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Emma Price, VMD, master’s candidate in Clinical and Translational Science at Tufts University’s Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

Summer 2022 Featured Trainee:

Emma Price, VMD

  • 2nd year master’s candidate in Clinical and Translational Science at Tufts University’s Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
  • Student researcher working with the Levy CIMAR’s Claire Fellman DVM, PhD, and Shira Doron MD, to identify factors driving antimicrobial prescription in hospitalized dogs and cats

Emma Price is a second-year master’s student in Tufts University’s Clinical and Translational Science program, which is designed for trainees who seek to affect the translation of research into improved clinical care and public health. Under the guidance of the Levy CIMAR’s Claire Fellman, DVM, PhD (Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine) and Shira Doron, MD (Tufts Medeical Center), Emma is working with an interdisciplinary team to improve antimicrobial stewardship in small animal veterinary medicine. Her research focuses on the first steps of building a benchmark, similar to the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network standardized antimicrobial administration ratio, in small animal medicine to incentivize improved prescribing practices. As a first step, Emma is identifying patient factors associated with antimicrobial prescription in hospitalized dogs and cats at the Foster Hospital for Small Animals at Tufts University. These patient factors will next be used to inform facility-level drivers of antimicrobial prescription which will be adjusted for in the benchmark.

As part of her research, Emma is working to help validate a common data model adapted from human healthcare for use in veterinary medicine. The observational medical outcomes partnership common data model, OMOPv5+ CDM, normalizes data from disparate sources into a common language. This model, developed at Tufts, is an exciting step for veterinary medical research as it facilitates comparative and translational studies in veterinary medicine and aids in the analysis of big data.

Emma’s passion for her research stems from her veterinary training. Following her interest in varied biological mechanisms among species, Emma earned her B.S. in Animal Science at the University of Connecticut and then obtained her veterinary degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. There, her interest in One Health—or the interconnectedness of animal, human, and environmental health—grew, and she realized the potential to use veterinary medicine to advance animal and human health.

Upon graduating, Emma completed a small animal rotating internship in Washington, D.C., to cement her clinical experience. She then came to Tufts to learn how to design and conduct research studies to address health issues facing animals and humans. The collaborative community at Tufts, Emma says, has offered her the mentorship and resources to do just that.  Given that bacteria can be transmitted between and among humans and pets and the similar antimicrobials used in veterinary and human medicine, antimicrobial stewardship efforts in animals benefit all of public health. Emma will formalize her career in public health as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer at the CDC starting this summer.

Outside of research, Emma still enjoys practicing clinical veterinary medicine at general practices for cats and dogs. She relaxes by spending time with family and friends, and getting outside, going cycling, skiing, hiking, and sailing depending on the time of year.