Dr. Derr has directed worldwide research projects in wildlife and livestock conservation genetics for over 25 years. This body of work has produced more than 75 scientific publications reporting original research on many different species. For example, Dr. Derr has authored articles on bison, dolphins, domestic and wild cats, elk, pronghorn antelope, sheep, quail, white-tailed and mule deer, whales, domestic livestock and multiple fish species. All of this conservation genetics research has been funded through international, federal, state, NGO and private funding sources including the DSC and DSC Foundation. In addition, Dr. Derr is an impactful educator through his teaching efforts in undergraduate genetic courses to students interested in medicine (human and veterinary) and he has mentored over 100 graduate students in the fields of conservation / population genetics and animal health. One of Dr. Derr's most popular courses is "Wildlife Conservation Medicine". This course is designed for first- and second-year veterinary students to travel to South Africa and Botswana to learn how to chemically immobilize, treat and transport everything from African plains game to dangerous game. His efforts with these young veterinarians ensure they graduate with specialized knowledge and skills to handle health care and conservation issues with the tremendous number of exotic wildlife species here in the State of Texas on private ranches and preserves.

education and training
selected publications
Academic Articles70
  • Dobson, L. K., Zimin, A., Bayles, D., Fritz-Waters, E., Alt, D., Olsen, S., ... Derr, J. N. (2021). De novo assembly and annotation of the North American bison (Bison bison) reference genome and subsequent variant identification.. Anim Genet. 52(3), 263-274.
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  • Curry, C. J., Davis, B. W., Bertola, L. D., White, P. A., Murphy, W. J., & Derr, J. N. (2021). Spatiotemporal Genetic Diversity of Lions Reveals the Influence of Habitat Fragmentation across Africa.. Mol Biol Evol. 38(1), 48-57.
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  • Yang, T., Miller, M., Forgacs, D., Derr, J., & Stothard, P. (2020). Development of SNP-Based Genomic Tools for the Canadian Bison Industry: Parentage Verification and Subspecies Composition.. Front Genet. 11, 585999.
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  • Forgacs, D., Wallen, R. L., Boedeker, A. L., & Derr, J. N. (2019). Evaluation of fecal samples as a valid source of DNA by comparing paired blood and fecal samples from American bison (Bison bison).. BMC Genet. 20(1), 22.
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  • Curry, C. J., White, P. A., & Derr, J. N. (2019). Genetic analysis of African lions (Panthera leo) in Zambia support movement across anthropogenic and geographical barriers.. PLoS One. 14(5), e0217179-e0217179.
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Conference Papers2
  • Mitchell, C. D., Marchand, A. J., Head, K., Haakenson, J. K., Kelley, A., Deiss, T. C., ... Criscitiello, M. F. (2021). Evolution of immunogenetic components used to form ultralong VH CDR3 antibodies in Bovidae. JOURNAL OF IMMUNOLOGY. 206,
  • Rooney, A. P., Merritt, D. B., & Derr, J. N. (1999). Microsatellite diversity in captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).. J Hered. 90(1), 228-231.
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chaired theses and dissertations
First Name
Last Name
mailing address
Texas A&M University; Vet Med Pathobiology; 4467 TAMU
College Station, TX 77845