Emily Britton

Undergraduate Student


ISB 460



efbritton [at] umass [dot] edu
Former PI: 
Cynthia L. Baldwin

Emily Britton, BS Pre-veterinary Science ’20 was awarded a $5,000 Fellowship from the Center of Agriculture, Food and Environment Summer Scholars Internship Program. Emily has been working with Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences faculty members Cynthia L. Baldwin, Janice Telfer, and Samuel J. Black, Professor Emeritus. The project is titled “Ovine CD4 and γδ (gamma delta) T cell responses to Veterinary Vaccines” and is designed based on the fact that animal diseases impact livestock health and productivity and human health through zoonotic infections. It can be summarized as, “To control and eradicate animal diseases veterinary vaccines have a paramount importance since veterinary vaccines have had, and continue to have, a major role in protecting animal health and public health, reducing animal suffering, enabling efficient production of food animals to feed the burgeoning human population, and greatly reducing the need for antibiotics to treat food and companion animals” (James A Roth, 2011). Dr. Baldwin, Dr. Black and Dr. Telfer’s novel focus in this regard is on next generation vaccines that target nonconventional lymphocytes ( T cells).
Emily applied for this fellowship because she said she became fascinated by previous discoveries that Dr. Baldwin and Dr. Telfer have made regarding immunology for large animals. Emily says she had a desire to learn more in-depth details and how the researchers go about deciphering advanced biological systems through complex lab protocols and procedures. As the summer has progressed, Emily has had the opportunity to develop her own experiments regarding proliferation assays and surface staining with monoclonal antibodies. Part of her experience has involved going to the UMass Hadley Farm to collect blood samples from sheep and goats and traveling to the UMass South Deerfield Farm to draw blood from Holsteins and Herefords with Ph.D. student, Alie Gillespie. Emily has enjoyed the hands-on experience with the animals as well as the intellectual challenge of interpreting results. She has become professionally trained to operate the Flow Cytometer and analyze her own data. The ultimate goal of the Baldwin lab is to enhance the development of future veterinary vaccines, which positively correlates with Emily’s ultimate goal of becoming a large animal veterinarian in the near future.