September 15, 2012




Posted Sept. 5, 2012
 Dr. Edward A. Hoover
Dr. Edward A. Hoover received the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges’ 2012 Merial-AAVMC Excellence in Research Award Aug. 4 during the Merial-National Institutes of Health National Veterinary Scholars Symposium at Colorado State University.

Dr. Hoover, whose work led to the development of a vaccine against feline leukemia, is a University Distinguished Professor at the Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences.

The AAVMC board of directors established the annual research award in 2010 to recognize outstanding research and scholarly achievements in the field of veterinary medicine. It recognizes an individual who, over the course of his or her career, has demonstrated excellence in original research, leadership in the scientific community, and mentoring of trainees and colleagues in any discipline of veterinary medicine.

For three decades, Dr. Hoover’s laboratory focused on the pathogenesis of retrovirus and prion infections—in particular, infection with feline leukemia virus and the feline and simian immunodeficiency viruses, and chronic wasting disease. These diseases also serve as models for human diseases such as aplastic anemia, leukemia, and HIV/AIDS.

Research in Dr. Hoover’s laboratory led to development of the first successful and most widely used FeLV vaccine, now used to immunize cats worldwide against leukemia. More recently, Dr. Hoover has performed pioneering research on CWD in deer and elk. His current work focuses on the mechanisms of transmucosal prion infection and excretion, detection of prions in body fluids of live animals, the CWD species barrier in cervid and noncervid species, and experimental vaccines for prion and protein misfolding diseases.

Dr. Hoover received his DVM degree from the University of Illinois as well as master’s and doctoral degrees from The Ohio State University. He is also a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology.

Winners of the 2012 Young Investigator Award co-sponsored by the AVMA and the American Veterinary Medical Foundation also were announced Aug. 4 during the Merial-National Institutes of Health National Veterinary Scholars Symposium.

The Young Investigator Award is given to graduate veterinarians pursuing advanced research training through doctoral or postdoctoral programs. A total of 57 applications were received for the 2012 competition and reviewed by a group of veterinarians and faculty at several veterinary schools. The AVMA and AVMF covered the expenses for five finalists invited to present their research at the Veterinary Scholars Symposium.

Two members of the AVMA Council on Research—Drs. Kent Lloyd and Harm Hogenesch—were part of the panel that judged the presentations according to three criteria: scientific merit, quality of presentation, and responses to audience questions. After the presentations were concluded, the winners of the Young Investigator Award were announced as follows:

First place—Dr. Todd Strochlic, postdoctoral trainee at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, for “Ack1 regulates a macromolecular complex involved in nucleotide synthesis.” Second place—Dr. Theresa Alenghat, instructor at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, for “Epigenetic regulation of intestinal barrier function and susceptibility to inflammation.” Third place—Dr. Sarah Hamer, assistant professor of epidemiology at Texas A&M University, for “The complex interface among wild bird populations, tick-borne pathogens, and human health.”

In addition to the awarding of plaques, Dr. Strochlic received a cash award of $2,500 for first place, Dr. Alenghat $1,000 for second, and Dr. Hamer $500 for third.