Dr. Cathy Walsh

Title: Senior Scientist; Program Manager — Marine Immunology

Phone: 941-388-4441
Email: 

Dr. Walsh’s current research focuses on basic and applied research on the health and immune systems of marine vertebrates.  Animal species studied include cartilaginous fishes (sharks, skates, and rays), marine mammals, and sea turtles.  Current projects include research on cytotoxic factors produced by cultured shark immune cells, antimicrobial properties of epidermal mucus from stingrays, effects of harmful algal blooms on human health as well as on the health of wildlife species including the Florida manatee and sea turtles, and research on the immune system impacts of oil exposure in elasmobranch species. 

Since 2000, Dr. Walsh has served as Quality Assurance Officer for Mote Marine Laboratory, which is certified through the Florida Department of Health Environmental Laboratory Certification Program for certain environmental testing parameters.  Dr. Walsh is also a registered patent agent through the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and initiated Mote’s patent program in 2002.  Since its inception, 10 patents covering a range of technologies have been issued to Mote Marine Laboratory, two of which are products of research conducted by Dr. Walsh and her colleagues.     

Education

Ph.D. Nutrition-Immunology/Toxicology, Clemson University, Clemson, SC

M.S. Nutrition, Clemson University, Clemson, SC

B.S. Biology, Hope College, Holland, MI

Awards
Current Grants:

Funding Agency:  NOAA ECOHAB  
Project Title:  Brevetoxin metabolism and physiology – a freshwater model of morbidity in endangered sea turtles
Investigators:  Sarah Milton (FAU, PI); Cathy Walsh (MML, Co-PI); Leanne Flewelling (FWRI, Co-PI); Greg Bossart (Georgia Aquarium, Co-PI); Deb Fauquier (MML, Co-PI)  
Amount:  $653,379

Funding Agency:  Department of Defense  
Project Title:  Novel compounds from shark and stingray epidermal mucus with antimicrobial activity against wound infection pathogens
Investigators:  Carl Luer (MML, PI); Cathy Walsh (MML, Co-PI); Laura Edsberg (Daemen College, Co-PI); Andy Cannons (USF, Co-PI), A.B. Bodine (Clemson University, Co-PI); Jen Wyffels (Daemen College – Co-PI).
Amount:  $1,316,469

Funding Agency:  Henry L. and Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation.  
Project Title:  Shark immune cell-derived peptides as novel agents for cancer therapy  Investigators:  Carl Luer (MML, PI); Cathy Walsh (MML, Co-PI); A.B. Bodine (Clemson University, Co-PI)
Amount:  $600,000

Funding Agency:  Florida High Tech Corridor Industry Seed Grant
Project Title: Membrane targets in tumor cells vs. normal cells exposed to shark immune cell-derived antitumor compounds
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh (PI, MML), Carl Luer (Co-PI, MML)
Amount: $50,000

Funding Agency:  BP/FIO – Gulf Oil spill Prevention, Response & Recovery Grants Program
Project Title: Effects of Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill on Epipelagic and Large Coastal Sharks and Teleosts of the Gulf of Mexico.  
Investigators:  Bob Hueter (MML), Jim Gelsleichter (UNF)
Amount:    $269,427

Funding Agency:  National Science Foundation  
Project Title:  Research Experiences in Estuarine and Coastal Science for Undergraduates at Mote Marine Laboratory:  Developing a New Generation of Leaders in Ocean Sciences
Investigators:  Barb Kirkpatrick and Cathy Walsh, Co-PIs
Amount:  $351,939

Past Grants:

Funding Agency:  NOAA Oceans and Human Health Initiative
Project Title:  Effects of brevetoxin exposure on human immune cells
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh (MML, PI), Barb Kirkpatrick (MML, Co-PI), John Sleasman (USF, Co-PI), Rich Pierce (MML, Co-PI), L Backer (CDC, Co-PI)
Amount:  $681,659

Funding Agency:  FFWCC Red Tide Control and Mitigation Program.  
Title:  Effects of brevetoxin exposure on signal transduction in immune cells  
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh (PI)
Amount:  $87,244

Funding Agency:  National Cancer Institute/NCCAM        
Title:  STEF as a novel antitumor agent    
Investigators:  Carl Luer, Cathy Walsh, Clay Smith, A.B. Bodine (Co-PIs)
Amount:  $275,000

