Researchers recognized for excellence in orthopedics, nutrition

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During the 2016 Merial–National Institutes of Health Veterinary Scholars Symposium, held July 28-31 at The Ohio State University, the AVMA and American Veterinary Medical Foundation presented awards to two individuals for their efforts in advancing veterinary research.

AVMA Lifetime Excellence in Research Award

This award recognizes a veterinary researcher on the basis of lifetime achievement in basic, applied, or clinical research.

Dr. Stover
Dr. Susan M. Stover

Dr. Stover (Washington State ’76) is a professor of veterinary anatomy and director of the J.D. Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine.

Dr. Stover completed an internship and residency in equine surgery at UC-Davis. After working in private practice, she returned to UC-Davis, starting out as a lecturer in equine surgery before earning a doctorate in comparative pathology. She is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Her career research record spans many aspects of comparative orthopedics, with a primary focus on bone development and remodeling, the response of bone tissue to exercise, and the pathogenesis of fractures and ligament injury.

Complementing those are studies on the biomechanics of fractures and fracture fixation techniques in horses and dogs, development of novel fracture repair techniques, new approaches to diagnostic regional anesthesia in horses, and evaluation of prosthetic joints in dogs.

Dr. John R. Pascoe, executive associate dean at UC-Davis’ veterinary school and nominator for her award, wrote: “Catastrophic fractures in racing horses continue to be a major welfare issue, receiving extensive, often negative, publicity. Without equivocation, Dr. Susan Stover has had a transformative effect on our understanding of the pathophysiology of catastrophic musculoskeletal injury in performance horses. Gone are the days when racetrack breakdowns could be dismissed as the horse simply ‘took a bad step.’ Indeed, her research is far reaching in impact, nationally and internationally, has influenced decisions on approaches to training and rehabilitation, horseshoeing (racing plates), track surface types and preparation, diagnostic approaches, and fracture repair techniques.”

AVMF/Winn Excellence in Feline Research Award

This award honors a candidate’s contribution to advancing feline health through research.

Dr. Fascetti
Dr. Andrea J. Fascetti

Dr. Fascetti (Pennsylvania ’91) is a professor of nutrition at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine.

She completed her internship and residency in internal medicine at the Animal Medical Center in New York City. Dr. Fascetti received a doctorate in nutrition from UC-Davis in 1999 after joining the university five years earlier as an adjunct instructor. She is now the service chief for the Nutrition Support Service in the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital as well as the scientific director of the Feline Nutrition and Pet Care Center, the Feline Research Laboratory, and the Amino Acid Laboratory. In addition, Dr. Fascetti is a diplomate of both the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine and the American College of Veterinary Nutrition.

Her current research interests are trace mineral and amino acid metabolism, obesity, carnivore nutrition, nutritional idiosyncrasies of cats, improvement of pet foods, and clinical nutrition. She is currently on sabbatical in Melbourne, Australia.

Dr. Fascetti, during her presentation at the Veterinary Scholars Symposium, described her initial introduction to the world of research as a work-study student cleaning dog kennels in the University of Pennsylvania Genetics Laboratory. She counseled the students in the audience to not live in fear of failure or worry about what to study—she has more research questions now to pursue than she has time to perform.