Science Newsletter Vol.9: September 2020
In This Issue
Bringing a Cure for Coronavirus to Market For Both Cats and Humans | Wisdom Health Announces System Updates to Improve Optimal Selection™ Experience | My Cat is Panting! | The Use of Famciclovir for Herpesvirus Infection | What is Karpati? | Upcoming Virtual Cat Breeders Symposium | TICA Joins Forces with AKC Reunite to Offer Breeders and Members Big Discounts on Microchips | TICA Announces Details for 2021 Annual | Advancements in the TICA Judging Program | Reserve Your Cat’s Piece of TICA’s History: TICA 2020 Yearbook Deadline Quickly Approaching | In Case You Missed It… | TICA September Breed of the Month: Snowshoe
Bringing a Cure for Coronavirus to Market
For Both Cats and Humans
The antiviral drug, GC376, developed at Kansas State University and proven by Dr. Niels Pedersen’s group of researchers at UC Davis to be effective in treating FIP in cats, has been licensed by the California company Anivive. The company has started two pre-clinical trials to evaluate the drug’s efficacy in inhibiting the 3C protease required for the replication of both SARS-CoV-2 (which causes COVID-19 in humans) and feline coronavirus.
Due to the current crisis, approval of the drug for human use could be expedited due to the data obtained from the use of this drug to treat cats with FIP. Read more from Nature Communications on how this work is laying the framework for use in human trials for the treatment of COVID-19.
Wisdom Health Announces System Updates
to Improve Optimal Selection™ Experience
Wisdom Health announced as part of their ongoing breeder platform development, they are tackling some overdue system maintenance and updates this summer. Wisdom Health is notifying those with recently purchased Optimal Selection™ Feline Breeding Analysis kits of upcoming changes. The updates will allow Wisdom Health to set the stage for an ongoing improved experience for TICA’s breeder community.
There will be a brief outage in September while they are doing some of the updates. New samples can be activated and submitted during this phase and will receive the updated experience that will go live in October. This will include:
- Updated information displays for disorders, traits, and diversity with continued improvements to the reports planned into 2021.
- NEW traits (including GLITTER and 2 Lykoi variants).
- NEW diseases (see the full list).
- NEW ISAG genetic profile.
- Site improvements like a simpler layout and overall speed.
- Faster turnaround times for results.
A few features such as making cats public and the breeder tool will not be immediately available upon the site’s return.
While the site is undergoing maintenance during the month of September:
- Existing users will not be able to access their accounts or reports for previously tested cats. However, this data is being carefully archived.
- Once service is reinstated in October on the new platform, existing cat reports will again be accessible, and we will welcome both new and old users at that time.
Their team of specialists are available to answer any questions at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
My Cat is Panting!
Cats have many ways of dealing with the summer heat including moving away from a sunny spot, laying on cool, temperature radiating surface, and grooming themselves to allow the saliva on their fur to provide evaporative cooling. Cats also can sweat through their paw pads and noses.
Rapid, open-mouthed breathing is a last resort for a cat that is extremely overheated. Unless your cat has just been playing hard for an extended period of time in a warm environment, panting or other signs of labored breathing is a cause for concern and may indicate asthma, respiratory infection, heart failure, heartworm infection, or pleural effusion (fluid in the chest).
Learn more from Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine on how panting and labored breathing can be key indicators for a number of other underlying issues.
The Use of Famciclovir for Herpesvirus Infection
Winn Feline Foundation has released the final research project report for an investigation performed at Iowa State University on the use of compounded liquid formulations of famciclovir to treat cats with herpesvirus-1 infections, the most common cause of acute and chronic feline upper respiratory disease. Famciclovir is a safe and effective antiviral medication manufactured in large tablets, which can be challenging to administer to cats. Liquid suspensions of famciclovir produced by compounding pharmacies have become popular. Unlike their FDA-approved counterparts, however, compounded drugs seldom undergo any quality control testing. Analytical testing of the drug content was performed on a large number of compounded formulations of famciclovir obtained from different compounding pharmacies. It was found that the compounded famciclovir suspensions rarely met the acceptance criteria of 90-110% of labeled potency required by FDA approved drugs and were subpotent by an average of 18% (250 mg/mL) and 53% (400 mg/mL). Treatment of cats infected with feline herpesvirus-1 infection with compounded famciclovir could be subtherapeutic and ineffective.
