Posts Tagged ‘HIV’

South Africa: Neglect of animals threatening human lives

March 5, 2008

Domestic and farm animals in poverty-stricken rural areas often need veterinary care more desperately than animals in townships.

Allan Perrins, chief executive officer of the Cape of Good Hope SPCA, says the rural neglect of animals is a countrywide problem and the Karoo is the Western Cape’s “hotspot”.

Vast distances between clinics and homes and lack of transport, education and money all contribute to the problem.

There was an epidemic of mange, a condition that could be transferred to humans as scabies, Perrins said. This was especially dangerous for children, the elderly, and those living with tuberculosis or HIV.

Recently a vet visiting Ladismith in the Karoo had to put down, over a few hours, 60 animals infected with mange.

Fleas, ringworm, worms and other afflictions can also be contracted by humans.

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For more animal-esque music, news, and issues, tune in to Kitty Mowmow’s Animal Expo online at www.thecapstone.ua.edu, Sunday nights 8-10 central.

Study: More Deadly Diseases Crossing Barrier From Animals to Humans

February 21, 2008

Scores of deadly infectious diseases are crossing the species barrier from animals to humans, scientists have reported.

A three-year investigation has shown that since 1940 around 250 viruses such as HIV, Ebola Virus, Sars and H5N1 bird flu have jumped from wild animals to people.

Presenting the first-ever map of “hotspots” of new infectious diseases in the British journal Nature, researchers predicted the next pandemic is most likely to come out of poor tropical countries.

It is here where burgeoning human populations most frequently come into contact with wildlife.

The report said that if a monitoring system is not put in place “then human populations will continue to be at risk from pandemic diseases”.

HIV/Aids, which has killed or infected as many as 65 million people worldwide, is believed to have jumped from chimpanzees to humans, possibly through hunters who killed and butchered apes.

Most new diseases come from wild animals, especially mammals, which are the most closely related species to humans.

Pathogens that adapt to humans can be extremely lethal, as we have no resistance to them.

“We are crowding wildlife into ever-smaller areas, and human population is increasing,” said the report’s co-author Marc Levy.

“Where those two things meet, that is a recipe for something crossing over.”

Click here for the full article.