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Three Future Vets Rewarded by Morris Animal Foundation

Veterinary Students Recognized for Their Contributions to Small Companion Animal Health Research

Morris Animal Foundation recently awarded prize money to three aspiring veterinarians in recognition of research projects they completed to improve the health and well-being of small companion animals. The prizes were awarded at the Foundation’s small companion animal scientific review meeting held in Denver from June 21 to 26.

Each student was part of Morris Animal Foundation’s Veterinary Student Scholars Program, which gives students hands-on research experience early in their veterinary career with the hope that they will consider advanced research training. Through the program, veterinary students or non-veterinary graduate students receive stipends of up to $4,000 to participate in clinical or basic animal health and/or welfare research. The students then present their projects in a poster competition for cash prizes.

First place was awarded to Laura Stoeker, of North Carolina State University, for developing a system to test the effectiveness of Lactobacillus-based vaccines. This type of vaccine can be tested without using live animals and may improve the immune system response to immunization. Along with the recognition, Stoeker received a $2,500 prize.

Second place went to Eric Fish of Western University of Health Sciences. His research evaluated evidence of early white blood cell replication and determined that very few healthy cats test positive for replicating feline coronavirus, which causes feline infectious peritonitis. His findings may offer insight into better vaccine development. Fish received a $1,500 prize.

Third place was awarded to Eva Oxford of Cornell University. Her research evaluated arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy, an inherited disease in boxers that affects the muscles of the heart. Oxford received $1,000.

“Morris Animal Foundation funds more than 70 veterinary student projects each year, and these three students are excellent examples of the quality of work that is accomplished through the program,” said Wayne Jensen, DVM, PhD, chief scientific officer for Morris Animal Foundation.

For more examples of student projects or to support student scholar research, visit us at or on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter for up-to-date information. 

Posted by MAFon June 30, 2011.

Categories: Animal health, Animal studies, Veterinary students


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