Funding Agency:  National Science Foundation
Project Title:  REU Site:  Research Experiences in Estuarine Science for Undergraduates at Mote Marine Laboratory:  Developing a New Generation of Leaders in Ocean Sciences  
Investigators:  Barb Kirkpatrick and Cathy Walsh, Co-PIs
Amount:  $262,143

Funding Agency:  Florida High Tech Corridor Industry Seed Grant        
Title:  Pathways of Programmed Cell Death in Tumor Cells Exposed to Shark Immune Cell-Derived Peptides
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh, Carl Luer (Co-PIs)
Amount:  $100,000

Funding Agency:  FFWCC, Florida Wildlife Institute, Extended Red Tide Monitoring and Research Program  
Title:  Immune system effects from exposure of marine vertebrates to Florida red tide
Investigators:  Rich Pierce, Cathy Walsh, Dana Wetzel, Mike Henry, Kim Ritchie, John Reynolds (Co-PIs)
Amount: $1,521,750

Funding Agency:  All Children’s Hospital/USF Pediatric Clinical Research Center Pilot Grant Program
Project Title:  Effects of red tide toxins on children’s immune cells:  in vitro studies
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh (PI), John Sleasman (USF, CO-PI)
Amount:  $50,000

Funding Agency:  National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
Project Title:  Manatee Conservation Through Health Assessment
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh
Amount:  $72,137

Funding Agency:  Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Project Title:  Diagnostic Indicators of Manatee Immune Function
Investigators:  Cathy Walsh (PI), Tracy Romano (Mystic Aquarium, Co-PI), Jeff Stott (UCDavis, Co-PI), Charles Manire (MML, Co-PI)
Amount:  $150,000

Publications

Journal Publications

Walsh CJ, SR Leggett, MS Henry, PC Blum S Osborn, RH Pierce. 2009. Cellular metabolism of brevetoxin (PbTx-2) by a monocyte cell line (U-937). Toxicon 53(1):135-145.

Walsh CJ, SR Leggett, K Strohbehn, RH Pierce, JW Sleasman. 2008. Effects of in vitro brevetoxin exposure on apoptosis and cellular metabolism in a leukemic T cell line (Jurkat). Marine Drugs 6: 291-307.

Walsh CJ, JE Stuckey, H Cox, B Smith, C Funke, J Stott, C Colle, J Gaspard, CA Manire. 2007. Production of nitric oxide by peripheral blood mononuclear cells from the Florida manatee, Trichechus manatus latirostris. Vet Immunol Immunopathol 118(3-4):199-209.

Wyffels, JT, CA Luer, CJ Walsh, AB Bodine. 2007. In vivo exposure of clearnose skates, Raja eglanteria, to ionizing X-radiation: Acute effects on the peripheral blood, spleen, and epigonal and Leydig organs. Fish Shellfish Immunol 23(2):401-418.

Luer CA, CJ Walsh, AB Bodine, JT Wyffels. 2007. Normal embryonic development in the clearnose skate, Raja eglanteria, with experimental observations on artificial insemination. Environ Biol Fishes 80:239-255.

Walsh CJ, CA Luer, AB Bodine, CA Smith, HL Cox, DR Noyes, M Gasparetto. 2006. Elasmobranch immune cells as a source of novel tumor cell inhibitors: Implications for public health. Integrative Comp Biol 46(6):1072-1081.

Gelsleichter J, CJ Walsh, NJ Szabo, LEL Rasmussen. 2006. Organochlorine concentrations, reproductive physiology, and immune function in unique populations of freshwater Atlantic stingrays (Dasyatis sabina) From Florida's St. Johns River. Chemosphere 63:1506-1522.

Walsh CJ, JD Toranto, CT Gilliland, DR Noyes, AB Bodine, CA Luer. 2006. Nitric oxide production by nurse shark (Ginglymostoma cirratum) and clearnose skate (Raja eglanteria) peripheral blood leucocytes. Fish Shellfish Immunol 20:40-46.

Walsh CJ, CA Luer, DR Noyes. 2005. Effects of environmental stressors on lymphocyte proliferation in the Florida manatee, Trichechus manatus latirostris. Vet Immunol Immunopathol 103(3-4):255-264.

Wyffels JT, CJ Walsh, C.A Luer, AB Bodine. 2005. In vivo exposure of clearnose skates, Raja eglanteria, to ionizing X-radiation: Acute effects on the thymus. Dev Comp Immunol 29(4):315-331.

