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College of Veterinary Medicine

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November 2017 - Vol. 12, No. 11

Top Stories

Fall Teaching Awards

Terrific trio is touted for their talent and tenacity: Drs. Bob Larson, Lisa Pohlman and Emily Reppert

Drs. Bob Larson, Lisa Pohlman and Emily Reppert

Three faculty members have been recognized for preclinical teaching excellence in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University. Drs. Robert Larson, Lisa Pohlman and Emily Reppert were each named as the respective top teachers for the first, second and third years of instruction, as voted on by each respective class of students at the end of the 2016-2017 school year.

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Drs. Beth Davis and Bob Larson


Above: Dr. Elizabeth Davis (left), department head for clinical sciences, presents the first-year teaching award to Dr. Robert Larson.


Dr. Lisa Pohlman

  Dr. Pohlman with her dog “Flopsy”. She is on sabbatical and will formally receive the second-year teaching award at a later date. (Photo credit, Little Leapling Photography).

Drs. Beth Davis and Emily Reppert

  Dr. Davis presents the third-year award to Dr. Emily Reppert.

"These pre-clinical teaching awards began in 2004 as part of an effort by the college to recognize exceptional teaching at every stage of the veterinary curriculum," explained Dr. Peggy Schmidt, associate dean for academic programs and student affairs. "Students have chosen these faculty for their exceptional teaching and dedication to student learning. This year's recipients are outstanding educators and well deserving of this recognition."

Dr. Larson was named as the recipient of the 2017 Boeringer Ingelheim Teaching Excellence Award, which is presented in recognition of outstanding instruction of first-year veterinary students. He earned his doctor of veterinary medicine degree in 1987 and a doctorate in 1992, both from K-State. He has been a professor of food animal production medicine since 2006 and holds the Coleman Chair in Food Animal/Production Medicine. Dr. Larson became is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, American College of Animal Nutrition and American College of Theriogenlogy.

"I have the privilege to teach highly motivated and talented students," Dr. Larson said. "I feel blessed to be able to have a career where my love for veterinary medicine and my enjoyment of seeing bright students comprehend challenging subjects are rewarded on a daily basis. I am confident that our profession is in very capable hands when I think about the next generation of veterinarians who are being trained at Kansas State University."

Dr. Pohlman was given the 2017 Teaching Excellence in the Second Year Award in recognition of outstanding instruction of second-year veterinary students. She is currently on sabbatical and will be presented with the award at a later date. She earned her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Guelph, Canada, in 2001 and a master's degree from Auburn University in 2007. She is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists.

"I want to express tremendous thanks to the class of 2019 for selecting me for this award; it was an absolute pleasure to teach you," Dr. Pohlman said. "It is wonderful to be able to teach veterinary students in a discipline that I am so passionate about. I would also like to express my gratitude to the team I had behind me in putting this course together – the clinical pathology group, Gina Scott, and Mal Hoover – for all their assistance and creativity."

Dr. Reppert received the 2017 Teaching Excellence in the Third Year Award sponsored by Zoetis. She earned her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Colorado State University in 2010. She then completed an internship and a residency in food animal internal medicine and surgery at Oklahoma State University. While at Oklahoma State University, Dr. Reppert completed a master's degree in 2014.

"I am incredibly flattered to be honored with this award and would like to thank the students for selecting me," Dr. Reppert said. "I am grateful to have the opportunity to work with faculty and house officers that are dedicated to training the very best veterinarians."


Dr. Bob Rowland lands grants from NIFA and National Pork Board

Dr. Bob Rowland

A new pair of research grants will help a Kansas State University research laboratory utilize genetic modification as a method of preventing one of the most devastating and costly diseases found in swine.

Dr. Raymond "Bob" Rowland, professor of diagnostic medicine and pathobiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine, is a leading researcher in the area of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus, or PRRSV. His latest efforts focus on the modification of the CD163 protein found in swine.

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Dr. Bob Rowland

 Dr. Bob Rowland focuses on finding a genetic method for controlling PRRS.

“Vaccines and other control measures have not proved effective and a new generation of vaccines is still years away,” Dr. Rowland said. “Our previous work showed that genetically modified pigs, which lack expression of CD163 on macrophages, are completely resistant to infection with PRRSV. Since CD163 is important for homeostasis, including the regulation of inflammation and immunity, the goal of the proposed project is to construct a pig that possesses a modified CD163 that prevents PRRSV infection while retaining normal CD163 biological functions.”

The role of CD163 is so compelling that Dr. Rowland was able to obtain funding from two different organizations. The USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture awarded $331,450 to Dr. Rowland for his research proposal entitled, “Preventing PRRS through modifications in the virus receptor, CD163.” The National Pork Board awarded him with $66,576 for a separate proposal entitled, "Adaptation of PRRSV to genetic modifications in CD163."

“The construction of pigs with genetically modified CD163 provides a practical and realistic approach for eliminating PRRS,” Dr. Rowland said. “There could be additional benefits too, such as the elimination of the costs associated with PRRS vaccination, diagnostic testing and PRRSV-specific biosecurity measures, such as barn filtration.”

Dr. Rowland explained how this research utilizes genomic sequencing techniques, which has become popular.

“The results from this method of research will enable us to identify the viral genes and amino acids involved in the interaction between the virus and CD163,” Dr. Rowland said. “The proteins and peptide sequences in viral proteins that interact with CD163 can be used as protective antigens in vaccine formulations.  In addition, the interruption of the CD163-PRRSV interaction by small molecules creates opportunities to explore alternative therapeutics, such as antivirals, so this research opens up a whole series of possibilities. We really appreciate the support we have received from the NIFA and the National Pork Board.”


Joint DVM agreement expands in China

China DVM agreement signing ceremony

K-State veterinary faculty recently brushed up on how to say “Hello” and “Thank You” in Chinese for a memorandum-of-understanding (MOU) signing ceremony held in Beijing, China, Oct. 19.

