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The official newsletter of the College of Veterinary Medicine

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January 2011 - Vol. 6, No. 1

Top Stories

Food safety culture graphStudy looks to improve food safety

Dr. Doug Powell and colleagues examine how the culture of food safety is practiced can be a significant risk factor in foodborne illness.
Salmonella and listeria targeted in study

New research center opens

The new Large Animal Research Center opens with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Take a video tour of the LARC.

Surgeon's hobby heats up

Dr. Jim Lillich, equine specialist, gets the family involved with a 'hot' competition.
What's on Dr. Lillich's plate?

Order your copy of '150 Years of Kansas Beef'

Photo Gallery: Bringing in the Holidays

AVMA video promotes animal welfare policy

Find us on Facebook

Dr. Purinton to receive Alumni Recognition Award at NAVC

Regular features

Dr. Pritpal MalhiUnder the Microscope
Meet Dr. Pritpal Malhi, Anatomic Pathology Resident, Department of Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology

News Ticker

Calendar of events

New Arrivals/Recent Departures

Lifelines back issues

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Study looks to improve food safety

Food safety culture graph
Food safety and business operations are in constant relations with each other. “Operators should know the risks associated with their products, how to manage them, and most important, how to communicate with and compel their staff to employ good practices — it’s a package deal,” said Dr. Ben Chapman, assistant professor at North Carolina State University. Dr. Chapman is assisting Dr. Doug Powell at K-State on a new study about foodborne illness.

If providing safe food is a priority, why do large outbreaks of foodborne illness keep happening? Incidents like 2010's salmonella-in-eggs outbreak sickened more than 1,900 across the U.S. and led to the recall of 500 million eggs.

A new study by a Kansas State University professor and colleagues finds how the culture of food safety is practiced within an organization can be a significant risk factor in foodborne illness.

Dr. Doug Powell, associate professor of food safety at K-State, said how businesses and organizations operate above and beyond minimal food safety regulations and inspections, or their food safety culture, is often overlooked.

"You'd think making customers sick is bad for business, yet some firms go out of their way to ignore food safety," Powell said. "Some places are motivated by money and efficiencies. The amount of regulation, inspection and audits just doesn’t seem to matter. And those 'Employees Must Wash Hands' signs don't really work."

Focus on the Risks

According to the researchers, individuals focusing on food safety risks within an organization with a good food safety culture do the following:

  • Know the risks associated with the foods they handle and how those should be managed;
  • Dedicate resources to evaluate supplier practices;
  • Stay up-to-date on emerging food safety issues;
  • Foster a value system within the organization that focuses on avoiding illnesses;
  • Communicate compelling and relevant messages about risk reduction activities, and empower others to put them into practice;
  • Promote effective food safety systems before an incident occurs; and
  • Don't blame customers, including commercial buyers and consumers, when illnesses are linked to their products.

Dr. Powell, along with Casey Jacob, a former K-State research assistant, and Dr. Ben Chapman, an assistant professor at North Carolina State University, examined three food safety failures: an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in Wales in 2005 that sickened 157 and killed one; a listeria outbreak in Canada in 2008 that sickened 57 and killed 23; and a salmonella outbreak in the U.S. in 2009 linked to peanut paste that killed nine and sickened 691.

Their study "Enhancing Food Safety Culture to Reduce Rates of Foodborne Illness" is being published by the journal Food Control and is available in advance online at

"Creating a culture of food safety requires application of the best science with the best management and communication systems," Dr. Chapman said. "Operators should know the risks associated with their products, how to manage them, and most important, how to communicate with and compel their staff to employ good practices -- it's a package deal."


Ribbon-cutting for new LARC

Tour the Large Animal Research Center by video

LARC ribbon cutting ceremony
Hands up for the opening of the new Large Animal Research Center on Denison Avenue, just south of the intersection with Marlatt Avenue. Animal Sciences and Industry Department Head Dr. Ken Odde, CVM, Dean Ralph Richardson, K-State President Kirk Schulz and K-State Vice President for Research Ron Trewyn cut the ribbon in December. Take a "virtual" tour of the new facility by watching our video report below.


Lifelines News Video. Click the play button below to see our story for this month.

Video produced by Joseph Chapes and Kent Nelson, technology coordinators from
Veterinary Medical Continuing Education.



