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Research snapshot: MRSA appears not as problematic in US swine as originally thought

Since 2004, when methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) was first discovered in European swine, there has been a focus on how livestock-associated MRSA effects the European population. Although first detected in US pigs in 2007, relatively little information has been available about MRSA in US pigs.

Peter Davies, associate professor in the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine, in partnership with scientists from the USDA National Animal Disease Center and the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine, conducted two studies on MRSA in relation to US pigs and the people who work with them.

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Research snapshot: antibiotic resistant bacteria spreading in Minnesota

There is a public health crisis too small for the naked eye to see: antibiotic resistance. It affects at least 2 million people in the U.S. each year.

A study published in the Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy Journal by Timothy Johnson, Ph.D., associate professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine, in collaboration with the Minnesota Department of Health, has identified a new strain of antibiotic resistant bacteria that has spread throughout North Dakota and Minnesota, presumably by both patients and healthy, asymptomatic people.

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Research Snapshot: Researchers identify mechanisms that determine the aggressiveness of bone cancer

A new study published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry has found bone tumors have preprogrammed genes, meaning the genes of the cancer remain unchanged even after a tumor is found in the body.

Bone cancers are similar in canines and humans, so researchers are hoping to use this information to learn more about this type of cancer that predominantly affects dogs and children.

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Two U of M College of Veterinary Medicine faculty members appointed to National Presidential Advisory Council

An increasing number of bacterial infections no longer respond to antibiotics, which threatens public health and the economy. As a result, the Presidential Advisory Council on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria was formed. Out of just four U.S. veterinarians to be appointed to the committee, two are University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine faculty members Peter Robert Davies B.V.Sc., and Randall Singer, D.V.M.

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How to help an injured raptor during migration this fall

While we might not be thinking of winter quite yet, raptors are already preparing for the change in the season. In the darker, colder months, insects are sparse so smaller birds travel south in search for bugs to eat, and mammals need to adjust their diets to accommodate a smaller seed and plant supply. Frozen lakes pose a challenge for raptors like osprey and bald eagles relying on fish for nourishment.

The environmental changes lead raptors on an annual journey to find food sources, but the trip can be challenging.

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Educational activities to replace bird exhibitions at the 2015 Minnesota State Fair

Earlier this Spring, highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) hit Minnesota affecting more than 100 farms and more than 9 million poultry and birds across the state were killed. Animal health officials decided to close poultry exhibits at a variety of events including the 2015 Minnesota State Fair, leaving fair-goers and 4H members disappointed, but the decision will minimize the risk of spreading the virus further.  

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