Kari Ekenstedt, DVM, PhD

Kari Ekenstedt

Contact Info


Office Phone 612-301-9290

Fax 612-625-0204

Lab Phone 612-624-5322

Mailing Address:
295R AS/VM Building
1988 Fitch Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55108

PhD, University of Minnesota

DVM, University of Minnesota

BS, University of Wisconsin - River Falls



Genomics, Canine Genetics, Gross Anatomy, Histology

Awards & Recognition

Waltraut Zieher International Memorial Leonberger Health Award, 2016


Research Summary/Interests

My research focuses on the molecular and genetic basis of canine naturally-occurring inherited diseases, specifically neuromuscular, ophthalmologic, and orthopedic diseases. I focus on diseases that can function as comparative animal models for human conditions, such as degenerative neuronal diseases (polyneuropathies), and progressive retinal atrophy (retinitis pigmentosa in humans). Our group has identified the mutated genes that cause several diseases in dogs, and we offer genetic testing for these canine mutations. Ongoing work includes genetic association studies for several canine eye and orthopedic diseases. 



Academic Interests and Focus

I have experience teaching across a broad spectrum of students, including undergraduates, graduate students, and veterinary students. I strive to incorporate new technologies into courses and to create resources such as instructional dissection videos of canine and feline cadavers and a comprehensive catalog of our Anatomy Museum’s equine skull specimens.


  • CVM 6903: Veterinary Anatomy I (Carnivore)
  • CVM 6908: Veterinary Anatomy II (Ungulate)
  • CVM 6900: Microscopic Anatomy I (Histology)
  • CVM 6936: Microscopic Anatomy II (Histology), Course Coordinator
  • CVM6004: Critical Scientific Reading
  • VBS2100: Companion Animal Anatomy
  • CMB8303: Comparative Models of Disease


Clinical Experience Statement

Small animal private veterinary practice from 2006-2011