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Mac Law, DVM, PhD

Mac Law


Office: 290, CVM Research Building
Phone: 919-515-7411
Fax: 919-515-4237

Center for Comparative Medicine and Translational Research

Coordinator, Pathology Focus Area
Associate Faculty Member, Dept. of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology


Research Interests: Aquatic Animal Models / Aquatic Ecotoxicology

My research focuses on mechanisms of carcinogenesis and comparative pathology of aquatic animals.  The approach is twofold: (1) Mechanistic investigations using histopathology, molecular biology, and analytical techniques such as GC/mass spectrometry and HPLC with electrochemical detection to further establish small fish species as viable alternative animal models in toxicologic testing.  Fish models such as the medaka, Oryzias latipes, and the zebrafish, Danio rerio, are used in these studies.  (2) Laboratory, mesocosm, and field investigations designed to establish reliable biological markers in aquatic organisms as sentinels of environmental degradation.  These biomarkers incorporate histopathology, clinical pathology, and immunologic techniques to determine the health of aquatic animals and ecosystems.  Expected benefits of my research include increased knowledge of basic mechanisms of carcinogenesis, more rapid and economical testing of potential carcinogens, sensitive monitoring of aquatic pollutants, and better assessment of seafood safety.

Current Projects

Selected Publications

Wolf JC, Baumgartner WA, Blazer VS, Camus AC, Engelhardt JA, Fournie JW, Frasca S, Groman DB, Kent ML, Knoo LH,Law JM, Lombardini ED, Ruehl-Fehlert C, Segner HE, Smith SA, Spisbergen JM, Weber K, Wolfe MJ.  Nonlesions, misdiagnoses, missed diagnoses, and other interpretive challenges in fish histopathology studies: a guide for investigators, authors, reviewers, and readers.  Toxicologic Pathology (published online 11 August 2014.  DOI: 10.1177/0192623314540229).

Gonzalez LM, Fogle CA, Baker WT, Hughes FE, Law JM, Motsinger-Reif AA, Blikslager AT (2014) Operative factors associated with short-term outcome in horses with large colon volvulus: 47 cases from 2006 to 2013.  Equine Vet J. 2014 Apr 15. doi: 10.1111/evj.12273. [Epub ahead of print]

Hill TL, Lascelles BD, Law JM, Blikslager AT (2014) The effect of tramadol and indomethacin co-administration on gastric barrier function in dogs.  Journal of Internal Medicine 28(3): 793-798.

Van Wettere AJ, Law JM, Hinton DE, Kullman SW (2014)Phenotypic characterization of a transgenic Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) expressing a red fluorescent protein in hepatocytes.  Toxicologic Pathology 42(3): 616-621.

Van Wettere AJ, Kullman SW, Hinton DE, Law M (2013) Immunohistochemical characterization of the hepatic progenitor cell compartment in medaka (Oryzias latipes) following hepatic injury.  Journal of Comparative Pathology 149(4): 434-445.

Taylor K, Foster ML, Law JM, Centeno JA, Henderson Jr. MS, Trager SA, Stockelman MG, Dorman DC (2013)  Assessment of geographical variation in the respiratory toxicity of desert dust particles. Inhalation Toxicology 25(7): 405-416.

Posner LP, Scott GN, Law JM (2013) Repeated exposure of goldfish (Carassius auratus) to tricaine methanesulfonate (MS-222).  Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 44(2): 340-347.

Choi K, Cope WG, Harms CA, Law JM (2013) Rapid decreases in salinity, but not increases, lead to immune dysregulation in Nile tilapia Oreochromis niloticus (Linnaeus). Journal of Fish Diseases 36(4): 389-399.

Van Wettere AJ, Law JM, Hinton DE, Kullman SW (2012) Anchoring hepatic gene expression with development of fibrosis and neoplasia in a toxicant-induced fish model of liver injury. Toxicologic Pathology: 1-17

Clarke EO, Harms CA, Law JM, Flowers JR, Williams VN, Ring BD, McGinty AS, Hopper M, Sullivan CV (2012) Clinical and pathological effects of the polyopisthocotylean monogenean, Gamacallum macroura in white bass. Journal of Aquatic Animal Health 24(4): 251-257.

Hobbie KR, DeAngelo AB, George MH, Law JM (2012) Neoplastic and nonneoplastic liver lesions induced by dimethylnitrosamine in Japanese medaka fish. Veterinary Pathology 49: 372–385.

Law M, Stromberg P, Meuten D, Cullen J (2012) Necropsy or Autopsy? It's All About Communication!  Veterinary Pathology 49: 271--272.

Boylan SM, Harms CA, Waltzek T, Law JM, Garner M, Cassell J, Fatziner MH, Govett P (2011)  Clinical report: hyperplastic adipose lids in mackerel scad, Decapterus macarellus (Cuvier).  Journal of Fish Diseases 34(12): 921-925.

Tobias JR, Barnes HJ, Law JM (2011) Pathology in practice: oviduct adenocarcinoma. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 239(8): 1065-1067.

Ott LE, McDowell ZT, Turner PM, Law JM, Adler KB, Yoder JA, Jones SL (2011) Two myristoylated alanine-rich C-kinase substrate (MARCKS) paralogs are required for normal development in zebrafish.  Anatomical Record 294: 1511-1524.