Read more about the study.
What is Karpati?
Courtesy of the TICA La Perm Breed Committee, Denise Abraham, Anne-Louise Magee, and Joyce Pierce
Karpati is a unique pattern, inherited as a dominant trait, independent of any other color trait. The body has solid white hairs interspersed with normal pigmented hairs throughout the cat's coat, with a greater number of white hairs present on the “points”. Shading of undercoat is also observed. Karpati can be seen in any color and along with any other pattern, but shows the most contrast with solid dense colors such as black, chocolate, cinnamon, and red. Dilutes (e.g. blue, lilac, fawn, and cream) are a delicate and pretty variation. Tabby patterns look blurred by the extra white hairs but retain any rufusing. Phaeomelanistic colors (red and cream) are much slower to develop and torties will have white patches in the phaeomelanistic areas when young, and often on the “points” permanently.
Color is strongest along the spine and fades out down the legs. The area of increased white hairs on the tail starts about an inch up from the base. Ear furnishings are white and whiskers are both white and pigmented. Nose leather and pawpads are normal for the base color, for example black karpati have black nose leather and pawpads despite the white hairs around them. Normally there is little pigment on the skin, but ears may show mottling. Only hair pigment is affected; the texture of the hair does not change.
Pigment lessens in strength down the hairs towards the skin, giving an effect similar to the inhibitor gene, but noticeably different, as the shading is not pure white but a paler version of the base color. Red karpati will have pale cream shading and black karpati will have grey/mouse shading. Some hairs remain fully white or fully pigmented to the roots.
There is a seasonal variation in color: pigment may fade during the summer and darken in the winter. Karpati develops over time and young kittens may be mainly white to begin with. Pigment gradually spreads over the body and is mostly completed by about 7 months of age. By 3 months, the pattern is there but without full density of color and shading is likely still white.
This new pattern for cats was discovered in 2012 in Eastern Europe in the domestic population. It was named karpati after the Carparthian region where they were found. The La Perm Breed Committee has applied to have the karpati pattern accepted into the UCD for their breed. Several members of the Breed Group, including two Breed Committee members, have been actively working with the pattern for up to 5 years and have been exhibiting them in New Traits.
Upcoming Virtual Cat Breeders Symposium
The School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania is planning an online Cat Breeders Symposium on October 10, 2020 via Zoom.
An exciting line-up of speakers is planned. The price will be $75 per person and you will receive a secure link the day before the Symposium. The talks will be recorded and made available to the attendees after the event.
Many TICA members remember the first Feline Genetics Conference held by Penn Vet in 1998 and can vouch for the quality of that event. Heather Lorimer remembers meeting Urs Giger for the first time and Anthony Hutcherson spent a great deal of time discussing tabby patterns with Eduardo Eizirk. Trivia time: Heather Lorimer, Nikki Crandall-Seibert, and Lorraine Shelton were roommates for that conference. See complete details of the Cat Breeders Symposium, including topics, speakers and a schedule of events.
TICA News Briefs
TICA Joins Forces with AKC Reunite
to Offer Breeders and Members Big Discounts on Microchips
TICA announced a new partnership with AKC Reunite during the September Annual Board Meeting. The new alliance will offer TICA members great deals on helping owners and breeders keep their cats safe, as well as the opportunity to earn FREE microchips.
