Supervisory Veterinary Pathologist, Smithsonian's National Zoo
As the supervisory veterinary pathologist for the Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute in both Washington, D.C., and Front Royal, Virginia, Dr. Neel Aziz and his team of veterinary pathologists, pathology technicians, veterinary epidemiologists and molecular scientists oversee the pathology program for more than 2,700 animals representing more than 390 species. By diagnosing animal illnesses, Dr. Aziz and his team provide day-to-day consultations to the clinical programs of the Zoo's animal health section and SCBI’s department of conservation medicine. These programs, along with animal care staff, are responsible for the health and husbandry of the collection.
Dr. Aziz has more than 10 years of veterinary pathology experience working at a diverse assortment of institutions. He worked in the United States Department of Defense's biomedical research institutes, including providing pathology support to animal model studies that were focused on infectious diseases, experimental therapeutics, biodefense, behavioral studies and neuro-trauma. At the Faculty of Veterinary Science, Mahidol University in Thailand, Dr. Aziz worked as a lecturer and pathologist in the faculty’s diagnostic laboratory. He was responsible for the pathological evaluation of species ranging from zoo, wildlife and common domestic species to laboratory, food and aquatic animals.
Dr. Aziz worked at the City University of Hong Kong - Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. He was part of the early team that helped to set up the college in Hong Kong, and was the project lead in designing, staffing, equipping and operating the college’s veterinary diagnostic laboratory. Dr. Aziz provided pathologic evaluations and support to local small animal veterinarians, Equine Hospital of the Hong Kong Jockey Club and the department of veterinary medicine at Ocean Park. He also consulted with the department of Agriculture and Fish Conservation diagnostic laboratories to support disease investigations in local aquatic farms. At Covance Pharmaceutical R & D (Shanghai) Co. Ltd. in Shanghai, China, Dr. Aziz was responsible for the daily reporting and interpreting of pathology data from toxicity studies.
Dr. Aziz likes to focus on veterinary oncology, toxicology and metabolic disease in nonhuman primates and avian species. His diagnostic and research interests include conservation efforts in infectious disease investigations, oncology and liver pathology that affect zoo and wildlife animals. Dr. Aziz earned his Bachelor of Science in biology from Rowan University and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Tuskegee University. He completed a veterinary anatomic pathology residency at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology and earned his board certification from the American College of Veterinary Pathologists.