LSU Veterinary School announces Phi Zeta Research Emphasis Day Award Recipients

For Immediate Release: March 5, 2020

 

NOTE: Award recipients are from Baton Rouge, Houma, New Orleans, and Slidell, La.; Little Rock and Rogers, Ark.; Lakewood, Colo.; Kissimmee, Fla.; Long Island, N.Y.; Yorktown, Va.; Argentina, Bangladesh, Belgium, China, India, and Japan.

Phi Zeta award winners

On February 12, the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine (LSU SVM) hosted its annual Phi Zeta Research Emphasis Day—a day established to promote research in schools of veterinary medicine, to recognize research conducted by veterinary students, House Officers (residents and interns), graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and faculty, and to encourage veterinary students to pursue careers in research.

Phi Zeta is the national veterinary honor society, which recognizes and furthers scholarship and research in matters pertaining to the welfare and diseases of animals. The importance of this day to the LSU SVM is underlined by the fact that the Veterinary Teaching Hospital is closed except for emergencies to allow all students and House Officers to participate.

Phi Zeta Day provides an opportunity for national experts to speak to students on current research in various fields and to present a picture of global veterinary research. This year’s speaker was Rustin Moore, DVM, PhD, DACVS, dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at The Ohio State University. Dr. Moore’s presentation was entitled “The Veterinary Clinician-Scientist: A One Health Approach.” One Health is the integrative effort of multiple disciplines working locally, nationally, and globally to attain optimal health for people, animals and the environment. Together, the three make up the One Health triad, and the health of each is inextricably connected to the others.

Veterinary, undergraduate, and graduate students, House Officers, faculty, post-doctoral fellows, and staff presented current biomedical research that is relevant to diseases of man and animals. More than 60 posters presented by students and post-doctoral researchers were judged by a panel of scientists for monetary prizes in four categories: (1) Dissertation (PhD) students 2) Basic research for thesis (MS), professional students (DVM students), and house officers (veterinarians pursuing advanced training in veterinary medical specialties); (3) Clinical research for thesis, professional students, and house officers; and 4) Post-doctoral researchers.

This year, 21 PhD students submitted posters for the competition. In the undergraduate, veterinary student, MS degree student and House Officer competition, there were 13 posters for consideration in the Basic Research category, 21 in the Clinical Research Category and six in the Post-Doc Category. We also had four entries in the Clinical Case Reports Category and one entry in the non-competing Faculty Category.

Veterinary students who participate in the LSU SVM’s Summer Scholars Program enter their research projects for consideration on Phi Zeta Emphasis Day. Each year, veterinary students apply to participate in the Summer Scholars Program, in which they develop research proposals with the guidance of a faculty member and conduct research throughout the summer. The 2019 Summer Scholars Program was funded by the National Institutes of Health, Boehringer-Ingelheim, the Kenneth F. Burns Trust, the Comparative Gastroenterology Society, the Equine Health Studies Program at the LSU SVM, and Morris Animal Foundation.

Winners in the PhD category were as follows:

First place went to Ishita Choudhary, BVSc and AH, who is a PhD student in Comparative Biomedical Sciences (CBS). Dr. Choudhary is from Nurpur, Himachal Pradesh, India, and her project is entitled “Effect of Ozone on progression of CF-like lung disease in mice.” Her faculty mentor is Yogesh Saini, PhD, associate professor of CBS.

Second place went to Tanya Gandhi, MS, who is a PhD student in CBS. Gandhi is from Ambala City, Haryana, India, and her project is entitled “Behavioral and Neuroanatomical Alterations in CNTNAP2 Mouse Model of Autism Spectrum Disorder.” Her faculty mentor is Charles Lee, PhD, associate professor of CBS.

Third place went to Zhongqiang Li, who is a PhD student in CBS. Li is from Lianyungang, Jiangsu, China, and his project is entitled “Optimization of cell deposition into 3D-bioprinted nanocellulose-alginate/dECM aerogel for biofabrication.” His faculty mentor is Shaomian Yao, PhD, associate professor in CBS.

Fourth place went to Cassie Bonavita, who is a PhD student in Pathobiological Sciences (PBS). Bonavita is from Yorktown, Va., and her project is entitled “Functional and Phenotypic Evaluation of Murine Cytomegalovirus Infection of the Heart.” Her faculty mentor is Rhonda Cardin, PhD, associate dean of research and advanced studies.

Winners in the Basic Research student competition for veterinary and undergraduate students were as follows:

First place went to Pilar Ruiz, undergraduate student at LSU pursuing a BS degree in Biological Science. Ruiz is from New Orleans, La., and her project is entitled “Investigating the antibacterial effect of Sca1+ lung mesenchymal stem cells on carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae-Induced Pneumonia.” Her faculty mentor is Samithamby Jeyaseelan, DVM, PhD, professor in PBS and Dr. William L. Jenkins Professorship in Veterinary Medicine.

