Recycling Sewage Recycles Brain Disease

Sewage Sludge Spreading Deadly Diseases

I wish that I could support wastewater reclamation and the application of sewage sludge (biosolids). Unfortunately, I have reversed course on my position over the past decade and now I only see unacceptable risks. The reason for my reversal is a microscopic protein particle called a prion.

The problem is that prion diseases are on the rise around the world in people and animals. Since prions cause a deadly, incurable disease in people, wildlife and livestock, it seems to be prudent to question prion pathways and policies. Prion diseases kill everything in their path. There is no cure. They are always fatal. Since prions are unstoppable, they are a threat to food and water supplies around the world. Carelessly spreading prions via any pathway is reckless and criminal. Since the safety of biosolids cannot be proven, the practice must be stopped based on common sense.

We know these prion diseases (transmissible spongiform encephalopathies–TSEs) as:

mad cow disease and prions

Mad Cow (BSE) in cattle. Mad cow disease has emerged significantly around the globe over the past 30 years. Few countries have been immune.

Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and Alzheimer’s disease in humans. At least 10-20 percent of Alzheimer’s disease cases are actually Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease. Since both are prion diseases, the difference is likely due to genetic and chemistry variations in the host or due to a prion mutation prior to exposure.

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) deer, elk and moose. Meanwhile, prion disease is on the rise among wildlife. Deer, elk, moose and other mammals have been dying from chronic wasting disease for more than 30 years, but the impacted regions continue to spread. The deadly disease has been found from Utah to Pennsylvania and from Canada south to Texas.

chronic wasting disease caused by prions

Scrapie in sheep. Farmers in Europe have reported sick and incurable sheep for about 300 years or more. Some speculate that this is one of the origins of the outbreak because they over-bred sheep for specific genetic traits and weakened the herds. Then some of the sick animals became feed for other livestock.

While the death rate for many major diseases, including heart disease and many forms of cancer, are declining, the death rate from Alzheimer’s disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakobs disease are on the rise among many populations (in some regions more than others). If Alzheimer’s and CJD were truly random diseases without environmental influence, the death rate from these diseases would be fairly consistent around the world. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. People who live in Washington State, for example, are lmost twice as likely to die from Alzheimer’s disease as people elsewhere in the nation. Women are almost twice as likely as men to die of Alzheimer’s disease. Why?

People and animals are exposed to prions in multiple ways. Many cattle got the disease from feed that was made from ground up cattle carcasses–a cheap source of protein and an elimination of disposal costs. Some animals have been infected by touching noses with infected animals or licking or ingesting material that sick animals touched. Since infected animals have the deadly prions in their blood, urine, feces, saliva and tissue, they basically contaminate their entire environment–even after death. Animals or carcasses that come along behind them are at risk of exposure and infection. Cattle also are exposed to prions in sewage sludge.

land application sewage sludge

The same risks are present for people. A person with prion disease will permanently infect cups, utensils, dental instruments and surgical instruments. In fact, most coroners refuse to conduct an autopsy on people who are suspected of having prion disease. Call your favorite coroner and ask.

Furthermore, people with prion disease also contaminate their toilets with their bodily fluids and excretions, which contaminate the sewage treatment plant. Just one person with a prion disease will contaminate every sewage system used–forever. Most cities have had more than one resident or visitor with prion disease, which means that prions are incubating and spreading within the pipes and the treatment plants of most sewage plants around the world. Additional prions arrive frequently thanks to the growing population of people with Alzheimer’s disease or CJD.

The prion problem grows thanks to sewage recycling efforts–prions are spread on golf courses, parks and crops as reclaimed water and as biosolid applications. Entire watersheds are at risk as rain, snow and irrigation can rinse the deadly prions into creeks, rivers, ponds, lakes, oceans and groundwater. Some states, such as Wisconsin, have applied biosolids in almost every county of the state. Wisconsin also has one of the worst epidemics of chronic wasting disease in the nation. Unfortunately, the sick deer contribute to the the contamination as they expose other animals, hunters, soil, and water.

The prion problem escalates when you realize that we are dumping millions of gallons of sewage into our rivers and oceans every day. I wonder how many dolphins and whales that beach themselves or just wash ashore are victims of prion disease?

Does it all sound too much like a sci-fi thriller? The plot thickens.

prion disease epidemic

Dr. Stanley Prusiner earned a Nobel Prize in 1997 for identifying, naming and studying deadly prions. President Obama awarded Prusiner the National Medal of Science in 2010 to recognize the growing significance of his discovery. (In June 2012, Prusiner confirmed that Alzheimer’s disease is a prion disease like CJD and mad cow.)

In fact, prions now are such a formidable threat that the United States government enacted the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002 to halt research on infectious prions in the United States in all but two laboratories. Now, infectious prions are classified as select agents that require special security clearance for lab research. The intent is to keep prions and other dangerous biological materials away from terrorists who might use them to contaminate, food, water, blood, equipment, and entire facilities.

If prions must be tightly regulated in a laboratory environment today, the outdoor environment should be managed accordingly. If we can’t sterilize surgical equipment used on people who have prion disease, why are we kidding ourselves that we can neutralize prions in sewage? Dilution is not a solution to prion contamination. They don’t have a half-life like radiation. They multiply, which means even one will become many. They can’t be stopped.

biosolids land application and disease

Recycling water and waste is a good idea, except when it concentrates and recycles deadly diseases and pathogens that migrate, mutate and multiply. Prions are worse than radiation. That’s why the Department of Homeland Security has classified them as a “special agent” that must be controlled in only two labs in the entire country. Therefore, we should not make our lands and waters an outdoor chemistry experiment that can blow up in our face–and our children’s.

Any place that recycles sewage water and sewage sludge (biosolids) is spreading pathogens and misinformation–if not outright lies. These lands could someday be condemned as Superfund sites and our diminishing water supplies could be further lost to permanent contamination.

For more information on this topic please visit http://garychandler.com/pandoras-lunchbox-filled-with-prions/ you will see that the EPA and others are mismanaging these prion risks. I hope that you don’t make the same mistake. I would be happy to discuss this matter and consult with your agency to manage this issue.

Alzheimer's disease epidemic

Fact Sheet

Alzheimer’s disease patients shed infectious prions in their blood, saliva, mucus, urine
and feces. The infectious prions bind to the sewage sludge, including sludge biosolids compost, being applied on home gardens, US cropland, grazing fields and dairy pastures,
putting humans, family pets, wildlife and livestock at risk.

Other prion contaminated wastes discharged to sewers include rendering plants (which process remains of 2 million potentially BSE infected downer cows each year), slaughterhouses, embalmers and morticians, biocremation, taxidermists, butcher shops, veterinary and necropsy labs, hospitals, landfill leachates (where CWD infected and other carcasses are disposed), etc.

The US EPA lists prions as a contaminant of concern in sewage sludge and water
eight times. The EPA issued what it calls the “Sludge Rule,” which basically disclaims any responsibility for its premature and questionable risk assessments as it relates to all toxins and pathogens found in biosolids. It reserves the right to adjust the risk assessments as the test of time may disprove its pseudo-science.

Renown prion researcher, Dr. Joel Pedersen, University of Wisconsin, found that prions become 680 times more infective in certain soils. Dr. Pedersen’s research also proved sewage treatment does not inactivate prions.

sewage treatment plant and disease

“Our results suggest that if prions were to enter municipal waste water treatment systems, most of the agent would partition to activated sludge solids, survive mesophilic anaerobic digestion, and be present in treated biosolids. Land application of biosolids containing prions could represent a route for their unintentional introduction into the environment. Our results argue for excluding inputs of prions to municipal waste water treatment,” said Pedersen.

“Prions could end up in waste water treatment plants via slaughterhouse drains, hunted game cleaned in a sink, or humans with vCJD shedding prions in their urine or feces,” Pedersen says. “The disposal of sewage sludge was considered to represent the greatest risk of spreading (prion) infectivity to other premises.” It is well known that sewage sludge pathogens, pharmaceutical residue and chemical pollutants are taken up by plants and vegetables. 

