In the latest chronic wasting disease (CWD) developments, Virginia’s Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF) has confirmed the condition in a buck legally harvested in November in Culpeper County, 40 miles from where other CWD-positive deer have been reported. And Minnesota officials said all deer have been depopulated from a Crow Wing County farm first infected with the disease in 2016.

CWD is caused by abnormally shaped proteins, called prions, that can damage nerve and brain tissue. A fatal, progressive disease, CWD has been found in North American whitetail and mule deer, elk, and moose.

The disease is likely transmitted by infected deer shedding prions in saliva, feces, urine, and other fluids or tissues. The disease is fatal in animals, and, while no human cases have been recorded, consuming infected meat is not advised.

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