The ceremony was in support of the U.S.-China Joint DVM Scholarship Program, which was initiated in 2012 by the U.S.-China Center for Animal Health at Kansas State University, along with the China Agricultural University and Chinese Veterinary Medical Association. The Joint DVM Program has been sponsored by China Scholarship Council, Kansas State University and Zoetis/International Veterinary Collaboration for China (IVCC).

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China DVM agreement signing ceremony
(click image to enlarge) Rimma Driscoll, vice president of business development for Zoetis); Dr. Frank Blecha, associate dean for research in the CVM; and Xin Shengpeng, secretary–general of the Chinese Veterinary Medical Association sign a historic new agreement. Back Row: Wang Ming, vice president of the CVMA; Juan Ramon Alaix, CEO of Zoetis; Dong Zhixue, director of the Division of American and Oceanian Affairs for the China Scholarship Council; Jonathan Fritz, acting deputy chief of mission for the U.S. Embassy; Chen Guanghua, deputy director general of the Veterinary Bureau at  Ministry of Agriculture in China; Jia Youling, president of the Chinese Horse Industry Association and the first president of the CVMA; Cai Xuepeng, director general of the China Institute of Veterinary Drug Control in the Ministry of Agriculture; Dr. Jishu Shi, director of the U.S.-China Center for Animal Health (at the CVM); and Mike Wang, vice president and Greater China cluster head, Zoetis.

Zoetis originally provided funding to the program for 30 students’ pre-veterinary tuition and related activities. The China Scholarship Council has provided full-ride scholarships for four years of DVM tuition and five years for living stipends. Kansas State University has sponsored the program by providing program management service and additional scholarships.

For the new MOU, Zoetis will continue to support the program by providing pre-veterinary tuition funding for an additional 15 students with Kansas State University and the Chinese Veterinary Medical Association.

“The U.S.-China Joint DVM Program advances veterinary education and promotes the development of the animal health industry in China,” said Rimma Driscoll, vice president, Business Development and Commercial Alliances, at Zoetis. “Since 2012, Zoetis, along with the IVCC, has stood behind this remarkable program, and we look forward to continuing with that assistance.”

“The signing ceremony on Oct. 19 was a great opportunity for us to invite all supporters to celebrate and witness the U.S.-China public-private partnership on veterinary education and welcome the program inaugural DVM graduates coming back to China,” said Dr. Jishu Shi, director of the U.S.-China Center for Animal Health at Kansas State University.

The US-China Joint DVM Program is a five-year training program with one year of pre-veterinary study at Kansas State University and four years of veterinary study at Kansas State University or one of three other U.S. partnering schools. Once students receive Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degrees, they will return to China to advance veterinary education and promote animal health, public health and food safety under the concept of “One World, One Health.”  

In May, the program graduated four inaugural DVMs who are the first government-sponsored Chinese DVMs since 1949. Now, these four graduates are recruited by the China Agricultural University and Huanzhong Agricultural University as associate professors.

“Today, more than ever before, veterinary medicine has a global mission and responsibility, said Dr. Frank Blecha, associate dean for research. “With our first DVMs from this program returning to China this year, it is appropriate and exciting for all of us to re-dedicate ourselves to this important international veterinary educational program as it foretells a bright future for veterinary medical collaboration in the world.”

The signing event was held at the Grand Hyatt in Beijing, China. Along with Dr. Shi and Dr. Blecha, Kansas State University was represented by Lei Wang, manager of the U.S.-China Center for Animal Health, as its representatives who spoke at the ceremony.


Video Feature

K-State clinician restores sight to blind baby ape

Meet Dr. Jessica Meekins in this Scaly Adventures video. She's the Veterinarian who restored the eyesight to the baby Gibbon from Monkey Island Rescue, which is featured in episode 5 of this season, on Nov. 11 at 11 am CST!

Video courtesy of Scaly Adventures.


CVM chooses new class of Early Admission Scholars for 2017

Early Admit Scholars

A group of 27 Kansas State University undergraduate students will have a special opportunity to fulfill their dreams of becoming veterinarians. The College of Veterinary Medicine recognized these students for being selected in its Early Admission Program during an afternoon ceremony Oct. 27 in Trotter Hall.

Established in 1999, the Early Admission Scholars program has recruited the best and brightest undergraduate students who are interested in studying veterinary medicine. Upon acceptance in the program, students must complete all of their science prerequisite courses at Kansas State University to be guaranteed admission into the College of Veterinary Medicine. 

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Early Admit Scholars
Front row (from left): Dr. Ronnie Elmore, Bailey Pyle, Amanda Tlacil, Samantha Jansen, Cori Hough, Amelia “Amy” Finn, Taylor McAtee, Angela Gaggiano, Shelby Abts, Hanna Westermier, Halle Kloefkorn, Margo Wottowa and Dr. Bonnie Rush. Back row: Abigail Gibbons, Nathan Jackson, Allianna Mitchell, Emma Hawkins, Alexis Fenton, Rachael Peterson, Walter Meyers, Douglas Farleigh, James Osborn, Joseph Kempin, Dylan Albers, Molly Reilly, Annaliese Colacicco, Katherine Stenger and Hannah Tice. Not pictured: Levi Gauby.

“Qualifying for this program is very special,” said Dr. Ronnie Elmore, associate dean for admissions and diversity programs. “These students represent the top 5 percent of Kansas State University students according to their college acceptance test scores. Being selected into the Early Admission Programs gives them the advantage of bypassing the regular applications process, which is very competitive. For only 112 positions in each incoming veterinary class, we usually receive more than 1,000 applications.”

Successful candidates in the Early Admission Scholars program must maintain a 3.5 grade point average during completion of the science prerequisites and complete all of their 64 hours of prerequisites by the end of the spring semester prior to beginning the DVM curriculum in the fall, and submit graduate record examination (GRE) scores.

The College of Veterinary Medicine assigns a veterinary student mentor to each Early Admit Scholar to stimulate career and academic development and to provide orientation and access to college activities. The pre-veterinary students attend regular meetings during the academic year to develop a sense of community and share their progress.