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency recently warned that plants can uptake infectious prions: “. . . there is a potential risk to humans via direct ingestion of the compost or of compost particles adhered to skin or plant material (e.g. carrots). Another potential route of exposure is by ingestion of prions that have been taken up by plants.”

public relations firm and public affairs firm Denver and Phoenix

Gary Chandler is a public affairs, public relations and issue management strategist with Crossbow Communications, based in Denver and Phoenix. http://crossbowcommunications.com/alzheimers-disease-surging-due-to-misinformation-mismanagement/ Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Blood Infected With Prions Threatens Public Health

Undiagnosed Victims Are Contagious

British officials warn that almost 30,000 Britons carry a dormant form of mad cow disease unknowingly and it may affect the blood supply, the Global Post is reporting.

Surgical and dental equipment used on a person with prion disease cannot be sterilized and can infect subsequent patients with the deadly disease.

Experts said up to 1,000 people could die from receiving infected blood via tainted blood donations. A study published this month by the government’s Health Protection Analytical team found that 1 in 2,000 Britons may be “silent” carriers of the disease proteins.

Mad cow disease or variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) is a degenerative brain disease that had started from people eating beef from diseased cows but now can be spread through blood transfusions.

Millions of animals were killed in the 1980s and 1990s in Britain and 176 people died from the disease. Officials say that no new cases have been reported in the past two years.

prion disease epidemic

“There is no room at all for complacency,” former Labor Health Secretary Frank Dobson said. “With a blood test, you would be able to screen every potential donor. If that screening showed the incidence was higher than thought, then maybe you would do it for the whole population.”

Officials said the 176 death count could increase more than five times because the disease has not been eradicated from the blood supply like it was from the food supply, The Telegraph reported.

Canada had a similar exposure to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) via blood transfusions several years ago. All countries are at risk from this ongoing threat to our blood supplies, not to mention the risks associated with dental equipment, utensils and other items that can be reused after a person with prion disease has contaminated them with saliva, blood or other bodily fluids.

Prion News via http://alzheimerdisease.tv/creutzfeldt-jakob-disease/ 

public relations firm and public affairs firm Denver and Phoenix

Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Chronic Wasting Disease Being Mismanaged

Chronic Wasting Disease Unstoppable

Editor’s Note: As the following story illuminates, the global response to chronic wasting disease and other forms of prion disease demonstrate incompetence, negligence or criminal misconduct. I will debate anyone in the world and I will consult with anyone in the world. Mismanagement of this predatory disease is not acceptable and it could change life as we know it–if it hasn’t already. 

Initially the concern about Chronic Wasting disease (CWD) was focused on the health of the white tail deer population and the economic implications CWD could have on the deer hunting industry. New science has raised the possibility that we should be looking more closely at the potential effect CWD could have on human health, as well as hope that a new vaccine might stem the spread of CWD.

chronic wasting disease caused by prions

Chronic Wasting Disease has been a persistent issue among hunters and resource managers in all 25 states in which it now exists, including here in Wisconsin, since the first CWD positive elk was discovered in Colorado in 1967.

A positive doe found just west of Shell Lake in Washburn County in 2012 has rekindled discussion about CWD here in Wisconsin.

Initially the concern about CWD was focused on the health of the white tail deer population and the economic implications CWD could have on the deer hunting industry. New science has raised the possibility that we should be looking more closely at the potential effect CWD could have on human health, as well as hope that a new vaccine might stem the spread of CWD.

Wisconsin has more than 600,000 deer hunters who regularly harvest 300,000 to 400,000 deer annually, according to DNR Regional Wildlife Manager Mike Zeckmeister.

“Deer hunting … generates more than $500 million in retail sales and over $1 billion in total impact to the state’s economy,” he said. “A healthy whitetail deer population is critical to the state’s economy.”

land application sewage sludge

DNR CWD Wildlife Biologist Tim Marien said the state has spent roughly $43 million on the CWD program since the first whitetail tested positive in 2002. That money came from a combination of federal and state agencies including USDA and USFW. The most money was spent in 2003, $12.6 million, immediately after the initial detection of CWD in Wisconsin. The funding for surveillance, testing and research has decreased steadily since then to $600,000 in 2012.

If you do what a lot of folks do and just read the first couple of sentences of a paragraph and assume you’ve got the gist of what’s being said, this is what you’ll likely read in the first paragraph, of informational materials about the impact of CWD on human health, “there is no evidence that CWD poses a risk for humans,” followed shortly by, “The World Health Organization has reviewed available scientific information and concluded that currently there is no evidence that CWD can be transmitted to humans.” That’s not exactly what the science is saying.

prion disease epidemic

“I would not eat a deer that has not been tested (for CWD),” said retired veterinarian David Clausen, chairman of the Wisconsin Natural Resources Board.