Food preparation is a family affair for Dr. Jim Lillich

Story by Meta West. Originally printed in the Abilene-Reflector Chronicle and “Home Cooking: Dickinson County Style.” Reprinted with permission of author.

Things don’t always work out as planned. After watching Dr. Jim Lillich’s cooking video on the local cable station—it aired in September during the Men’s Cooking Competition—I was impressed with his organizational and cooking skills, his ease of operation in the kitchen and his ability to pair wine with fine food. It seemed like that would then be the logical focus for this interview. But I soon found out that even though all of my assessments were correct, there is a more important motivating force behind Jim’s culinary efforts.

There are actually three motivating forces and their names are Rachael, Olivia, and Matthew. Food seems to be a central theme in the Lillichs' home life and everyone gets involved in the preparation. As a matter of fact, the family recently spent part of a weekend processing deer sausage.

“The kids read the recipe, measured ingredients and they loved adding it all to the electric meat grinder,” Jim explained.

But the kids also help with everyday food preparation as well. Rachael, 12, cuts meat and chops vegetables. During the Men’s Cooking Competition finals, I saw her wielding a knife as she carved the meat that her father had prepared for sampling; she definitely knew what she was doing. Olivia, 10, helps prepare vegetables, paints sauce on ribs and loves to bake. According to Dad, “She reads the recipe, mixes up the ingredients, and I then put it in the oven.” Matthew, 7, prepares sauces and likes to start the fire under the smoker.

Of course, I asked about everyone’s favorite food. Rachael likes Japanese; a meal featuring Asian-style pork tenderloin is high on her list. “I sauté the tenderloin in olive oil flavored with rice wine vinegar and sliced fresh ginger,” Jim pointed out. “It’s served with steamed ginger rice and zucchini and onion sautéed with peanut sauce.”

Dr. Jim and Rachael Lillich
Preparing to enter the Men’s Cooking Competition finals, Rachael Lillich helps her dad Dr. Jim Lillich grill his entry. (Photo courtesy of the Abilene Reflector- Chronicle).

Olivia likes Japanese too, but according to her dad, “She does a pretty good job with BBQ ribs as well.” Add a twice baked potato (made by adding cream cheese, butter, milk, Ranch dressing and some salt and pepper) and she’ll be content.

Jim did note, “Matthew can sometimes be picky but he likes sausage and sauces so I sauté Italian sausage with black olives and broccoli, add a white sauce and serve it over linguine.”

Asked about his favorite, Jim simply replied, “I like to make and eat anything the kids like and especially enjoy having them help me in the kitchen. I don’t do much out of a box short of macaroni and cheese, a staple for all kids.”

But he is a self-professed carnivore so meat figures into most of his menus and his skills with a knife most certainly are a carry over from his profession. Jim is an Associate Professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University; he specializes in equine musculoskeletal diseases and is board certified in large animal general and orthopedic surgery. He even concurs that his desire for perfection transfers over to everyday meals, “I want to make every meal nice, satisfying, and just right.”



Centennial Plaza bricks ad



150 Years of Kansas Beef

Donít forget to order your '150 Year of Kansas Beef' commemorative book!

150 Years of Kansas Beef celebrates the people and institutions that have made Kansas beef what it is today. The historical and photograph-rich book will take readers through the hardships, changes, and triumphs of the Kansas beef industry over the last century and a half.

The book can be ordered online at, and will be printed by Donning Company Publishers and delivered in summer 2011.


!50 Years of Kansas Beef

Bringing in the Holidays

Star cookies
The CVM hosts its first cookie contest. There were more than 30 entries in the inaugural event ranging from star to cars to nutcrackers.
This nutcracker was one of the winners.
Rob Reves sings carols with Kealan Schroeder
Rob Reves sings carols, accompanied by Kealan Schroeder , at the holiday party in the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.
Enjoying the holiday meal at the VMTH party.
Staffers enjoy the holiday meal at the VMTH party.
Dog bones
'Dog bone' bread sticks make for a special treat at the dean's holiday open house.
Jennifer Zeliff, Barb Self and Justina Vanderlinde
Jennifer Zeliff, Barb Self and Justina Vanderlinde enjoy some of the treats at the holiday open house.


