VN January 2024

VET Januarie / January 2024 The Monthly Magazine of the SOUTH AFRICAN VETERINARY ASSOCIATION Die Maandblad van die SUID-AFRIKAANSE VETERINÊRE VERENIGING A Basic Introduction to Backyard Poultry Medicine – Part 3 of 3 CPD THEME Veterinary Education nuus•news

Dagboek • Diary Ongoing / Online 2023 April 2024 SAVETCON: Webinars Info: Corné Engelbrecht, SAVETCON, 071 587 2950, / Acupuncture – Certified Mixed Species Course Info: Chi University: OP Village Centenary Festival 05-06 April 2024 Venue: OP Village Residence, Onderstepoort, Old Southpan Road, Pretoria Info: Marnus Zaaiman (082 779 8435) / SAVA Oranje Vaal Branch Mini Congress 09-11 August Venue: Parys – venue to be confirmed. Info: August 2024

January 2024 1 Contents I Inhoud President: Dr Paul van der Merwe Managing Director: Mr Gert Steyn +27 (0)12 346 1150 Editor VetNews: Ms Andriette van der Merwe Bookkeeper: Ms Susan Heine (0)12 346 1150 Bookkeeper's Assistant: Ms Sonja Ludik (0)12 346 1150 Secretary: Ms Elize Nicholas +27 (0)12 346 1150 Reception: Ms Hanlie Swart +27 (0)12 346 1150 Marketing & Communications: Ms Sonja van Rooyen +27 (0)12 346 1150 Membership Enquiries: Ms Debbie Breeze +27 (0)12 346 1150 Vaccination booklets: Ms Debbie Breeze +27 (0)12 346 1150 South African Veterinary Foundation: Ms Debbie Breeze +27 (0)12 346 1150 Community Veterinary Clinics: Ms Claudia Cloete +27 (0)63 110 7559 SAVETCON: Ms Corné Engelbrecht +27 (0)71 587 2950 VetNuus is ‘n vertroulike publikasie van die SAVV en mag nie sonder spesifieke geskrewe toestemming vooraf in die openbaar aangehaal word nie. Die tydskrif word aan lede verskaf met die verstandhouding dat nóg die redaksie, nóg die SAVV of sy ampsdraers enige regsaanspreeklikheid aanvaar ten opsigte van enige stelling, feit, advertensie of aanbeveling in hierdie tydskrif vervat. VetNews is a confidential publication for the members of the SAVA and may not be quoted in public or otherwise without prior specific written permission to do so. This magazine is sent to members with the understanding that neither the editorial board nor the SAVA or its office bearers accept any liability whatsoever with regard to any statement, fact, advertisement or recommendation made in this magazine. VetNews is published by the South African Veterinary Association STREET ADDRESS 47 Gemsbok Avenue, Monument Park, Pretoria, 0181, South Africa POSTAL ADDRESS P O Box 25033, Monument Park Pretoria, 0105, South Africa TELEPHONE +27 (0)12 346-1150 FAX General: +27 (0) 86 683 1839 Accounts: +27 (0) 86 509 2015 WEB CHANGE OF ADDRESS Please notify the SAVA by email: or letter: SAVA, P O Box 25033, Monument Park, Pretoria, 0105, South Africa CLASSIFIED ADVERTISEMENTS (Text to a maximum of 80 words) Sonja van Rooyen +27 (0)12 346 1150 DISPLAY ADVERTISEMENTS Sonja van Rooyen +27 (0)12 346 1150 DESIGN AND LAYOUT Sonja van Rooyen PRINTED BY UVO: +27 (0)12 423 9460 VET nuus•news Diary / Dagboek II Dagboek • Diary Regulars / Gereeld 2 From the President 4 Editor’s notes / Redakteurs notas Articles / Artikels 8 Opinion Piece: A Second Veterinary Faculty in South Africa 11 Biobanking for Animal Health: Storing Natural Treasures 14 Verbesina encelioides-a potentially toxic plant 18 Just Another Fall Association / Vereniging 20 CVC News 22 SAVA News 34 In Memoriam 36 Legal Mews Events / Gebeure 6 World Veterinary Association Congress 2024 28 Onderstepoort Class of 2023 Graduation Ball 30 Old Res at Onderstepoort: 100 years old Vet's Health / Gesondheid 35 Life Coaching Technical / Tegnies 38 Ophthalmology Column Relax / Ontspan 48 Life Plus 25 Marketplace / Markplein 42 Marketplace Jobs / Poste 43 Marketplace/Jobs / Poste 47 Classifieds / Snuffeladvertensies 14 30 20

