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Thread: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

  1. #1
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    Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Came across this article today, sounds promising for CWD

    https://www.sciencenews.org/article/...ess-infectious

    An acid found in soil may make a disease killing deer less infectious


    The incurable neurodegenerative disease is crippling deer, elk and moose populations



    An acid found in rich humus soil breaks down the misfolded brain proteins — called prions — that cause chronic wasting disease.


    When concentrations of humic acid similar to those found in soils were applied to diseased elk brain tissue, chemical signatures of the infectious prions were nearly erased, researchers report online November 29 in PLOS Pathogens. That suggests that the acid somehow degrades the warped protein, making it less infectious, says Judd Aiken, a prion disease researcher at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada.


    Chronic wasting disease, an incurable neurodegenerative disease, has devastated populations of deer, elk and moose across parts of North America, South Korea, Sweden and Norway. We know “that environmental sources of infectivity play a role in transmission of these diseases,” Aiken says. The twisted proteins lurk in the rotting carcasses, feces or saliva of infected animals, and eventually seep into soils. The infection spreads when deer graze in prion-contaminated areas.


    Previous studies have shown that soil mineralogy can influence the spread of prions, says Bryan Richards, a wildlife biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Wildlife Health Center in Madison, Wis., who was not involved in the study. For example, prions easily bind to microscopic minerals such as quartz, kaolinite and montmorillonite, and can — as lab tests have revealed — stay locked in soil for years.
    Prions are a malformed version of proteins that cause nearby normal proteins of the same kind to take on this complex shape that is harmful to nerve cells. Infected animals become listless, disoriented and unable to chew their food or drink water for months until death.


    Unlike mad cow disease, another fatal prion-related disorder, there is currently no evidence that chronic wasting disease can transfer to humans. Still, little is known about the transmission barrier between species, and scientists aren’t ruling out the possibility. If chronic wasting disease continues to ravage deer and elk populations, more humans may come into contact with the tainted animals through hunting and farming.
    But the discovery of how humic acid affects prions may provide a way to track or even prevent the disease from taking hold.


    Since levels of humic acid vary in nature, scientists exposed infected elk brain tissue to one, 2.5 and 25 grams per liter of commercially produced humic acid, and let it incubate overnight. In tissue samples with higher concentrations of humic acid, chemical signatures left by the infectious prions decreased by as much as 95 percent, signaling that the prions had likely broken down. The team also tested humic acid extracted from soil samples collected throughout western Canada and noted a similar decrease in prion signatures.


    Next, researchers injected some mice with a mixture of humic acid and infected elk brain tissue. Others were given a noninfected mixture. The team then monitored the mice during a roughly yearlong incubation period. Higher doses of humic acid correlated to weaker prion signals in the infected mice. In roughly half the cases, the mice injected with the infected brain tissue and humic acid mixture didn’t show any symptoms at all after a 280-day incubation period.


    The results suggest that humic acid could be used in efforts to limit the disease’s spread — possibly as a soil decontaminant to disinfect farmland. Previously, high levels of a mineral called birnessite were also found to degrade prions, therefore limiting transmission of the disease.


    Alternatively, scientists could use this information to map which geographic areas elevate or inhibit prion transmission based on the levels of humic acid in the soil, says Shannon Bartelt-Hunt, an environmental engineer at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln who was not involved in the research. The next step, Bartelt-Hunt says, might be to test the effects of humic acid on prion-contaminated soil samples to see if prions can be eradicated in the environment.
    Unfortunately, the rifles are getting lighter because we are getting heavier and more unfit as a society. This is the key to the mainstream acceptance of the short magnums. - Nathan Foster

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  3. #2
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Is CWD even a problem anymore?

    I was under the impression it was from over population, and we definitely don't have over populations of animals anymore.

    Haven't heard of a case in a long time.

  4. #3
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    I wouldn't say it has ever been a problem in BC, yet, but it is a big problem wherever it establishes itself, it has been found in the wild in Alberta and Saskatchewan, and also on farms, so the risk is still valid to BC with hunters bringing carcasses across the border

    I wanted to share this article on the annual bait bashing thread that seems to pop up every December but I see that was locked lol, CWD was a hot topic in that conversation
    Unfortunately, the rifles are getting lighter because we are getting heavier and more unfit as a society. This is the key to the mainstream acceptance of the short magnums. - Nathan Foster

  5. #4
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Still ongoing head submission program in my area of the Okanagan. Hasn't been a case from what I understand. When I first moved here there were a couple fields harbouring well over 100 whitetail that were definitely swapping spot with local cattle. Deer numbers seem to have been thinned out in that particular area, probably for the best. Not to start another fight but the interaction between cattle and wild game seems to have more potential for cwd spread than any average joe throwing a couple pounds of feed out in the bush. I know an alpine area that cattle take over every year, prime mule deer habitat the two
    sharimg the same grazing grounds...
    The only advantage to a light rifle is it's weight, all other advantages go to the heavier rifle..

  6. #5
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    First CWD case in Montana recently. It is just a matter of time until the disease arrives in B.C. unfortunately.

  7. #6
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Quote Originally Posted by Drillbit View Post
    Is CWD even a problem anymore?

    I was under the impression it was from over population, and we definitely don't have over populations of animals anymore.

    Haven't heard of a case in a long time.
    i spoke with a CO in Alberta when I was hunting there a few weeks ago. He said last year 8% of mule deer tested positive for CWD in the MU we were hunting in (compulsory head submissions for all deer), and this years said they estimate that up to a third of all mature (+4 years) will be positive. I’d say that’s a massive problem.

  8. #7
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Cool, thanks for the article

  9. #8
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD



    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with keyboards and forums. - F L Wright


    "Statistics are like women; mirrors of purest virtue and truth, or like whores to use as one pleases". ~Theodor Billroth

  10. #9
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Quote Originally Posted by Drillbit View Post
    Is CWD even a problem anymore?

    I was under the impression it was from over population, and we definitely don't have over populations of animals anymore.

    Haven't heard of a case in a long time.
    CWD is a Huge problem. They are monitoring it but it's moving west and it's a matter of time before we get it. It may end the hunting of ungulates as we know it. This is really scary shit!
    Last edited by Brez; 12-05-2018 at 02:44 PM.
    "Target archery is seeing how far away you can get and still hit the bull's eye;
    Bowhunting is seeing how close you can get and never miss your mark."

  11. #10
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    Re: Acid found in soil may combat CWD

    Heres Something for Ourea and his baiting friends
    BCWF Wildlife Policy:
    g) The BCWF agrees that there can be negative consequences with the supplementalfeeding of wildlife such as increased risk of disease transmission, degradation of naturalhabitat in proximity to feeding sites, increased mortality from predation near feeding sites,increased conflicts with humans, and negative consequences to animal health resultingfrom the use of improper feed or sudden changes in feed sources. Therefore, there is aneed for concise provincial policy that includes criteria describing when and how feedingshould occur.

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