T. Connor McCorkell
M.Sc. in Canine & Equine Nutrition and Physiology (University of Guelph, OAC)
Growing up in small-town rural Canada, my love of animals began early in life while surrounded by a variety of family pets including, dogs, cats, and horses.
My passion for animal health lead me to the University of Guelph, where I studied Animal Science in my undergraduate degree. It was during this time that I met Dr. Anna Kate Shoveller, an impactful professor that sparked my interest in research. Following an undergraduate thesis with Dr. Shoveller, I continued my Master of Science degree under her guidance. My master's research sought to better understand how seasonal and monthly variations in environmental conditions impact the plasma electrolyte status of outdoor-housed dogs and horses at rest. The ultimate goal of this work was to explore if the environment alone can predispose animals to electrolyte imbalances or abnormalities, and further build data for precision nutrition. In addition to this work, I was also a key contributor in a large equine investigation that looked at how dietary inclusion of oil (flax, canola and camelina) impacts a horse's skin and coat health, plasma fatty acid composition, and inflammatory response. Moreover, I also had the pleasure of assisting on numerous other investigations concerning dietary protein in horses, dogs and cats during this time.
Currently, I am a PhD student at the Ontario Veterinary College in the Departments of Biomedical Science and Clinical Studies advised by Dr. Judith Koenig and co-advised by Dr. Thomas Koch. My research now investigates how cord blood-derived mesenchymal stromal cells and anti-miRNA oligonucleotides, may improve the joint health and overall well-being of horses suffering from osteoarthritis.
In my free time, I enjoy traveling, photography, hiking with my dog, and spending time with friends and family.