The Secret Life of Drew; Guinea Pig Health Checks
Pigs as universal flu vaccine models
Researchers at Pirbright, the University of Oxford and the National Institutes of Health, USA, have shown that pigs may be better candidates for flu vaccination trials as they best represent the human immune response. Researchers at the Pirbright Institute have collaborated with the University of Oxford and the National Institutes of Health, USA, to show that S-FLU, a candidate for universal flu vaccine, induces different immune responses in pigs compared to ferrets, increasing the possibility that ferrets may not give the whole picture and that pigs can more accurately represent the disease of human influence. The team also identified a type of T cell in pigs for the first time, which can quickly help fight respiratory infections. The S-FLU aerosol vaccine, developed by Alain Townsend in Oxford, is a weakened strain of the influenza virus that is designed to trigger a response from T cells that are capable of reacting to multiple tensions of influence. This differs from conventional influenza vaccines that activate antibodies that only respond to the strain contained in the vaccine.
The research, published in the Journal of Immunology, showed that when pigs received the S-FLU aerosol vaccine, the newly identified T cells were activated when they were submitted to an influenza virus of a different strain. The severity of the disease was also reduced, but the amount of virus remained the same. When S-FLU was given to ferrets, viral replication was reduced, as was the amount of virus that was transmitted to other animals. This surprising difference in response to the same vaccine raises the question of whether ferret, an animal model that is considered the gold standard for research on influenza, provides results that are transferable to humans. Pigs provide a model that is more similar in size, naturally infected with influenza viruses and with a very similar human respiratory system.
The discovery of the T-cell activation group of memory resident in pigs brings them closer to an understanding of how influenza is fought in the lungs. The results also show that targeting the lower respiratory tract with vaccination against aerosols in pigs may be more effective than other immunization pathways in the prevention of serious diseases, which provides promising evidence that this method of vaccination could also be successful in humans.
Top 5 Winter Tips For Micro Pig Owners
Winters nearly here again so I thought id share some advice on how to care for your pig during the winter months. If you are lucky enough to own a pig house which is easily moved it might be worth repositioning the door so it’s out of the wind and less prone to the wind or draughts. Any micro pig owner knows how much pigs love their bedding. Pigs love to immerse in their bedding straw, so make sure they have enough to cover themselves which will help keep them warm during the bad weather. Deep muddy areas can make it hard for your pet pig to move and can also increase the chance of an injury.
Make sure you check the entrances to your pig’s home as these areas are the area’s most likely to get muddy first. You shouldn’t need to use heat lamps or heat mats if you pigs home is watertight and weatherproof. Heat lamps and heat mats can be fire hazard if they are set up incorrectly; also the electrical heat lamps/mats also run the risk of electrocuting your pig if they chew through any cables. If you do insist on using, or your pig has access to heat lamps, fireplaces, portable heaters, etc make sure that these are guarded properly and correctly installed. If you set up any Christmas or holiday lights at your home make sure that any electrical cabling is out of your pet pigs reach.
Your pig can still get dehydrated during the cold months so make sure a fresh supply of water is available. You can also throw a few brick and stones in the bottom to make it really sturdy and secure and prevent your pig from tipping it over.
Peppa Pig’s GP visits copied by fans, says doctor – World News Hill
Peppa Pig has been named as public enemy number one in the fight to reduce unnecessary GP visits, by a doctor. Dr Catherine Bell, a GP and regular viewer of the cuddly character’s TV exploits, with her toddler, believes the Pig family’s inappropriate use of the doctor are copied by their fans. The family’s GP in the animation series, Dr Brown Bear, provides the Pigs with unparalleled medical help. Dr Bell says her cartoon equivalent’s work fuels unrealistic expectations. The usual advice for uncomplicated self-limiting illnesses such as coughs and colds is to stay at home and not see a doctor, while drinking plenty of fluids.
Peppa and family receive home visits from Dr Brown for the slightest of conditions. If Dr Bell was given the chance to write the script for one episode, contact with Dr Brown would be unlikely to occur. Dr Bell is not the only person to think Peppa’s constant trips to the surgery have an impact in real life. She posted the idea on a Facebook group for doctors who are also mothers and lots of people said they could identify with her views. Entertainment One, the media group that owns Peppa Pig, was contacted for comment but did not want to respond.