Second place went to Benjamin Andries, a member of the LSU SVM Class of 2022. Andries is from Baton Rouge, La., and his project is entitled “The effect of JUUL aerosol exposures on emphysema in atherosclerosis-sensitive mice.” His faculty mentor is faculty mentor is Alexandra Noël, PhD, assistant professor of CBS.

Third place went to Heather Smith, a member of the LSU SVM Class of 2022. Smith is from Kissimmee, Fla., and her project is entitled “Optogenetic Stimulation Illuminates the Role of SK2-Channels in Cellular Mechanisms of Memory and Learning.” Her faculty mentor is Olalekan “Michael” Ogundele, PhD, assistant professor in CBS.

Winners in the Basic Research student competition for Master’s students, interns, and residents were as follows:

First place went to Emi Sasaki, DVM, an anatomic pathology resident and PhD student in PBS. Dr. Sasaki is from Tokyo, Japan, and her project is entitled “Extramedullary plasmacytoma in a hamster.” Her faculty mentor is Ingeborg Langohr, DVM, PhD, DACVP, professor of PBS.

Second place went to Kerin Cahill, a Master’s student in CBS. Cahill is from Long Island, N.Y., and her project is entitled “Molecular signatures and altered lung function induced by in utero electronic-cigarette aerosol exposures in neonatal mice.” Her faculty mentor is Alexandra Noël, PhD, assistant professor of CBS.

Winners in the Clinical Research student competition for veterinary and undergraduate students were as follows:

First place went to Brandon Thibodaux, a member of the LSU SVM Class of 2021. Thibodaux is from Houma, La., and his project is entitled “Precision, Variability and Accuracy of Two Current Methods of Measuring Femoral Torsion Angle (FTA) Using Radiographs and Computed Tomography.” His faculty mentor is Karanvir Aulakh, BVSc & AH, MS, DACVS, assistant professor in VCS.

Second place went to Morgan Steiner, a member of the LSU SVM Class of 2021. Steiner is from Rogers, Ark., and her project is entitled “The Use of Liposomal Bupivacaine as an Incisional Analgesic and its Effects on Wound Healing in Horses.” Her faculty mentor is Britta Leise, DVM, PhD, DACVS, associate professor of equine surgery in Veterinary Clinical Sciences (VCS).

Third place went to Angela Yoon, a member of the LSU SVM Class of 2021. Yoon is from Slidell, La., and her project is entitled “Effect of Environmental Variables on Tear Test Results in Dogs.” Her faculty mentor is Andrew Lewin, BVM&S, DACVO, assistant professor of comparative ophthalmology in VCS.

Winners in the Clinical Research student competition for Master’s students, interns and residents were as follows:

First place went to Lawrence Kadic, MVetMed, equine surgery resident at the LSU SVM. Dr. Kadic is from Diest, Belgium, and his project is entitled “Description of Atypical Osteochondritis Dissecans Lesions of the Distal Intermediate Ridge of the Tibia Diagnosed Radiographically in Seven Thoroughbred Horses (2008-2018).” This study was conducted at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in Kentucky.

Second place went to Michael St. Blanc, DVM (LSU SVM 2017), equine research intern the LSU SVM. Dr. St. Blanc is from Baton Rouge, La., and his project is entitled “Effect of an Oral Supplement Containing Curcumin Extract (Longvida™) on Lameness Due to Osteoarthritis or Degenerative Disease and Gastric Ulcer Scores.” His faculty mentor is Frank Andrews, DVM, DACVIM, director of the Equine Health Studies Program at the LSU SVM.

Winners in the Clinical Case Reports category were as follows:

First place went to Mariano Carossino, DVM, PhD, DACVM, anatomic pathology resident in PBS. Dr. Carossino is from Buenos Aires, Argentina, and his project is entitled “Chytridiomycosis in a three-toed amphiuma (Amphiuma tridactylum).” His faculty mentor is Ingeborg Langohr, DVM, PhD, DACVP, professor of PBS.

Second place went to Annie Bauman, DVM (LSU SVM 2018), clinical pathology resident in PBS. Dr. Bauman is from Little Rock, Ark., and her project is entitled “Lymphoma-Associated Hemophagocytic Syndrome in a Dog.” Her faculty mentor is Shannon Dehghanpir, DVM, DACVP, assistant professor of clinical pathology in VCS.

