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Jim Wellehan

Assistant Professor

Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences
PO Box 100126
2015 SW 16th Ave
Gainesville, FL 32608-0125
(352) 392-2235
FAX: 352-392-7259



  • Ph.D. in Veterinary Medicine. University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. 2010. Dissertation topic: “Discovery, Phylogenetic Analysis, Diagnostic Test Development, and Surveillance of the Astroviruses of Marine Mammals”.
  • Residency, Zoological Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. 2002-2005.
  • Internship, Avian/Exotic/Wildlife Medicine and Surgery, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON. 2001-2002.
  • M.S. in Molecular Veterinary Biosciences. University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN. 2001. Thesis topic: “Mycoplasma infections in passerine birds in Minnesota”.
  • D.V.M. University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN. 2001. GPA 3.98.
  • B.A. in Biochemistry, Physics minor. Bowdoin College, Brunswick, ME. 1992.

Honors and Awards

  • 2006, ACZM Manuscript Award
  • 2005, Phi Zeta Best Clinical Research Publication Award
  • 2004, Association of Avian Veterinarians Resident Manuscript Competition Award
  • 2001, Hoyt scholarship for future academician
  • 2000, Schlotthauer scholarship for parasitology
  • 1999, 1st place SCAVMA Symposium academic competition in exotics
  • 1999, Caleb Doerr Award for highest GPA in DVM class
  • 1999, Phi Zeta honor society
  • 1998, Caleb Doerr Award for highest GPA in DVM class

Research Interests

My research interests revolve around comparative infectious disease diagnostics, novel pathogen identification, and host/pathogen evolution and ecology. The recent emergence of infectious agents such as SARS, West Nile Virus, HIV, and Nipah Virus from wildlife reservoirs has had a serious impact on both human health and domestic livestock, underscoring the need to survey the viruses of non-domestic animals. I have developed techniques for rapid initial sequence identification of broad groups of agents, enabling identification of novel agents during initial disease outbreaks in a clinically useful time course. Further surveillance of novel infectious agents in wildlife together with studies of host switching may identify agents of concern before significant outbreaks occur, enabling management strategies for risk mitigation to be proactive rather than reactive.

Recent Publications

Additional publications here