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Experts fear disease turning Michigan deer into 'zombies' could one day spread to humans

60 cases of chronic wasting disease confirmed in Michigan deer

DETROIT – Chronic wasting disease turns deer into so-called "zombies," and experts are worried it could one day spread to the human population.

The disease has spread to 24 states, including Michigan. The target zone in Michigan is 16 counties in the center and western parts of the state. There have been 60 cases confirmed.

No cases have been reported in humans, but many experts believe it's just a matter of time before that happens. They compare the disease with the mad cow outbreak in the late 1980s in Britain.

To help combat the spread of the disease, baiting or feeding of deer is no longer allowed across Michigan's lower peninsula.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends hunters test deer before eating meat in affected areas.

If a deer looks sick or acts unnaturally, hunters should not shoot, handle or eat the meat, experts said.


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