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 2 « BACK TO CONTENTS A happy and blessed 2024! But what is happiness? Happiness is an especially “fuzzy” word used to refer to a whole range of related emotions, such as joy, elation, satisfaction, peace of mind, etc. Two commonly used scientific terms for happiness are Psychological Well-being (PWB) and Subjective Well-being (SWB). Leading Positive Psychologists claim that happiness has three sources; our genetic makeup, our environment and our actions. Our genetic makeup is our “inbuilt” sense of happiness, or grumpiness, that runs in the family. We can’t do much about that. This might be the most important factor, perhaps 50% or more, but it is scientifically very difficult to prove. Our environment we living in also plays an important role. If you live in a war zone, for example, that may have a big impact on your mood. In veterinary services, we are often faced with numerous challenges ranging from clients’ expectations to financial challenges to lack of resources, especially human resources, impacting our daily lives. You may be able to change some of these environmental factors, or not. What we do know, however, is that they have a major impact on the health and wellbeing of our veterinary community, often with disastrous effects. Our actions, such as life skills or habits are aspects that are in our control that we can change. Some of these skills can be practiced immediately such as active-constructive listening, and may change your mood pretty immediately too. Some take a while (such as regular exercise) but have a profound, long-term impact on your well-being. There is evidence that, over the long term, exercise might be at least as effective as anti-depressants The exciting thing about “life skills” is that you can get off your chair and do something about it right now. But why are so many people, inclusive of veterinarians so unhappy and depressed? Some leading causes might be ignorance, the hype of happiness, and the culture of immediate gratification. The world we are living in is ignorant in that life skills education, training and development are put on the back burner. According to Aristotle, one of the pioneers of happiness, “Education of the mind without education of the heart is not an education at all.” Is enough emphasis given to the education of the hearts, or is too much emphasis placed on the facts? An appreciation of the mentorship program which includes aspects of education of the heart, excellent results were seen in the life-skills environment. All effort must be made to ensure that the mentorship program is continued and even extended to students. Due to such a focus on the epidemic of depression, an explosion of interest in happiness has been seen with many programs presented. Unfortunately, if something becomes a focus of much interest, commercialization is not far behind. Happiness Inc. is becoming a thriving business. It must be guarded against making happiness a hype, but concentrate on what is needed in the veterinary fraternity to function optimally ensuring the health and welfare of our members. Tailor-made programs should rather be strived for specifically addressing the needs of our members. Our sources of evidence should be researchbased, not on the “hype” of doing something. Today’s society functions on immediate gratification. We want things now, so we drink a beer, take a tranquillizer or tap an emoji on a smartphone screen to “overcome” unhappiness. What happened to personal interaction like calling a colleague in need? Happiness takes a little spade work. But the long-term benefits are enormous. In the words of Julia Roberts: “One of the first steps to happiness is deciding that you want to be happy and knowing what that means. I have had many full-on conversations about what that looks like for me. To be happy is a choice you make every day, every hour. And refining and renewing that state is a constant pursuit”. Our environment is sometimes out of control. The world is going through a perfect storm of chaotic changes that humans are not used to dealing with. Covid 19, climate change, overcrowding, economic chaos, Dr Google and so on. The environment cannot necessarily be changed, but you can be taught the necessary life skills to manage change and be more resilient. In the past attention was given to what made depressed people depressed. The focus should rather be on “What makes happy people happy?” From the President Dear members,

January 2024 3 w Discover What Matters Read more and apply: We’re hiring both Anatomic and Clinical Pathologists to join our team in South Africa! *The AP job can be done from anywhere in the country; the CP is partially remote and partially on site in Kyalami, Midrand. At IDEXX, helping pets lead longer, fuller lives is at the heart of everything we do. Our diagnostic and software products and services create clarity in a complex and evolving world. Our innovations also help ensure the safety of milk and water around the world and maintain the health and well-being of livestock, poultry, and horses. Joining our Pathology team means being part of a dynamic environment dedicated to innovation, research, and compassionate care for animals. We offer competitive compensation, professional growth opportunities, and a supportive work culture. If you’re passionate about making a difference in the lives of animals and are eager to contribute your expertise to a collaborative team, we’d love to hear from you! Or email our recruiter at This Copernican shift in perspective has given rise to the new “science of happiness”. Happiness has three dimensions that can be cultivated: “The pleasant life” is realized if we learn to savour and appreciate such basic pleasures as companionship, the natural environment and our bodily needs; or We can remain pleasantly stuck at this stage or we can go on to experience “the good life,” which is achieved by discovering our unique virtues and strengths and employing them creatively to enhance our lives; or We can aspire for “the meaningful life,” in which we find a deep sense of fulfilment by mobilizing our unique strengths for a purpose much greater than ourselves. Despite powerful genetic and environmental influences, a sizable chunk of our mental well-being depends on our actions and attitudes. By cultivating certain strengths and virtues, we are not escaping from the causes of depression but rather generating a resilience that protects us from it. Teaching “Happiness” (Resilience) is an urgent task. Being happy is the greatest form of success. As those who have experienced it well know, depression is a very real form of suffering. We are living in the dawn of a new beginning. Traditional religious and spiritual ways are in decline and new ways are replacing them. This is happening because people want inner peace, not just promises of inner peace. People want to experience what is sacred directly, not through the words of middlemen. People want lives filled with love and fellowship, not lives filled with stress and separation. People want communities that truly have their back, not communities that let the powerful prey on them. Blessed can be defined as divinely or happily favored; fortunate to have, do, or experience something: often used in a lighthearted way or to avoid sounding boastful. There are seven supernatural blessings that God wants to release to those who honour Him: double portion, financial abundance, restoration, miracles, God’s divine presence, blessings upon your family and deliverance. Cry. Forgive. Learn. Move on. Let your tears water the seeds of your future happiness. May 2024 be a year where action will be taken to bless you and those around you with happiness. v Kind regards, Paul van der Merwe

