Pulmonary Medicine

Laurel J. Gershwin, DVM, PhD

VM: Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology (See also: Immunology, Pathology)

Dr. Gershwin is a veterinary immunologist who studies immunopathogenesis of disease in several species.

The laboratory studies bovine respiratory disease, with particular emphasis on Bovine Respiratory Syncytial Virus (BRSV).  Ongoing projects focus on effects of anti-viral compounds and anti-inflammatory drugs on bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) infection, testing in cattle a new potential BRSV subunit vaccine, and evaluating gene usage during acute and chronic infection. Human and bovine RSV are very similar and cause almost identical disease in their respective hosts. One of our projects has uses a human anti-RSV drug to evaluate its effectiveness in bovine calves.

The Gershwin lab is working with VMTH equine clinicians to evaluate the cellular immune response of grey horses with melanoma that are receiving Merial’s canine melanoma vaccine (off label). This DNA vaccine appears to have great potential and the goal is to document at the cell and molecular level how it works to decrease tumor growth.

STAR projects for summer can involve either of these research areas.

Please visit Dr. Gershwin's website at: http://faculty.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/faculty/ljgershwin/

Kent E. Pinkerton, Ph.D.

Professor of Anatomy, Physiology and Cell Biology

(see also: cardiology, immunology, pathology/virology and pharmacology/toxicology)

1) To take an innovative approach in addressing air quality issues in dairy and cattle operations by the examination of direct health effects on the cardiopulmonary systems of mice and rats exposed to ambient particles using a concentrator system at the Tulare Veterinary Medicine Teaching and Research Center.

2) To examine the effects of environmental factors (gases and particles in the air) on peri-natal development to affect lung anatomy and pulmonary function in the rat. From conception to adulthood in the rats takes approximately 6 weeks, an easy fit for one summer!

3) To measure heart rate variability as an indicator of change in autonomic control in the mouse exposed to Davis, CA summer particulates.

4) To take a comparative biology approach to elucidate mechanistic environmental pathways leading to increased susceptibility (fetal onset of adult disease).

5) To examine the role of secondhand smoke on increased susceptibility to infection (influenza).

6) To explore the role of metabolomics as an early indicator of disease (asthma, altered immune function, increased susceptibility to infection).

Please visit Dr. Pinkerton's website for more information.

Laura S. Van Winkle, Ph.D., DABT

VM: Anatomy, Physiology & Cell Biology

(See also: Pharmacology/Toxicology)

My research focus is on toxicology and pulmonary cell biology. I study cellular responses in the lung.. Airways are a key site for many human lung diseases such as asthma, bronchitis, cystic fibrosis and lung cancer. Exposure to toxic air pollutants contributes to development of these diseases in humans and animals. We utilize unique in vivo and in vitro models to study airway epithelial injury and repair in diverse species from mice to monkeys. We have a substantial archive of tissue sections.  My laboratories are located at the Center for Health and the Environment. Projects available include studies of: 1) The effect of inhaled particles on airway toxicology and histopathology in rats 2) Effect of inhaled toxic vapors, such as naphthalene on cytotoxicity in the nose and lung 3) Using nanoparticles to understand ultrafine particle dosimetry.

Students are invited to participate in any of these ongoing projects. Students may also conduct an original project of special interest to be completed during the summer session. Ongoing research is supported by funding from several grants from NIH.

Please visit Dr. Van Winkle's website for more information.