Prior to the pandemic, international dog rescue operations would bring in homeless canines from all over the world and place them in Canadian homes. Recently, veterinarians in Canada and the United States have come across several cases of leishmaniosis, a tropical flesh-eating disease caused by the Leishmania parasite. It's a zoonotic disease, meaning it can cross over into humans, and can be fatal if left untreated.

While the disease is not (yet) a threat here, veterinarians are raising the alarm about the presence of the parasite in rescue dogs brought into the country. Today in The Conversation Canada, Victoria Wagner, a veterinarian and graduate student in Molecular Parasitology at the Université de Montréal, alongside researchers Christopher Fernandez-Prada from the Université de Montréal and Martin Olivier at McGill University, write about how the Leishmania parasite's vesicles — a delivery system of sorts — may contain clues for the treatment and management of the disease. The authors also make a case for a cohesive “One Health” approach that requires collaboration between government policy makers, veterinarians and public health officials to manage leishmaniosis in Canada and elsewhere.

Also today:


Nehal El-Hadi

Science + Technology Editor

Leishmaniosis — a parasitic infection that causes skin sores — has been found in kenneled American foxhounds. (Shutterstock)

A flesh-eating parasite carried by dogs is making its way to North America

Victoria Wagner, Université de Montréal; Christopher Fernandez-Prada, Université de Montréal; Martin Olivier

Importing dogs into Canada has also introduced a flesh-eating parasite that is transmissible to humans. Veterinarians, researchers and public health officials should work together to curtail the disease.

Children perceived as kind and considerate were more likely to form sustained partnerships. Anxious children were more likely to be unpartnered in early adulthood. (Shutterstock)

How your behaviour in childhood predicts whether you’ll be in a relationship as an adult

Francis Vergunst, Université de Montréal

New research suggests that the seeds of future romantic partnering patterns are planted in childhood and are visible even before adolescence.

Do we need this many vehicles on the road? (Shutterstock)

The myth of electric cars: Why we also need to focus on buses and trains

Alexandre Milovanoff, University of Toronto

Life cycle assessments of electric vehicles show that they cannot fully eliminate the greenhouse gas emissions of personal travel. We also need bikes, buses and train to solve our climate problems.

In this April 2013 photo, Bangladeshis gather as rescuers look for survivors and victims at the site of the Rana Plaza building that collapsed a day earlier, in Savar, Bangladesh. (AP Photo/A.M.Ahad)

Corporate social responsibility commitments: All talk, no action

Andy Hira, Simon Fraser University

Until there are global standards for authentic corporate social responsibility efforts, we will continue to see local impoverishment, hazardous waste and tragic labour accidents in the Global South.



  • How much of Barack Obama’s legacy has Donald Trump rolled back?

    Clodagh Harrington, De Montfort University; Alex Waddan, University of Leicester

    From healthcare, to the environment, immigration and racial justice, which areas of Barack Obama's legacy were the most vulnerable – and most resilient – during Donald Trump's first term?

Science + Technology