Stephen Sollner from the AIB judges the cookies.
Judge Toby Moore analyzes entries at the cookie contest. Moore was a guest from the American Institute of Baking in Manhattan.
VMTH Holiday Party
A delightful menu greets the attendees at the VMTH holiday party.
Naomi Ohta and Dr. Susumu Ishiguro
Naomi Ohta and Dr. Susumu Ishiguro take a break from the lab to enjoy some snacks at the holiday open house.
Dr. Chengappa picks out veggies.
Dr. M.M. Chengappa finds some veggies in the dean's office at the holiday open house. He is joined by other DM/P staff: Chuanmin Cheng , Zakir Ali, Dr. Roman Ganta and Wendy Michaels.


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AVMA video promotes animal welfare policy

Pain control measures for cattle recommended

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has released a new video promoting its policy on how to reduce pain for cattle during a common surgical procedure—dehorning.

Many breeds of cattle have horns, which are often removed early in life to protect other animals and farmers from injury. The AVMA policy and this informational video offer guidance to help make this procedure as comfortable as possible for animals.

“The AVMA provides up-to-date and accurate information about ensuring good animal welfare. Videos like this one help us get that information to more people,” explains Dr. Cia Johnson of the AVMA Animal Welfare Division, who appears in the video. “America has more than 96 million head of cattle, so — although not widely known — this is a common procedure. The AVMA Animal Welfare Committee uses the latest scientific research available and practical experience to recommend policy for the Association. Research has shown that local anesthesia can be used to reduce the pain experienced by animals during dehorning.”

AVMA policy recommends that, to reduce discomfort for the animal, dehorning be done at the earliest age possible and that consideration be given to the use of local anesthetics (e.g., lidocaine) and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents for pain control.

The new video demonstrates the use of local anesthetic and disbudding (a dehorning technique applied to young calves), and helps educate farmers and the general public about how pain management can improve an animals’ welfare. For more information, please visit


Pain relief study at K-State
Dr. David Anderson, bottom left, points an infrared camera at a
calf to help measure blood flow in response to physical stress, in
a story about pain relief research at K-State from the Fall 2008
issue of Healing Hands. See the full story here.


Dr. Purinton to receive recognition award at NAVC

Dr. Tom PurintonDr. Tom Purinton, Athens, Ga., is the recipient of the 2011 Alumni Recognition Award for the North American Veterinary Conference held in Orlando, Fla., on Jan. 16.

Dr. Purinton received his DVM at K-State in 1965. He then completed an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at the University of Minnesota in 1966 and continued his education there, receiving a doctorate in veterinary anatomy with a minor in clinical neurology in 1972. After obtaining his Ph.D., Dr. Purinton joined the faculty at the K-State College of Veterinary Medicine in the anatomy and physiology department. In 1975 he joined the faculty of the anatomy and radiology department at the University of Georgia where he taught until his retirement in 2008.

“It is truly an honor to be recognized by my alma mater with this alumni award,” Dr. Purinton said. “Kansas State provided me with a great foundation for my journey in this wonderful profession of veterinary medicine. I hope that I have been at least half as good an example and mentor for my students as the K-State faculty members were for me.”

“Our college is very proud to recognize Dr. Purinton as an outstanding alumnus,” Dean Richardson said. “His success and leadership skills are self-evident. He has excelled as an educator and helped guide generations of students toward successful and productive careers as veterinarians.”

Dr. Purinton has held several leadership roles throughout his career. He is an honorary member of Aghon, the Agriculture Honor Society at the University of Georgia, and a past member of the Athens Track Club, serving as its president in 1987. He is also a member of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity and was a vice president of its board of trustees from 2000 to 2003, the commissioner for alumni education from 2003 to 2005 and president from 2005 to 2011.

Dr. Purinton received the Norden Teaching in 1986 and 2004 and the Josiah Meigs Award for Teaching Excellence in 2004, which is Georgia’s top teaching recognition honor. He received the college’s Faculty Recognition Award eight times, as chosen by each year’s first-year class.

Dr. Purinton has been a member of the American Association of Veterinary Anatomists, American Veterinary Medical Association and World Association of Veterinary Anatomists.

Dr. Purinton is married to Molly (Ruliffson). The Purintons have one son Scott; and two daughters: Amy and Sarah; and nine grandchildren.



