photo: dog running in grass

New Year’s Resolutions for Pets

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New year, new you, as the saying goes. As resolutions are being set, pets (and their people) can also take steps toward a healthy 2020. Below, clinicians from a variety of service areas within UW …

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Common Chemical Linked to Rare Birth Defect in Mice

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A chemical commonly used in consumer and agricultural products to boost the effectiveness of insecticides has been linked to a rare birth defect in mice. The chemical, piperonyl butoxide or PBO for short, is widely used as a “synergist” in household and agricultural insecticides to make the toxic effects of the insecticide longer lasting and to reduce the amount of actual insecticide in a product.
Despite its widespread and growing use, as well as its ubiquity in the environment, the chemical has been little studied. Now, a team led by Robert Lipinski, a professor of comparative biosciences in the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s School of Veterinary Medicine, reports that PBO interferes with the critical signaling pathway dubbed by scientists as sonic hedgehog, resulting in stunted forebrain development and signature facial abnormalities. The study is published this week (Oct. 23, 2019) in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.  
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Newly Discovered Virus Infects Bald Eagles Across America

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Researchers have discovered a previously unknown virus infecting nearly a third of America’s bald eagle population. Scientists at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, the U.S. Geological Survey  National Wildlife Health Center and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources found …