Researchers from the University of Florida and the University of California have found that certain parts of the feline immunodeficieny virus (FIV) can produce human T cells that fight against the human aids virus (HIV). This surprise discovery may set the stage for an HIV vaccine derived from the cat form of the virus. In previous studies scientists combined various whole HIV proteins as vaccine components, but none worked well enough to be used commercially. In this study, peptides, which are segments of the whole protein molecule, were incubated with the T cells, which resulted in these cells recognizing the viral peptides on infected calls and attack those cells.
This is exciting news. Prior to this study, a T cell-based vaccine has never been used to prevent any viral diseases.. This is a new, immune system approach to developing a vaccine, which is atypical. The possible use of the cat virus for this vaccine is unique.
Veterinary oncologist Joshua Louis Lachowicz, DVM, has combined his two passions – veterinary medicine and music- into an original song released on iTunes to benefit pets with cancer. Known as Joshua Louis, the singer-songwriter, he founded the Joshua Louis Animal Cancer Foundation (JLACF) in 2011 to raise money for families in need of financial assistance to cover the cost of cancer treatment after a pet’s diagnosis. He says that all profits from the song’s sales on iTunes will go directly to the foundation.
The effects of soothing music on animals has been talked about for years. Clients often describe this effect with their own pets, and I previously posted a blog about just this (see “Acoustics and Canine Behavior, 1/1/14). If you are interested in checking out the song, and maybe testing it’s effects on your pet, go to iTunes. It is available for download at : ;iTunes.apple.com/us/album/tomorrow-single/id680476868?uo=4.
An accompanying video is available on YouTube youth.be/Q-W6jfzXEVk).