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Ohio State University’s (USA) College of Veterinary Medicine Links with One Health Initiative website - Friday, February 05, 2010


Ohio State University’s (USA) College of Veterinary Medicine Links with One Health Initiative website

 *The One Health Initiative website was notified that effective today, February 5, 2010, the Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine has linked the One Health Initiative website on their website’s front page

UNDER News Stories

"One Health" at the College of Veterinary Medicine

“At Ohio State, the concept of one health allows us to address a triple threat to health in an integrated way. We recognize the importance of addressing issues in animal health, human health and environmental health and are expanding several programs to meet the challenges in all three areas.  

The  One Health Initiative is a national effort that is bringing together "collaborative efforts of multiple disciplines working locally, nationally, and globally to attain optimal health for people, animals, plants and our environment."

Notably, the current Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine, Lonnie J. King, DVM, MS, MPA, is a renowned champion and preeminent leader of the One Health movement in the United States and internationally.  Among many top administrative positions, Dr. King has served as Administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA-APHIS), Dean of the Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and most recently the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) first Director of the *former National Center for Zoonotic, Vector-Borne, and Enteric Diseases (NCZVED).


The One Health Initiative website promotes One Health and endeavors to post all pertinent national and international One Health News, Publications, and Upcoming events items in a timely fashion.   There are now 34 websites, worldwide, linked to this autonomous pro bono website. 


*Provided by:

Melissa L. Weber, Director

Communications and Marketing

College of Veterinary Medicine

127D Veterinary Medicine Academic Building (VMAB)

1900 Coffey Road

Columbus, Ohio 43210

*Effective January 4th, 2010, two former Centers, including NCZVED and the former National Center for Preparedness, Detection, and Control of Infectious Diseases (NCPDCID) have been merged into one new Center, the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Diseases (NCEZID) proposedThomas Hearn, PhD has been named the Acting director for NCEZID (proposed), and RADM Ali Khan, MD, MPH is serving as Acting Deputy Director.

European Wildlife Disease Association (EWDA) Links with One Health Initiative website - Wednesday, February 03, 2010

European Wildlife Disease Association (EWDA) Links with One Health Initiative website


The One Health Initiative website has been notified that the European Wildlife Disease Association (EWDA) has linked our website on their links page  There are now 33 websites, worldwide, linked to this One Health Initiative website. 

Mission of EWDA:

“The European Wildlife Disease Association (EWDA) seeks to provide a forum for the exchange of information on wildlife diseases and their management. Through the provision of opportunities for networking, collaborative research and training we seek to raise the profile of wildlife disease research and management.”


Information provided by:


 Merel Langelaar, DVM, PhD  
 Laboratory for Zoonoses and Environmental Microbiology (LZO)  
 National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM)
 Centre for Infectious Disease Control Netherlands
 P.O. Box 1 (postbak 63)
 3720 BA Bilthoven
 The Netherlands

The Case For A "One Health" Paradigm Shift - Reprinted with permission from ALN Europe™ - Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Tuesday, September 01, 2009.

Reprinted with permission from ALN Europe™


The Case For A "One Health" Paradigm Shift
By Bruce Kaplan, DVM and Mary Echols, DVM, MPH
September/October 2009

The One Health concept calls for a merging of perspectives from within human and veterinary medical disciplines.

A public health emergency declared due to the newly emerged “swine flu” virus (H1N1) was recently classified as a worldwide pandemic. This is definitely an indication of impending similar, serious “brewing storms”. Since 1998, public health officials and scientists have been speculating about this with the avian flu (H5N1) virus strain. Fortunately, this has not evolved yet and may never do so. But, make no mistake; we are on the precipice of unpleasant health and health care threats that need to be addressed.

These influenza events, plus the fact that approximately 75% of recently emerging infectious diseases affecting humans are diseases of animal origin, strongly suggest the need for a paradigm change on how public health approaches these phenomena called “zoonotic diseases”, i.e. diseases transmissible from animals to man.

Today, many institutional, geographic, and financial barriers often prohibit meaningful interactions among experts. The result is that surveillance, research, prevention, and control measures for cross-species infections like influenza and dangerous bacteria emerging from antibiotic resistance, like those demonstrated by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) between pigs and people, have been short changed. This deficit must be rectified in order to pursue an enlightened course of modern health and health care for this generation and for generations to come.

