Mentors for 2015 SNPRC Summer Intern Program Kathleen Brasky, V.M.D., M.S., DACLAM Dr. Brasky is a board-certified laboratory animal veterinarian and has worked with many different species of laboratory animals but has specialized to work with a variety of species of nonhuman primates. She has a particular interest in animal model development and infectious diseases. She has mentored many undergraduate and veterinary students and has been active in recruiting veterinarians to laboratory animal medicine. She is available to mentor students with an interest in laboratory animal medicine, particularly nonhuman primates and their use in research. There will also be opportunities to participate in clinical case management and pathology. Edward J. Dick, Jr., D.V.M., Dipl. ACVP Michael Owston, D.V.M., M.S., Dipl. ACVP Drs. Dick and Owston are ACVP board certified veterinary pathologists. Trainees will be fully involved in the pathology service, conducting gross and microscopic pathologic evaluations of clinical and experimental cases in nonhuman primates. The trainees will also have access to the clinical pathology laboratory, which conducts hematology, blood chemistries, cytology, and fecal parasite exams. Trainees will be expected to prepare a manuscript for publication. Patrice A. Frost, D.V.M. Dr. Frost is one of four veterinarians participating in clinical and research support at the SNPRC. She believes that education is the gate to one’s future. As a team of veterinarians, we are committed to providing candidates with an opportunity to get firsthand knowledge in the field of primate medicine. Dr. Frost has had the privilege throughout her career in guiding over 25 students with a variety of educational backgrounds through their introduction to nonhuman primates. Based on the applicant’s individual goals and knowledge, we try to build a rewarding experience to include both clinical and research aspects of our practice. Luis Giavedoni, Ph.D. A summer student working with Dr. Giavedoni will participate in the molecular characterization of novel vaccines against Simian Immunodeficiency Virus (SIV) and in the characterization of in vitro SIV infection of nonhuman primate (NHP) lymphocytes. SIVs are found in a large number of African NHP species, where infection does not have apparent detrimental effects for the host; on the contrary, infection of Asian macaques, which do not have natural SIV infection, results in an AIDSlike disease. The student will perform several virological and immunological techniques. Anthony Griffiths, Ph.D. We are interested in the pathogenesis and molecular biology of neurotropic herpes viruses. Summer projects will focus on herpes B virus (BV). Although BV naturally infects macaque monkeys, it can zoonotically infect humans and typically results in encephalitis. If untreated, approximately 80% of infected individuals die. Even with timely antiviral intervention, the fatality rate is 20%. Thus, BV-infection is a serious concern to those working around macaque monkeys. Because of its extreme pathogenicity, BV is classified as a Risk Group 4 agent and may only be propagated in a BSL-4 laboratory – such as we have at Texas Biomedical Research Institute. BV is endemic in most macaque colonies. Given that macaque monkeys are the most commonly used nonhuman primate in biomedical research, it is of great importance that we learn how to better manage BV in macaque colonies. Projects in the laboratory aim to understand the molecular basis of BV pathogenicity in humans, improve diagnostic assays to detect BV infection, and develop vaccines to prevent monkey and human BV infections. Ruth M. Ruprecht, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Ruprecht is a physician-scientist with expertise in virology, molecular biology, immunology, and especially vaccine research. Her group has developed the technology to generate recombinant monoclonal antibodies from rhesus monkeys that were protected by novel AIDS vaccines against repeated challenges with different viruses. Summer students have an opportunity to participate in antibody engineering, protein biochemistry and/or virology, depending on prior experience.