April 17, 2012

Today's Wildlife Disease News Stories


Testing for diseases could soon become quicker, portable

Soon, a simple drop of blood and a few minutes may be all that is needed to determine if someone has a disease, thanks to two researchers at the University of Tennessee who have developed a portable device that detects pathogens in humans and animals.

Jayne Wu, associate professor of computer science and electrical engineering, and Shigetoshi Eda, associate professor of forestry, wildlife and fisheries at the UT Institute of Agriculture Center for Wildlife Health, have been collaborating on the project for about two years, according to Eda.

The device has been able to successfully detect tuberculosis in people and animals, as well as Johne's disease in cattle.

Standard-Examiner - www.standard.net
10 Apr 201
A Osborne

Reptiles, Amphibians in US Succumbing to Deadly Ranavirus

Since the mid 1990s, a type of virus known as a ranavirus has been taking a devastating toll on reptiles and amphibians -- especially turtles, frogs, toads and salamanders -- in more than 20 states across the U.S. Hundreds of thousands of these animals have died from the lethal virus and the disease continues to spread. Scientists are stepping up their efforts to better understand and combat the pathogen.

A few years ago, Scott Farnsworth, a graduate student at Towson University in Maryland, was sent to a wooded park in Maryland to relocate box turtles safely away from a new highway.

Farnsworth and his team tagged 100 turtles with radio transmitters. But then the reptiles started turning up dead. And not just turtles. They began seeing massive die-offs of toads, young frogs called tadpoles and salamanders. Lab analyses showed the culprit was the ranavirus, a class of viruses that mostly infect cold blooded animals.

Voice of America
13 Apr 2012
Z Palacio
Location: Maryland, USA

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