Veterinary Laboratory Investigation and Response Network (Vet-LIRN)
Jennifer Jones received her Bachelor of Science in biology with a minor in chemistry from Converse College in 2007. She worked as a small-animal technician for a few years prior to starting veterinary school. Jennifer received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine with an epidemiology and public health focus from North Carolina State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 2014. During veterinary school, she worked on projects such as import risk assessment and passive surveillance for multi-state outbreaks of zoonotic salmonellosis. Additionally, she has research experience with protein production, purification, in vivo protein function assays, and half-life determination.
Dr. Jones joined FDA in 2014 as Vet-LIRN’s first program staff fellow, working primarily on the jerky pet treat investigation. This led to her current position in Vet-LIRN, where she continues to investigate not only jerky pet treat-related reports, but also other reports of potential problems involving FDA/CVM regulated products (e.g., pet food, animal feed, and animal drugs).
Dr. Jones currently holds the position of veterinary medical officer in Vet-LIRN. Vet-LIRN is FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) special program, established in 2011. Vet-LIRN coordinates facilities, equipment, and professional expertise of government and non-government veterinary diagnostic laboratories across the country and Canada to respond to high-priority chemical and microbial feed/drug contamination events.
The network provides the means for rapid response to reports of animal injury and establishes protocols to facilitate veterinary diagnostic reporting to FDA. When conducting investigations, Vet-LIRN follows specific Network Procedures for Laboratories, Owners, and Veterinarians (more on Vet-LIRN).
Dr. Jones works with laboratories, referring veterinarians, and pet owners to investigate cases of potential foodborne illness in animals. Each investigation is different and tailored to a presenting case. She reviews the animal’s medical records, obtains a dietary and environmental exposure history, and requests additional diagnostic (blood, urine, and/or tissue) samples from the ill or deceased pet, if appropriate.
Case investigations often include various tests on collected animal feed or treat samples, and analysis of testing results. For example, requested tests may include bacteriology testing (including whole-genome sequencing on selected isolates), compositional analysis (e.g., taurine, thiamine, etc.), and chemical toxicology testing (e.g., toxic compounds, metals, etc.).
Dr. Jones’ main research interest is working closely with veterinarians and owners as part of the jerky pet treat investigation. She is currently reviewing medical histories to look for any potential risk factors or common clinical trends associated with developing Fanconi syndrome (FS) after ingesting jerky pet treats.
Dr. Jones continues to evaluate urine samples for markers of FS. One aspect involves following dogs with well-documented Fanconi syndrome over time to see how long the markers of FS remain in the urine and how those markers change over time. A second aspect involves comparing the urine Fanconi testing results with patient signalment, in-depth dietary histories, and product information to help identify possible etiologies of FS. Most recently, Dr. Jones began looking at aminoaciduria (one such marker of FS) and how different aminoaciduria profiles can relate to the various stages of clinical FS disease. This data may help Vet-LIRN identify possible disease pathogenesis and identify any possible predispositions to developing FS.
Finally, Dr. Jones is working with a group of veterinary renal pathologists to examine clinical data and post-mortem renal tissue from dogs whose deaths were reported to FDA after ingesting jerky pet treats.
R. Reimschuessel, J. Jones, O. Ceric, S. M. Nemser, J. Guag, A. Tkachenko, D.S. Rotstein, L. A. Palmer, C. Fitzgerald, S. Strickland, and U. Giger. Evaluating canine Fanconi syndrome occurrence in association with jerky pet treat ingestion. FDA Science Forum 2015. White Oak, MD. May 27–28, 2015.
R. Reimschuessel, J. Jones, O. Ceric, S. M. Nemser, J. Guag, A. Tkachenko, D. S . Rotstein, L. A. Palmer, L. Carey, and U. Giger. Canine urine Fanconi panel results in association with jerky pet treat ingestion. 5th Annual FDA Foods and Veterinary Medicine Science and Research Conference, White Oak, MD. August 13-14, 2015.
J. Jones, O. Ceric, U. Giger, S. Strickland, S. M. Nemser, J. Guag, A. Tkachenko, D.S. Rotstein, L. A. Palmer, L. Carey, R. Reimschuessel. Using Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratories in the Vet-LIRN network to investigate canine diagnostic samples to understand adverse event reports following jerky pet treat ingestion. 58th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians. Providence, RI. October 22–28, 2015.
J. Jones, O. Ceric, J. Guag, and R. Reimschuessel. Quantification of aminoaciduria in dogs with jerky pet treat exposure. 59th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians. Greensboro, NC. October 13–16, 2016.
J. Jones, R. Reimschuessel, O. Ceric, J. Guag, D. Rotstein, L. Carey, L. A. Palmer, R. Han, and U. Giger. Clinicopathological findings of Fanconi syndrome positive dogs following jerky pet treat ingestion. 2016 Annual Meeting of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists/American Society of Veterinary Clinical Pathology. New Orleans, LA. December 3–7, 2016.
J. Jones, M. Nabity, O. Ceric, D. Rotstein, L. A. Palmer, L. Carey, C. Brown, R. Cianciolo, and R. Reimschuessel. Clinical pathology and feeding history data for necropsied dogs with Fanconi syndrome that died after eating jerky pet treats. 2016 Annual Meeting of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists/American Society of Veterinary Clinical Pathology. New Orleans, LA. December 3–7, 2016.
J. Jones, R. Cianciolo, C. Brown, D. Rotstein, O. Ceric, L. A. Palmer, L. Carey, M. Nabity and R. Reimschuessel. Renal histopathology for necropsied dogs with Fanconi syndrome after exposure to jerky pet treats. 2016 Annual Meeting of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists/American Society of Veterinary Clinical Pathology. New Orleans, LA. December 3–7, 2016.
- Contact Information
- Jennifer Jones
- +1 (240) 402-5421
- +1 (301) 210-4685