The 2017 class of Early Admission Scholars are:

From Greater Kansas City: Abigail Gibbons, Samantha Jansen and Molly Reilly, all three from Lenexa; Shelby Abts and Amelia “Amy” Finn, both from Kansas City, Missouri; Douglas Farleigh and Joseph Kempin, both from Olathe; and Alexis Fenton, Stilwell.

Cori Hough, Derby; Taylor McAtee, LaCygne; Annaliese Colacicco, Leavenworth; Rachael Peterson, Leonardville; Hannah Tice, Maize; Levi Gauby, Washington;  Dylan Albers and Halle Kloefkorn, both from Wichita; and Bailey Pyle, Westmoreland.

From out of state:

Amanda Tlacil, Canton, Georgia; Margo Wottowa, Columbia, Illinois; Allianna Mitchell, Kildeer, Illinois; Angela Gaggiano, Lake Zurich, Illinois; Katherine Stenger, Williamsfield, Illinois; Hanna Westermier, Cole Camp, Missouri; James Osborn, Elkhorn, Nebraska; Emma Hawkins, LaVista, Nebraska; Walter Meyers, Smithtown, New York; and Nathan Jackson, Friendswood, Texas



More Headlines

College hires renowned veterinary clinical toxicologist Dr. Steve Ensley

Dr. Steve Ensley

The College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University has announced the hiring of Dr. Steve Ensley, formerly a clinical professor at Iowa State University, to enhance toxicology services and education.

“Dr. Ensley is recognized as one of the foremost veterinary clinical toxicologists in the country,” said Dr. Hans Coetzee, head of the Department of Anatomy and Physiology.  “He is a phenomenal instructor and diagnostician whose commitment to teaching and service will have a significant impact on veterinary students, practitioners and livestock producers throughout Kansas and beyond.”

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Dr. Steve Ensley

 Dr. Steve Ensley will provide toxicology training to veterinary students, and also develop toxicology testing and consulting services for the Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

In addition to providing toxicology training to veterinary students, Dr. Ensley will also develop toxicology testing and consulting services for the Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

Dr. Steve Ensley grew up in Centralia, Kansas, where his father, Dr. Leroy Ensley, a 1961 DVM alumnus, had a mixed animal practice. He received a bachelor’s degree at Kansas State University and then followed with Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, which he earned in 1981. Dr. Ensley then practiced mixed medicine in Nebraska and Kansas for more than 14 years.

Following practice, Dr. Ensley obtained a master’s degree and doctorate in toxicology from Iowa State University. While completing his advanced degrees at Iowa State University, Dr. Ensley worked in its veterinary diagnostic laboratory for five years. After completing his doctorate in 2000, he became the director of the University of Nebraska’s Diagnostic Laboratory at North Platte. Dr. Ensley then worked for Bayer AG as a research toxicologist/pathologist. He returned to a toxicology position at the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory at Iowa State University in May 2006. In his most recent position, Dr. Ensley taught, conducted research and acted as clinical toxicologist for the diagnostic laboratory.

Dr. Ensley’s interests are clinical veterinary toxicology and applied veterinary toxicology research. His master’s degree and doctorate involved drinking water quality of swine and dairy cattle and the effects on production and reproduction. The effects that Hazardous Algal Blooms (HAB’s) have on animals are a direct extension of his primary water quality work. Dr. Ensley has published extensively on applied veterinary toxicology and gives numerous presentations on these topics. He is a member of the Academy of Veterinary Consultants and American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians.


AASV selects students for poster contest

Jordan Gebhardt and Laura Constance

For the second year in a row, a pair of veterinary students have been selected to participate in the American Association of Swine Veterinarians' (AASV) Veterinary Student Poster Competition, sponsored by Newport Laboratories: Laura Constance, Clyde, North Carolina, and Jordan Gebhardt, Cedar Springs, Michigan. This will be the eighth annual edition of the competition, which will be held Sunday, March 4, during the association's 2018 Annual Meeting in San Diego.

Last year, Gebhardt won the top prize of $500 in the competition. Constance was awarded with a $200 scholarship for her poster.

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Dr. Steve Dritz, Jordan Gebhard, Laura Constance and Dr. Megan Niederwerder
Major professors lead their students through concurrent DVM/Ph.D. studies and mentor them in the AASV research poster competition: (from left) Dr. Steve Dritz, Jordan Gebhardt, Laura Constance and Dr. Megan Niederwerder.

This year, the top 15 poster abstracts out of 43 have been chosen for judging based upon scores awarded after review of the abstracts submitted for the AASV Student Seminar. Constance and Gebhardt are both concurrent DVM/PhD students. Their primary mentors are Drs. Megan Niederwerder and Steve Dritz, respectively, both swine researchers in the Department of Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology.

"To be selected for the poster competition for consecutive years is a true testament to the quality of Laura's and Jordan's research," Dr. Niederwerder said. "Recognition of their work by the American Association of Swine Veterinarians is a tremendous honor as well as a reflection of the importance of their projects to the swine industry."

"As concurrent DVM/PhD students, Laura and Jordan will be broadly trained as research veterinarians to solve complex health and disease issues," Dr. Dritz added. "These are both wonderful students, and we are very proud they will be representing Kansas State University. We are also appreciative of the financial support the College of Veterinary medicine provides for the concurrent DVM/PhD program"

Gebhardt explained how his project builds significantly upon research that has been conducted at Kansas State University on the benefits of medium chain fatty acids when used to mitigate potential pathogens in swine feed – specifically porcine epidemic diarrhea virus.

"The impact of supplementation with these specific compounds on overall growth performance in nursery pigs has not been previously evaluated by our research group," Gebhardt said. "The current project was aimed to assess the impact of medium chain fatty acid inclusion in nursery pig diets on overall growth performance and characterization of fecal microbes, and results are very promising. We observed substantial improvements in growth performance, indicating additional investigation is warranted to further evaluate these compounds and generate productive solutions for swine producers."