The 1918-1919 influenza pandemic killed 50 to 100 million people worldwide. Emerging influenza viruses have been isolated from a variety of animals, including humans, pigs, horses, wild and domestic birds, and sea mammals. The recent events caused by swine flu came to light only when human cases occurred. The interval between cross-species spread and the declaration of a public health emergency was extremely brief, a matter of days. It is reasonable to ask: could surveillance for the emergence of new strains of flu be more effective if targeted at animals—the “mixing pot” of flu virus evolution? Could we develop more effective tools to identify strains with potential to spill over from animals to humans?

Besides influenza, other animal diseases are transmissible to humans. Hantaviruses exist in various rodent reservoirs where the hosts are persistently infected without disease symptoms. Specific hantaviruses transmitted from the contaminated urine and feces of infected rodents cause two important human diseases, hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) and hantavirus-pulmonary syndrome (HPS). Nipah virus is a newly discovered virus of fruit bats responsible for encephalitis outbreaks in southeast Asia. West Nile, a virus of birds, invaded the U.S. in 1999 and is now endemic. Emerging bacterial disease agents can be transmitted by food animals including E. coli 0157:H7, various Salmonella species, Campylobacter species, and Streptococcus iniae (from farmed fish). Leptospirosis is the most common rat-transmitted disease in the United States.

Combating zoonoses effectively will require a “One Health” approach—an interdisciplinary collaborative model for prevention and control of infectious disease epidemics, as well as chronic illnesses (e.g. cancer, obesity, orthopedic prosthetics, genetics, and others) that affect humans and animals. Physicians, veterinarians, ecologists, environmental scientists, laboratory animal specialists, and other health science-related disciplines must work together, equally without regard to “turf” barriers.

The One Health concept promotes the integration of human, animal, and environmental health by communication and collaboration among multiple disciplines. Successful One Health examples during the late 19th century and 20th century include:

Yellow Fever - In 1893, Theobald Smith (physician) and Frederick L. Kilborne (veterinarian) published a seminal paper on Texas cattle fever transmitted by ticks that set the stage for Walter Reed’s discovery of yellow fever transmission via mosquitoes.

Anthrax - In 1903, John McFadyean (veterinarian with a degree in veterinary medicine and medicine) published a paper on “McFadyean methylene-blue reaction in anthrax”, still referred to and recognized in microbiology texts.2,3 It is currently noted as “the ideal method for demonstration of the [anthrax] capsule.”4 McFadyean is regarded as the founder of modern veterinary research.

Tuberculosis - In 1921, Albert Calmette (physician) and Jean-Marie Camille Guerin (veterinarian) collaborations resulted in the “BCG” Tuberculosis vaccine that, along with the use of streptomycin, was credited with a dramatic reduction in the human toll from Tuberculosis caused by Mycobacterium bovis contracted by contact from infected cattle.

Immune System - In 1996, Rolf M. Zinkernagel (physician) and Peter C. Doherty (veterinarian) won the Nobel Prize for discovering how the body’s immune system distinguishes normal cells from virusinfected cells.5,6

In 1976, Frederick A. Murphy (veterinarian) and Karl M. Johnson (physician) worked closely together (along with others) to help unravel the mystery surrounding the initial outbreak of Ebola hemorrhagic fever and discovered its etiologic agent, Ebola virus5,6

Karl M. Johnson, MD is Past Director, Middle America Research Unit - NIAID, NIH Founding Chief -Special Pathogens Branch, CDC (retired). Commenting on their work together, Johnson noted, “Fred Murphy and I collaborated on zoonotic viruses, their pathogenesis, epidemiology, and ecology; initially at great distance but later in daily contact at CDC. Although Ebola virus was perhaps the most notable project, our work over many years truly exemplifies the concept of One World, One Medicine, One Health.

“My prayer is that support, both scientific and financial, for the marriage of human and veterinary medicine will grow at an ever expanding rate. The earth requires it.”

Fred Murphy, DVM, PhD, University of Texas Medical Branch, Department of Pathology, reflected on the work of some of the pioneers. He stated, “My recent delving into the foundations of medical and veterinary virology has provided much evidence of common roots and incredible early interplay, much more than we see today. For example, Walter Reed and his colleagues, the discoverers of the first human virus, yellow fever virus, acknowledged the influence of Friedrich Loeffler and Paul Frosch, who had discovered the first virus, foot-and-mouth disease virus, a few years earlier.

