Experts Warn Deadly Zombie Deer Disease Could Spread To Humans Next

Experts Warn Deadly Zombie Deer Disease Could Spread To Humans Next

"So as long as you have deer on the landscape, and it continues to spread from animal to animal, you'll probably have more".

But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that as of January 2019, the disease has been reported in deer, elk and moose in 251 counties in 24 USA states, primarily in the Midwest.

While there have not been cases of the disease reported in humans, Michael Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, told lawmakers human cases will likely be "documented in the years ahead".

The CDC states on its website: "Since 2000, the area known to be affected by CWD in free-ranging animals has increased to at least 24 states, including states in the Midwest, Southwest, and limited areas on the East Coast". That is why many are concerned that it may be transfered to humans.

A deadly and infectious condition know as "zombie deer disease" is said to be spreading rapidly across the U.S. - and humans could be next, an expert has warned.

Recent research suggests it could be spread to humans, but no such cases have been reported, according to the CDC.

CWD has also been reported in two provinces in Canada, and in reindeer and moose in Norway and Finland - and there's been a small number of imported cases reported in South Korea.

Zombie Deer Disease could kill HUMANS next, experts warn | Daily Star

The CDC recommends that hunters and people who eat deer, elk or moose stay aware of where CWD has been found and heed local public health guidance.

If a deer looks sick or acts unnaturally, hunters should not shoot, handle or eat the meat, experts said.

It is caused by misfolded proteins, or prions, which leads to the spongy degeneration of the brain, resulting in emaciation, peculiar behaviour, loss of bodily functions and eventually death.

Do not use household knives or other kitchen utensils for field dressing. Recommendations vary by state, but information about testing is available from many state wildlife agencies.

If you have your deer or elk commercially processed, consider asking that your animal be processed individually to avoid mixing meat from multiple animals.

Because CWD isn't viral or bacterial, the animals at risk can't be vaccinated, and "there's basically no way to treat it", Tomecek said.

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