Constance's project examines the effect of the microbiome on porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS), which is an economically devastating swine disease endemic to many United States farms, costing producers around $665 million annually. The title of her poster is, "Pre-challenge microbiome composition is associated with improved weight gain in pigs after vaccination with a porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) modified live virus (MLV) vaccine followed by challenge with PRRSV and porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2b)."

"My project is focused on PRRSV and PCV2; two of the most economically devastating swine viruses that cause respiratory disease and reduced growth," Constance said. "Co-infections lead to secondary bacterial infections and increase the use of antimicrobials. With antimicrobial resistance a growing problem, producers need alternative methods to treat these infections. Our research suggests that modulating the gut microbiome could be used as alternative tool to control PRRS and PCV2 co-infections."

A panel of three judges will conduct a brief interview with each of the 15 students selected to participate. The judges will evaluate the students' posters at the meeting on Sunday morning, March 4. All posters will be available for viewing by the meeting attendees starting at noon on Sunday and continuing through Monday. The results of the poster competition will be announced during the AASV luncheon on Monday, March 5. Newport Laboratories is sponsoring the scholarship awards as follows: 1st place poster: $500; 2nd and 3rd place: $400 each; 4th, 5th and 6th place: $300 each; and 7th-15th place: $200 each.

"This is a great opportunity for me to present my research to the larger swine research community" Constance said. "Last year was a great learning opportunity for me and I look forward to being able to participate again."


Dr. Zhoumeng Lin gives presentations in China on drug residues in food animals and computational modeling

Dr. Zhoumeng Lin

Multitasking is an understatement for describing recent activities for Dr. Zhoumeng Lin, an assistant professor of pharmacology and toxicology in the College of Veterinary Medicine. He was invited to give multiple presentations in China, while also meeting with a group of renowned scientists in the field of veterinary pharmacology and toxicology.

Dr.  Lin serves on the faculty for the Institute of Computational Comparative Medicine (ICCM) and Department of Anatomy and Physiology. He is also the principal investigator and regional director of the Midwest Regional Center for the Food Animal Residue Avoidance Databank (FARAD) program, located here at Kansas State University.

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“My research focuses on applying computational modeling technologies to address problems in drug tissue residues, withdrawal time, food safety, animal health, nanomaterial tissue distribution, cancer nanomedicine and nanomaterial risk assessment,” Dr. Lin explained. “We employ computational modeling methods that include physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling, traditional pharmacokinetic modeling, population pharmacokinetic modeling, and pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic modeling.”

He was recently invited to attend the Chinese 14th Conference on Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology from Oct. 17-20 in Qingdao, China.

Dr. Zhoumeng Lin

“I gave two presentations in the meeting, including a focused presentation entitled ‘Development of a Population Physiologically Based Pharmacokinetic Model for Penicillin G in Swine, Beef Cattle, and Dairy Cows for Food Safety Assessment’ and a keynote presentation entitled ‘Application of the Food Animal Residue Avoidance Databank (FARAD) in animal health, human food safety, and animal drug development,’” Dr. Lin said.


Dr. Lin with Dr. Eran Lavy and Dr. Zonghui Yuan

 Dr. Zhoumeng Lin (far right) meets with Dr. Eran Lavy and Dr. Zonghui Yuan when Dr. Lin visited the Department of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology at Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China, as part of a trip to present a series of lectures in October. 

He also gave an introduction of the American Academy of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics (AAVPT) on behalf of its past president, Dr. Ronette Gehring who was formerly a faculty member at K-State. Dr. Lin’s laboratory member, Dr. Dongping Zeng, gave an oral presentation entitled “A physiologically based pharmacokinetic model for T-2 toxin in Chicken.”

Dr. Lin said the other invited speakers include Dr. Pierre-Louis Toutain, professor in veterinary pharmacology at the Royal Veterinary College in London, England (who also serves as president of the European College of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology); Dr. Stephen Page, professor in veterinary pharmacology and toxicology at the University of Sydney, Australia; Dr. Arturo Anadon, professor in toxicology and pharmacology at the Complutense University of Madrid, Spain; and Dr. Eran Lavy, professor in veterinary pharmacology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot, Israel.

“I was also invited to give a series of lectures on PBPK modeling to the Department of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology at Huazhong Agricultural University in Wuhan, China,” Dr. Lin said. His lectures were on: Introduction of PBPK modeling; PBPK model development – mathematical description of absorption and distribution; PBPK model development – mathematical description of metabolism and elimination; and PBPK model calibration, evaluation and analysis.

“This trip provided an excellent opportunity to discuss potential collaborative projects on drug tissue residues, withdrawal time estimation, PBPK modeling, and food safety with the hosts, Dr. Zonghui Yuan and Dr. Lingli Huang,” Dr. Lin said. Dr. Zonghui Yuan, a world-renowned veterinary pharmacologist, is professor and head for the Department of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology at Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China. He is also an elected member of the Royal Academy of Veterinary Sciences of Spain. Dr. Lingli Huang, who was a visiting scholar here at the ICCM, is now an associate professor and associate department head for the Department of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology at Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China. These collaborative projects are in line with our mission of FARAD at K-State.

Dr. Lin said he recently received a USDA-NIFA grant to support the mission of national FARAD program, which is to provide science-based expert advice and quantitative tools to help mitigate unsafe chemical residues in products derived from food animals. Another recent grant is from the NIH/NIBIB for “Physiologically based pharmacokinetic modeling and analysis of nanoparticle delivery to tumors.” Dr. Lin said the goal of this project is to construct a simply general physiologically based pharmacokinetic model for nanoparticles in tumor-bearing animals using traditional approaches. He also received a 2017-2018 K-State CVM Success For Young Investigators (SUCCESS-FYI) Award to support his computational nanomedicine research. In addition to his research activities, Dr. Lin teaches a graduate level online course in PBPK modeling through K-State Global Campus.

