Research Training for Veterinarians in Comparative Pathobiology


A vital step in the translation of basic biomedical research to human clinical applications is the development and testing of diagnostic tools, novel therapies and preventive strategies in appropriate animal models. Veterinarians are well-positioned to select, create, characterize, improve and utilize animal models of human diseases because of their broad training in the anatomy, physiology, microbiology, and pathology of a variety of animal species. They should play an important role as investigators on multidisciplinary biomedical research teams. However, in order to be an effective principal investigator or collaborator, veterinarians need appropriate basic research training. The objective of this program is to provide research training in Comparative Pathobiology for veterinarians who have completed residency training in pathology, laboratory animal medicine or a clinical specialty with the goal to develop veterinary scientists with a successful career in biomedical research. The research of this training program is focused on the development and utilization of animal models of infectious diseases, cancer and inflammation.

Description of the Program

The program will prepare veterinarians for a successful career in biomedical research by providing hands-on laboratory experience, expertise in animal model development, training in ethical conduct of research, and effective verbal and written communication skills. During the first year, students will fulfill most of the course requirements and rotate through laboratories of participating faculty mentors (see below). By the end of the first year, students will select a research project and faculty mentor, as well as an advisory committee composed of at least four faculty members including the mentor. The program is supported by a T32 Institutional Training grant from the National Institutes of Health that provides stipend support for 3 years. The level of support depends on years of professional experience. Additional stipend support is provided by the faculty mentor and/or university resources.

Program Faculty

The program director is Dr. Harm HogenEsch, Professor of Immunopathology and Associate Dean for Research in the College of Veterinary Medicine. Faculty from five different departments participate in the program.

Dr. Ourania Andrisani – signal transduction mechanisms in cell growth and differentiation

Dr. Erik Barton – Immunity during lifelong herpes virus infections

Dr. James Fleet – Effect of vitamin D and calcium on colon and prostate cancer

Dr. Harm HogenEsch – Vaccine development and immunopathology of allergic diseases

Dr. Chang Kim – Trafficking and effector functions of T cells in inflammation and cancer

Dr. Stephen Konieczny – Mouse models of pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer

Dr. Richard Kuhn – Biology of flaviviruses and alpha viruses

Dr. Philip Low – Developing drug targeting strategies for cancer and inflammation

Dr. Susan Mendrysa – Role of p53 regulation in cancer

Dr. Suresh Mittal – Development of adenoviral vectors for vaccination and gene therapy

Dr. Timothy Ratliff – Role of immune response in prostate and bladder cancer

Dr. J. Paul Robinson – role of oxygen metabolites in inflammation and cancer

Dr. Elizabeth Taparowsky – Basic leucine zipper transcription factors in cell growth and differentiation

Dr. Ramesh Vemulapalli – pathogenesis of brucellosis and development of vaccines

Purdue University

Purdue University is a premier research institution with over 8,000 graduate students. The campus in West Lafayette, IN, has state-of-the-art facilities and instruments for biomedical research. It is home to Discovery Park, a collection of centers and institutes for interdisciplinary research with cutting-edge technologies, and the Purdue Center for Cancer Research supported by the National Cancer Institute. West Lafayette is a culturally rich and diverse college town with an affordable cost of living, excellent schools, and in easy driving distance from Indianapolis (1 hour) and Chicago (2 hours).


Applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States. To apply, please submit your curriculum vitae, transcripts, GRE scores, 3 letters of recommendation, and a letter describing your professional background, interests and career goals to Ms. Barbara White, Department of Comparative Pathobiology, Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine, 725 Harrison Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907 or by e-mail (pdf documents only) to


Additional information can be requested from Dr. Harm HogenEsch (; phone: (765)496-3467)

Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine, 625 Harrison Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907, (765) 494-7607

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