Ashlee Watts DVM, PhD, DACVS, is director of the lab and an equine orthopedic surgeon in the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences. Her clinical interest in the performance horse is a focus point for the dedicated study of orthopedic diseases and the development of innovative targeted therapeutic measures. Dr. Watts works with board certified faculty members on the Equine Orthopedics, Equine Sports Medicine & Imaging and Diagnostic Imaging services at Texas A&M and collaborates with basic scientists and veterinarians throughout the world to advance the field of equine orthopedics and regenerative medicine. The laboratory is located in the new wing of the Veterinary Medical Research Building, immediately adjacent to the Large Animal Hospital at Texas A&M.
The Comparative Orthopedics and Regenerative Medicine Laboratory serves the equine industry and veterinary community by: engaging in orthopedic and regenerative medicine research with immediate impact to both equine and human athletes; providing guidelines and strategies for management of equine clinical cases through incorporation of innovative regenerative technologies; and educating undergraduate students, veterinary students, veterinary residents, graduate students, and visiting scientists in equine regenerative techniques for orthopedic disease.
Areas of research emphasis include techniques of stem cell isolation and expansion for improved safety of autologous therapy, investigation into the basic mechanisms of stem cell therapy, investigation into novel musculoskeletal therapies for tendon, ligament and bone injury and osteoarthritis prevention. The overriding goal of the laboratory is to provide for the dedicated study of orthopedic diseases and the development of innovative targeted therapeutic measures to treat orthopedic diseases.