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 4 « BACK TO CONTENTS A new year is like an empty canvas, New Year’s resolutions and all that, but seriously though, maybe 2024 is the best year of your life. What would the test be for the best year of your life? How would you know in retrospect that it was indeed the best? What are your standards or your measurement of ‘best’? I think it is a very personal issue. No two people would consider BEST as the same thing. Oxford has a couple of things to say about of ‘best’ • of the most excellent or desirable type or quality. • to the highest degree; most (used with verbs suggesting a desirable action or state or a successful outcome • that which is the most excellent, outstanding, or desirable • outwit or get the better of (someone) It all sounds so great and rather pink and fluffy. But how does the “tekkie” hit the tar? There are, in my mind, 2 ways of determining the ‘best’ The world around us can be used It will not be difficult to find measures around for the ‘best’. From the tender school-going age and even before, the ‘best’ is found in the performance of people. Who talked at what age, who walked at what age, who outshines who at plays, who is the strongest, fastest, most confident. The rapport cards come along and the child is measured against a set of standards, as well as their peers. Parent encourage their offspring to do better, go further, and aim higher. All of which has its place but how do we determine the balance? The world can be an overwhelming place where only a few can ‘fit’ in and meet the standards of being the best. Praising the few for outstanding achievements can easily exclude masses of great people. The world’s definition is very exclusive, it is aimed at highlighting only a few. The Better way In contrast to this excluding definition, there is another much more inclusive approach to the best. It is much, much harder to determine as it is much more personal. Determining the standard of being the best starts with the recognition of the self. The people around the individual are what first form this awareness. Gentle guiding and sympathetic exploration helps to person to form. The person inside is discovered before the standards of the world are impressed on them. The best person is the person who knows him-/herself the best. A confident, well-formed and balanced person will feel much less threatened by the imposition of the standards of the world. The best ‘best’ comes from within. Nothing can be more true than this statement. A person unsure of himself is easily intimidated by a confident person. Even the biggest extrovert can be intimidated by an introvert. Only you can be the best version of you. From your mitochondrial DNA, you are unique. But the responsibility lies with you to discover what makes you tick. Experience in yourself will help you with this great journey of discovery. My wish is that you spend some time this year discovering new facets of your ‘best’ life. It will take stepping out of the box of comfort and spending some time on this. Maybe a new hobby or travel will unlock a new interest and new horizons. Take a look in this Vetnews at Prof Ilwa-Langa’s opinion piece on veterinary education in South Africa. Very interesting indeed. Also, note the research done on toxic plants and the contribution the readers can make. There is an article on the New Veterinarians;’ graduation ball. Please welcome these new colleagues into your midst. If you are aware of Community Service Vets in your vicinity, reach out to them, they need inclusion into the community. Make them feel welcome. May 2024 be your BEST year yet! Andriette v From the Editor Editor’s notes / Redakteurs notas Comparison is the thief of joy.

January 2024 5 “The South African Veterinary Association aims to serve its members and to further the status and image of the veterinarian. We are committed to upholding the highest professional and scientific standards by utilising the professional knowledge, skill and resources of our members, to foster close ties with the community and thus promote the health and welfare of animals and mankind”. MISSION STATEMENT Servicing and enhancing the veterinary community since 1920! Tel: 012 346 1150 E-mail: EARLY EXPOSURE TO ANIMAL CARE DURING YEAR 1 TRAINING AT ANTIBIOTIC-FREE FARMS AND QUANTITATIVE GENETICS TRAINING (FARM ANIMALS) EU ACCREDITED VETERINARY DEGREE ALLOWING PRACTICE WORLDWIDE FINANCIAL AID SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE GLOBAL FACULTY EXPERTISE IN SMALL AND LARGE ANIMAL MEDICINE ADVANCED FACILITIES INCLUDING ANATOMY AND CLINICAL SKILLS LABORATORIES CURRICULUM ALIGNED AS REQUIRED BY RCVS AVMA, EAEVE, AND WORLD ORGANIZATION FOR ANIMAL HEALTH. STUDY VETERINARY MEDICINE IN CYPRUS DOCTOR OF VETERINARY MEDICINE (DVM) 5-Year Undergraduate Degree Programme Targeted for High School Leavers

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Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 8 « BACK TO CONTENTS A SECOND VETERINARY FACULTY IN SOUTH AFRICA “AN EMOTIVE PROPOSITION” Dr Ivan Ilwa-Langa OPINION PIECE The debate for a second Veterinary Faculty has been raging on for as far as I can remember. It’s a very emotive subject which is running like a “Sine Curve” with its ups and downs depending on probably, the mood of the nation, the mood of the academics, the mood of the politicians and probably the prevailing climatic and social conditions with thanks to EL Nino and Covid!! This debate is also unfortunately clouded by some of those with the so-called “Common purpose training”, namely those who think and work in clusters to ensure that their voices outclass those who have never had the privilege of experiencing the same. The moment you raise this subject, you are immediately faced with all sorts of reactions, sometimes outrageous, sometimes outlandish, sometimes very superficial, by those who purport to be the custodians of our beautiful profession: • South Africa is experiencing a severe shortage of veterinarians and fixing it will be tough. • Experts trying to solve the problem are facing a great challenge. • A Veterinary faculty is too expensive to set up. • Proposed sites do not have the requisite Laboratories.

