Seeking the cause of a mysterious whale disease

Ft. Pierce, FL On June 25, scientists will meet at HARBOR BRANCH Oceanographic Institution to study and discuss a deadly heart disease affecting pygmy and dwarf sperm whale populations. The workshop will bring together human and marine mammal researchers in an effort to better understand causes of the heart defect using medical techniques normally applied to humans.

Dr. Gregory Bossart, director of the HARBOR BRANCH Marine Mammal Research and Conservation Division, who has studied both clinical marine mammal medicine and pathology and human pathology, will lead the workshop. Other experts involved will include Dr. George Hensley, a human and comparative pathologist from the University of Miami Jackson Memorial Hospital; and marine mammal researchers from the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Fla., and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), as well as other HARBOR BRANCH experts.

The focus of the workshop will be a disease known as dilated cardiomyopathy, which appears to be the cause of death of most of a recent increase in pygmy sperm whale strandings in Florida, though the causes of the disease itself have been elusive. "We want to try to determine what's causing the cardiomyopathy because right now we only have a list of possibilities," says Dr. Bossart, who was the first, with colleagues, to describe the disease in 1985. The list of possibilities ranges from nutrient deficiency and environmental toxins to genetic mutations and infection.

From just January to March of this year there were 20 dwarf and pygmy sperm whale strandings in the southeast. Typically there are only about 12 in the region in an entire year. NMFS is deciding whether to call for a formal investigation into the cause of the increase.

Dilated cardiomyopathy involves enlargement of and subsequent weakening of part or all of the heart, and can leave whales more susceptible to environmental stresses and ultimately death. One human version of the

Contact: Mark Schrope
Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Seeking a mechanical solution to nations number-one childrens illness
2. Seeking comfort from the cold
3. The eyes have it: Seeking expressions of the genetic risk for developing alcoholism
4. Seeking Life At Its Limits Leads To Antarctica
5. Climate change plus human pressure caused large mammal extinctions in late Pleistocene
6. Researchers determine genetic cause of Timothy syndrome
7. Cigarette smoke causes breaks in DNA and defects to a cells chromosomes, Pitt study finds
8. Marijuana use could cause tubal pregnancies
9. Pollutant causes delayed flowering in plants
10. A probable cause for high blood pressure identified - shows links with diabetes
11. Disruption of protein-folding causes neurodegeneration, mental retardation

Post Your Comments:

(Date:6/28/2020)... ... June 25, 2020 , ... In an upcoming episode scheduled for ... Point of Care Testing solutions (POCT). Check local listings for more info. , Today, ... offices and are shipped to labs throughout the country. Results are then available several ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... June 23, 2020 , ... ... healthcare, and Renovagen Ltd, a UK supplier and manufacturer of innovative portable renewable ... testing operations in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in Zambia. , One ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... June 23, 2020 , ... In its June 22 online post, business ... James L. Sherley, M.D., Ph.D., founder and director of stem cell biotechnology company ... June 16 that starting July 5 it would begin offering free tissue ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/31/2020)... ... August 29, 2020 , ... ... manufacturing capability in Wuxi, China. The new plant operation will provide the local ... advanced technology. , “This facility will improve the flexibility of our offerings ...
(Date:8/15/2020)... ... 13, 2020 , ... Inc. magazine today revealed that Skysis ... of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents a unique look at ... businesses. Intuit, Zappos, Under Armour, Microsoft, Patagonia, and many other well-known names gained ...
(Date:8/12/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... August 11, ... ... a biopharmaceutical cold chain validation engineering firm, is making available for free ... the need to incorporate concurrent transport simulation testing into today’s biologics licensing ...
(Date:8/7/2020)... ... August 06, 2020 , ... ... announces it has closed on the purchase of greenfield for a new, expanded ... and includes over 21 acres in the initial acquisition, with an option to ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: