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West Nile Virus confirmed in Kentucky horse
US vets have confirmed the presence of West Nile Virus in a horse from Kentucky.

Discovery is the US state’s second case of 2019

US vets have confirmed the presence of West Nile Virus (WNV) in a horse from Kentucky.

According to The Horse.com, the University of Kentucky Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory confirmed the presence of the disease in a five-month-old rocky mountain horse from Powell County.

On Wednesday (9 October), the horse presented with clinical signs compatible with the disease. Vets collected and tested a sample from the horse the following day.

The horse, which had not been vaccinated against WNV, failed to respond to treatment and its condition gradually deteriorated until it died.

This is the second horse to be confirmed with WNV in Kentucky this year. In September, officials at the Kentucky Department of Agriculture confirmed the disease in a seven-year-old Paint gelding.

Other US states that are reported to have confirmed equine WNV cases include California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Minnesota, and Washington.

WNV is an incurable condition, but with supportive care, some horses do recover. The disease is spread by infected mosquitos, with clinical signs including mild anorexia, drowsiness and asymmetrical ataxia.

The American Association of Equine Practitioners recommends all horses are vaccinated against WNV at least once a year.

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Regional Representatives nominations sought

News Story 1
 Seven new regional representatives are being sought by the British Veterinary Association (BVA) to speak for vets from those regions and to represent their views to BVA Council.

The opportunities are available in in the North-East, Yorkshire & Humber, East Midlands, West Midlands, London, Wales, and Northern Ireland. Representatives from all sectors of the veterinary profession are urged to apply.

BVA president Daniella Dos Santos, said: "Our regional representatives are integral to that mission and to the activities of Council - contributing to effective horizon scanning on matters of veterinary policy and providing an informed steer to BVA’s Policy Committee.” 

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News Shorts
Livestock Antibody Hub receives funding boost

The Pirbright Institute has received US $5.5 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to form a Livestock Antibody Hub aimed at supporting animal and human health. The work will bring together researchers from across the UK utilise research outcomes in livestock disease and immunology.

Dr Doug Brown, chief executive of the British Society for Immunology, commented: “The UK is a world leader in veterinary immunology research, and this transformative investment from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will drive the next chapter of innovation in developing new treatments and prevention options against livestock diseases".