“From my reading, it was Sir William Osler, the founder of modern human medicine and of veterinary pathology, who in the late 1800s coined the term ‘One Medicine’. Calvin Schwabe, the inspiring veterinary epidemiologist from UC Davis, has been credited with revitalizing the concept, and now it seems that the concept is gaining new breadth and depth, thanks to the efforts of the One Health Initiative. As others have noted, bringing substance to the concept, shaking up institutions and individuals, will require a difficult and long-term effort, especially as this applies to the interplay of physicians, veterinarians and biological scientists in biomedical research and in the scholarly base for public health—but, as [golfer] Arnold Palmer said, “Never up, never in.”

In an impressive One Health example in the 21st century, veterinarian James “Jimi” Cook, DVM, PhD, a University of Missouri-Columbia college of veterinary medicine Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, and physician B. Sonny Bal, MD, JD, MBA, Associate Professor of Orthopedic Surgery college of medicine have been investigating practicable clinical medicine betterment in the field of orthopedics—for humans and animals. Drs. Cook and Bal have collaborated for about seven years on efforts to create hip and knee replacements without using commonplace biomechanical metal and plastic materials. The technique being developed by Cook for dogs involves use of laboratory grown tissue (cartilage) that can be molded into replicas of joints that require replacement. Bal and Cook are jointly developing a process whereby a similar process can be adapted for humans.7

Following a June 2009 story in the Missourian where both men were recognized for their important biomedical research, Dr. Bal commented, “Jimi Cook and I have worked alongside a team of specialists from medicine, veterinary medicine, and engineering for seven years now. Our current focus is to develop replacement joints that mimic the natural process of cartilage and bone formation as they grow and develop. This kind of collaboration is essential to the creation of better options for the replacement of failing hips and other joints. By working with specialists in the veterinary field, we are able to evaluate our technology more rapidly, and that means that we will be able to develop these alternatives for humans sooner than if we worked alone.”

The early 21st century physician and former President of the American Medical Association, Ronald Davis, MD [now deceased] collaborated with the former President of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Roger K. Mahr, DVM helping to establish a bond between the AMA and AVMA. Davis skillfully shepherded an historic One Health supportive resolution through to adoption by the AMA membership—a major milestone in the progress of this modern day One Health movement.

In July 2007, Dr. Davis said, “I'm delighted that the AMA House of Delegates has approved a resolution calling for increased collaboration between the human and veterinary medical communities and I look forward to seeing a stronger partnership between physicians and veterinarians. Emerging infectious diseases, with the threats of cross-species transmission and pandemics, represent one of many reasons why the human and veterinary medical professions must work more closely together”.

A large number of North American professional organizations have endorsed the One Health concept. Among these are the American Medical Association; American Veterinary Medical Association; American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene; Association of American Medical Colleges; and American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges. Globally, One Health has been recognized by the Immuno Valley Consortium in The Netherlands; the Indian Veterinary Public Health Association; The Institute for Preventive Veterinary Medicine and Food Safety, Lazio and Tuscany Regions, Italy; the Italian Society of Preventive Medicine; the Corporation Red SPVet, Bogota, Colombia; and others.

A recent One Health monograph—containing 13 diverse essays—was published in the European Journal, Veterinaria Italiana. It provides a strong scientific international case for implementing the One Health model worldwide. It is the product of 53 prominent interdisciplinary professionals (physicians, veterinarians, and health scientists) from twelve countries.1

The One Health concept is a global strategy that is expanding within public health and academic circles. However, it is not widely known among practicing physicians, veterinarians, news media, or the general public. Once implemented, the synergism achieved will advance health care for the 21st century and beyond by accelerating biomedical research discoveries, enhancing public health efficacy, expeditiously expanding the scientific knowledge base, and improving medical education and clinical care. Seeking essential practicable “out of the box” scientific knowledge will most likely require a mind merging of various perspectives from within human and veterinary medical disciplines as well as others.


1.       Kaplan, Bruce, Laura H. Kahn, and Thomas P. Monath. "'One Health - One Medicine': linking human, animal and environmental health." Veterinaria Italiana Volume 45 (1)(2009) Web 2009/45_1/45_1.htm.

