An Interview with... Dr. Denis Marcellin-Little - Veterinary Medicine
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An Interview with... Dr. Denis Marcellin-Little


What part of your work do you enjoy most?

Meeting new people daily, and trying to have a positive impact on their lives.

Do you have a bad habit?

I tend to complete the tasks I like before the tasks I don't like, regardless of the urgency of the tasks.

What do you consider the greatest threat to the profession?

We often show a lackadaisical approach to science. This hurts our credibility as a profession. We should be more critical about the benefits of current and novel therapies and never rely on anecdotes and vague reports.

Which animal health needs are currently unmet?

More should be done to control pet populations and to prevent animals with known genetic diseases from reproducing, without infringing on the individual freedom of pet owners. In some countries, the breeding of companion animals requires a permit. Such a system goes a long way to ensuring that owners are informed and breed their pets responsibly.

What changes in veterinary medicine do you hope will occur in the next 100 years?

Our medicine will become evidence-based. New treatments and modalities will be assessed properly in prospective, randomized trials before they are introduced. Orthopedics has a long way to go before we get there.

What is your sci-fi prediction for veterinary medicine?

We are not too far from growing various organs that could be used to replace defective ones. Later on, we will be able to scan patients to quickly and noninvasively find the source of their ailments, just as in the Star Trek series.

What makes a good veterinarian?

Honesty and humility.


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