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Stem cells ‘could be used as an alternative to antibiotics’
"...MSCs could prove useful against antimicrobial resistance and be used as an alternative to antibiotics.”

Study finds MSCs in horses fight bacterial infection 

Stem cells found in horses naturally produce molecules that can fight bacterial infection, according to new research by the Roslin Institute.

The team examined mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which are seen in animals and humans and can differentiate into a variety of cell types.

They discovered that MSCs may be able to fight infection in two ways - by acting directly on bacteria and by regulating the activity of immune cells involved in the body’s natural defences.

The endometrium was identified as a particularly promising novel source of MSCs for clinical applications in horses - and likely in other species too.

MSCs obtained from bone marrow or adipose tissue have been used for clinical tissue regeneration in animals for more than 10 years, which scientists say assures their safe use as potential clinical antimicrobials in the future.

Lead author Dr Cristina Esteves said: “This study shows that equine MSCs may act to defend the body against bacterial infection.

"We’re excited about these results as MSCs could prove useful against antimicrobial resistance and be used as an alternative to antibiotics.”

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World Bee Day celebrations begin

News Story 1
 Today (20 May) marks the fifth annual World Bee Day, which raises awareness of the importance of bees and pollinators to people and the planet. Observed on the anniversary of pioneering Slovenian beekeeper Anton Jana's birthday, this year's celebration is themed: 'Bee Engaged: Celebrating the diversity of bees and beekeeping systems'.

Organisations and people celebrating the day will raise awareness of the accelerated decline in pollinator diversity, and highlight the importance of sustainable beekeeping systems and a wide variety of bees. Slovenia, the initiator of World Bee Day, will be focusing on teaching young people about the significance of pollinators. 

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Further avian flu cases confirmed

Three cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 have been confirmed in recent days, bringing the total number of cases in England to 98.

On Thursday, the APHA confirmed two cases of HPAI H5N1 near Redgrave, Mid Suffolk and Market Weston, West Suffolk. A case H5N1 was also confirmed in poultry at a premises near Southwell, Newark and Sherwood, Nottinghamshire.

Protection and surveillance zones are in place around the affected premises. Further details are available at gov.uk