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No wasting disease found in Md. deer samples

CUMBERLAND — The Maryland Department of Natural Resources says it found no evidence of chronic wasting disease in deer killed by hunters last fall.

A Wildlife and Heritage Service official said Wednesday the negative results are encouraging.

Associate Director Pete Jayne says the agency implemented regulations designed to slow the spread of the disease after Maryland’s first and only case was confirmed in Allegany County in 2010.

The contagious disease attacks deer, elk and moose. It causes their brains to degenerate, and they starve to death. It is not believed to affect humans.

The disease is found mainly in the Midwest and Rocky Mountain regions but it continues to spread. Minnesota and Missouri have also recently had their first confirmed cases in wild deer.