02/19/2013 06:08 EST | Updated 04/21/2013 05:12 EDT

Mad Moose Disease: Alberta Wildlife Officials Identify Case

MEDICINE HAT, Alta. - Southern Alberta wildlife officials have identified what they say is the first case in Canada of a moose suffering from a neurological disorder associated with mad cow disease.

The diagnosis of chronic-wasting disease, also called CWD, was made after tests on an animal killed in a collision with a vehicle last November near Medicine Hat.

Chronic-wasting disease is related to the mad cow variant found in cattle and the human form known as Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease.

The province has been battling to prevent chronic-wasting disease from spreading to wild deer populations since 2006.

That's when the disease began being found in mule and white-tail deer populations in east-central and southeastern Alberta.

Since last September, 23 other cases of CWD have been diagnosed in deer out of nearly 3,000 specimens sent to the province for testing.

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