News

Emerging Fungal Infections Impact Wildlife

Jan 20, 2016 / Comparative Biosciences News

Yale Environment 360 (Jan. 19) – “It’s having a pretty significant impact on some populations,” Matthew Allender, a professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s veterinary school and the lead author on a recent paper on the etiology of SFD [snake fungal disease], said. For snakes infected with SFD, Allender noted, mortality rates can...

Fred Kummerow in his laboratory, he has spent his career battling trans fats

A Minute With… Fred Kummerow on the FDA’s Ban On Trans Fats

Jun 5, 2015 / Comparative Biosciences News

Comparative biosciences professor Fred Kummerow, now 100, first reported a link between dietary trans fats and heart disease in 1957. Trained in lipid biochemistry, Kummerow later determined the mechanisms by which trans fats contributed to atherosclerosis in patients with heart disease. In 2009, he petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to ban trans fats from...

blue-gloved hands hold a frog and wipe its yellow belly with a swab to diagnose diseases in ampibians

Task Force Looks at Diseases in Amphibians, Reptiles

May 30, 2015 / Comparative Biosciences News

Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (PARC), a North American conservation network devoted to amphibians and reptiles and their habitats, recently formed a task force to coordinate response to disease outbreaks impacting those species. Matt Allender, DVM, PhD, of the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, along with Matt Gray, PhD, from the University...

3D depiction of the production of steroid hormones, BPA

Flaws’ BPA Research Inspires YouTube Video

May 12, 2015 / Comparative Biosciences News

A group of undergraduate students at the University of Pennsylvania recently created a video influenced by Dr. Jodi Flaws, professor of comparative biosciences at Illinois. Dr. Flaws specializes in research involving factors such as toxicants that can affect the female reproductive system. One of Dr. Flaws’ recent research projects looked at how bisphenol A (BPA),...

BPA Mice Fertility

BPA Exposure in Pregnant Mice Affects Fertility in Three Generations

Apr 16, 2015 / Comparative Biosciences News

When scientists exposed pregnant mice to levels of bisphenol A equivalent to those considered safe in humans, three generations of female mouse offspring experienced significant reproductive problems, including declines in fertility, sexual maturity and pregnancy success, the scientists report in the journal Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology. BPA exposure during pregnancy was associated with reproductive problems...

[Dr. Jodi Flaws at a microscope]

The Phthalate DEHP Undermines Female Fertility in Mice

Mar 30, 2015 / Comparative Biosciences News

Two studies in mice add to the evidence that the phthalate DEHP, a plasticizing agent used in auto upholstery, baby toys, building materials and many other consumer products, can undermine female reproductive health, in part by disrupting the growth and function of the ovaries. In the first study, reported in the journal Reproductive Toxicology, researchers...

[Multidisciplinary team studies endometriosis]

New Drug Compounds Show Promise against Endometriosis

Jan 21, 2015 / Comparative Biosciences News

Two new drug compounds – one of which has already proven useful in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis – appear to be effective in treating endometriosis, a disorder that, like MS, is driven by estrogen and inflammation, scientists report in Science Translational Medicine. The researchers hope to eventually use the new compounds and others like...

[screen capture from video]

Department Head Educates Thousands Through TED Ed Video

Oct 12, 2014 / Comparative Biosciences News

Dr. Duncan Ferguson, head of comparative biosciences, and Dr. Margarethe Hoenig, veterinary clinical medicine, recently worked with a TED Ed team to create an educational video entitled “What did dogs teach humans about diabetes?” TED-Ed Original lessons feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. The description of the video...

[Matt Allender in his lab with a snake]

Scientists Gear up to Fight Deadly Snake Fungal Disease

Jul 15, 2014 / Comparative Biosciences News

Now we can identify the infections earlier, we can intervene earlier and we can potentially increase our success of treatment or therapy. Researchers have developed a faster and more accurate way to test for infection with Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola, a fungus that is killing snakes in the Midwest and eastern United States. The test also allows...

A Minute with … Jodi Flaws on bisphenol A

Jun 12, 2014 / Comparative Biosciences News

Researchers have conducted hundreds of studies of the potential health effects of exposure to bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical compound found in some plastic food containers, cash-register receipts and resin coatings in food-storage cans. Because it is a hormone mimic, a key concern is that exposure to BPA disrupts normal reproductive function. University of Illinois...