2.       Pattison, Ian. John Mcfaydyean: Founder of Modern Veterinary Research. London: J.A. Allen, 1981. Print.

3.       Dunlop, RH and DJ Williams. Veterinary Medicine: An Illustrated History. Mosby, 1996. Print.

4.       WHO Blood Safety and Technology: Manual for Laboratory Diagnosis of Anthrax. Last update: 27 April 2006.

5.       Kahn, LH, B. Kaplan, and JH Steele. "Confronting zoonoses through closer colaboration between medicine and veterinary medicine." Veterinaria Italiana 43 (1)(2007) 5-19. Web. 43_1/5_19.pdf.

6.       Kahn, LH, B. Kaplan, and TP Monath. ""One Health" in Action Series" June 7, 2007. Online Posting. One Health/One Medicine. Web:

7.       7. Monath, Thomas P., Bruce Kaplan, Laura H. Kahn, and Jack Woodall. One Health Initiative.

Dr. Bruce Kaplan, a retired veterinarian, is a former Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (USA) epidemiologist, practitioner of small animal medicine, United States Department of Agriculture-Food Safety Inspection Service public affairs specialist and staff officer in Washington, DC and a writer/editor/ columnist. Dr. Kaplan currently helps manage the One Health Initiative website and serves on the editorial board of the One Health Newsletter.

Dr. Mary Echols, a public health veterinarian, is with the Palm Beach County Health Department, Palm Beach, Florida (USA). Dr. Echols is the Editor of the One Health Newsletter, a product of the Florida Department of Health, Division of Environmental Health and collaborates closely with the One Health Initiative website One Health team.,

Editorial: 'ONE HEALTH' and Parasitology - Tuesday, August 25, 2009

“ONE HEALTH” Editorial Published on ‘Parasites and Vectors’ ...

'One Health' and Parasitology


Please see

or PDF at

'ONE HEALTH' and parasitology
Bruce Kaplan, Laura H Kahn, Thomas P Monath, Jack Woodall
Parasites & Vectors 2009, 2:36 (12 August 2009)
[Abstract] [Full Text] [PDF] [PubMed] [Related articles]

HISTORIC “One Health” Monograph Published - Friday, June 26, 2009

HISTORIC “One Health” Monograph Published


Veterinaria Italiana


 ‘One Health – One Medicine’:


linking human, animal and environmental health


Volume 45 (1) / January – March 2009


Bruce Kaplan, DVM, Laura H. Kahn, MD, MPH, MPP and Thomas P. Monath, MD, Editors


This monograph contains a variety of 13 scientific One Health essays by 53 authors & co-authors from 12 countries including the U.S.  These provide further justification for invoking a rapid One Health paradigm shift for the benefit of human and animal health and health care locally, nationally and globally.


“It is a glorious feeling to discover the unity of a set of phenomena that seem at first to be completely separate”


Albert Einstein, April 14, 1901



‘One Health - One Medicine’: linking human, animal and environmental health

Bruce Kaplan, DVM, Laura H. Kahn, MD, MPH, MPP & Thomas P. Monath, MD

The brewing storm                                                              9-18




Laura H. Kahn, MD, MPH, MPP

‘One Medicine - One Health’ interview with Ronald M. Davis†, MD, President of the American Medical Association,                                      19-21


Peter Rabinowitz, MD, MPH, Matthew Scotch, PhD, MPH & Lisa Conti, DVM, MPH

Human and animal sentinels for shared health risks             23-34


E. Paul J. Gibbs, BVSc, PhD, FRCVS & Tara C. Anderson, DVM, MPH

‘One World - One Health’ and the global challenge of epidemic diseases of viral aetiology                                                                        35-44




Eyal Klement, DVM, MSc, Nahum Shpigel, DVM, PhD, Ran D. Balicer, MD, MPH, Gad Baneth, DVM, PhD, Itamar Grotto, MD, MPH & Nadav Davidovitch, MD, MPH, PhD

One Health’, from science to policy: examples from the Israeli experience          45-53


Alemka Markotiæ, MD, PhD, Lidija Cvetko Krajinoviæ, BSc, Josip Margaletiæ, PhD, Nenad Turk, DVM, PhD, Marica Miletiæ-Medved, MD, PhD, Ljiljana ˇmak, MD, PhD, Mateja Jankoviæ, MD, Ivan-Christian Kurolt, BSc, Silvija Šoprek, MD, Oktavija Ðakoviæ Rode, MD, MSc, Zoran Milas, DVM, PhD, Ivan Puljiz, MD, PhD, Dragan Ledina, MD, MSc, Mirsada Hukiæ, MD, PhD & Ilija Kuzman, MD, PhD