Clausen said he is concerned that public access to information, including the latest science, isn’t what it should be to enable hunters and other consumers to make informed decisions about CWD. He’s also concerned government officials have been less than transparent in their decision-making process and that their priorities have been questionable when it came to preserving the resource and associated economy versus the health and well-being of citizens.

“We have a responsibility to be honest with the citizens of Wisconsin,” he said. “If we are doing nothing to influence the progression of CWD, we need to say that. We need to be more up front about the likely ramifications of our inaction. We cannot continue to maintain to the public that we can manage this disease by simply watching it.”

On March 20, 1996, British Health Secretary Stephen Dorrell rose before the House of Commons to inform colleagues that scientists had discovered a new variant of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (a fatal nervous system disease in humans), in 10 victims, and that they could not rule out a link to consumption of beef from cattle infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), also known as mad cow disease.

To date 217 cases of CJD have been diagnosed, mostly in the United Kingdom. The mad cow outbreak demonstrated that prion infections could cross species barriers between humans and cattle, increasing concern about the possible transmission to humans of a CWD another TSE.

Pursuant to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, material from CWD positive deer and elk may not be used in any animal feed, and animal feed containing CWD positive material is considered adulterated and must be recalled from the market.

“Why isn’t the same degree of caution apparently necessary regarding human consumption of CWD positive deer?” Clausen asked.

In Wisconsin, the Department of Health Services has maintained surveillance for human prion diseases since 2002.

“Hospitals and physicians who suspect a case are legally mandated to report those to us,” said Jim Kazmierczak, state public health veterinarian.

It is DNR procedure to inform hunters who have had their deer tested for CWD, by phone, that their deer tested positive and that it is their recommendation, as well as that of the CDC and World Health Organization, that they do not eat that venison and instead dispose of it properly.

Beginning in 2004, if it was discovered that the hunter had already consumed venison from a contaminated deer for whatever reason, his or her name was referred to the DHS. A follow up call was made by DHS officials to conduct a brief interview to obtain the names of all of the people who had consumed venison from that particular contaminated deer (friends, family members etc.).

Those names are added to a registry of all hunters and other folks who have been identified as having eaten venison from a CWD positive deer. Today that registry consists of roughly 1,000 names.

“Based on the small numbers (consumers of venison) along with the long incubation period, we didn’t think it (the registry) would be a very valuable tool for at least 10 or 20 years after we initiated it,” said Kazmierczak.

Those names are regularly compared to the names of people who have been confirmed to have died from a human prion disease like CJD in the state of Wisconsin.

“The longer we don’t find any venison eaters on our list of cases, the more sure we can be. To date, we don’t have any incidences of human illnesses being related to CWD,” confirmed Kazmierczak.

Scientists have been experimenting in laboratories around the world to try and better understand how prion diseases work. Prions are tenacious abnormal proteins and impressively resilient responsible for spreading CWD. They are typically transmitted between whitetail deer in saliva, urine and feces. They can also be transmitted from soil.

A team of scientists at the UW-Madison, led by assistant professor of soil science Joel Pedersen, proved prions have an affinity for a particular type of clay, montmorillonite, found in many common types of soil. Prions bind to the soil and can remain as infectious as those transferred directly by animals for at least two years.

This is just the kind of science Clausen thinks people should know about.

“We should be asking what are the department’s (DNR) duties and responsibilities regarding increasing environmental contamination of soil and possibly plants with a disease agent that both CDC and WHO recommend people not consume,” he said.

As a result of the Mad Cow outbreak in the UK, scientists made a significant discovery. Prion infections were found in extra neural lymphoreticular tissues (tonsils, lymph nodes and spleen). Until that discovery, health officials had only been looking for evidence of prion infections in the central nervous system (CNS), brain and spinal column.

Recent research by French scientist Vincent Beringue using human and ovine transgenic mice, demonstrated that lymphoreticular tissue may be up to seven times less resistant to cross-species infection with prions than brain tissue. Beringue’s research also showed these mice lived normal life spans without showing any CNS symptoms but were none-the–less capable of transmitting disease when their splenic tissue was inoculated into other normal mice.