January 2024 9 Leading Article • Where are you going to get the teaching staff from? • You can’t establish a Veterinary faculty in the “Bundus.” • We don’t want to lower standards. • Why do you need a second faculty? • The existing single Veterinary Faculty caters for the country’s needs adequately. Having been in the middle of several attempts to initiate a second Veterinary school in the country for years, one gets the feeling that either the “naysayers” have had an upper hand in this area, or we are stuck in our “History” and refusing to move on despite developments like AI currently in our faces. I remember in my previous article on this subject in this Newsletter, I said that the second Faculty proposal is experiencing a “KODAK MOMENT”, basically highlighting the fact that if we don’t become more innovative, we will be overtaken by circumstances the way Kodak was trumped by digital photography. There are several compelling reasons why the creation of a second Faculty in the country is really” a no-brainer.”: • High demand for veterinarians: South Africa has a shortage of veterinarians, especially in rural areas where most of the livestock and wildlife are located. According to the South African Veterinary Council, the current vet-to-client ratio is far below the international standard of one veterinarian per 10,000 animals. The State Veterinary Services in the country have relied mainly on veterinarians from Zimbabwe to gap-stop this glaring challenge, especially in the rural provinces like the Eastern Cape, Limpopo, and Northern Cape. Fast-forward to now, many of these expatriate colleagues have had their services terminated because Home Affairs is not renewing their work permits. This affects the quality and availability of veterinary services and the health and welfare of animals and humans. • Limited capacity and resources of the only veterinary faculty: The only veterinary faculty in South Africa is the Faculty of Veterinary Science at the University of Pretoria. The faculty can only admit about 200 students per year and has a limited number of staff and facilities to cater for the diverse and complex needs of the current veterinary profession. The faculty also faces challenges such as ageing infrastructure, budget constraints and staffing. The steps this faculty has taken post-1994 to reinvent itself has done very little to change its standing in the country or perception about it from various quarters of the community in South Africa. Diversifying the teaching body, increasing the size of the intake, and opening accessibility to all community groups in South Africa as well from other countries, has really done very little to address the current challenges in this area. • Benefits of having more diversity and competition in the field: Having a second veterinary faculty in South Africa would increase the diversity and representation of the veterinary profession, which is currently dominated by one population group, regardless of gender. A second veterinary faculty would also create more opportunities for collaboration and innovation, as well as healthy competition and quality improvement, among the veterinary institutions and stakeholders. Further, the cultural and social relevance and responsiveness of the profession to the needs and expectations of society would be enhanced. Endeavour to attract and retain qualified and motivated students and staff, especially from disadvantaged and rural backgrounds. To this end, we should cast our nets wide and stop recycling ourselves in the narrow belief that good veterinarians cannot be trained from elsewhere or from somebody else. Up to now, Onderstepoort is seen as“THE VET SCHOOL” by most South Africans, and rightly so, because it is the only one in the country but unfortunately had limited pre-1994 access to collaboration with other veterinary schools in the world (other than in UK or Australia) because of the then prevailing politics. We must acknowledge the accolades this Institution has notched up over the years, without a doubt, but it’s high time we moved on and looked at veterinary training in the country in the bigger picture and context. Collaborations with other veterinary training faculties both in Africa and Europe ( East included) and the Americas should no longer be “Taboo” and should enrich our professional product, “blinkers off”. A second faculty in the country will exactly achieve this with little effort. How would a second faculty be set up: • This could be done by establishing a second veterinary faculty, as proposed by some experts, or by creating satellite campuses or partnerships with other existing universities or colleges in the country and elsewhere. This could for example obviate the challenges in infrastructure or teaching staff. In terms of infrastructure, taking the example of a faculty in the Eastern Cape would be to make use of the already established medical and agricultural facilities at Rhodes, Nelson Mandela, and Walter Sisulu Universities. All pre-clinical subjects which need laboratories could be done at one of these institutions leaving the clinicals to be done at Fort Hare which has an abundance of animals and facilities in the commercial and rural setups. By the way, Eastern Cape has currently very successful twinning programmes with various countries including several Veterinary schools in Germany which are ready to support a second faculty in the province. The opportunity here >>> 10

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 10 « BACK TO CONTENTS Leading Article would be two-fold, namely, to use some of their teaching staff on secondment or sabbaticals to assist in the initial staffing and to use their established clinical facilities to upscale the ability of our prospective students in the new faculty. The Premier of the Eastern Cape Province re-confirmed this offer from the Veterinary University of Hannover (TiHo) during his recent visit to Germany in November 2023. • Providing more funding and support for veterinary education, research, and service delivery, from both the government and the private sector. This could include subsidizing the cost of veterinary education, increasing the remuneration and recognition of the profession, improving the working conditions and career prospects, and ensuring compliance with national and international standards and regulations. This would also attract and retain more qualified and motivated students and staff, especially from disadvantaged and rural backgrounds. Whereas we have more than 8 medical faculties in the country, veterinary education has been relegated to the backburner by having only one veterinary faculty. The costs of establishing a new veterinary school are always in the spotlight!! Nobody has said it is cheap but, in a country, where food security and livestock contribution to the GDP is important with a population of over 60 Mio. people, availing money for the training of veterinarians is a priority. • Adapting and innovating the veterinary curriculum and pedagogy to keep abreast of the current and future trends and challenges in the veterinary sector, such as veterinary public health, food safety, emerging diseases, international trade, bioterrorism, and biomedical research. This could be done by adopting a one-health approach that focuses on the interface between wildlife, domesticated animals, humans, and their environment. This would also require a vision and a strategy for the future of veterinary education in South Africa, as well as collaboration and coordination among the various stakeholders and role players. • Improving the awareness and interest of the public and potential students about the veterinary profession and its importance and relevance to society. This could be done by promoting and advertising the profession and its services, as well as by engaging with schools and communities to expose and inspire learners to pursue veterinary careers. This would also increase the demand and appreciation for veterinary services, especially in rural areas. Most of the current crop of veterinarians in the State Veterinary Services especially in the management echelons are a direct product of a special programme which was established in most homelands pre-1994 to target and identify Black, Indian and Coloured people to study veterinary medicine at the then MEDUNSA. Since the demise of MEDUNSA, the number of new veterinarians from these three groups has continuously declined year on year and it will continue to do so unless we intervene. In conclusion, one cannot underestimate the challenges and opportunities of establishing a new veterinary faculty in the country. A new veterinary faculty in South Africa would require a lot of planning, funding, goodwill and support from the government, the private sector, and the academic community. Some of the challenges include finding a suitable location, securing land and infrastructure, recruiting, and retaining qualified staff, developing a relevant and rigorous curriculum, and ensuring compliance with national and international standards and regulations. However, these challenges are not insurmountable, considering that many countries on our continent with more compromised resources have been able to establish vibrant veterinary faculties whose graduates have made contributions to the profession the world over. And, these challenges also present opportunities for creating a modern and world-class veterinary faculty that would address the current and future needs of the veterinary sector in South Africa especially the need to support the “National Herd” which is mainly located in the rural areas. This requires a vision and a strategy for the future of veterinary education in South Africa, as well as collaboration and coordination among all stakeholders and role players, especially those who have never been part of this discussion, and by this, I mean our rural farming communities who are likely to be the main benefactors of a second faculty. There is an urgent need to widen the “ownership of the veterinary playground” so to say. This can only be achieved by opening this space and allowing new entrants to access this area which up to now has been reserved for a privileged few in our republic. Finally, to paraphrase a statement from the ruling party at the advent of the new dispensation: “Among the many urgent priorities on the agenda of the new African National Congress (ANC) government in 1994 was the extension of public services to the whole population that up to then only one South African population group had been able to take for granted. This discussion document considers the challenges of achieving this ambition, regarding the delivery of health and education services in South Africa in the post-apartheid state”. @Ivan Lwanga-Iga v