Zoonoses and vector-borne diseases in Croatia - a multidisciplinary approach  55-66


Stephen J. Prowse, PhD, Nigel Perkins, BVSc (Hon), MS, PhD & Hume Field, BVSc, MSc, PhD

Strategies for enhancing Australias capacity to respond to emerging

infectious diseases                                                                                   67-78


Jacqueline Fletcher, PhD, David Franz, DVM, PhD & J. Eugene LeClerc, PhD

Healthy plants: necessary for a balanced One Health concept      79-95


Val Beasley, DVM, PhD

One Toxicology, Ecosystem Health and One Health                      97-110


Douglas Thamm, VMD & Steven Dow, DVM, PhD

How companion animals contribute to the fight against cancer in humans   111-120


Jakob Zinsstag, DVM, PhD, Esther Schelling, DVM, PhD, Bassirou Bonfoh, DVM, PhD, Anthony R. Fooks, PhD, CBiol, FiBiol, Joldoshbek Kasymbekov, DVM, PhD, David Waltner-Toews, DVM, PhD & Marcel Tanner, PhD, MPH

Towards a ‘One Health’ research and application tool box                   121-133


Charles O. Thoen, DVM, PhD, Philip A. LoBue, MD, Donald A. Enarson, MD, John B. Kaneene, DVM, MPH, PhD & Isabel N. de Kantor, PhD

Tuberculosis: a re-emerging disease in animals and humans              135-181


Joan Hendricks, VMD, PhD, Charles D. Newton, DVM, MS & Arthur Rubenstein, MBBCh (MD)

One Medicine - One Health at the School of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania - the first 125 years                                       183-194


Laura H. Kahn, MD, MPH, MPP, Bruce Kaplan, DVM & Thomas P. Monath, MD

One Health’ in Action Series: Nos 1-8  


In memoriam


Great 21st century physician One Health leader dies    Ronald M. Davis, MD
Past President, American Medical Association     209

















Orthopedic Surgeons (a veterinarian and physician) Research Creative Hip and Knee Replacements for Dogs and Humans Together - Wednesday, June 03, 2009

One Health in ACTION! 

Orthopedic Surgeons (a veterinarian and physician) Research Creative Hip and Knee Replacements for Dogs and Humans Together

Veterinarian James "Jimi" Cook, DVM, PhD, a University of Missouri- Columbia college of veterinary medicine professor of orthopedic surgery and physician B. Sonny Bal, MD, JD, MBA, Associate Professor of Orthopedic Surgery college of medicine have collaborated for over seven years on efforts to create hip and knee replacements without using commonplace biomechanical metal and plastic materials.  The technique being developed by Dr. Cook for dogs initially, involves use of laboratory grown tissue (cartilage) that can be molded into replicas of joints that require replacement.  Drs. Bal and Cook are concomitantly developing a process whereby a similar process can be adapted for humans.  

The two One Health supporters were recognized for their important biomedical research in the MISSOURIAN Newspaper, Tuesday, June 2, 2009.  This is another significant example of why “One Health” needs to be implemented into the scheme of health and health care as a paradigm shift.  Humans and animals will obviously benefit immensely in fields of biomedical research and public health.

“Jimi Cook [DVM, PhD] and I have worked alongside a team of specialists from medicine, veterinary medicine, and engineering for seven years now. Our current focus is to develop replacement joints that mimic the natural process of cartilage and bone formation as they grow and develop. This kind of collaboration is essential to the creation of better options for the replacement of failing hips and other joints. By working with specialists in the veterinary field, we are able to evaluate our technology more rapidly, and that means that we will be able to develop these alternatives for humans sooner than if we worked alone.”


Sonny Bal [MD, JD, MBA]


 MU builds ties between veterinary and human researchers

Tuesday, June 2, 2009 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

(Permission to publish granted June 3, 2009)


*Please visit website link above to see accompanying Photo of Drs. Cook and Bal along with descriptive caption. You may also view the complete article with photo and caption on this website's Publication page.


BY Tim Lloyd

COLUMBIA — Jimi Cook’s grandfather was one of the first patients in the U.S. to have artificial knee replacement surgery. 

“From the time I was 8 years old, I have always wanted to find a better way to treat arthritis after watching him go through six knee replacements,” Cook said. He is an associate professor of small animal surgery and director of the Comparative Orthopaedic Laboratory at the MU School of Veterinary Medicine. 