AKC Reunite are 134.2 kHz ISO pet microchips that provide permanent identification, to ensure your cat a safety net if it gets lost or is stolen. Chips can be obtained with or without prepaid (lifetime) enrollment. Both Mini chips (Indi Minichips) and standard-sized chips are available for purchase. A special HUB is also available for breeders to track and maintain their cats with chips. A special Enrollment Rewards Program is also available to TICA member where they can earn points for free microchips with every kitten registered and when the standard enrollment fee paid. For example, 25 points can be redeemed for a 25-count box of microchips.
Learn more at www.akcreunite.org/TICA/.
TICA Announces Details for 2021 Annual
TICACats will host TICA’s 2021 Annual, "Cats and Wine on the Rhine", on September 4-5, 2021 at the Friedrich-Ebert-Halle in Ludwigshafen, Germany. The Annual Awards Banquet 2021 will take place at the show hotel Dorint Congress Hotel Mannheim the evening of Sept. 4, 2021.
Confirmed judges to date include: Steven Savant(AB), Aline Noel Garel(AB), Robby Whyte(AB), Carlos Lopez(AB), Harley DeVilbiss(AB), Katharina Krenn(SP), Marion Schiff(AB), Asa Broing(AB), Steven Corneille(AB), Andreas Kretschmer-Kraiczek(SP), Richard Hoskinson(AB), Jamie Christian(AB), Susanna Shon(AB), Steven Meserve(AB).
Entries are open and more information can be found on TOES. Contact the entry clerks for clerking assignments: email@example.com. Stay tuned for the show website, coming soon.
Advancements in the TICA Judging Program
Congratulations! The TICA Board approved the following for advancements to the TICA Judging Program:
- Provisional AB: Nicki Fenwick Raven (UK)
- Approved AB: Sue Hart-Jones (UK)
Reserve Your Cat’s Piece of TICA’s History
TICA 2020 Yearbook Deadline Quickly Approaching
Shh ... come closer ... I have a secret to tell you. In fact, I'm going to tell you one of the best kept TICA secrets.
What's that you might ask? Why, the TICA Yearbook! A yearbook you say? Well sit down and let me tell you.
The TICA yearbook is a full-color, hardbound book that is published each year containing the pictures of all international, regional, and breed winners from the prior show season. That's right, want to see pictures of your breed shown in other regions around the world? Showing a household pet? See all the household pet beauties. And feel the pride of seeing your winning cat pictured forever as part of TICA's history.
And that's not all. You can see pictures of cats that accomplished titles throughout the year as well as remembering cats that have passed over the rainbow bridge. Still not enough? See pictures of all the people who help keep our organization going.
And the memories keep on going with pictures taken from events from all over TICA's world.
Excited? Want to start your own collection of TICA's history or add to your existing collection with the edition covering the 2019-2020 show season?
First, reserve your 2020 yearbook by sending in a Yearbook order form. You can also use that form to pay to include pictures in the yearbook that are not included for free, for example in memory, title pictures, and some awards. Then, make sure you send all your award winner's pictures to the Yearbook editor, Chris Unangst, no later than September 20th.
And just as important, send pictures you have taken at shows during the 2019-2020 show season to Chris as well. She wants to include pictures from around TICA's world, but can only include those sent, so make sure your region and country is well represented. What's that? You're excited and can't wait for the yearbook to arrive at your house? Well, you need to be a little patient. It takes a while to pull together an entire year's history after the show season ends. The 2020 yearbook, covering the 2019-2020 show season, will be shipped out world-wide in early 2021, but will be worth the wait. The yearbook is TICA's history in a form that you can hold in your hands and display on your living room table. Don't miss out!
In Case You Missed It…
Check out TICA's social media pages to learn the latest news about cats. Here are some top posts you may have missed...
On TICA's Instagram:
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TICA September Breed of the Month: Snowshoe
Known for their love of water, the Snowshoe is TICA's September Breed of the Month. Learn how this mellow breed is born completely and develops point colors as they mature and if the Snowshoe is right for you and your family.