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Weekly News Roundup 8/28 to 9/3

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Turmeric could help treat canine uveitis

Researchers at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences have found that the turmeric plant, a member of the ginger family known for its vivid yellow color, may have powerful anti-inflammatory properties useful in the treatment of uveitis in dogs. While studying the anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin, a compound found in turmeric, they discovered that when processed to a special nanoparticle formulation that boosts absorption, it’s safe and effective at managing uveitis—without any known side effects. . . . more

New study finds cat drugs may fight coronavirus in humans

A drug designed for cats may protect people from coronavirus, according to a new study. The medicine, GC376, was made to treat cats for feline infectious peritonitis (FIP). FIP is caused by another type of virus—that is, not the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19 in humans—but research showed that GC376 could destroy SARS-CoV-2. This hasn't been tested in humans yet but the researchers said the fact that it works as an antiviral against coronaviruses is enough proof to push it into clinical trials—and called for them to begin immediately. . . . more

FDA warns about hand sanitizer packaged to look like food or drinks

Some hand sanitizer products are being packaged in containers typically used for food and drinks, leading to concerns that people may accidentally ingest the products, according to health officials. The US Food and Drug Administration put out a warning about these hand sanitizer products, which have been packaged in a variety of potentially misleading containers, including beer cans, water bottles, juice bottles, vodka bottles, and children’s food pouches. . . . more

Daylight study reveals how animals adapt between seasons

Scientists have discovered how a biological switch helps animals make the seasonal changes crucial for survival, such as growing a warm winter coat and adjusting body temperatures. The findings reveal how the brain responds to short and long days to allow animals to adapt to changing conditions and governs vital behavior such as breeding cycles. Researchers say the study, conducted with sheep, could help explain the timing of seasonal adaptations in a number of species such as birds, reptiles, and mammals. . . .more

How technology is saving lions (and cattle)

The idea behind lion-tracking collars is to help local livestock owners in Botswana protect their cattle. Whenever a collared lion is close, cattle owners get a text alert, giving them time to move the herds somewhere safer. Cattle are one of the main income sources for people in the area, and losing a cow to a lion is a big financial hit. It’s tough to blame residents for wanting to eliminate the predators. Unfortunately, preemptive and retaliatory killings are one of the biggest threats to lions, whose numbers across Africa have dropped more than 40% in 20 years. Early alert systems such as lion-tracking collars could help reverse that trend. . . . more