Because of this science and Clausen’s bringing it to the attention of the DHS, if a prion disease is suspected in Wisconsin, “both neural and extra neural tissues would now be sent to the CDC for examination,” said Kazmierczak.

CWD can cross the species barrier using a transmission mechanism called “serial passage.” Serial passage is occurring between deer naturally in nature.

“The longer CWD stays on the ground and the father it spreads,” said Clausen, “the more likely this type of thing is to happen.” In other words, the more adept CWD will become at crossing the species barrier.

At UW-Madison, the brains of hamsters were injected with CWD prions from infected deer and did not get sick. Hamsters appeared to be immune to CWD. Then the brains of ferrets were injected with CWD prions from infected deer and they got the disease and died. When infected brain tissue from the diseased ferrets was injected into the hamster’s brains, the hamsters got sick and died.

“So apparently CWD can make this end run around the species barrier,” said Kazmierczak. “It adds to our concern regarding the transmission and mutation of CWD when diseased deer carcasses are scavenged by other animals like coyotes, raccoons, and bears, even crows. We need to be guarded and cautious when we talk about CWD, we just don’t know.”

Dr. John Mapletoft works for Pan-Provincial Vaccine Enterprise Inc, (PREVENT). The Canadian-based organization connects and coordinates experts from public health, academic organizations, research institutes, the vaccine industry and the investment community to focus on the development of vaccine technologies.

PREVENT researchers have been working on a promising injectable vaccine to prevent the spread CWD among farmed cervids.

“Our goal is to prevent the disease in animals that don’t have it,” Mapletoft said.

Tami Ryan, a manager in the wildlife health section for the DNR, remembered being involved in several public forums back in 2010 when work on the vaccine was getting started.

“It did not evolve to fruition because at the time there were some pretty significant challenges to overcome with getting a vaccine developed in Canada into the U.S.,” she said. “About the same time, funding levels started to really decline (in Wisconsin) taking with it funds for research on CWD.”

A viable vaccine must meet three standards: it must demonstrate an immune response, it must be proven safe, and it must work. The CWD vaccine works by using a very short piece of protein that mimics a piece of the misfolded prion.

“We have demonstrated that our vaccine does induce an immune response in multiple species and that the immune response is specific for the misfolded prion protein,” said Mapletoft. “We also know it does not otherwise interact with or harm the brain.”

According to Ryan, one key question is if animals already infected with CWD tare vaccinated, can they still be carriers? Would they still be sharing prions and shedding prions into the environment?

Mapletoft said the current vaccine is “primarily seen to be a preventative (vs. cure) situation, so animals that already have the disease are not the target. That’s not to say it may not help them.”

The first vaccine tests began earlier this year on elk in Wyoming and another will be starting later this year in Saskatchewan.

One of the difficulties of testing a CWD vaccine is the long incubation period of the disease. Each of these tests will take a minimum of two years to determine if the vaccine is working, unlike a flu vaccine, which can be tested in a matter of days or weeks. Results from the Wyoming test aren’t expected until 2015.

“The vaccine has always been pursued with the idea that once the injectable vaccine is up and running and generating revenue, you would then have funds to proceed with a second generation oral vaccine which could be put out in the wild,” said Mapletoft.

“Frankly when the news came out recently about these trials in Wyoming, we were quite surprised,” said Ryan. “We’ll be paying attention.”

Prions are associated with an entire family of neurological disorders that are killing people, wildlife and livestock around the world. These deadly diseases are known as Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy (TSE). The operative word is “transmissible.” TSEs include Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, scrapie, chronic wasting disease and mad cow disease. The disease has killed many species of mammals including dolphins. Victims permanently contaminate the world around them with their bodily fluids. Once contaminated with prions, items cannot be sterilized. 

source: http://www.rivertowns.net/event/article/id/38779/publisher_ID/13/

public relations firm and public affairs firm Denver and Phoenix

Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

North Carolina Confirms 17 Cases Of CJD Since 2011

Three People Die Of CJD In Cleveland County Recently

It started with double vision. That’s when Ellen Horton knew something was wrong with her husband, Raymond. The couple was en route back to Shelby from a car show in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., in September. She described his driving as erratic.

creutzfeldt jakob disease outbreak in North Carolina

“He was all over the road. He would run off the road and cross the center lines,” she said. “I found out (that) to him, the line in the roads were curved because of his eyes.”

