Deadly Amphibian Fungus Finally Has a Successful, New Treatment

First Posted: Nov 18, 2015 09:40 AM EST

Scientists may have discovered a way to eliminate a killer fungus. They've detailed the first-ever successful elimination of a fata chytrid fungus in a wild amphibian, which could be huge when fighting the devastating disease.

The latest findings are the results from a seven-year study. This is the first ever evidence that eradicating the chytrid pathogen may be possible, which could help re-establish amphibian populations.

The researchers combined antifungal treatment of Mallorcan midwife toad (Alytes muletensis) tadpoles with environmental disinfection. By using an antifungal to treat tadpoles and a common lab decontaminant to sterilize the environment, the researchers were able to clear infection from populations of the toad over the research period.

"This study represents a major breakthrough in the fight against this highly-destructive pathogen; for the first time we have managed to rid wild individuals of infection for a continued period," said Trenton Garner, co-author of the new study, in a news release. "Amphibian-associated chytrid fungi are a critical conservation issue that requires simple, straightforward and transferrable solutions. Ourstudy is a significant step towards providing these."

The findings are a huge positive when it comes to eliminating this disease. Because the highly-infectious chytrid pathogen has severely affected over 700 amphibian species worldwide, it's more important than ever to take steps to conserve these populations. By developing a treatment, scientists are giving these populations a leg up when it comes to their future survival.

The findings are published in the journal Biology Letters.

Related Stories

Bacteria Helps Frogs Fight Deadly Skin Disease

Estrogen in the Environment May be changing the Gender of Frogs in Suburbia

For more great science stories and general news, please visit our sister site, Headlines and Global News (HNGN).

See Now: NASA's Juno Spacecraft's Rendezvous With Jupiter's Mammoth Cyclone

©2017 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission. The window to the world of science news.

Join the Conversation

Real Time Analytics