Archive - November 2012

November 2012

Dr. Kaltenboeck’s Vaccine Platform Gives Immune Systems a Boost

Dr. Bernhard Kaltenboeck, a professor in the Department of Pathobiology, along with research associate Erfan Chowdhury and former research associate Yihang Li, have developed a vaccine platform to treat intracellular diseases for which antibodies are ineffective.

When someone receives a vaccine, it usually means they are trying to build up antibodies toward a disease they do not want to get. For centuries, the approach has worked to prevent the spread of, or even eliminate, many diseases. However, antibodies are insufficient in preventing many other diseases. 

“Some diseases occur primarily inside cells,” said Kaltenboeck. “Perhaps it’s a virus that harbors inside of cells, or small bacteria that infect cells as opposed to the surface of tissue, or a cancer. Antibodies are ineffective in these situations. What’s needed is a cellular immune response that can remove these diseased cells.”

To learn more, visit our Web site.

Good Sam Fund Monies Presented

According to Dr. Rhiannon Balentine Kauffeld ’06 of Saint Paris, Ohio, the class of 2006, specifically one of Dr. Axlund’s neuro rotations, began the CVM’s hot dog eating contest.  This year the contest, which benefits the Good Samaritan Fund for ownerless animals, received a boost when it became part of a college tailgate lunch in the lameness arena.

Members of the CVM Staff Advisory Committee assisted with the tailgate luncheon and contest. At the general staff meeting on Nov. 26, advisory committee members presented a check totaling $400 to Dr. Jamie Bellah. The Good Sam Fund allows the Veterinary Teaching Hospital to treat animals that are ownerless (up to $500 per animal).

To donate to the fund, contact Jan Chamblin in the CVM development office. Checks made payable to the Auburn University Foundation may be mailed to: Jan Chamblin, Auburn University Foundation, 317 South College Street, Auburn AL 36849.  Please note “Good Samaritan Fund” on your check.

Dr. Rajesh Guntupalli

New faculty member and LIVE UNITED campaign winner

Dr. Rajesh Guntupalli was appointed to the position of research assistant professor in the Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Pharmacology on Nov. 1. Dr. Guntupalli, whose background is in the research and development of biosensor technologies, joined the department in 2007 as a postdoctoral fellow.

He was highly productive as a fellow in Dr. Vitaly Vodyanoy’s laboratory publishing over 20 peer review papers. His efforts in the laboratory have contributed significantly to new research areas and funding opportunities, and to the teaching of technicians and graduate students.

Dr. Guntupalli earned his Ph.D. in 2008 in materials engineering from Auburn University and his bachelor of technology degree in 2001 from Nagarjuna University.

Each year the CVM is a participant in the United Way of Lee County LIVE UNITED campaign. As an incentive for contributions, a framed print of Toomer’s oaks was offered by Dr. Charles Hendrix. Dr. Guntupalli is the faculty/staff member whose name was selected in the drawing.

November Orientation

New employees of the College of Veterinary Medicine who attended the November orientation session were:

  • Janeva Cole, large animal/small animal technician, Clinical Sciences
  • Maureen Bryant, veterinary technician, Clinical Sciences
  • Tamara Bass, administrative support assistant, Clinical Sciences
  • Marion Hocutt, large animal/small animal technician, Clinical Sciences

Upcoming Events

Dec. 14

  • Dean’s Holiday Party
  • 2 p.m.
  • Overton Common Area

No More Wasted Lives

The Lee County Humane Society (LCHS) holds its 17th annual No More Wasted Lives fundraising campaign beginning Monday, Dec. 10, at noon at Kroger on Dean Road.  Lee County Humane Society Executive Director Bobbi Yeo will remain locked in a dog kennel, day and night, until the fundraising goal of more than $26,000 is reached.  No More Wasted Lives is the shelter’s largest fundraiser, and all proceeds from this campaign directly benefit shelter animals.

LCHS cared for 5,374 pets in 2012. Its goal is to raise $26,870, or $5 in honor and memory of every animal that came through the shelter’s doors last year.

Weight Watchers at Work

Weight Watchers is a weight management program that encourages healthy eating, increased physical activity, and healthy weight management behaviors. As part of the Healthy Tigers Wellness Initiative, the college is polling interest on beginning a Weight Watchers group that meets once per week at the CVM beginning from 5 to 5:30 p.m.

The meetings usually last 40 to 60 minutes, with 20-30 minutes for confidential weigh time and 30 minutes for class. Free literature and Q&A are included. Sessions are 10-12 weeks with length based on participants. Meetings are expected to begin in January; 15 participants are needed to establish the group.

The cost for Auburn University affiliates – faculty, staff, spouses, dependents, etc. – is only $10 per week (regular cost is $13). Methods of payment are cash or personal check. 

A split-payment option is also available: a check for half of the total sessions is received on the first day of class.  A second check is post-dated for one month later. Both checks are for half the total payment (two checks for $50 or $60).

Once you have achieved a goal weight, you must undergo a six-week maintenance period to become a lifetime member. As a lifetime member, you may attend any meeting free of charge as long as you are within two pounds of your goal weight or miss a month weighing in. 

If interested, please contact Sherry Compton noting your name, phone number, e-mail, and day and time you prefer the group to meet.

Congratulations to...

  • Dr. Dwight Wolfe and Dr. Andrew Lovelady on a recent grant award in the amount of $5000 from the Theriogenology Foundation for “Evaluation of the accessory sex organs of the bull for the presence of Tritrichomonas foetus.”
  • Dr. Byron Blagburn for a $119,364 grant award from Novartis Animal Health US Inc. for “The Impact of Environmental Stressors on the Efficacy of Sentinel, Vectra 3D, and Frontline Plus against Adult and Immature Cat Fleas on Dogs.”
  • Sharon Bailey (Clinical Sciences) who married Joe Ratcliff on Dec. 8.
  • Debbie Burelle, an administrative support assistant in the Department of Clinical Sciences who will be retiring Dec. 31 with 18 years’ service to our college.
  • Gail Pratt, administrative support associate in the Office of Academic Affairs, who retires Dec. 31 with 12 years’ service to the CVM.


The college has launched a Fan Page on Facebook. Search for "Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine."

You must be a Facebook user to view our page. To post CVM news, upcoming events, honorary awards, grant awards, etc. (with photographs), please send your information to Tara Lanier.

Veterinary Medicine Tweets News

Make the College of Veterinary Medicine part of your Twitter feed. Keep up to date on the latest information and events by following the college @AuburnVetMed on Twitter. On Facebook search for “Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine.”


Did you get married, have a baby, win a teaching award, receive a grant for a study, publish your work in a professional journal, or, do you have immediate family serving in the U.S. Military? @the CVM is a monthly e-newsletter for faculty and staff and we would like to hear from you! Please send information to, 105 Greene Hall.