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Cattle, swine, mosquitoes, ticks, flies can't infect humans with COVID

Christian Fernsby |
Scientists and staff at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have been studying Covid-19 to ensure that America’s agricultural system is safe.

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ARS has laboratories and personnel dedicated to the research of especially dangerous pathogens, including emerging zoonotic agents such as SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 is the term used for the disease, while SARS-CoV-2 is the acronym for the name of the viruses that causes COVID-19.

“ARS research clearly provided science based evidence that eggs and live poultry, cattle, swine, and arthropods (mosquitoes, ticks, flies), were not able to replicate the virus and become a source of infection for people,” Cyril Gay ARS senior national program leader for animal production and protection said. Of all the farmed animals studied, only deer were susceptible to SARS-CoV-2.

“Interestingly, deer did not get sick, but they quickly spread the virus to other deer.”

ARS included white tail deer in its investigation because the genetic sequence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus cell receptor closely aligns with the sequence of the human receptor, and because some white tail deer are farmed.

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