Jessica Lawrence, DVM, DACVIM, DACVR, DECVDI

Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology, College of Veterinary Medicine


Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences


DVM, University of Guelph Ontario Veterinary

Licensures and Certifications

DACVR (Radiation Oncology), University of Wisconsin-Madison
DACVIM (Oncology), University of Wisconsin-Madison
DECVDI (Radiation Oncology)

Expand all



Jessica Lawrence joined the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine in 2016 as an Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology. She earned her DVM from the Ontario Veterinary College and completed advanced training in radiation and medical oncology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to joining the CVM, Dr. Lawrence spent 3 years as an Assistant Professor of Medical Oncology at the University of Georgia before spending 3.5 years as the Head of Oncology at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies at the University of Edinburgh. Dr. Lawrence has a strong interest in comparative oncology, and she aims to provide exceptional quality of life for pets with cancer and their owners. Dr. Lawrence is particularly interested in tumor and normal tissue radiation sensitivity and developing methods to improve tumor control with radiation therapy while minimizing side effects.

Awards & recognition

  • 2010: National Phi Zeta Award in the Clinical Sciences / Applied Research
  • 2015: Outstanding Clinician, Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies


Research summary/interests

Dr. Lawrence is a clinician researcher fully engaged in the “One Health” directive as she strives to improve our understanding of the pathobiology, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of human and animal cancer and treatment-related toxicities. In particular, she is keen to improve radiation killing of cancer cells while limiting radiation-induced injury to normal tissue that may result in treatment-related complications such as organ fibrosis and bystander injury. As cancer survivors (pet or human) enjoy improved outcomes after radiation therapy for many tumor types, it is important that cancer researchers investigate treatment methods to maintain or improve quality of life after treatment. By furthering our understanding of the signals that occur after radiation in normal and cancer cells, Dr. Lawrence and her collaborators hope to develop strategies that mitigate radiation-induced injury to normal tissue.


Selected peer-reviewed publications

  • Vail DM, Thamm DH, Reiser H, Ray AS, Grushenka WHI, Lee WA, Watkins WJ, Babusis D, Henne IN, Kurzman ID, Jeraj R, Vanderhoek M, Plaza S, Anderson C, Wessel WA, Robat C, Lawrence J, and Tumas DB. Assessment of GS-9219 in a pet dog model of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Clin Cancer Res 2009;15:3503-3510.
  • Lawrence J, Vanderhoek M, Barbee D, Jeraj R, Vail D. Utility of 3’-deoxy-3’-[18F]Fluorothymidine-positron emission tomography/ computed tomography for evaluating response to cytotoxic chemotherapy in dogs with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 2009;50:660-668
  • Lawrence JA, Forrest LJ, Turek MM, Miller PE, Mackie TR, Jaradat HA, Vail DM, Chappell R, and Mehta MP. Proof of principle of ocular sparing in dogs with sinonasal tumors treated with intensity-modulated radiation therapy. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 2010;51:561-570.
  • Lawrence J, Saba C, Gogal R, Lamberth O, Vandenplas ML, Hurley DJ, Dubreuil P, Hermine O, Dobbin K, Turek M. Masitinib demonstrates anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic activity in primary and metastatic feline injection site sarcoma cells. Vet Comp Oncol 2012;10:143-152.
  • Lawrence J, Karpuzoglu E, Vandenplas M, Vance A, Saba C, Turek M, Gogal R. Changes in ?-H2AX expression in irradiated feline sarcoma cells: an indicator of double strand DNA breaks. Res Vet Sci 2013, 94:545-548.
  • Regan R, Gogal R, Tuckfield C, Barber J, Lawrence J. The antitumor effects of loperamide hydrochloride on canine cancer cells. Res Vet Sci 2014; 76:1563-1568. doi: 10.1292/jvms.13-0537.
  • Lawrence JA, Huelsmeyer MK, Thamm DH, Tumas DB, Burkus G, Kurzman I, Vail DM. Novel acyclic nucleotide analogues GS-343074 and GS-424044 demonstrate antiproliferative and pro-apoptotic activity in canine neoplastic cell lines. Vet Comp Oncol 2015; 13:246-254
  • Kaye ME, Thamm D, Weishaar K, Lawrence J. Vinorelbine rescue therapy for dogs with primary urinary bladder carcinoma. Vet Comp Oncol 2015;13: 443-51. doi: 10.1111/vco.12065.
  • Feng Y, Welsh D, McDonald K, Carruthers L, Cheng K, Montgomery D, Lawrence J, Argyle DJ, McLaughlin S, McLaren DB, Nailon WH. Identifying the Dominant Prostate Cancer Focal Lesion using Image Analysis and Planning of a Simultaneous Integrated Stereotactic Boost. Acta Oncologica 2015;54:1543-1550.
  • Saba C, Paoloni M, Mazcko C, Kisseberth W, Burton JH, Smith A, Wilson-Robles H, Allstadt S, Vail D, Henry C, Lana S, Ehrhart EJ, Charles B, Kent M, Lawrence J, Burgess K, Borgatti A, Suter S, Woods P, Gordon I, Vrignaud P, Khanna C, LeBlanc AK. A comparative oncology study of iniparib defines its pharmacokinetic profile and biological activity in a naturally-occurring canine cancer model. PLoS One 2016; 11:e0149194. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0149194.
  • Serra JC, Pecceu E, Handel I, Lawrence J. Tolerability of a rapid-escalation vinblastine-prednisolone protocol in dogs with mast cell tumors. Vet Med Sci 2016; in press. doi: 10.1002/vms3.42

Selected book chapters

  • Lawrence JA and Forrest LJ. Intensity-modulated radiation therapy and helical tomotherapy: its origin, benefits, and potential applications in veterinary medicine. Vet Clin Small Anim 2007; 37:1151-1165.
  • Lawrence J, Cameron D, Argyle DJ. Species differences in tumour responses to cancer chemotherapy. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 2015; 370:20140233. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2014.0233.
  • +Feng Y, Lawrence J, Cheng K, Montgomery D, Forrest L, Mclaren DB, McLaughlin S, Argyle DJ, Nailon WH. Invited Review: Image registration in veterinary radiation oncology: indications, implications, and future advances. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 2016; 57:113-123. doi: 10.1111/vru.12342.
  • Lawrence J. Radiation Oncology: In: Ettinger SJ, Feldman EC, Côté E. (eds). Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine: Diseases of the Dog and the Cat. 8th ed. WB Saunders Co. Philadelphia, PA, 2017: 2046-2051.