January 2024 11 Dear SAVA member Please note that Vethouse will close on Thursday, 21 December 2023 at 12:00 and resume business on 03 January 2024. SAVA wishes all its members and their families a joyous festive season and everything of the best for the year ahead. Kind regards Gert Steyn: Managing Director Geagte SAVV lid Neem asseblief kennis dat Vethuis sal sluit op Donderdag, 21 Desember 2023 om 12:00 en sal heropen op 03 Januarie 2024. Die SAVV wens alle lede en hul families ‘n wonderlike feestyd en alles van die beste vir die jaar wat voorlê. Vriendelike groete Gert Steyn: Besturende Direkteur Article BIOBANKING FOR ANIMAL HEALTH: STORING NATURAL TREASURES Juanita van Emmenes, Puseletso Johnston, Refiloe Malesa, Keneiloe Montsu Introduction The term ‘Biobanking’ currently does not have a clear definition, but it refers to collections of several biological specimens that will be linked to relevant information submitted with the sample that can be used in research (Annaratone et al., 2021). Collected samples from either plant, animal or human origin have been stored, but it was only in the 1990s that the practice was acknowledged (Labtoo, 2023). Veterinary Biobanks are collections of biological samples and related data, such as isolation date, species from which the sample was isolated and collected, registration data and surveys (De Souza et al., 2013). Thus, Biobanks are advantageous to enable scientists to better comprehend animal disease, create novel diagnostics and therapies, and integrate molecular genetic information into livestock breeding programs. Additionally, the primary functions of veterinary Biobanks include collecting, analysing, preserving, and storing biological samples as well as granting access to them. Recently, the Agricultural Research Council-Onderstepoort Veterinary Research (ARC-OVR) Institute in Pretoria, South Africa established a Biobank to provide a secure facility for processing, storing, and maintaining quality biological samples within the Institute. An extension of the Biobank is located at the Transboundary Animal Diseases laboratory which hosts the disease-specific Biobanks for foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) as well as African swine fever (ASF). Under the guidance of the ISO 17025:2017 standard, the Institute can demonstrate its competence in providing high-quality samples as well as curation of metadata that is dependable. The ARC has ensured that procedures are in place to make sure that good practices are followed which includes curation of SOPs, quality manuals and material transfer forms. Why is creating a Biobank so important? To date, Biobanks remain a valuable tool used throughout the world to preserve both genetic resources and the world’s biodiversity, which is advantageous to improve research and diagnostics as well as infrastructure surrounding scientific investigations. The Biobank enables scientists or stakeholders to have access to high-quality biomaterials and their associated data for current and future research to link research data or determine what are the gaps in disease research. Having access to these biomaterials through a Biobank will reflect South Africa’s diversity when it comes to different samples and reduce the time and resources needed to collect biological samples. >>> 12

