The Office of the Vice President for Research recognizes Tanya LeRoith, an associate professor of anatomic pathology in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and Pathobiology in the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, for studying the immune system to help people and animals fight diseases.
Board-certified as a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists, LeRoith is interested in immunology and infectious diseases.
Focusing on the immunopathogenesis of viral diseases, she uses models to explore how viruses modulate the immune system to cause disease. She currently uses a model system to study how single strand RNA and circular DNA viruses stimulate regulatory T cells to cause local immune suppression and clinical disease.
She is involved in a project with colleagues to develop a chronic hepatitis E model to study how and why the disease progresses. Hepatitis E is an understudied cause of hepatitis, especially in pregnant women. This research is important in understanding why pregnant women develop such severe disease with HEV infection, and will ultimately be important in optimizing vaccine development.
Prior to joining Virginia Tech, LeRoith completed several internships with the National Institutes of Health and also studied as a Zweig Foundation Fellow in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University.
She is a member of Phi Zeta, the Charles Louis Davis Foundation, the American Society for Microbiology, the American College of Veterinary Pathologists, and the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians.
She received her bachelor’s degree in animal science from the University of Maryland-College Park, her doctor of veterinary medicine degree from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, and her doctoral degree in microbiology/pathology from Washington State University.