Dr. Zhoumeng Lin joins group of dignitaries
Dr. Lin poses with a select group of participants. (Second from left), Dr. Lingli Huang, associate professor and associate head of the Department of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology at Huazhong Agricultural University in Wuhan, China; (fourth from left), Dr. Lin; Dr. Stephen Page; (sixth from right) Dr. Yuan; (fifth from right) Dr. Arturo Anadon; and (fourth from right) Dr. Lavy. Not pictured: Dr. Pierre-Louis Toutain.


Dr. Sabarish Indran serves up 'Science on Tap'

Dr. Sabarish IndranThe CVM's Dr. Sabarash Indran was the guest speaker in October for the "Science on Tap" series. Held in a relaxed setting, Science on Tap features a brief, informal presentation by a K-State scientist followed by lively conversation. The goal is to build the community's enthusiasm for science in a fun and unique way.

Science on Tap is organized through a partnership with the Graduate School, the Center for Engagement and Community Development, Sunset Zoo, and Tallgrass Tap House.

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Dr. Sabarish Indran
Dr. Sabarish Indran address an intent audience at the Tallgrass Tap House, explaining how transboundary animal disease might impact human and animal health, and the economy.

The free, interactive program was held Oct. 18 at Tallgrass Tap House, located at 320 Poyntz Ave. in Manhattan. Dr. Indran, a postdoctoral fellow with the Department of Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology, estimated about 60 people attened. 

"My talk was on transboundary animal diseases and their impact on human and animal health and on the economy," Dr. Indran said. The talk dealt with viral diseases of animals especially food animals that are highly infectious and could spread rapidly across national borders. They could cause high rates of death and disease in animals, thereby having serious socio-economic and sometimes public health consequences in the affected countries. The diseases I talked about are not native to the US but have a high possibility of international spread (including into the US) and could have devastating effects on the US economy and public health in case they spread into the US. I mainly focused on the importance of studying such pathogens in my talk and subsequent discussions."

Science on Tap features a short introduction to the scientist's research, time to engage with fellow attendees around the research presented, then the event wraps up with a conversational Q&A period.

The final Science on Tap for the fall semester will be Nov. 15


Veterinary and MPH reps provide public health information at Okt-FLU-ber Fest

Okt-Flu-ber Fest - MPH students

Members from Kansas State University's Master of Public Health program and the College of Veterinary Medicine joined the Riley County Health Department on Oct. 26, for Okt-FLU-ber Fest.

These veterinary and public health experts answered questions about influenza in pets and what people can do to keep all family members — people and pets — safe from various strains of influenza.

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Okt-Flu-ber Fest - Drs. Kate KuKanich and Ellyn Mulcahy

 Drs. Kate KuKanich and Ellyn Mulcahy staff the booth at Okt-FLU-ber Fest, held at the Riley County Health Department.

Okt-Flu-ber Fest - Heather Poole and Hannah Lux


MPH students Heather Poole and Hannah Lux.


Okt-Flu-ber Fest - Christine Barlety, Drs. Susan Nelson and Kate KuKanich

 Fourth-year student Christine Bartley joins Drs. Susan Nelson and Kate KuKanich. 

Okt-FLU-ber Fest included a vaccine clinic for kids and adults in a fun, family atmosphere.

"The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyone 6 months of age and older should get a flu vaccine each year," said Jennifer Green, director of the Riley County Health Department. "This year we are offering extended hours and Fort Riley Public Health will be offering vaccines for military families. We will also have a limited supply of vaccines for uninsured adults. We're encouraging families across the community to come enjoy food, games, and face painting."

"This is an important collaborative event to educate and inform our community about influenza and the One Health relationship between animals and humans," said Dr. Ellyn Mulcahy, director of the Master of Public Health program. She said Master of Public Health students will be assisting at the event.

According to Dr. Kate KuKanich, associate professor of internal medicine in the College of Veterinary Medicine's clinical sciences department, canine influenza most commonly causes coughing, sneezing and runny nose, similar to a person with a respiratory virus.

"There are many other infectious causes of these same signs in dogs," Dr. KuKanich said. "While some dogs show no signs of illness with canine influenza when infected and shedding, other dogs may show more severe signs such as fever or even pneumonia."

Dr. KuKanich said there are two strains of canine influenza: H3N8 and H3N2.

"Both are very contagious and spread through respiratory secretions especially when a dog coughs or sneezes," she said. "Fortunately, we have not yet diagnosed a single case of canine influenza H3N8 or H3N2 at the Kansas State University Veterinary Health Center."

Veterinarians are routinely on alert for influenza and can submit a nasal swab from any suspected case to the Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for testing by PCR and sequencing. Inquiries should be directed to clientcare@vet.k-state.edu or by phone at 785-532-5650 or 866-512-5650.

Answers to common questions about influenza in pets

What can dog owners do?

Dr. KuKanich suggested discussing risk factors with your veterinarian to decide if vaccination is recommended. "Not all dogs should be vaccinated," she said. "Dogs who stay in Kansas and have little contact with other dogs are considered to be at very low risk at this time." Dr. Susan Nelson, clinical professor, and Dr. Neala Boyer, clinical assistant professor with the Veterinary Health Center's Pet Health Service, suggest that dogs who travel, go to dog shows or spend time at boarding facilities, doggie daycare or dog parks may be at increased risk and are candidates for vaccination.

Is there risk for people to acquire canine influenza?

No, neither H3N8 nor H3N2 has been shown to be transmissible to a person or to cause illness in people, although H3N2 has been transmitted to cats causing respiratory illness.

Can influenza spread from people to pets in our households?

Yes, the human influenza strain H1N1 has been confirmed in pet dogs, cats and ferrets, and these pets were believed to acquire their influenza from sick family members within their homes. "It is a good idea to stay home when you are sick with the flu to minimize spread of disease to your friends and colleagues, and our pets can be wonderful companions when we are ill," Dr. KuKanich said. "Coughing and sneezing in your elbow or into a tissue and washing hands frequently are great ways to keep other people and pets around you healthy. If your pet does show signs of illness, call your veterinarian for advice and let them know about any illness in yourself or other family members."