Under the Microscope

Dr. Pritpal Malhi, Anatomic Pathology Resident, Department of Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology

Dr. Pritpal Malhi Hometown: Punjab, India.

Family Information: My wife and our two lovely daughters

How did you spend your holiday break? A leisurely time at home.

What is one thing that you cannot live without? Family.

What is your favorite type of food? Anything cooked by my wife while I am relaxing.

If you could change something about the world, what would you change? We have to change the human mind in order to change the world. We earn Ph.D.s but forget what we learnt in kindergarten – respect and compassion for others.

What would you do if you won a million dollars from a contest? A nice holiday for me, my family and all pathology residents (Hope Dr. Anderson is not reading this!!).

What do you enjoy most about your job? Looking at cells and predicting the function or dysfunction of the organs is fascinating.

Do you have any new yearís resolutions? I don’t wait all year for a resolution – sometime there is a new resolution every night though I can’t remember it in the morning.



News Ticker

Jonathan AggaGetahun E. Agga, graduate research assistant in diagnostic medicine and pathobiology, and his wife welcomed their son, Jonathan G. Agga, on Dec. 18, 2010. Jonathan was 9.6 pounds and 21 inches.





Ceva Biomune, Lenexa, Kan., has made a commitment of $80,000 to the College of Veterinary Medicine to establish the Ceva Biomune Beef Production Medicine fund. The gift will benefit the Veterinary Beef Production Medicine Graduate Student Program within the Department of Clinical Sciences in the College of Veterinary Medicine. More specifically, the funds will be used in the area of bovine respiratory disease with an emphasis in the field of mycoplasma bovis infections at the discretion of the Beef Production Medicine group representative. Formerly Biomune Company, Ceva Biomune is a U.S. manufacturer of live, inactivated, recombinant, autogenous, USDA-licensed and customized vaccines for the cattle, poultry and swine industries.

Dr. Dan Thomson presented at the Nebraska Cattlemen’s  Association in Kearney, Neb., on Dec. 8. Topic:  “Economics of Animal welfare."

A reminder for students: Telefund 2011, the all-volunteer telephone campaign for K-State, is coming up soon. College of Veterinary Medicine calling sessions are being held Feb. 13 and 15. See Dr. Melinda Wilkerson, the CVM Telefund administrator or sign up online at: Overall, Telefund raised more than $1.2 million for scholarships last year. Join the campaign!

Dr. Rachel AllbaughDr. Rachel Allbaugh, assistant professor of ophthalmology, was honored among several other K-State faculty and staff members at the KSU Mortar Board reception in December for exemplifying the organization's pillars of scholarship, leadership and service in her work with students. Congratulations!

Susan Rose, animal facility manager, has an art exhibit at the Poppyfield Gallery in Wamego through Feb. 13. The gallery features 53 original pieces of artwork done in acrylic, watercolor and pencil media. Themes featured were of land and skyscapes, horses and cattle.
Carriage Horse Study
Carriage Horse Study
Summer Shower
Summer Shower by Susan Rose.



Calendar of events

Feb. 18: CVM All-Faculty Meeting, 3:00 in the Mara Conference Center.

Continuing Education events

Jan. 14: Conference on Cow-Calf Herd: Reproduction, Calving and Calf Care

Feb. 5: Canine Care Workshop

March 5: Veterinary Technicians Conference

March 27: 28th Annual Frank W. Jordan Seminar

June 5-8: 73rd Annual Conference for Veterinarians

* More information about Veterinary Medical Continuing Education events can be found at the VMCE Web site.



New Arrivals/Recent Departures

Welcome to:

Amy Geyer - Clinical Sciences
Abby Jones - Clinical Sciences
Christopher Miller - DM/P
John Green - A&P
Kelli Millsap - VMTH
Dr. Kelli Almes - VDL
Raman Malhi - VDL
Samantha Bernhardt - VDL
Dr. Gregg Hanzlicek - VDL
Dr. Brian Lubbers - VDL


Thanks and Goodbye to:

Donna Rogers - DM/P


Lifelines is published each month by the Development and Alumni Affairs Office at the College of Veterinary Medicine.
The editors are Joe Montgomery,, and Dana Avery,