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Department of Veterinary Medicine

Cambridge Veterinary School


I am a qualified veterinary surgeon graduated from Universidad Mayor, Chile. Currently, I am PhD student working under the supervision of Dr. Barbara Blacklaws.  

After finishing my licentiate in veterinary sciences, I did several internships in places like Colorado State University where I got familiarized with data management and statistical analysis, Klamath Biological Station based in California, supporting a demographic research on Northern Spotted owl and at University of Cambridge in the Laboratory of viral zoonotics where I worked on the expression of recombinant Murine Norovirus capsid protein and in vivo antigen localization.

On my return to Chile, I started my thesis project, a requirement to obtain my D.V.M degree. I performed my research in histopathology, analyzing samples obtained from Antarctic fur seal pups. Where I could identify injuries linked to intoxication.


Following my veterinary background and my passion for conservation and research, I have a develop deep interest in studying the faecal metagenome as a key indicator of wild population stability. Given the gut metagenome’s close association with health and disease, metagenomics is becoming a tool in conservation with studies researching both the effect on and the effect of the microbiota caused by declining population numbers, dramatic changes in habitat or food networks and drops in genetic diversity. Studying how modifications to the microbiome are affecting wildlife health and population stability may help in formulating new conservation strategies. Understanding the interaction dynamics between the different components is vital if we are to use metagenomic approaches as a means of non-invasively monitoring wildlife health and population stability.


 Constanza  Toro Valdivieso

Contact Details

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Collaborator profiles: 
Person keywords: 
Conservation genetics
Gut microbiome
Marine mammals