Cathleen Alma Hanlon, VMD, PhD, Dipl ACVPM
Director, K-State Rabies Laboratory
Kansas State University
College of Veterinary Medicine
Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory
Cathleen A. Hanlon, VMD, PhD, Dipl. ACVPM, earned her veterinary degree in 1987 from the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine, Philadelphia, PA. In 1994, she earned her PhD in Comparative Medicine from the Biomedical Graduate Group of the University of Pennsylvania. Her dissertation is entitled “A vaccinia recombinant virus: comparative evaluations among free-ranging, immunocompetent, and immunodeficient hosts.” This work was instrumental in the forging the path towards the first North American field release of a recombinant vaccine based on a live viral vector expressing foreign antigens.
Dr. Hanlon currently serves as Professor in the Department of Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology at the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine and Director of the K-State Rabies Laboratory. She formerly served as the Veterinary Medical Officer of the Rabies Team at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1996-2007) and also as the Deputy and then Acting State Public Health Veterinarian for New York State Department of Health (1994-1996). She is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine.
Dr Hanlon’s experience in rabies prevention occurs at the intersection of human, animal and even environmental health. For example, she recently co-authored the update of the Human Rabies Prevention recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and the World Health Organization Position Paper on (human) Rabies Vaccines. She diligently practices the overarching principles of One Health through state, national and international leadership experience in human and animal disease diagnosis, surveillance, control, and policy development. These leadership experiences include World Health Organization, Pan American Health Organization invited consultancies and World Organization for Animal Health (Organization International des Epizooties) invited consultancies and a 90-day assignment to OIE while she was a Veterinary Medical Officer at CDC. Recently, she served as a consultant to the National Advisory Board of Hyper-immune products and as a key leader of the World Rabies Day initiative.
The K-State Rabies Laboratory is the primary rabies diagnostic laboratory for the states of Kansas and Nebraska which receives between 1,800 and 2,500 animal specimens annually and serves as a reference laboratory for other mid-Western states. The laboratory is one of the highest volume rabies serology testing centers in the world handling over 55,000 human and animal samples each year. The laboratory meets quality monitoring standards of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments and numerous state departments of health. Due to quality control practices, the laboratory is a leader in collaborations with commercial partners towards the development and clinical trials of new vaccines, immune globulins, and monoclonal antibody products for the prevention of rabies in humans and animals.
As the Director of the K-State Rabies Laboratory and a Professor in the Department of Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology, Dr Hanlon enjoys interacting with the undergraduate, veterinary medical, and other graduate students, on-campus at K-State University. Throughout her career, she has mentored over 35 students including senior veterinary and medical students on rotation at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Masters and PhD candidates for advanced degrees in Public Health, Biology, Ecology and related fields.
Dr. Hanlon has published over 70 peer reviewed articles, 8 textbook chapters and presented over 150 presentations throughout the world at various local, regional, national and international meetings.