Nearly three decades after his grandfather's surgeries, Cook is developing new technology that might make repeat surgeries things of the past. But his discovery didn’t only come from studying the human skeletal system.

“Dogs are the closest replicas of humans for us when it comes to studying clinical problems in knees and hips,” he said.

Cook's new technique involves growing cartilage in a lab that can be molded into permanent joint replacements. It’s just one in a growing number of human medical advancements made by researchers studying their canine companions.

Growing knees, hips and shoulders

In the sterile petri dishes of a walk-in-closet sized lab, cells divide and multiply into living cartilage that Cook plans to mold into new knees and hips for dogs.    

“The goal is to make replacement parts,” said Sonny Bal, an associate professor of orthopedic surgery at the MU School of Medicine. Bal is working with Cook on the human application of his technique.  

The collaboration between Cook and Bal is welcome news to Bob Reeves, a retired Columbia resident who in the last four years has had both of his knees replaced with metal transplants. The surgeries are the most recent in a series of medical procedures that are likely the result of injuries he suffered in a construction accident almost 50 years ago, Reeves said.  

“I was working to pay my way through college when a scaffold broke and I fell 35 feet,” Reeves said. “I’m sort of like 'The Six Million Dollar Man,' but my wife says I’m more like $49.95.”

Reeves said that even though he has worked hard to regain strength and motion in his body, the metal replacement parts have limited the improvements.

“My body has healed around the metal parts, but metal won’t improve with the rest of my body,” Reeves said. 

Cook’s technique replaces damaged joints with living tissue, meaning patients like Reeves could get a new set of knees that would heal with the rest of their bodies. 

“That would be extremely helpful for people who need transplants,” said Robert Kimble, a 78-year-old who has had three knee transplants in the last eight years. “That would be a heck of an improvement.”

The technique being developed by Cook mimics the natural process of cartilage and bone formation during growth and development of the joints. Molds of joints are then made and filled with lab-grown cartilage, forming exact replicas of joints in need of replacement.  

Because conditions like arthritis progress month to years faster in dogs, Cook is able to more rapidly test the effectiveness of his technique.  

“In dogs with arthritis, everything happens much faster,” Cook said. “This allows us to see the results of our research sooner than if we were working on humans.”

The Food and Drug Administration recognizes physical similarities between dogs and humans, and if a new treatment is proved effective for dogs, it can more quickly be tested in humans. 

“We’ve been working on this for seven years,” Cook said. “It would have taken 15 to 20 years if we were working on humans.”

This summer, Cook will begin testing his technology on dogs in need of new hip joints. If effective, the tests will continue into long-term studies. Human testing is the final phase.

New horizons

Cook and Bal are widening the scope of previous collaborations to include engineers from the Missouri University of Science and Technology and researchers at Columbia University in New York City.

The multidisciplinary approach puts MU in line with a worldwide effort to strengthen ties between veterinary medical and human medical research, said Bruce Kaplan, a Florida veterinarian and co-founder of the Web site

The site promotes the One Health movement, which advocates collaboration between veterinary and human research. The concept has received endorsements from the American Medical Association and the American Veterinary Medical Association.

“The campuses that have veterinarians and physicians working together are where a good deal of biomedical research is done,” Kaplan said. “Dr. Cook has become a giant in the field.”

Recently discovered neurological similarities between dogs and humans could lead to treatments for degenerative brain diseases.

Veterinary neurologist Joan Coates is part of a research team that found a genetic link between hereditary degenerative myelopathy (DM) in dogs and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

“There is a potential that this discovery may assist with finding new treatments that will slow the progress of some forms of hereditary ALS,” Coates said. 

She is quick to point out that years of study are needed before a treatment for humans can be developed.

“We still have a lot of work to develop markers of disease in dogs in order to evaluate disease progression and response to potential treatments,” Coates said.

Working with dogs could shorten the time frame.

“ALS takes two to five years to progress in humans; it takes six months to a year in dogs,” Coates said. “We may be able to test and see more results more quickly when evaluating potential therapies in dogs.”

Kaplan said Cook and Coates' advances could just be the beginning of new advances in the field of veterinary and human medicine. 

“If you combine the brains and minds of different medicines, you will come up with things that would have not come about otherwise,” Kaplan said. “It could be miraculous.” 

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