Presentation on theme: "David S. Blehert, PhD USGS – National Wildlife Health Center U.S. Department of the Interior U.S. Geological Survey White Nose Syndrome: An Emerging Fungal."— Presentation transcript:
David S. Blehert, PhD USGS – National Wildlife Health Center U.S. Department of the Interior U.S. Geological Survey White Nose Syndrome: An Emerging Fungal Pathogen?
What is White-Nose Syndrome? Photo by J. Reichard, Boston UniversityPhoto by A. Hicks, NY DEC
CHALLENGE: Identify the White Fungus and/or Other Pathogen(s) Photo by N. Heaslip, NY DEC
Parasitology, Virology, and Bacteriology Parasitology: Disease causing parasites not found. Virology: No known viral pathogens identified. Bacteriology: No consistent findings.
Circumstantial Case from Direct Observation Fixed Bat Muzzle Skin NYS DOH Photo by D. Springer and M. Behr Direct Scraping from Bat NYS DOH Photo by M. Behr
Fixed Bat Muzzle Skin NYS DOH Photo by D. Springer and M. Behr Direct Scraping from Bat NYS DOH Photo by M. Behr NWHC Cold Isolate Photo by D. Blehert, NWHC Circumstantial Case from Direct Observation
Fungal Biology – Mycology Requires cold for growth. It cannot grow at room temperature. Common on sick bats. Absent from healthy bats. All isolates are identical. Fungus is a new species of Geomyces. Photo by A. Klein, NWHC
Histopathology Bat Wings – In addition to flight, they are critical for: Heat Dissipation Water Control Gas Exchange Blood Pressure Regulation Photos by C. Meteyer, NWHC
WNS: A European Connection? Hungary Romania Photo: Szilard Bucs Switzerland Netherlands Photo: Tamas Gorfol Photo: Anne Jifke-Haarsma
Infection Trial Torpid little brown bats housed in mesh enclosures in refrigerators at 7 C. Three treatment groups – each in an individual refrigerator in a dedicated isolation room within a shower-out BSL-3 facility. Each bat wears an iBBat archival temperature logger.
Soil Sampling Project Collect soil samples from approximately 100 caves in the eastern US. Screen samples for the WNS-associated fungus.
Future Directions Determine the origin of the WNS fungus. Predict potential for future WNS spread. Can WNS be contained? Can WNS be controlled? Investigate biological or chemical control strategies. Continue to develop a better understanding of the disease. Identify bat survival strategies – Are there resistant bats?