in their environment during inflammatory processes
Name goes here

Dave Lin

Biomedical Sciences

Axon guidance; neurodevelopment; epilepsy; autism; genomics
John Loftus

John Loftus

Clinical Sciences

General research interests include immunology and nutritionally responsive diseases; current research projects include investigation of vitamin D in dogs with immune-mediated disease and metabolomic investigation of hepatocutaneous syndrome
Sabine Mann

Sabine Mann

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Metabolic diseases and insulin signaling; nutrition; epidemiology; metabolic and nutritional immunology
Helene Marquis

Helene Marquis

Microbiology & Immunology

Pathogenesis of Listeria monocytogenes; mechanisms of regulation of specific virulence factors; signaling during bacterial cell-to-cell spread
Faculty member

Jessica McArt

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Epidemiology of periparturient diseases in dairy cattle; disease economics; on-farm methods for accurate disease diagnosis
picture of Dr. Angela L. McCleary-Wheeler

Angela McCleary-Wheeler

Clinical Sciences

Companion animal models of cancer; hedgehog signaling; epigenetics; novel therapeutics
Andrew Miller, DVM, DACVP

Andrew Miller

Biomedical Sciences

Studying the mechanisms underlying neurologic disease in animals utilizing both spontaneously arising disease and experimental models in a variety of laboratory animal species

Alexander Nikitin

Biomedical Sciences

Stem cells and cancer; pathogenesis of ovarian and prostate cancers; modeling of human disease in genetically modified mice and human organoids

Faculty member

Daryl Nydam

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Population & clinical studies; epidemiology of food security/safety issues related to dairy production medicine; study of economically important infectious diseases, particularly zoonoses, subclinical diseases of perapaturient cattle and reproductive efficacy

John Parker

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. Microbiology & Immunology

Virology; Feline Calicivirus; mammalian orthoreoviruses; virus-host interactions; effect of viral infection on host cell translation; use of viruses for treatment of cancer; virus entry; broadly neutralizing antibodies; innate immune response to viruses

Parrish

Colin Parrish

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. Microbiology & Immunology

Evolutionary, structural, and functional studies of the determinants of virus host range
Ned Place

Ned Place

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Mammalian physiology and behavior, with a focus on the life history trade-offs associated with the timing of hormone secretion, reproductive effort, and aging
picture of Dr. Heidi L. Reesink

Heidi Reesink

Clinical Sciences

Unravel basic mechanisms underlying the development of orthopedic disease and to pioneer innovative therapies for the treatment of joint injury and arthritis in equine and human athletes

Brian Rudd

Microbiology & Immunology

Developmental immunology; host response to infection

Schaffer

Chris Schaffer

Biomedical Engineering

Advanced optical techniques used to observe and manipulate in vivo biological systems with the goal of developing microscopic scale understanding of normal and disease-state physiological processes
Praveen Sethupathy

Praveen Sethupathy

Biomedical Sciences

Functional genomics; gene regulation; molecular genetics; gastrointestinal physiology; stem cell biology; metabolic disease

Jeongmin Song

Microbiology & Immunology

Host-pathogen interactions, bacterial toxins, Salmonella Typhi, bacterial pathogenesis

Michael Stanhope

Michael Stanhope

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Primarily concerned with the application of molecular evolutionary biology principles and techniques to issues of epidemiology, comparative genomics, and population genomics within various groups of bacterial pathogens
Faculty member

Tracy Stokol

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

The role of tissue factor (coagulation factor III) in hemostasis (particularly thrombotic disorders) and cancer metastasis
Rory Todhunter

Rory Todhunter

Clinical Sciences

Canine hip dysplasia; genetic linkage analysis; osteoarthritis
Alexander J. Travis, VMD, Ph.D.

Alexander Travis

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. Biomedical Sciences

Animal health and fertility as well as efforts to help alleviate poverty and hunger in developing countries, work that indirectly benefits local wildlife
Dr. Gerlinde Van de Walle

Gerlinde Van de Walle

Baker Institute for Animal Health & Dept. Microbiology & Immunology

Focused on finding drugs suitable for eliminating mammary cancer and ocular herpevirus infections in small companion animals, and evaluating the effectiveness of stem cell therapies for treating skin wounds in horses – all of which may also be used in humans and other animals

Bettina Wagner

Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Immune responses and protective mechanisms in neonates and young foals
picture of Joseph J. Wakshlag

Joe Wakshlag

Clinical Sciences

Obesity management and nutritional intervention for the canine athlete

Robert Weiss

Biomedical Sciences

Genome maintenance mechanisms and metabolic
pathways in cancer and other diseases

Andrew White

Biomedical Sciences

Cancer biology; stem cell biology; biochemistry and cell biology

Gary Whittaker

Gary Whittaker

Microbiology & Immunology

Pathogenesis of influenza viruses, corona viruses and arena viruses; host range and receptors; activation of membrane fusion; macrophage- and neurotropism; anti-viral therapeutics; diagnostic tests; virus-bacteria co-infections

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