Anderson MK, AL Miracle, X Sun, CA Luer, CJ Walsh, EV Rothenberg, GW Litman. 2004. Evolutionary origins of lymphocytes: Ensembles of T-cell and B-cell transcriptional regulators in a cartilaginous fish. J Immunol 172:5851-5860.

Manire CA, CJ Walsh, HL Rhinehart, DE Colbert, DR Noyes, C.A Luer. 2003. Alterations in blood and urine parameters in Florida manatees, Trichechus manatus latirostris, from simulated conditions of release following rehabilitation. Zoo Biol 22(2):103-120.

Walsh CJ, CA Luer, JT Wyffels, AB Bodine. 2002. Dexamethasone-induced apoptosis in immune cells from peripheral circulation and lymphomyeloid tissues of juvenile clearnose skates, Raja eglanteria. Dev Comp Immunol 26(7):629-639.

Bossart GD, RY Ewing, M Lowe, M Sweat, SJ Decker, CJ Walsh, SJ Ghim, AB Jenson. 2002. Viral papillomatosis in Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris). Exptl Mol Pathol 72(1):37-48.

Miracle AL, MK Anderson, RT Litman, CJ Walsh, CA Luer, EV Rothenberg, GW Litman. 2001. Complex expression patterns of lymphocyte-specific genes during the development of cartilaginous fish implicate unique lymphoid tissues in generating an immune repertoire. Internat Immunol 13:567-580.

Walsh CJ, CA Luer. 1998. Comparative phagocytic and pinocytic activities of leucocytes from peripheral blood and lymphomyeloid tissues of the nurse shark (Ginglymostoma cirratum Bonaterre) and the clearnose skate (Raja eglanteria Bosc). Fish & Shellfish Immunol 8:197-215.

Luer CA, CJ Walsh, AB Bodine, JT Wyffels, TR Scott. 1995. The elasmobranch thymus: anatomical, histological, and preliminary functional characterization. J Exp Zool 273(4):342-354.

Walsh CJ, AB Bodine, TR Scott. 1991. A co-mitogenic assay for assessing the effects of aflatoxin B1 on interleukin 1 production in bovine macrophages. Drug Dev Res 24(2):157 166.

Walsh CJ, RL Thomas, ME Kunkel. 1989. The use of metallic ultrafiltration membranes to assess calcium availability in vitro. Food Chem 32:307-317.

Bodine AB, CA Luer, S Gangjee, CJ Walsh. 1989. In vitro metabolism of the pro-carcinogen aflatoxin B1 by liver preparations of the calf, nurse shark and clearnose skate. Comp Biochem Physiol 94C(2):447-453.

Published Abstracts

Walsh CJ, CA Luer, DR Noyes, CA Smith, M Gasparetto, KN Bhalla. 2004. Characterization of shark immune cell factor (Sphyrna tiburo epigonal factor, STEF) that inhibits tumor cell growth by inhibiting S-phase and inducing apoptosis via the TRAIL pathway. FASEB J 18(4):A60.

Walsh CJ, P Blum, C Luer. 1995. Phagocytic and pinocytic activities of shark and skate immune cells. Florida Scientist 58 (Suppl. 1):15.

Walsh CJ, CA Luer, AB Bodine. 1993. Functional studies on elasmobranch epigonal cells in short-term culture. Florida Scientist 56 (Suppl. 1): 30.

Luer CA, CJ Walsh. 1993. Identification and partial characterization of the major hematopoietic tissues in elasmobranch fish. Florida Scientist 56 (Suppl. 1): 30.

Walsh CJ, AB Bodine, TR Scott, C Kendall. 1991. Investigation of the cell cycle and of phytohemagglutinin binding in aflatoxin B1 treated bovine lymphocytes. FASEB J Part I 5(4):A506.

Walsh CJ, AB Bodine, TR Scott. 1990. A co mitogenic assay for assessing the effects of aflatoxin B1 on interleukin 1 production in bovine macrophages. FASEB J Part I 4(3):A337.

Walsh CJ, AB Bodine. 1989. The effects of aflatoxin B1 on bovine T lymphocytes and macrophages in vitro. FASEB J Part I 3(3):A603.

Bodine AB, CA Luer, CJ Walsh, S Valentino. 1989. Aflatoxin B1 DNA binding studies in nurse shark and calf liver in vitro. FASEB J Part II. 3(4):A923.

Department: Directorate of Environmental Health & Ocean Technology




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