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Penn Vet News

 

 

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Shelter medicine is on a roll

According to the Humane Society of the United States, nationally an estimated 70 million dogs and cats lack a home. Of those, about 6.5 million wind up in shelters each year. Ensuring that more of these pets find a loving, caring home—and receive the proper veterinary care to stay there—is a daunting challenge, one that motivates the veterinarians and students who make up the Shelter Medicine Program in Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine.

Drs. Brittany Watson and Chelsea Reinhard get ready to take Shelter Medicine to Philly neighborhoods with their new mobile unit.

Penn Vet Launches Mobile Clinic

In 2016, there were 50,000 animal intakes in the Philadelphia region’s animal shelters. The University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) Shelter Medicine Program provides clinical care support to several of these shelters and works to reduce the number of animals entering them to begin with. The program is about to increase its regional reach and impact with the Penn Vet Mobile Clinic, a new 40-foot-long facility-on-wheels that will help more vulnerable animals.

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Hindering melanoma metastasis with an FDA-approved drug

For cancer to spread, it needs a hospitable environment in distant organs. This fertile “soil” can provide a home to circulating malignant cells. Recent research has shown that cancer cells from the primary tumor can help ready this soil by sending out small vesicles. These vesicles contain a cocktail of molecules that “educate” healthy cells to prepare the target tissues for cancer cells to seed and thrive. Blocking this process offers one strategy to stop metastasis, which is often responsible for cancer’s lethality.

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Big-hearted Quarter Horse Fights through EPM to Finish Strong

“Allie Kat is the friendliest, sweetest horse. She loves everyone,” said Tracy Barbeito about her six-year-old Quarter Horse. But the mare’s big-hearted nature isn’t always a good thing. Because the performance horse “loves to please,” her charming personality can make it hard to know when she’s not okay. It took an alarming head tilt a little more than a year ago to alert Allie’s caretakers that something was amiss with the horse’s health.

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Specialized Surgery Gets Goliath Back to the Farm

Steve and Leah Jefferson were looking for a way to protect their 38 chickens from roving coyotes on their 10-acre farm in Martinsburg, West Virginia. Goliath was their answer. The Great Pyrenees joined the family in the spring of 2017, when he was just eight weeks old. The Jeffersons quickly realized the “flock dog” would be spending as much time indoors as out.

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Tolerance, Transplant Immunology

In collaboration with scientists and clinicians, Dr Raimon Duran-Struuck established a liver, kidney, bone marrow and pancreatic islet pre-clinical transplant program.

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Going out of the box to learn to treat exotic creatures

Rebecca Revay, a fourth-year veterinary student at Penn, never had a dog growing up. Instead, her home’s animal census included “red-eared sliders, fire-bellied toads, some parrots, guinea pigs, hamsters, a lot of fish tanks, and a couple snakes,” she says.

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Equine Field Service on the Beat for Clydesdale Cops

Clydesdale cops Spartan and Julio help keep the peace in northern Delaware, so the horses’ massive bodies must always be up to the task. With their human riders, the equine officers police parks, neighborhoods, and community events as members of the New Castle County (NCC) Mounted Patrol Unit.  When recent eye issues bothered both horses, their sergeant called New Bolton Center’s Equine Field Service.

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Shelter Medicine Program Expands Shelter and Community Outreach

Every year, 6.5 million stray or surrendered animals enter shelters, 1.5 million of them are euthanized. In Philadelphia, the city’s shelter alone admitted 19,000 animals last year.

Enter Penn Vet’s Shelter Medicine program with a mission that includes keeping animals from ending up in shelters at all. The program helps improve the lives of the city’s most at-risk animals. And early next year it will start covering more ground with a mobile clinic.

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Solving Sports Medicine's Trickiest Mysteries

Penn Vet’s Dr. Elizabeth Davidson loves a good horse mystery. She and her team of equine Sports Medicine experts at New Bolton Center have solved many cases of ‘just not right’ horses, athletic animals who aren’t performing well but don’t have any obvious clinical complaints.

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Sniffing for science

Bonnie, a sleek border collie mix, is practically vibrating with excitement. After getting a signal to start her search, her owners release her. She bounds, snuffling and wriggling, to a stainless-steel wheel, roughly 4 feet in diameter, with 12 numbered ports along its edge. Upon locating her target, she crouches down to signal her find, only to spring back up as she hears a mechanical click and cries of, “Good girl! Well done!” She finds her owner to receive a treat, and then gets ready to do it all over again.

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Dr. Virginia Reef to Unravel Cardiovascular Complexities During AAEP’s 2018 Milne Lecture

Acclaimed equine cardiologist and ultrasonography pioneer Virginia B. Reef, DVM, DACVIM, DACVSMR, will help practitioners determine the significance of murmurs and arrhythmias and the resulting ramifications for their treatment and management when she delivers the Frank J. Milne State-of-the-Art Lecture on Monday, Dec. 3 at the American Association of Equine Practitioners’ 64th Annual Convention in San Francisco, Calif.

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Physical Rehab Helps "Rock Star" Ranger Walk Again

One day, your young dog is wagging and running around; the next, he’s barely able to move. Cory Laslocky lived through this nightmare a few months ago.

Marshak Dairy Cows at New Bolton Center

Want to reduce emissions? Start in the gut of a cow.

As concern about climate change rises, researchers are working to develop innovative strategies to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

The Penndemic, a fictional scenario, presented to 81 Penn students, constituted the launch of an infectious disease outbreak simulation exercise.

Staging the plague

A child with a swollen armpit and high fever dies in Washington, D.C. The cause is found to be Yersinia pestis, the bacteria that causes plague. Two days later, a 35-year-old man goes to a Philadelphia-area hospital with similar symptoms and is later confirmed to also have the plague. If you’re a public-health professional, what questions do you have? What do you need to know in order to protect your community?

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Penn Vet Swine Group Discusses Global Challenges Arising from China’s African Swine Fever Outbreak

In China, a country that is home to more than half of the world’s swine population, the spread of deadly infectious disease - such as the current African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreak - can carry tremendous implications for food supply and pricing across the globe.

Penn Vet, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and University of Wisconsin-Madison scientists will lead a team in developing a stem cell-based approach to treat blindness in dogs.

Multidisciplinary team to develop stem cell-based approaches to restore vision

A team from the University of Pennsylvania, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison are launching a project to develop new strategies for treating vision disorders using cells implanted in the retina. 

Making a Difference for Triple-negative Breast Cancer Patients

Immune cells involved in triple-negative breast cancer could offer future therapeutic target

 About 15 percent of breast cancers are classified as triple-negative, lacking receptors for estrogen, progesterone, and Her2. These cancers do not respond to targeted hormonal therapies, and they tend to be particularly aggressive, often resisting systemic chemotherapy and metastasizing to other tissues.

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Penn Vet, Penn Medicine, and CHOP to Host Fifth Annual Microbiome Symposium Featuring New York Times Columnist and Science Writer Carl Zimmer

Microbes are a critical component of human health. Scientists recognize that an imbalance in our bodies’ vast community of life-sustaining microbes can lead to heart disease, diabetes, auto-immune disease, and cancer. Methods for studying microbes have greatly improved in recent years. Researchers now understand the tremendous potential in managing microbe populations that can lead to positive, healthy outcomes.

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Cutting-edge science moves to the clinic to help ‘our furry friends’ fight cancer

Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine has long been a scientific and clinical powerhouse. But the launch of an initiative last year is further bolstering those strengths in the areas of cancer research and care.