Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Identifying memory B cell in pigs
Growing up just down the road from the “Field of Dreams” in Dyersville Iowa, Mike Rahe participated in baseball, football, and track in his youth. When he wasn’t on the field, Rahe enjoyed raising pigs and cattle and helping his father, a large animal veterinarian. Mike attended Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, where he played football and ran track. Rahe then transferred to Iowa State University for his junior year, where he went on to complete both his Bachelor of Science and his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine. While in veterinary school, Rahe completed a Masters of Public Health at the University of Iowa. He also was part of a Stanford University research project that studied the dengue virus.
Now at the University of Minnesota working in Dr. Michael Murtaugh’s lab, Mike’s thesis project focuses on the study of the memory B cell in pigs. He hopes to identify and characterize this cell, which in turn will give us the ability to produce more effective vaccines against viruses that threaten animal health. During his time at the U, Mike has created and characterized a porcine B cell lymphoma cell line, performed a malaria immunity study investigating the pig as a model for human skin vaccination, and carried out cellular metabolism studies of lymphocytes investigating the role of nutrition in animal health.
Rahe looks to finish his Ph.D. and then transition to an anatomic pathology residency. Following his training, he wants to utilize both his immunology research and future diagnostic work to fight infectious diseases. When asked what was he has learned through his educational career, Rahe answered, "That that a dream without a plan is a wish."
by Gabriel Sinner