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August 30, 2017
 
US scientists to develop test that can identity swine, cattle brucellosis
 

US veterinary scientists at the University of Wyoming are developing a test which will determine between two types of brucellosis - a disease that has caused worries among cattle ranchers in Wyoming, the Wyoming Public Media Statewide "Network reported.

According to the project leader and epidemiologist Brant Schumaker, brucellosis concerns infections which are induced by various strains of the Brucella bacteria. He said that Wyoming sees an occurrence of cattle brucellosis, "which affects cattle, elk and bison in the Greater Yellowstone area."
 
But feral swine, according to Schumaker, "carry a different, related bacteria that can be transmitted to both cattle and domestic swine operations in those areas where animals come in contact with them."
 
And brucellosis, if left uncontrolled, can become a serious threat to human health as it spreads through milk and secretions. Making matters even so complex is that current antibody tests cannot identity different brucellosis, specifically those of swine or cattle types.
 
In addition, at least 36 states - excluding Wyoming - in the US are affected by feral swine, also known as wild hogs. Given the challenge of stemming feral swine's movements, the control of swine brucellosis is less regulated, Schumaker added.
 
Still, there are ways to identity brucellosis types, although such methods tend to be expensive and inaccurate, said Schumaker, who hopes the University of Wyoming research can improve detection methods.
 

- Wyoming Public Media Statewide Network

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