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Penn Vet News

 

 

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Coming together to solve the many scientific mysteries of COVID-19

As the rumblings of a pandemic began to be felt at the beginning of the year, scientists at Penn started work to develop a vaccine and assess possible treatments. But the scope of COVID-19 studies at the University goes much broader. Scientists whose typical work finds them investigating autoimmune disease, influenza, HIV/AIDS, Ebola, cancer, hemophilia, and more, are now applying their deep understanding of biology to confront a novel threat.

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Penn Vet Launches New Telehealth Platform, Expands Access to Leading Pet Behavior Expertise

With less than 100 veterinary behavior experts practicing in the United States, having direct access to reliable, scientifically-sound advice on managing unsavory pet behavior can prove challenging. But thanks to a newly launched, web-based application from the Penn Vet, Intellivets, and Connect for Education (C4E), pet owners and primary care veterinarians alike can now enjoy expert insight from the comfort of their home or clinic.

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Health care education in a virtual world

Back in January, fourth-year students in the School of Dental Medicine had begun working to complete a variety of graduation requirements that require demonstrating their clinical skills. Part of their licensing requires them to demonstrate their ability to perform two types of fillings and a deep cleaning. Now, barred from working with patients, that process has been put on hold for some students.

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Penn Vet Launches COVID-19 Canine Scent Detection Study

A pilot training program utilizing scent detection dogs to discriminate between samples from COVID-19 positive and COVID-19 negative patients is the focus of a new research initiative at Penn Vet.

Household Food Insecurity and the COVID-19 Pandemic

How does a Pandemic impact our relationship with food? A new Penn survey seeks insights

A newly launched internet survey led by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania looks to explore the multidimensional impact that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has had on our collective relationship with food.

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Tailoring treatment for triple-negative breast cancer

Immunotherapies have revolutionized treatment for people with a variety of cancers. But when given to those with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), a particularly aggressive form of the disease, less than 20% respond.

Gary Althouse (shown pre-pandemic) notes that the animal origins of the current Covid-19 crisis underscore the importance of veterinary expertise in sustaining both animal and human health.

Supporting agriculture and a safe food supply

Caring for a cow with uterine prolapse is not a task that a veterinarian can accomplish alone. The physicality and teamwork it demands makes it nearly impossible to sustain the social distancing prescribed to reduce the risk of transmitting COVID-19. Yet for Billy Smith and his fellow veterinarians that make up the School of Veterinary Medicine’s Field Service team, these kinds of encounters must continue, even amid a pandemic.

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Partnering through a Pandemic: Penn Vet’s New Bolton Center Launches Innovative Telehealth Service Amid COVID-19

In an effort to provide the highest level of veterinary care amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) at New Bolton Center today announced the launch of a new, innovative telehealth service for large animals.

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A critical enzyme for sperm formation could be a target for treating male infertility

While some of our body’s cells divide in a matter of hours, the process of making sperm, meiosis, alone takes about 14 days from start to finish. And fully six of those days are spent in the stage known as the pachytene, when pairs of chromosomes from an individual’s mother and father align and connect.

Gene doping in equines can now be tested for, thanks to Penn Vet researchers.

A Tipping Point for Catastrophic Injuries in Racehorses? Penn Vet Researchers Seek Answers in Novel Interaction Study

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) today announced the launch of a novel study exploring possible effects resulting from the combined use of furosemide, commonly known as Lasix, and bisphosphonates in equine athletes.

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For Improved Profit Margins, the Dairy Doctor is in

For Dr. Joe Bender, what goes on in the environment surrounding an animal is just as important as what’s going on inside of it. As a veterinarian and assistant professor of clinical dairy production medicine within the Center for Animal Health and Productivity (CAHP) at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet), Bender knows how an integrated approach to herd health can pay off in the bulk tank.

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Demystifying feline behavior

They know their names. We can read their facial expressions, sort of. And some of them really like having us around. These are among the purported findings of recent scientific studies aimed at deciphering the behavior of some of our most mysterious yet ubiquitous companions: pet cats.

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Answers to microbiome mysteries in the gills of rainbow trout

While many immunologists use mouse models to conduct their research, J. Oriol Sunyer of Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine has made transformational scientific insights using a very different creature: rainbow trout.

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Treatment in a FLASH

Radiation therapy to treat cancer can be grueling, requiring consecutive days of therapy over days or weeks. "When you talk to patients about coming in for 35 treatments, or seven weeks of daily therapy, usually their face kind of sags in disappointment or perhaps apprehension,” says Keith Cengel, a radiation oncologist at Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine.

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Taking on wildlife disease

When wildlife biologist Matthew Schnupp began his career, the emphasis was on conserving habitat. “The paradigm of wildlife management for the last 20 years has been habitat management,” he says, aiming to conserve the land and ecosystems animals require to thrive.

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A roadblock for disease-causing parasites

The threadlike parasite Dirofilaria immitis causes the debilitating canine heartworm disease. A related parasite, Brugia malayi, infects humans and is one of the parasites responsible for lymphatic filariasis, a neglected disease that affects 120 million and can give rise to elephantiasis, characterized by disfiguring and painful swollen limbs.

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What we do and don’t know about the novel coronavirus

Until a month ago, it’s possible to never have heard of coronavirus, despite the fact that science has known about this family of seven viruses since the 1960s. Four are common, causing mild or moderate respiratory symptoms like a runny nose and sore throat, all of which dissipate quickly. 

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With a protein ‘delivery,’ parasite can suppress its host’s immune response

Toxoplasma gondii is best known as the parasite that may lurk in a cat’s litter box. Nearly a third of the world’s population is believed to live with a chronic Toxoplasma infection. It’s of greatest concern, however, to people with suppressed immune systems and to pregnant women, who can pass the infection to their fetuses.

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Safeguarding farms and food

The Calving Corner is a popular attraction at the Pennsylvania Farm Show. Dairy cows on the verge of giving birth rest in a spacious pen while an audience seated on surrounding bleachers eagerly awaits. On a Saturday earlier this month, Karen, a cow from Meadow Spring Farm in Lititz, had been showing signs of readiness for hours: changing position frequently, “nesting" in the bedding straw, and breathing rapidly, with occasional pauses for contractions.

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Eight new pups report for duty

More sure-footed and confident by the day, the U litter puppies of the Working Dog Center are not yet 3 months old, yet are already a month into their training to use their agile bodies and sensitive noses to serve society.