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Dr. Mauler

Dr. John Haller

Dr. Leslie Lyons

Dr. Barbara Gandolfi

The MU College of Veterinary Medicine welcomes several new faculty members to the Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery.

New to the College – and the United States – this October is Dr. Daniela A. Mauler, a clinical instructor of neurology and neurosurgery. She completed her veterinary studies at Justus-Liebig-University in Giessen, Germany. She then worked as a visiting veterinarian in New York and Berlin and later worked as an associate veterinarian at clinics in Koeln, Germany. Most recently, Mauler completed an internship at Vetmed University Vienna in Austria and her residency at Ghent University in Belgium.

Mauler said she became interested in MU after seeing Dr. Dennis O’Brien, professor of veterinary medicine and surgery at the College, speak at a European College of Veterinary Neurology meeting in Germany two years ago.

“I was impressed by his research and his way to communicate with people,” she said. “I also knew about the outstanding reputation of (fellow professor of veterinary medicine and surgery) Joan Coates. So, when I saw the job posting online, I wanted to be part of this great team.”

Mauler’s interests include spinal cord disorders, especially spinal arachnoid diverticula in dogs.

In August, Dr. John R. Haller, DVM, joined the faculty as a clinical instructor of radiology. He completed his undergraduate education at the University of Texas at San Antonio and his veterinary studies at Texas A&M University. He then completed an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at the Southern Arizona Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center and his residency in radiology at Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists. Before coming to MU, Haller was an assistant professor of diagnostic imaging at Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. He is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Radiology.

“What drew me to MU was the ability to work in a bigger hospital with more radiologists and the faculty interaction that comes with working in a larger clinical setting with a higher caseload,” Haller said. “I enjoy working on the clinic floor and generating good discussions with radiologists and other clinicians about the cases we are seeing. MU provides me with the opportunity to see a larger and much more varied number of cases. It is never monotonous.”

Dr. Leslie Lyons, MS, PhD, joined the faculty in July as the Gilbreath-McLorn Endowed Professor of Comparative Medicine. She received both her MS and PhD in human genetics at the University of Pittsburgh and completed postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Pittsburgh and the National Cancer Institute. Before coming to MU, Lyons was a professor in Population Health and Reproduction at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine.

Her research focuses on genetic aspects of domestic cats, including inherited diseases, traits and population dynamics, which are applied to genetic disease studies, translational medicine, genetic testing and forensic applications.

Lyons said she is enjoying MU’s atmosphere, resources and facilities.

“Overall, I have found that MU faculty and staff are naturally more collaborative and team-oriented,” she said. “The veterinary clinical faculty have been most eager to incorporate our program, and the resources at MU, including instrumentation in the VMTH and genetic-oriented faculty, are more accessible and accommodating. The atmosphere of a Division I sports program feels more like being home, the countryside is beautiful, the cost of living is reasonable and I am within a day’s drive to get to hometown and friends in Pittsburgh.”

Also joining the College in July was Dr. Barbara Gandolfi, MS, PhD, as an assistant research professor. She completed both her MS in zootechnics and her PhD in biotechnology applied to veterinary science at the University of Milan in Italy. Prior to joining MU’s faculty, Gandolfi was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California-Davis, where she was awarded the 2013 Award for Excellence in Postdoctoral Research in recognition of her outstanding research accomplishments.

“The main interest of my research is to improve animal health,” Gandolfi said. “I started with ichthyosis in Chianina cattle during my undergraduate and master program in Milan, moved to the University of Salamanca (Spain), where I developed a vaccine to protect chickens from worm infections, and finally ended up working in the feline field, where I have successfully found the genetic cause for several diseases threatening the health of feline breeds. For each identified mutation, a genetic test was developed, providing breeders tools to improve the general health of the breed.”


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Last Update: February 29, 2012