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Canary Database

October 12, 2005

A new Web site is trying to save lives by bridging the gap between physicians and veterinarians.


Lessons from canaries. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

[Canary sounds]

Canaries are more sensitive to poisonous gases than humans are, which is why coal miners used to bring them into mines with them. Doctor Peter Rabinowitz of Yale Medical School says animals may still have an important role to play in warning humans of potential health hazards.

He and his colleagues recently launched a database of pet and wildlife health studies that they hope will foster research into questions about human health.

PETER RABINOWITZ (Yale Medical School):
When my pet gets sick should I worry? If the frogs in the pond near my well are having deformities in their legs, should I worry about that or not? These are questions that come up in the press and that people think about.

The resource is available online at I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.