The couple visited multiple doctors searching for answers. None surfaced. With time, daily activities became a strain for the Marine Corps veteran. His sight never came back. His arms stiffened.

“He couldn’t hold a sandwich. He forgot where his mouth was to feed him,” Horton remembered. “He was fine in Pigeon Forge. He saw the ceiling fan continuously turning, but the fan was off.”

 

Reading became impossible for Raymond. The avid reader had read the Bible more than once. Horton said all Raymond wanted was his eyesight back. Tears sat on the rim of her eyelids. What Raymond is believed to have battled affects less than 400 people each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

biosolids management land application

It would be December before Horton discovered what plagued her husband. Raymond saw Dr. Kevin Klein, head neurologist of Klein Neurology and Sleep, in December. Klein used an EEG and MRI to gain a closer look inside Raymond’s brain.

“He was unsteady when he walked. He had recent issues with memory,” Klein recalled.

The answers lied in the MRI scan, which shows detailed images of organs and tissues. Parts of Raymond’s brain cortex appeared white on the MRI scan. Klein said the discoloration, or abnormal diffusions, were similar to what doctors see in stroke patients. Raymond never had a stroke.

“Most people who have what he did don’t lose their vision first, but he did,” Klein said.

CJD Diagnosis

Klein diagnosed Raymond with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The rare, degenerative brain disease — not unlike mad cow disease — is marked by abnormal proteins called prions that can develop in humans and animals, the CDC reports.

land application sewage sludge

It was previously reported two Cleveland County deaths with links to CJD, one in December and another in January. Both deaths were labeled “probable cases” of CJD.

CJD can come in various forms, including classic/sporadic, which develops naturally in humans. It can lay dormant for many years. Symptoms usually surface about age 65 in those affected, according to the National Library of Medicine’s website. The disease is contagious.

Horton found relief in her husband’s diagnosis. But Raymond’s condition worsened. He was admitted to Cleveland County Hospice in mid-December. Nurses bathed and shaved him. Members from the N.C. Foothills Marine Corps League Detachment 1164 visited their former commandant while he was in Hospice. Horton recalled a moment where she laid her head on her ailing husband.

“I told him I loved him,” she said. “His mouth moved and I read, ‘I love you, too.’”

She sat calmly on her living room couch. A white tissue caught the falling tears from her eyelids.

“He went through three months of hell,” Horton said.

Raymond died Dec. 28. He was 66 years old.

All forms of CJD are fatal. There is no known cure.

More CJD Cases In North Carolina

Klein diagnosed two other patients in Cleveland County with sporadic CJD in 2012. Both were between 60 and 70 years old. Both passed away shortly after.

“That’s a high number,” Klein said. “It’s unknown where sporadic CJD comes from.”

CJD can mirror other diseases such as dementia, Alzheimer’s and some later-staged cancers. Symptoms include difficulty speaking and swallowing, memory loss, blurred vision and jerky movements, according to the National Library of Medicine’s website. Raymond displayed all of them.

About 85 percent of CJD cases in the nation are sporadic, the CDC reports. Since 2011, The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reported 17 confirmed cases of CJD. Nine were labeled probable. Most with sporadic CJD live up to seven months before succumbing to the disease, the MayoClinic reports.

CJD can only be confirmed through a brain biopsy or a cerebrospinal fluid test, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke’s website. All three of Klein’s patients are called “probable cases” of CJD because neither test was performed. Any tests to confirm CJD must be arranged by the hospital handling the case, it was previously reported.

Horton said, because CJD was new to her, she didn’t realize a brain biopsy could be done. Later, Horton requested a test on Raymond’s spinal fluids from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem. The results are pending.

Horton believes Raymond suffered from CJD after a doctor from Wake Forest Baptist agreed with Klein’s diagnosis.

“I didn’t want to put his body through anymore,” Horton said about opting out of a brain biopsy.

Horton described her husband as an “all-around kind of guy.” Those who found a father figure in Raymond called him “paw-paw” or “Daddy Raymond.” She doesn’t know if Raymond knew he had CJD.

“He never asked about it or mentioned it,” she said. “I still wonder if I’m going to end up with it.”