Dr. KuKanich said One Health is the industry term referring to the collaborative efforts of a community to keep people, animals and the environment healthy.

"By working as a team with our county health departments, physicians and veterinarians, we can keep everyone safe from the flu and other infections we may come across," she said.

Further questions can be addressed to Dr. KuKanich at kstenske@k-state.edu.


College of Veterinary Medicine brings in employers from several states for job fair

Job Fair

While graduation is still several months away, the College of Veterinary Medicine is already helping its senior class get a head start on entering the job market.

The college hosted a job fair Saturday, Nov. 4, at the K-State Student Union, bringing 40 employers who came from as far away as California, New Mexico and Massachusetts, hoping to hire one or more 2018 graduates.

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DVM Job Fair
A panaorma view of the DVM Job Fair held in the K-State Student Union ballroom.

"It's hard for students to find the time between clinical rotations, externships and studying for boards to get out to meet practitioners looking to hire a new 2018 graduate," said Peggy Schmidt, associate dean for academic programs and student affairs. "Bringing these employers to campus provides not only an opportunity for our students to meet multiple employers in a single day, it also allows employers to meet multiple students who may be interested in their practice. It was a win-win for both employers and students."

Many of the participants were themselves Kansas State University alumni. Out of a class of 112 students expected to graduate in 2018, more than 30 were in attendance, along with another 30 or so students from the classes of 2019, 2020 and 2021.

"We were delighted to have students in their first, second and third year of studies attend the job fair and introduce themselves to practitioners," Schmidt said. "This is an excellent way to build a network for potential fourth-year externships and possible future employment."

"The job fair was highly beneficial for me as a student in the Veterinary Training Program for Rural Kansas," said fourth-year student Chase Reed, Winfield. "I was able to have introductory conversations with practices that would not have been geographically feasible to interact with in person otherwise. At Kansas State University, we are lucky to have administrative leadership who demonstrate a pattern of concern and care for us. Thanks to Drs. Peggy Schmidt, Tom Schwartz, Brad White, Bonnie Rush and everyone else who helped schedule such an excellent event!"

Schmidt said in addition to the faculty mentioned by Reed, Beth Davis and Gregg Hanzlicek were invaluable in helping prepare students for success at the job fair. She also said Miranda Schremmer and Dee Roblyer, staff members from the dean's office, were the "driving force" behind employer registration and logistics for the job fair.

"It never would have happened without their effort and input," Schmidt said. "We are looking forward to our next Job Fair for the 2019 graduates next October."


Center of Excellence for Vector-Borne Diseases hosts inaugural campus conference

Dr. Roman Ganta speaks at conference

A new effort to convene Kansas State University researchers whose study is focused on vector-borne diseases was launched Oct. 23 at the Leadership Studies Building.

"The goal of this inaugural all-day conference is to generate synergy to further research in this area and explore potential collaborative funding opportunities, such as preparing program projects," said Dr. Roman Ganta, director of the Center of Excellence for Vector Borne Diseases, which is headquartered in the College of Veterinary Medicine.

Read more ...


Dr. Roman Ganta

 Dr. Roman Ganta hosts a discussion on ideas for how to collaborate across campus with other departments on vector-borne disease research projects.

The program included nine formal presentations by faculty members from the entomology, biochemistry, biology and diagnostic medicine/pathobiology departments. Topics included spatial epidemiology of tick-borne diseases, immunobiology of mosquitoes and biting midges, genetic analysis on Ehrlichia chaffeensis and a variety of other related topics. Several scientists from the Arthropod-borne Animal Diseases Research Unit, USDA, Manhattan, also attended the event.

Dr. Ganta said the center plans to have this meeting annually during the fall of each year.

"This was a very encouraging start," Dr. Ganta said. "At the conclusion of the presentations, we had a spirited group discussion where these participants expressed a mutual desire to include more of our colleagues on campus and to find ways to build stronger networks of collaboration and communication."

Dr. Ganta said the center has planned a national meeting on tick-borne diseases at Manhattan's Hilton Garden Inn on May 5, 2018. Currently confirmed speakers include experts from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, North Carolina State University in addition to Kansas State University.

The Center of Excellence for Vector-Borne Diseases is an interdisciplinary research center at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University. The primary focus of the center is to conduct research on vector-borne diseases of importance to animal and human health. Its goals also include disseminating the current knowledge through continuing education conferences.

A spring meeting has been scheduled and is posted here.

Dr. Kathryn Reif
Dr. Kathryn Reif talks about her research on identifying determinants of vector competence and transmission for tick-borne



Regular features

Alumni Events, Development and Continuing Education

VMAA logoThe Veterinary Medical Alumni Association organizes alumni receptions at several of the national annual conferences plus continuing education events and more. Updates include a fundraising effort to honor the memory of Dr. Wally Cash, recently departed alumni and other alumni notes from October and early November.

See news and upcoming events below ...

Remembering Dr. Wally Cash

Dr. Walter Cash

For nearly 40 years, Dr. Wally Cash taught anatomy to all freshmen veterinary students. Thousands of veterinarians around the country have him to thank for their foundational education in veterinary medicine.

This year, the third floor of Trotter Hall, soon to be known as the Dr. James Boyd Family floor, is undergoing renovations, and the anatomy lab will be named in honor of Dr. Wally Cash. The lab is scheduled to reopen in January 2018.

While making plans to name the lab for Dr. Cash, many individuals have shared incredible stories of his sense of humor and his dedication to teaching all students who walked through the anatomy lab doors.  It is here, on this site, we would like to encourage any and all that were impacted by Dr. Wally Cash during his illustrious career to share their “Wally Story.”

If you would like to share a special memory of Dr. Cash to be included on this web page, please email Marisa Larson at marisal@found.ksu.edu.

