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Renowned Wildlife Pathologist to Speak at the CVM

Linda Lowenstine, one of the world’s leading wildlife pathology experts who has had immeasurable influence on the care of far-ranging animal species, will speak at the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine on Oct. 5.

Lowenstine’s talk, free and open to the public, is titled, “Sea lions, toxins, viruses and cancer: The importance of pathology in wildlife rehabilitation.” It will be held at 12:15 p.m. at the North Theater.

Linda Lowenstine, professor emeritus of veterinary pathology, microbiology and immunology at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Photo courtesy of UC Davis.

Lowenstine is professor emeritus of veterinary pathology, microbiology and immunology at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and comes to the CVM as a Jim Wright Visiting Scholar. Wright was a pathologist and adjunct associate professor at the CVM, as well as a consulting clinical veterinarian at the North Carolina Zoo. Wright, who died in 2008, was instrumental in establishing a clinical partnership between the CVM and the NC Zoo, which continues to thrive.  

The CVM’s Environmental Medicine Consortium and Wildlife, Avian, Aquatic and Zoo Medicine Club are sponsoring the lecture.

Lowenstine earned a bachelor’s in biology from Stanford University and her DVM and Ph.D. in comparative pathology from UC-Davis. She joined the school’s faculty in 1981.

She has conducted seminal research on an array of wildlife diseases for more than three decades. Lowenstine’s early work led to the discovery of simian AIDS viruses and identified several diseases of birds of prey.

As a pathologist and adviser with the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project, Lowenstine’s data on transmittable diseases between human and mountain gorillas led to more effective ecotourism policies. Her advisory work for the Association of Zoos and Aquariums led to the development of survival plans and improved standards for the care of species such as orangutans, chimpanzees, thick-billed parrots and Sumatran rhinos.

After serving as the director of pathology for the world-renowned San Diego Zoo from 1994 to 1996, she returned to UC-Davis where notable research includes defining urogenital cancer in California sea lions. Recent work centers on the causes of morbidity and mortality in apes with cardiovascular disease.

Lowenstine has also had a long history of mentoring wildlife pathologists. She helped establish the acclaimed UC-Davis-San Diego Zoo pathology residency program and organized several American Association of Zoo Veterinarians workshops, giving many young pathologists their first opportunity to present scientific findings.

The NC State College of Veterinary Medicine is at 1060 William Moore Dr., in Raleigh.

Directions, a college map and parking information can be found here.

~Jordan Bartel/NC State Veterinary Medicine