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 12 « BACK TO CONTENTS It is important to note that some of the biological material can be from infectious diseases, which have a biosecurity risk and may have severe economic impacts on the country. Such a Biobank also supports the mandate of the South African Council for the nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction (Bioterrorism). Part of the Biobanking process involves a material-tracking sheet for each virus on the Pathogen Asset Control System (PACS), which allows for each isolate to be uniquely identified, catalogued, and traced. The PACS additionally links individual isolates to associated metadata providing background information for future reference. All data on the material-tracking sheets can be scrutinised by running various queries within the PACS database. This is crucial if the samples are to be used in all fields of research and development. For instance, genome-sequencing technologies involve understanding diseases by studying the genetic composition or sequence of a pathogen. The resultant data are used for example to determine the genetic basis for adaptive traits useful for crop, livestock, fish, and wildlife breeding programs, and much more. By further expanding the genetic sequence databases of pathogens, it may be possible to rapidly identify the probable source of disease outbreaks. The biosafety risk posed by some of the zoonotic diseases is important to note due to the risk of human infection. The ARC-OVR Biobank is considered a national asset and thus funding for Biobanking and support from both the government and private sector is essential to ensure the correct containment and cataloguing of biological material as well as to promote the improvement of research and development in the field of veterinary diseases. Furthermore, Biobanking allows South Africa to achieve and attain global standards and regulations with regard to biological materials, which allows for opportunities for collaborations and investment with international stakeholders. Establishment of the project ARC-OVR offers diagnostic services and provides vaccines for various veterinary diseases. The Institute is a World Organization of Animal Health (WOAH) reference laboratory for various animal diseases and a collaborating partner with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Part of its mandate is to monitor and manage outbreaks of animal diseases in Africa and to prepare for emergencies involving transboundary animal diseases. The ARC-OVR receives more than 100,000 samples annually which are rich in important biological and genetic material. The oldest samples attained date to the 1960s. Thus, Biobanking has been recognised to be a dire need for the Institute. The challenge is that in the past, the trend was that scientists had worked in isolation i.e., a scientist would gather samples in the field/laboratory, analyse them, and then store the samples in a freezer in their laboratory with the sample information being saved onto personal hardware until, all too frequently, samples are discarded to make space available for new material and the research data collated for the samples are not retained by the Institute. This situation is a great disadvantage as studies conducted on the same species/disease cannot be compared and correlated to what was done or available in the past. However, if historical samples were not discarded but stored in a Biobank with all the relevant supporting information and data after a study and made available to other scientists, then this issue might be resolved and correlations between studies can be achieved to provide valuable information. Moreover, personnel turnover makes traceability of samples and materials difficult. Therefore, Biobanking facilitates the rapid provision of the available stocks to end-users whilst ensuring full traceability and accountability accessions. Effective maintenance of the stock material in the Biobank ensures quality control (QC), method validation, research, and a prominent level of biosecurity. The Biobank complies with the guidelines given by the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development (DALRRD) for the establishment and maintenance of a Biobank, which is developed to overcome several challenges including, harmonized procedures, appropriate design and sustainability, all in the framework of their legal, social, and ethical values (Chalmers et al., 2016). Role of Biobanks in research studies In terms of veterinary disease research, Biobanks serve an important purpose of ensuring that there is safe and accountable storage of biological material that can be used to support research studies. To ensure ongoing research, high-quality biological material is required and with the use of Biobanks with well-maintained database repositories, this can be achieved (Lombardo et al., 2015). Moreover, to further understand animal diseases and create diagnostic treatments that will be novel, biological material stored in Biobanks is an advantage. According to Bull and Bhagwandin, (2020), in global health research, there has been an increase of interest when it comes to data sharing amongst different Institutes of research. This highlights that the role Biobanks play in research is vital because it fosters collaborations and data sharing strengthening research across multiple Institutes globally. In terms of improving public human health-related matters which have links with veterinary diseases, veterinary Biobanks have proven to be a key resource for answering or solve relevant issues (LaLonde-Paul et al., 2023). Veterinary Biobanks play a crucial role in promoting human medicine as well as animal research, especially considering the ‘One Health’ program and its guiding principles, which aim to sustainably balance and optimise the health of humans, animals and ecosystems (LaLondePaul et al., 2023). The implication is clear: if more well-characterized, high-quality samples are available through biobanks, research will advance faster and improve the delivery of efficient ways to combat animal diseases. Acknowledgements: Appreciation and thanks to the South African Pork Producers’ Organisation (SAPPO) and the Red Meat Research and Development South Africa (RMRD SA) for funding and support. Article Biobanking For Animal Health: Storing Natural Treasures <<< 11

January 2024 13 The following SAVA members are available on the SAVA stress management hotline. If required, they will refer you to professionals. The SAVA Stress Management Hotline is there to assist members who are experiencing personal problems by offering access to professional counselling/advice. Ken Pettey 082 882 7356 Aileen Pypers 072 599 8737 Willem Schultheiss 082 323 7019 Mike Lowry 084 581 2624 Tod Collins 083 350 1662 The hotline can assist with referrals or simply offer much needed emotional support when anxiety, depression, anger, grief, lonelinessand fear are at their highest. 24-Hour, Toll-Free Helpline (manned by psychologists, social and frontline healthcare workers): 0800 21 21 21 Article Resources: De Souza YG, Greenspan JS. Biobanking past, present, and future: responsibilities and benefits. AIDS 2013; 27(3): 303 -312 Chalmers D, Nicol D, Kaye J, Bell J, Campbell AV, Ho CW, Kato K, Minari J, Ho CH, Mitchell C, Molnár - Gábor F, Otlowski M, Thiel D, Fullerton SM, Whitton T. Has the Biobank bubble burst? Withstanding the challenges for sustainable Biobanking in the digital era. BMC medical ethics 2016; 17(1): 39 Biobanking in health care: evolution and future directions. Luigi Coppola, Alessandra Cianflone, Anna Maria Grimaldi, Mariarosaria Incoronato, Paolo Bevilacqua, Francesco Messina, Simona Baselice, Andrea Soricelli, Peppino Mirabelli. Lombardo, T., Dotti, S., Villa, R., Cinotti, S. and Ferrari, M., 2015. Veterinary Biobank facility: development and management for diagnostic and research purposes. Veterinary Infection Biology: Molecular Diagnostics and High-Throughput Strategies, pp.43-60. Annaratone, L., De Palma, G., Bonizzi, G., Sapino, A., Botti, G., Berrino, E., Mannelli, C., Arcella, P., Di Martino, S., Steffan, A. and Daidone, M.G., 2021. Basic principles of Biobanking: from biological samples to precision medicine for patients. Virchows Archiv, 479, pp.233-246. Bull, S. and Bhagwandin, N., 2020. The ethics of data sharing and Biobanking in health research. Wellcome Open Research, 5. LaLonde-Paul, D., Mouttham, L., Promislow, D.E.L. and Castelhano, M.G., 2023. Banking on a new understanding: translational opportunities from veterinary Biobanks. GeroScience, pp.1-12. v