To give a gift toward the renovation in memory of Dr. Cash, please visit the KSU Foundation website.

Cat Town winds down for the season - Join us for the remaining games

Cat Town

See full schedule here

Alumni notes

Dr. Russ Hardin, DVM class of 1946, was back for K-State Homecoming. He went to Purdue, played football for K-State, was captain of the team, is the oldest living K-State football player.

Dr. Mariah SoderlundDr. Mariah (Berry) Soderlund is an alumna from the DVM class of 2000, who has practiced in Oberlin and Hugoton. She currently is the owner and sole practitioner of Heartland Animal Hospital in Goodland, Kansas. We have learned Dr. Berry is currently fighting cancer, and is unable to practice and has not been able to sell her practice. On top of medical bills, she has the added burden of practice-related bills. Her family and friends are trying to help with her financial burdens and welcome all #KState family members to assist as they are able and see fit.

A fund has been established for those who might like to contribute to help Dr. Soderlund and her family: https://www.gofundme.com/nmnxu-mariahs-medical-fund

In Memoriam - Recently Departed Alumni

Dr. John Robert Mats, DVM 1959
Sept. 23, 2017

Questions about Alumni or CE events?


Ashley McCowan PhotoAshley McCowan
Alumni and Events Coordinator


Dana ParkerDana Parker
Program Assistant



News Ticker

More activities and accomplishments in the College of Veterinary Medicine:

Dr. Susan Moore and Beth McQuade presented at the 28th International Conference for Rabies in the Americas in Calgary, Canada. McQuade's presentation was "Rabies antibody levels in different groups of pets following vaccination." Dr. Moore presented:"Development and evaluation of a method for automated determination of rabies virus neutralizing antibody tigers by the fluorescent antibody virus neutralization test"; "Rabies virus antibodies from oral vaccination as a correlate of protection against lethal infection in wildlife";and "Risk factors for inadequate antibody response to primary rabies vaccination in dogs under one year of age."

Mal Hoover placed 3rd in the overall 2017 Movement Challenge for K-State, which was a six-week challenge that included walking and other activities converted to steps. "I walk a whole lot and ride a spin cycle at 4:15 a.m. each day, plus ride my bike to work and other places around Manhattan," Mal said.

Several CVM faculty will be presenting on Nov. 29 at 2017 Center for Viral Pathogenesis Research Symposiumat the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City. They include: Drs. Jürgen Richt and Jean-Paul J. Gonzalez, "Research Progress at the Center of Excellence for Emerging and Zoonotic Animal Diseases"; Dr. A. Sally Davis, "Viral Pathogenesis through the Lens of an Investigative Veterinary Pathologist"; Dr. Ying Fang, "A Naturally Occurring Cross Order Recombinant of Enterovirus and Torovirus"; and Dr. Rollie Clem, from the Division of Biology, "Unraveling the Arbovirus Midgut Escape Barrier in Mosquito Vectors." See more information at the link.

Dr. Amy Rankin attended the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists Annual Conference where she presented, "Effects of ophthalmic prednisolone and diclofenac on diabetes regulation in dogs," as well as attending the ABVO Exam committee meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, Oct. 10-14.

Dr. Elizabeth Santschi provided continuing education lectures and support for resident presentations at the American College of Veterinary Surgeons annual meeting in Indianapolis Oct. 11-14. Lecture topics included surgical infection, imaging and surgery, and imaging and septic arthritis.

Dr. Brad White was an invited speaker at the Wild West Veterinary Conference in Reno, Nevada, Oct. 11-15. His presentation was entitled, "Data to Decision from Remote Cattle Monitoring."

Dr. Raghavendra Amachawadi had two abstracts published this month. "Interactive effects of supplemental Zn sulfate and ractopamine hydrochloride on growth performance, carcass traits, and plasma urea nitrogen in feedlot heifers" and "Interaction between supplemental zinc oxide and zilpaterol hydrochloride on growth performance, carcass traits, and blood metabolites in feedlot steers" were published in the October Journal of Animal Science.

Dr. Ryane Englar published, "A Novel Approach to Simulation-Based Education for Veterinary Medical Communication Training Over Eight Consecutive Pre-Clinical Quarters" in the October Journal of Veterinary Education.

Dr. Bonto Faburay has become a member of the Center for Viral Pathogenesis, University of Kansas.

Dr. Cindy Bell was co-awarded a $10,000 Academy of Veterinary Dentistry Grant to support research titled, “Analysis and assessment of pulp vitality in intrinsically stained teeth in dogs.” She was also an invited speaker at the 2017 annual meeting for the American College of Veterinary Pathologists at which she presented on “Oral mucosal diseases in dogs.” 

Manuscripts published

Alarcon EI, Poblete H, Roh H, Couture JF, Comer J, Kochevar IE (2017) Rose bengal binding to collagen and tissue photobonding. ACS Omega 2(10):6646–6657. doi: 10.1021/acsomega.7b00675

Manuscripts accepted

Basel M, Narayanan S, Ganta C, Shrestha T, Marquez A, Pyle M, Hill J, Bossmann S, Yankee T, Troyer D:  Developing a xenograft human tumor model in immunocompetent mice.  Cancer Lett, Accepted for publication, 2017

Peer-reviewed publications

Watanabe A, Poole DC, Kano Y. The effects of RSR13 on microvascular Po2 kinetics and muscle contractile performance in the rat arterial ligation model of peripheral arterial disease. J Appl Physiol. 2017 Oct 1;123(4):764-772. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00257.2017. 

Smith JR, Ferguson SK, Hageman KS, Harms CA, Poole DC, Musch TI. Dietary nitrate supplementation opposes the elevated diaphragm blood flow in chronic heart failure during submaximal exercise. Respir Physiol Neurobiol. 2017 Oct 14;247:140-145. doi: 10.1016/j.resp.2017.09.017. 