Winners in the Post-doctoral category were as follows:

First place went to Claire Birkenheuer, PhD, post-doctoral researcher in PBS. Dr. Birkenheuer is from Lakewood, Colo., and her project is entitled “Temporal regulation of cellular RNA polymerase II activity by herpes simplex virus 1.” Her faculty mentor is Joel Baines, VMD, PhD, dean and Dr. Kenneth F. Burns Chair in Veterinary Medicine.

Second place went Md Ekhtear Hossain, PhD, post-doctoral researcher in CBS. Dr. Hossain is from of Rajshahi, Bangladesh. His project is entitled “Vitamin E Acetate Aerosols Generated by an E-cigarette Device Are Detrimental to Lung Epithelial Cells Exposed at the Air-Liquid Interface (ALI).” His faculty mentor is Arthur Penn, PhD, professor in CBS.  

Poster Judges

Phi Zeta would like to take this opportunity to thank the poster judges Jay Addison, DVM (LSU SVM 1983), Veterinarian; Frank Andrews, DVM, MS, DACVIM, Director, Equine Health Studies Program, Veterinary Clinical Sciences (VCS); Udeni Balasuriya, BVSc, PhD, Professor, Pathobiological Sciences (PBS); Rhonda Cardin, PhD, Associate Dean for Research and Advanced Studies; Shannon Dehghanpir, DVM, MS (LSU SVM 2013, 2017), DACVP, Assistant Professor, PBS; Tammy Dugas, PhD, Interim Head and Professor, Comparative Biomedical Sciences (CBS); Joseph Francis, BVSc, MVSc, PhD, Professor, CBS; Alberto Gines, DVM, DECVS, Assistant Professor, VCS; Andrea Johnston, DVM, PhD, Assistant Professor, VCS;  Charles Lee, PhD, Associate Professor, CBS; Britta Leise, DVM (LSU SVM 2002), PhD, DACVS, Associate Professor, VCS; Juan Martinez, PhD, Professor, PBS; David McDougal, PhD, Assistant Professor Research, Pennington Biomedical Research Center; Alexandra Noël, PhD, Assistant Professor, CBS; Michelle Osborn, PhD, Assistant Professor, CBS; Sonika Patial, DVM, MS, PhD, Assistant Professor, CBS; Carlos Pinto, DVM, PhD (LSU SVM 2001), DACT, Professor, VCS; Cherie Pucheu-Haston, DVM (LSU SVM 1992), PhD, DACVD, Associate Professor, VCS; Jennifer Sones, DVM (LSU SVM 2008), PhD, DACT, Assistant Professor, VCS; Krisztian Stadler, PhD, Associate Professor-Research, Pennington Biomedical Research Center; Rhett Stout, DVM, PhD (LSU SVM 1994, 2003), DACLAM, Associate Professor, PBS; Samithamby Jeyaseelan, PhD, Professor, PBS; Ronald Thune, PhD, Professor, PBS; Shaomian Yao, PhD, Associate Professor, CBS; and Masami Yoshimura, MSc, DSc, Associate Professor, CBS.

Sponsors

This day would not be possible without the support of Elanco, Zoetis, Boehringer Ingelheim, VWR, Fisher Scientific, Biocytogen, Dechra, and Blue Buffalo.

Phi Zeta Research Emphasis Day is sponsored by the Tau Chapter of the Society of Phi Zeta, which was established on March 30, 1977, with Dr. C.W. Titkemeyer as Chapter President. Phi Zeta is the abbreviation of the Greek word Philozoi, which means “love of animals.”

Photo

Award recipients and mentors at the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine’s Phi Zeta Research Awareness Day on February 12 are (from left to right) Dr. Jennifer Sones, Dr. Annie Bauman, Dr. Mariano Carossino, Dr. Emi Sasaki, Dr. Britta Leise, Dr. Karanvir Aulakh, Dr. Joseph Taboada, Md Ekhtear Hossain, Brandon Thibodaux, Benjamin Andries, Kerin Cahill, Dr. Lawrance Kadic, Morgan Steiner, Angela Yoon, Pilar Ruiz, Heather Smith, Dr. Claire Birkenheuer, Dean Joel Baines, Cassie Bonavita, Dr. Frank Andrews, Dr. Ishita Choudhary, Dr. Michael St. Blanc, Tanya Gandhi, Zhongqiang Li, Dr. Rhonda Cardin, Dr. Colin Mitchell, Dr. Ann Chapman, Dr. Sonika Patial, Dr. Samithamby Jeyaseelan, and Dr. Yogesh Saini.

The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine is one of only 30 veterinary schools in the U.S. and the only one in Louisiana. The LSU SVM is dedicated to improving the lives of people and animals through education, research, and service. We teach. We heal. We discover. We protect.

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