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 14 « BACK TO CONTENTS Verbesina encelioides (figure 1), commonly referred to as wild sunflower contains the toxic principle, galegine. It has recently been implicated in clinical cases of intoxication in sheep and cattle in several provinces of South Africa, except Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal. There are no studies that have been conducted on the toxic effects of the plant in South Africa, although, there is evidence of a wide distribution range. We have embarked on an investigation to determine the concentration of galegine in different geographical localities in South Africa. To measure the concentration of galegine the identification and collection of the plant material is needed. Therefore, this serves to kindly request colleagues to assist with the plant collection (aerial parts of 10 plants plus GPS coordinates) if it is present on farms, as well as reporting any suspected cases of intoxication. The information or any further questions can be communicated to Dr Asive Luningo (details above). Clinical signs of intoxication include dullness, anorexia, trembling, weakness, recumbency, tachycardia, difficulty in breathing, and cyanosis. Pathological findings reported include hydrothorax, pulmonary oedema, foam accumulation in the airways, red-mottled liver, and pericardial effusion. The animals die acutely due to respiratory arrest. Verbesina encelioides has been reported in other countries causing similar clinical signs. Verbesina encelioides-a potentially toxic plant A request for assistance with the collection of the plant material Dr Asive Luningo (BVSc) Section of Pharmacology and Toxicology Department of Paraclinical Science Faculty of Veterinary Science Email: Tel: 012 529 8581 Figure 1: Verbesina encelioides (wild sunflower/ golden crownbeard/ cowpen daisy). (Image source: M. Hitch, Kansas, US) 5

January 2024 15 VACCINATION BOOKS The LAST ORDERS for 2023 for vaccination books will be 30 November. No orders will be accepted after this – this is to ensure that stock will be dispatched by 15 December 2023. Orders for 2024 will resume on 16 January. To order/for more information contact Debbie Breeze on 012 346 1150 or Article Verbesina encelioides belongs to the Asteraceae family. It is an aggressive weed that invades pastures, orchards, and forest areas in tropical and subtropical regions. It can survive under various climatic conditions, including droughts and high temperatures. A single flower can produce 600 to 2100 seeds, which are readily dispersed by light winds and can easily adhere to wool, clothing, fibrous material, and coats of animals. Description of the plant • It is an erect annual, herbaceous plant typically reaching heights of 0.3-1.6 meters. • The lower leaves branch opposite from the stem and the upper leaves are arranged alternately. Figure 3: Different parts of Verbesina encelioides. aThe stems and leaves are covered in short, dense hairs. white hairs bThe leaves are triangular-shaped with coarsely, unevenly serrated margins. cThe flowers are yellow resembling small sunflowers. dThe seeds are greyish brown, flat, winged along the margins and covered with fine hairs-like. Current cases of toxicity in sheep In 2016, hay baled in Baltimore, Limpopo province, resulted in the death of sheep. After inspection, it was found to be heavily contaminated with Verbesina encelioides. More recently, in July 2023, sudden deaths in sheep at Graafwater, Western Cape were reported. A post-mortem conducted by the veterinarian revealed lesions consistent with Verbesina encelioides poisoning, which was also present in the vicinity. a b c d >>> 16

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 16 « BACK TO CONTENTS The post-mortem findings included severe pulmonary oedema, foam from the mouth and nostrils (Figure 2), hepatic congestion, and hydrothorax. In October 2023, a farmer in Thabazimbi, Limpopo, contacted the Toxicology Section of the Department of Paraclinical Sciences to report the presence of a plant on his farm. To the best of our knowledge, there are no specific control measures. However, concerning chemical control, there is ongoing research in South Africa. In other countries, physical control has been used which includes cutting the plant at its base or hand pulling it out. If the plant has seeds, tie it securely in a bag and then burn it. Thank you very much for assisting with the project. We eagerly await your response. v 24-Hour Toll-Free Helpline: 0800 21 21 21 Article Verbesina encelioides-a potentially toxic plant <<< 15 Figure 2: Dead sheep intoxicated by Verbesina encelioides.

