What is Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD)?

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What is Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD)? Blog Image


In a concerning development, scientists are sounding the alarm about the potential spread of a condition known as chronic wasting disease (CWD) from animals to humans.

About Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD)

  • · CWD, also known as Zombie deer disease, is a neurological disorder affecting deer and other cervids (members of the deer family) caused by the abnormal growth of a misfolded protein called a prion.
  • · This prion causes healthy brain proteins to become abnormal, leading to a range of symptoms.
  • · CWD is contagious; it can be transmitted freely within and among cervid populations.
  • · Transmission: CWD is transmitted directly through animal-to-animal contact and indirectly through contact with objects or environments contaminated with infectious material (including saliva, urine, feces, and carcasses of CWD-infected animals).
  • · Symptoms: It may take over a year before an infected animal develops symptoms, which can include drastic weight loss (wasting), stumbling, listlessness, and other neurologic symptoms. 
  • · CWD is particularly concerning because it has the potential to affect both animals and humans, with the possibility of transmission through the consumption of infected meat.
  • · CWD can affect animals of all ages, and some infected animals may die without ever developing the disease.
  • · CWD is fatal to animals, and there are no treatments or vaccines.

Q1) What are Neurons?

Neurons (also called neurones or nerve cells) are the fundamental units of the brain and nervous system, the cells responsible for receiving sensory input from the external world, for sending motor commands to our muscles, and for transforming and relaying the electrical signals at every step in between. 

Source: New ‘zombie deer disease’ alert for humans! Scientists sound alarm as virus spreads in US