SIAN DURWARD-AKHURST RECEIVED THE 2018 EQUUS FOUNDATION RESEARCH FELLOW BY THE AAEP FOUNDATION FOR HER RESEARCH IN EQUINE GENETICS
We are delighted to share this press release from the AAEP in recognition of Sian Durward-Akhurst's achievements with her 'incredibly ambitious project'. -
Sian Durward-Akhust, BVMS, MS, DACVIM (LAIM), MRCVS, a doctoral candidate at the University of Minnesota, received the 2018 EQUUS Foundation Research Fellow by the AAEP Foundation for her research in equine genetics.
The $5,000 grant, awarded annually to a doctoral or residency student who has made significant progress in the field of equine health care research, was presented to Dr. Durward-Akhurst at the AAEP’s 64th
Annual Convention in San Francisco, Calif. She also received a $500 stipend to support her travel to San Francisco.
Dr. Durward-Akhurst’s research is focused on identifying potential causative mutations for highly detrimental—likely Mendelian—diseases in the horse by developing and using the first database of genetic variation across the equine population. Dr. Durward-Akhurst’s research is aimed to help veterinary professionals understand genetic variants and allow them to group genetically similar patients together, ultimately improving management options and treatment outcomes.
“Sian has chosen an incredibly ambitious project, and has made exceptional progress,” said Dr. Durward-Akhurst’s advisor, Molly McCue, DVM, MS, Ph.D., ACVIM.
Dr. Durward-Akhurst notes that precision medicine is becoming a mainstay of human medicine and believes, “When available for the equine population, it will improve patient management—from basic pharmacogenomics, to diagnosis and assessing prognoses based on genetic variants.”
A 2009 honours graduate of the University of Glasgow College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Durward-Akhurst went on to receive a master’s in veterinary medicine from the University of Minnesota in 2016 and anticipates the completion of her Ph.D. in the fall of 2019.
“The health and welfare of America’s horses is core to the mission of the EQUUS Foundation. We are honored to partner with the AAEP Foundation through the EQUUS Foundation Research Fellowship to support veterinarians who are dedicating their careers to equine research,” said Jenny Belknap Kees, EQUUS Foundation Chairman of the Board.
For more information about this program and other scholarships offered through the AAEP Foundation, visit www.aaepfoundation.org. About the EQUUS Foundation
The EQUUS Foundation (www.equusfoundation.org), a 501(c)(3) organization founded in 2002, is the only national charity in the United States 100% dedicated to protecting America's horses and strengthening the bond between horses and people. About the AAEP Foundation
The AAEP Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization established in 1994, serves as the charitable arm of the American Association of Equine Practitioners to improve the welfare of horses. Since its inception, the Foundation has disbursed more than $5.4 million to fulfil its vital mission.