Poole DC, Richardson RS, Haykowsky MJ, Hirai DM, Musch TI. Exercise Limitations in Heart Failure with Reduced and Preserved Ejection Fraction. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2017 Oct 19:jap.00747.2017. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00747.2017.

One Health Day at K-State Olathe

Dr. Raelne Wouda (center)

Dr. Raelene Wouda (with microphone) attended a special One Health Day event Nov. 1 at Kansas State University Olathe along with Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute and BioKansas - Kansas Bioscience Organization where she joined a panel that talked about "Attacking Cancer with a One Health Approach"

Visiting students from Rajiv Institute

Visiting students from Rajiv
The CVM International Office and Department of Clinical Sciences hosted three visiting students from Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Veterinary Education and Research (RIVER) in Puducherry, India, Sept. 20–Oct. 22. The students spent time on clinical rotations such as orthopedic surgery, food animal medicine and surgery, equine medicine and surgery, general medicine (pet health), and diagnostic medicine as well as time in the pharmacy, at the rabies lab and a visit to Sunset Zoo. The students were Abhishek Madan, Lavanya Badda and Gowri Menon.

Dedication of the Kansas Health Institute Pocket Park and Dr. Samuel Crumbine Statue

Crumbine - Pocket Park dedication

Dr. Samuel Crubmine plaqueDr. Samuel Crubmine plaqueDr. Samuel Crubmine plaqueDr. Samuel Crubmine plaque
(click thumbnails to see larger images of the plaques)

Dr. Justin Kastner recently attended a special dedication event at Pocket Park in Topeka. He and Ph.D. student Danny Unruh, along with some undergraduate students in the Frontier program, authored several pieces for the dedication event (narrative for QR-code-mediated website summaries about Dr. Samuel Crumbine at http://www.khi.org/park). Dr. Kastner shared several pictures from the event.

The statue of Dr. Samuel Crumbine pays tribute to his career on the frontier as a doctor in Dodge City where he was an early leader in public health efforts. Dr. Crumbine became the state health director in the early 1900s. He served as state health director and later led the University of Kansas Medical Center. Dr. Crumbine started a "don't spit on the sidewalk" campaign to help limit the spread of tuberculosis and has been credited with pushing legislation to require hotels to change the bedding between guests. He also encouraged the public to "swat the fly" and "bat the rat." The character of Doc Adams in the long-running TV series Gunsmoke was based on Dr. Samuel Crumbine. (The part of Doc Adams was played by a fellow Kansan, Milburn Stone.)

Top right: Dr. Kastner and Frontier research assistant Clara Wicoff take a selfie with Dr. Samuel Crumbine-impersonator Ric Averill of Lawrence, Kansas. Middle right: Katelynn Stull, a K-State Olathe grad student in food science (under Dr Sara Gragg) celebrates with Danny Unruh and Clara Wicoff.

High school groups visit the college

Blue Valley Randolph high school students
A group of animal science students from Blue Valley-Randolph High School sent a thank-you card after touring the CVM. The two CVM ambassadors who gave the tour are Ellie Selanders (second person on left first row) and Kasey Ramsey (first person on right in back row).

Center for Advanced Professional Studies Blue Valley High School (KC)
A different Blue Valley High School (from Overland Park, Kansas) is represented by these students in its Center for Advanced Professional Studies (CAPS) program. On Nov. 10, 19 students and their teacher, Kelley Tuel, visited the College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr Laurie Beard gave the students a tour of the new Equine Performance Testing Center (EPTC), Dr. Matt Miesner gave the students a presentation utilizing a steer with a rumen fistula, and Dr. Ronnie Elmore (front row, right) gave the students a tour of our veterinary facilities. Mary Sue Moore facilitated a light lunch for the group.


Halloween pics

Hallowween pet pics
Spirits abound in this set of photos submitted by: (top left) Anum Ahmed with her pet bunny, Wolf, and a character at PetSmart. Top right: Zeek the "chicken" submitted by Amy Thornburrow. Bottom left: The Mad Hatter (Javier Abello) with Dr. Joan Murnane and Thitikan Jiraksonthon. Bottom middle: Sunny the dime-store cowgirl, submitted by Amy Thornburrow. And bottom right: Jack the cat as a jack-o'-lantern, submitted by Dr. Katelyn Fentiman.

Running man

Dr. Chuck Dodd - Heartland 100
Congratulations to Dr. Chuck Dodd, who was the second place finisher in the Heartland 100 - a 100-mile race held at Cassoday, Kansas, in October. The pictures show how he looked before and after running in the race.


New Arrivals/Recent Departures

Click here to see the New Arrivals/Recent Departures at the CVM ...

Welcome to:

Cassidy Goering, Veterinary Health Center, Veterinary Technician I
Rachel Madera, Anatomy & Physiology, Research Associate
Hongping Hao, Anatomy & Physiology, Fellow (Post-Doc)
Alison Brunner, Veterinary Health Center, Client Services Assistant
Jami Maike, Veterinary Health Center, Client Services Assistant
Jerusha Matthews, Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, Research Assistant
Yuntao Zhang, Anatomy & Physiology, Assistant Scientist
Cristin Edmonston, Veterinary Health Center, Client Services Assistant
Patricia Dollarhide, Dean of Veterinary Medicine, Director
Ce Zheng, Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, Research Assistant
Pradyuamna Baviskar, Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, Research Associate
Carrie Saleba, Dean of Veterinary Medicine, Accountant I

Farewell to:

Dr. Ronette Gehring, Anatomy & Physiology, Assistant Professor
Dr. Erin Schwandt, Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology, Fellow (Post Doc)
Jami Maike, Veterinary Health Center, Animal Technician I
Dr. Yuntao Zhang, Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology, Research Assistant Professor
Dr. Xuesong Wen, Anatomy & Physiology, Fellow (Post Doc)


Lifelines is published each month by the Marketing and Communications Office at the College of Veterinary Medicine. The editor is Joe Montgomery, jmontgom@vet.k-state.edu.

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