Outbreak Of Brain Cancer from New Virus Hits West Coast Raccoons

"A mysterious new virus on the West Coast is believed to be causing fatal brain cancer in raccoons -- an alarming sign given the animals' frequent interactions with humans and the fact that tumors of any type were previously rarely found in the animals."

"The discovery is documented in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's January 2013 issue of "Emerging Infections Diseases," wherein a team of researchers report brain tumors have been detected in 10 raccoons between March 2010 and May 2012 in Northern California and Oregon.

'Previous to this, there had been two reports of a raccoon with a brain tumor over the past two decades,' said Patricia Pesavento, a pathologist at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and the study's principal author, according to the Los Angeles Times. 'Now, we're getting one every month.'"

Ryan Grenoble reports for the Huffington Post January 9, 2013.

Source: Huffington Post, 01/10/2013