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Eleven students participated in the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine's Summer Research Training Program. Much of it was virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Summer Research Training Program Virtual Style

Monday, August 17, 2020

Eleven Oklahoma State University College of Veterinary Medicine students participated in the college’s Summer Research Training Program for 12 weeks this summer. The only difference – much of it was virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s been challenging with COVID-19, which forced us to make many changes in how we implement the program,” said Dr. Laura Nafe, associate professor of small animal internal medicine and one of the program coordinators. “We held weekly lectures via Zoom. Lab time was coordinated to minimize the number of people in the lab at one time so they could socially distance. PPE was provided to further protect the students and faculty mentors. Even the poster session at the college level and the national symposium will be virtual.”

Participating students, their mentors (College of Veterinary Medicine faculty unless noted otherwise) and their topics of study include:

  • Lydia Chang (’22) mentored by Craig Miller, DVM, Ph.D., DACVP – Replicating Cytauxzoon felis life cycle using Amblyomma americanum and feline embryonal macrophage cells
  • Mayra Guzman (’23) mentored by Rheal Towner, Ph.D., with the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation – Evaluating ELTD1 Antibody Therapies for Glioblastoma Multiforme
  • Alexis Hawton (’22) mentored by Mason Reichard, MS, Ph.D. – Quantifying Epidermal Changes of Naïve and Subsequent Amblyomma americanum Bite Lesions of Dogs and Cats
  • Bailey Hendrickson (’22) mentored by Sunil More, BVSc & AH, MVSc, Ph.D., DACVP – Canine Cutaneous Mast Cell Tumor Identification by Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Algorithms
  • Devery Hunt (’22) mentored by Kathryn Duncan, DVM, and Susan Little, DVM, Ph.D., DACVIM – Prevalence of Rickettsia in Lone Star ticks (Amblyomma americanum) from horses in northeastern Oklahoma
  • Lyle Moore (’22) mentored by Nicola Di Girolamo, DMV, MSc (EBHC), GP Cert (ExAP), Ph.D., DECZM (Herp) – Evaluating the Prevalence of Within-Group Statistical Comparisons in Randomized Controlled Trials of Dogs and Cats
  • Brian Nguyen (’22) mentored by Kelly Allen, MS, Ph.D. – Pilot Study Evaluating Oral Transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi in Domestic Cats
  • Emily Nunan (’23) mentored by Josh Butcher, MS, Ph.D. – Myostatin Deletion Improves Muscle Function in a Female Obese Mouse Model
  • Debosree Pathak (’22) mentored by Joao Brandao, LMV, MS, DECZM (Avian) – Intranasal Midazolam Effective Dose 50 and Its Effect on Circulating Corticosterone Levels in Zebra Finches
  • Sabrina Taylor (’23) mentored by Dr. Nicola Di Girolamo, DMV, MSc (EBHC), GP Cert (ExAP), Ph.D., DECZM (Herp) – Surrogate Outcomes are Prevalent in Randomized Controlled Trials in Horses
  • Erin Willis, Ph.D. ('23), mentored by Joao Brandao, LMV, MS, DECZM (Avian) – Effective Dose 50 of Oral and Intramuscular Midazolam and Its Effects on Corticosterone in Zebra Finches

Special thanks to this year’s sponsors for making this remarkable learning experience possible for OSU’s veterinary students: Boehringer Ingelheim, Morris Animal Foundation and the Office of the Dean and Office of Research and Graduate Education with Oklahoma State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

For more information on these research projects, please visit Summer Research Training Program 2020. If you would like to support future research at OSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine, please contact Ashley Hesser, assistant director of development with the OSU Foundation, at 405-385-0715 or

MEDIA CONTACT: Derinda Blakeney, APR | OSU College of Veterinary Medicine | 405-744-6740 |

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