Morris Animal Foundation announces fellowships


The 10 fellowships selected will support animal health research and veterinary scientists



Morris Animal Foundation announced it has selected 10 new fellowship studies to receive funding, including 2 funded by Sally R. McIntosh, a longtime donor. The chosen studies will support young promising veterinary scientists as they focus on a multitude of topics, including deadly infections in dogs, amphibian conservation, and immune response disorders in horses.

“Our fellowship training program is one of the most impactful investments we can make for animal health research,” said Kathy Tietje, PhD, MBA, chief program officer at Morris Animal Foundation, in an organizational release.1 “We are delighted to be able to support these highly qualified candidates at this critical juncture in their careers."

The following studies will begin this year:1

  • Amir Aliramezani from Jagiellonian University, Poland: This study will evaluate the 9 currently-available drugs for the treatment of deadly algae infections in dogs.
  • Nora Jean Nealon from The Ohio State University: This study will investigate antibiotic resistance in dogs with urinary tract infections caused by E. coli, as well as gut microbiota responses to antibiotics in dogs with and without multidrug-resistant E. coli strains, to help inform antibiotic use.
  • Shun Kimura from University of Georgia: This study will help determine the feasibility of using a currently available veterinary drug as a treatment for systemic inflammatory response syndrome.
  • Rebecca C. Bishop from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign: This study will investigate proteins and the genetic makeup of the peritoneal fluid as a first step toward a diagnostic test to help predict which horses are at higher risk for colic surgery complications.
  • Danielle Scott from Colorado State University: The study will take a closer look at how air pollution affects horses training outside and use this information to help inform management and training recommendations.
  • Emily R. Whitmer from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign: This study will aggregate health data of wild Humboldt penguins and create health and disease models to assist with conservation efforts.
  • Camila Benavides Espejo from Yale University: Espejo will study biomarkers in the blood of African buffalo that could provide a fast and accurate way to diagnose bovine tuberculosis and help control the spread of this common disease in animals.
  • David Daversa from University of California, Los Angeles: The study will assess the health and well-being of amphibian populations using epigenetics as a potential new tool for amphibian conservation.
  • Matheus Moreno Passos Barbosa from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign: The study will determine how to block an immune protein associated with the accelerated spread of osteosarcoma in dogs.
  • Marcos Isidoro-Ayz from University of Wisconsin-Madison: Isidoro-Ayz will test a promising new drug to protect North American bats against white-nose syndrome, a serious and highly fatal fungal infection.

According to the foundation,1 the studies conducted by Moreno Passo Barbosa and Isidor-Ayza were chosen to be funded specifically by McIntosh, who wanted to provide fellowship funding to support applicants from historically marginalized groups. Within those groups, McIntosh selected applicants interested in studying dog and wildlife health. McIntosh has been a donor to Morris Animal Foundation since 2009, where her first gift was to help advance greyhound health research. She has since expanded his support into other areas, including wildlife health.


Morris Animal Foundation announces fellowships to support animal health research, veterinary scientists. News release. Morris Animal Foundation. May 30 ,2023. Accessed May 30, 2023.

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