January 2024 17 NOEL MOENS PAUL WOODS Small Animal surgery Internal medicine and Oncology 12 - 13 August 2024 Skukuza National Kruger Park NVCG BUSH BREAK 2024 Registration Now Open

Vetnuus | Januarie 2024 18 « BACK TO CONTENTS Article JUST ANOTHER FALL By Anonymous Oldish Vet He had a friend of old who called on him from time to time to pick his brain, discuss some or other issue, or simply to “chew the breeze or shoot the fat”. On this occasion, his pal used a modern device for their chat. A smartphone belonging to his son. One that could take a film clip, a short movie. His Nokia 3310 couldn’t do that. The clip showed a cow standing splay-legged, head swaying, glazed-eyed; then it panned onto a typical downer; also a bloating carcass in the background. So far six had died, he said, so what could he dose or inject them with because it began soon after the herd had moved into the hill camp. Plant poisoning was the obvious cause. They spoke about cardiac glycocides and liver-zapping pyrrolizidine alkaloids though not in those words, and Senecio, tulip and that nuisance called slangkop that appeared every ten years or so at those altitudes when all its ducks were in a row. The farmer had already arranged to move them out of the hill camp. The ailing beasts had been dosed with the local vet practice’s universal antidote plus half a cube of Rickett’s blue that his grandfather swore by. He pondered the likely culprits all evening and referred to the excellent reference library Anipedia; reading until well past midnight carefully every single toxic plant in the “book” even those whose localities were supposedly restricted to the far west. One just never knew … His friend said one more cow had died overnight after the herd had crossed the district road, but two that had begun to show symptoms yesterday had recovered. The dead cow had chosen to expire in a large patch of brambles quite close to the old concertina gate. Pity, because the vultures wouldn’t scoff at her. And that was that. But it wasn’t just that. Not for him. He was after all a scientist, and the years as such had inculcated an unquenchable thirst for knowing. He did his morning chores and after the midday bite, he drove way out to the hill camp. It was – as all hill country camps are – big. He chose to first suss out the plateau of the nearest ridge top. That was very similar countryside to where Drimea Altissima had nailed some cattle further south. He searched in vain, reminding himself that perhaps the unfortunate victims had noshed all the evidence before any investigation could start. The obvious locality for the more likely culprits was the vlei, wetland, way down at the foot of his ridge; between his and the next great ridge. He could access the site by contouring around the rim and going down the not-so-steep grassy gulley where the two ridges met – or parted - or he could simply descend straight down the steep hillside at his feet. It was rocky which would provide steps. So down he went. Well, down he went indeed! Having begun descending the valley side he put his weight on a nicely implanted rock which wasn’t nicely implanted. It gave way in an instant and careered down the slope. He crashed down behind it with his left shoulder taking the main impact then his entire body spun; once? twice? again? Down the rocky side of the hill, he rolled too until a firm rock restrained any further descent. He was lying on his back. Still. He noticed dark clouds were moving in from the escarpment. He didn’t move for a minute or two, just letting pain from various parts of his body report where he had taken damage. The left shoulder is the worst. Left temple too. Right thigh. You silly old fool he said to himself and chuckled. “Thank you, dear Lord!” He cautiously got to his feet, assessing any irregularities. The shoulder was certainly nuked. With a capital F. The trip back up the steep slope seemed to take forever, as did his trudge across the wide ridge-top. The quest for the poisonous plants was history. But the recently dead cow was not. He steered the pick-up across the district road and up the bank to an old concertina gate adjacent … And it so happened that on the 6th day after his fall from on high, he wakened in great agony ...

January 2024 19 to the brambles. When he got out and opened the derelict gate he felt the raindrops coming down seriously. He drove across the veld to near the black hump in the bramble patch. The rain was now drumming on the cab roof, however, the scientist didn’t let that worry him. He needed to look inside the carcass before the rain and the fading daylight completely spoiled his chance of checking out the rumen contents and the other organs. Doing an autopsy in soaking wet clothing wouldn’t be too nice so he took everything off in the bakkie. This was a bit awkward because his left arm was like a dead boomslang only thicker. Walking on bramble thorns would be a vast amount worse than working in soaking clothes so he tug-tugged his gumboots on with his right hand. His butcher’s knife and whetting gadget lived under his seat and although it was awkward securing the handle between the boots and using his able hand, he honed the blade. He high-stepped as well as he could over the brambles to the black beast. He flattened the plants close to the carcass while doing the usual preliminary check. Customary blood-stained froth from nostrils; anus prolapsing slightly; mucous membranes reddened. The rainwater was really pouring down now... He opened the abdomen and the rumen, cautiously raking the contents out, looking for any giveaway tenuous leaves of likely tulp species or even the rare Msumbethi clusters that had claimed a few dozen du Plessis oxen some years back. Nothing. The deluge began to sting his naked flesh as much as the bramble thorns did. Hailstones. Thunder began to crash. Lightning flashed. With water cascading over his head he couldn’t really inspect the pieces of organs he extracted. It was a very cursory autopsy -even though he almost entered the thorax vulture-like - but under the circumstances would have to do. He needed three trips from the carcass to his bakkie to retrieve the organ specimens and an ear. The walking was quite pleasant because the downpour was washing the muck from his hair, his body, and everywhere including rinsing out his boots. They did the rotator cuff repair surgery the following afternoon and removed some bone fragments too. Someone had put a 24/7 drip into his other arm and he ate stacks of meds. They discharged him five days later. But on the sixth day after his fall, he awoke in the middle of the night in great agony. His unaffected arm – the one that had done all the work – had a bicep muscle the size of a healthy African python. It was purple-red and wanted to burst from its compartment fascia. He vomited, he perspired, he cried out aloud, and he went delirious. He was rushed back down to the hospital. Nobody ever diagnosed the cause. It was all most bewildering because afterwards, that second week in the hospital didn’t exist in his memory. Perhaps if some research scientists do another survey of old vets they’ll find antibodies against yet another enigmatic skelm. Not only brucellosis, Crimean-Congo, Rift Valley, Q-fever, Bartonella, and West Nile. They might even find antibodies against a hitherto unknown subspecies of botulism. Always follow a man who walks with a limp; because that man has been knocked down many times but keeps getting up and moving on. Angus Buchan v Article