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Tianna Sullivan

Position/Title: M.Sc. (Thesis) Student
email: tsulli03@uoguelph.ca
Office: ANNU

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BScH Animal Biology, University of Guelph,  2019

M.Sc. Animal Breeding and Genetics with a Collaborative Specialization in One Health 

Thesis Title:  The systemic inflammatory response to intramuscular endotoxin challenge in dairy heifers.

About Me: 

Having grown up in the city of Guelph, I have always been exposed to different facets of the agricultural sector from attending College Royal to visiting the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada. This prompted my interest working with agricultural food animals. In my second year at the University of Guelph I began working at the Arkell Swine Research station where I was introduced to the swine industry; through this experience I was able to work alongside industry representatives as well as researchers. While observing the work of researchers at the University of Guelph I developed a keen interest in animal physiology, genetics and welfare. 

I am currently working on my masters by thesis alongside Dr. Niel Karrow and his post-doctoral fellow Dr. Ankita Sharma assessing stress resilience in dairy cattle. My work on this project focuses on microRNA expression changes associated with the innate immune response after a bacterial lipopolysaccharide challenge. In the face of climate change, the dairy industry is seeing an increase in heat and bacterial stress events; one strategy for mitigating the effects of these events is to select for animals that are more resilient to stress. My work in identifying differentially expressed microRNA may be incorporated into breeding programs aimed at selecting stress resilient dairy cattle. 

During my master's program I was accepted into the Collaborative One Health Specialization at the Ontario Veterinary College. This specialization has allowed me to approach problems like climate change and antimicrobial resistance in a more holistic way. Specifically, I have addressed my own research in the context of a One Health approach as part of the #nOHvember Student Showcase.

In my spare time I enjoy camping, hiking, traveling and spending time with my dog, cat and rabbit.