|Veterinary Center Alumnus Honored-Dr. Leroy Coggins recognized as Pioneer of Virology|
STILLWATER, Okla.—Dr. Leroy Coggins, OSU College of Veterinary Medicine Class of 1957, was recently honored at the 48th Annual Conference of the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD) Meeting, which was held in Minneapolis, Minn. The AAVLD Virology Committee gave Dr. Coggins the “Pioneer of Virology” Award.
Following his graduation, Dr. Coggins served in the U.S. Army in infectious disease research. In 1959, he began his graduate program in virology at Cornell University. After he earned his Ph.D., he spent five years in Kenya with the U.S. Department of Agriculture working on African Swine Fever virus.
He returned to Cornell University as a faculty member to work on equine infectious anemia (EIA) virus. Dr. Coggins’ work on a diagnostic test for African Swine Fever was applied to the diagnostic test for EIA. The immunodiffusion test detecting EIA virus infected animals was found to identify those horses capable of spreading EIA. The resulting “Coggins Test” became the official U.S. Department of Agriculture test in 1973 and served the equine industry and veterinary medicine with important tools to control EIA.
In 1980, Dr. Coggins was appointed department head for the North Carolina State University School of Veterinary Medicine. He retired in 1994 and currently resides in North Carolina. Dr. Coggins was also awarded the 2000 meeting honoree by the Conference of Research Workers in Animal Diseases.