Cope WG, Holliman FM, Kwak TJ, Oakley NC, Lazaro PR, Shea D, Augspurger T, Law JM, Henne JP, Ware KM (2011) Assessing water quality suitability for shortnose sturgeon in the Roanoke River, North Carolina, USA with an in situ bioassay approach. Journal of Applied Ichthyology 27: 1–12.

Flowers JR, Law M, Carvajal-Endara S (2011) Pseudosonsinotrema megalorchis n. sp. (Digenea: Pleurogenidae) from the Paramo Marsupial Frog, Gastrotheca pseustes (Anura: Hemiphractidae), Ecuador. Comparative Parasitology 78:15-20.

Howarth DL, Law SHW, Law JM, Kullman SW, Hinton D (2010) Exposure to the synthetic FXR agonist GW4064 causes alterations in gene expression and sublethal hepatotoxicity in eleutheroembryo medaka (Oryzias latipes).  Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology 243: 111-121.

Wooten JG, Lascelles BDX, Cook VL, Law JM, Blikslager AT (2010) Evaluation of the relationship between lesions in the gastroduodenal region and cyclooxygenase expression in clinically normal dogs.  American Journal of Veterinary Research 71: 630-635.

Anderson ET, Davis AS, Law JM, Lewbart GA, Christian LS, Harms CA (2010) Gross and histological evaluation of five suture materials in the skin and subcutaneous tissue of the California Sea Hare (Aplysia californica).  Journal of the American Association of Laboratory Animal Science 49: 64-68.  [Featured cover article]

Yoon B-I, Kim Y-H, Yi J-Y, Kang M-S, Jang J-J, Joo K-H, Kim Y, Law JM, Kim D-Y (2010)  Expression of thioredoxin during progression of hamster and human cholangiocarcinoma.  Cancer Science (official journal of the Japanese Cancer Association) 101: 281-288.

Hinton DE, Hardman RC, Kullman SW, Law JM, Schmale MC, Walter RB, Winn RN, Yoder JA (2009) Aquatic animal models of human disease: selected papers and recommendations from the 4th Conference. Biochemistry and Physiology: Toxicology & Pharmacology Part C 149: 121-128.

Hobbie KR, DeAngelo AB, Winn RN, Law JM (2009) Toward a molecular equivalent dose: use of the medaka model in comparative risk assessment.  Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology: Toxicology & Pharmacology Part C 149: 141-151 (on-line: ).

Jima DD, Shah RN, Orcutt TM, Joshi D, Law JM, Litman GW, Trede NS, Yoder JA (2009) Enhanced transcription of complement and coagulation genes in the absence of adaptive immunity.  Molecular Immunology 46: 1505–1516.

Freeman KS, Lewbart GA, Robarge WP, Harms CA, Law JM, Stoskopf MK (2009) Characterizing eversion syndrome in captive scyphomedusa jellyfish.  American Journal of Veterinary Research (in press).

Spitsbergen JM, Blazer VS, Bowser PR, Cheng KC, Cooper KR, Cooper TK, Frasca S, Groman DB,  Harper CM, Law JM, Marty GD, Smolowitz RM, St. Leger J, Wolf DC, Wolf JC (2009) Finfish and aquatic invertebrate pathology resources for now and the future.  Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology: Toxicology & Pharmacology Part C 149: 249-257.

Kent ML, Feist SW, Harper C, Hoogstraten-Miller S, Law JM, Sánchez-Morgado JM, Tanguay R, Sanders G, Spitsbergen  J, Whipps CM (2009) Recommendations for control of pathogens and infectious diseases in fish research facilities.  Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology: Toxicology & Pharmacology Part C 149: 240-248.

Wooten JG, Blikslager AT, Ryan KA, Marks SL, Law JM, Lascelles BDX (2008) Cyclooxygenase expression and prostanoid production in the canine pylorus and duodenum in dogs administered non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. American Journal of Veterinary Research 69: 457-464.

Law M, Elmore S. (2008). Chapter 16: Mechanisms of Cell Death.  In: Molecular and Biochemical Toxicology, 4th Edition, RC Smart and E Hodgson (Eds.), John Wiley and Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey, pp. 287-318.

Harms CA, Christian LS, Burrus O, Hopkins WB, Pandiri AKR, Law JM, Wolf KN, Butler CM, Lewbart GA (2008) Cryotherapy for removal of a premaxillary mass from a chain pickerel using an over-the-counter wart remover.  Exotic DVM 10: 15-17.

Choi K, Harms C, Lehmann DW, Law JM (2007) Acute hypoxia triggers immunocompromise in tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus).  Journal of Aquatic Animal Health 19: 128-140.

Cachot J, Law M, Pottier D, Peluhet L, Norris M, Budzinsk H, Winn R (2007) Characterization of toxic effects of sediment-associated organic pollutants using the λ transgenic medaka.  Environmental Science and Technology 41: 7830-7836.

Johnson AK, Law JM, Harms CA, Levine JF (2007) Multi-tiered health assessment of Atlantic menhaden in the Pamlico River, North Carolina.  Journal of Aquatic Animal Health 19: 205-214.

Levine JF, Law M, Corsin F. (2006). Chapter 7: Bivalves.  In: Invertebrate Medicine, G. Lewbart (Ed.), Blackwell Publishing, Ames, Iowa, pp. 91-115.

Tuttle AD, Law JM, Harms, CA, Lewbart GA, Harvey SB (2006) Evaluation of the gross and histologic reactions to five commonly used suture materials in the skin of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science 45: 31-35.