UNL, Creighton researchers study chronic wasting

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — While Creighton University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln are often viewed as in-state sports rivals, two of their researchers have teamed up in the hopes of stopping the spread of chronic wasting disease among deer and elk.

Jason Bartz, a medical microbiologist at Creighton, and Shannon Bartelt-Hunt, an engineering professor at UNL, have been working together since 2006 to study prions, proteins that cause chronic wasting and mad cow diseases, in the environment.

Bartz and Bartelt-Hunt have focused specifically on chronic wasting disease, which can reduce the growth and size of wild deer and elk, such as seen in southwest Nebraska.

Their hope is that the research eventually leads to ways to stop the spread of not just chronic wasting disease, but other prion diseases in livestock and humans.

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