Raymond’s case was the first time Horton heard of CJD. It could be the same for many others.

She hopes sharing Raymond’s story not only leads to closure, but awareness.

“We don’t know what we’re walking around with in our bodies. We don’t,” she said. “So little is known about it.”

Horton clutched a framed picture of Raymond smiling. He wore a Marines cap. Horton said, she and Raymond lived to help others.

She wants his story to do the same.

Prion News Update via http://www.gastongazette.com/news/local/doctor-probable-case-of-rare-fatal-disease-third-for-area-in-recent-months-1.112799

Prions Not Stopped By Species Barriers

Prion Disease Killing Many Mammals

Prions are known to migrate, mutate and multiply. They become more voracious as they move from one host to another. New research adds to the bank of evidence that a deadly prion is a deadly prion and they know no borders between species. For years, food safety experts and wildlife managers have put people at ease by hiding behind the myth of species barriers. Blind faith can kill you when it comes to prion dynamics.

Canadian researchers recently discovered a slight change in prions’ makeup appears to give mad cow disease the ability to adapt and spread to other animals. Mutation still is likely a more accurate term, but “adaptation” is close enough for government work. I think the “adaptation” is the equivalent of a chemical reaction that takes place when prions are exposed to a new bank of proteins in a new host (victim).

prion disease epidemic

Neurologist Valerie Sim and her research team at the University of Alberta said the findings might explain how prion diseases, such as chronic wasting disease and mad cow disease, adapt in order to spread between various types of animals.

The prions’ makeup appears to give the disease the ability to adapt by mimicking and recreating new strains with which it comes into contact.

“Prion diseases don’t always successfully go from one animal to another, but when they do, the process is called adaptation. And we want to figure out what triggers that process to happen, what changes happen within prions to allow the disease to spread,” Sim said in a statement.

land application sewage sludge

“One of the important things researchers in this field have realized is that if you pass certain strains of prion disease through a number of different hosts, the disease can adapt along the way and increase the number of susceptible hosts. That’s the big concern right now.”

The findings were published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

Prions are associated with an entire family of neurological disorders that are killing people, wildlife and livestock around the world. These diseases are known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). The operative word is “transmissible.” TSEs include Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, scrapie, chronic wasting disease and mad cow disease. The disease has killed many species of mammals including dolphins and likely is killing whales.

chronic wasting disease caused by prions

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2013/03/17/Mad-cow-disease-adaptation-key-found/UPI-34591363498413/#ixzz2Np9pCJ6h

public relations firm and public affairs firm Denver and Phoenix

Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

More Mismanagement of Deadly Mad Cow Disease

Prion Pathogen Highly Contagious

After eight years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reopened the comment period for its rule on what cow parts may be used in human products Monday because research completed since the interim rule was published has revealed traces of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) and deadly prions in parts of the intestine currently allowed in human food and drugs.

mad cow disease

Since there is no way to ever sterilize the production line once infected with prions, just one infected animal part will contaminate the production line forever. Food, cosmetics, gel caps, lotions and other products could kill you and your family. Even our water supplies have been compromised due to prion mismanagement, including sewage mismanagement.

The report is alarming. Again, it shows that regulators are protecting the public health with blind faith, ignorance and incompetence. We must demand that deadly prions be regulated based on proven safety as opposed to one of a proven risk (ie. dead people). It took them eight years of status quo to raise this flag and countless products have been contaminated in the interim. As a result, we can only guess how many families have been exposed to this deadly and incurable prion disease. This is reckless, negligent and unforgivable. It’s criminal. It’s bioterrorism.

In 2005, FDA issued its interim final rule, “Use of Materials Derived From Cattle in Human Food and Cosmetics,” which stated that a cow’s small intestine was safe for use in human products as long as the portion called the distal ileum had been removed. At the time, the distal ileum was known to be a potential reservoir for BSE, also known as mad cow disease, but other parts of the small intestine were considered safe.

mad cow disease and prions

Since that time, studies have found low levels of BSE in other parts of the cow’s intestine, including the proximal ileum, jejunum, ileocecal junction, and colon, prompting concerns that perhaps the U.S. Department of Agriculture (which regulates meat safety) and FDA should also prohibit these parts from use in human foods and cosmetics. Of course, they should be kept out of rendering facilities, where they can be recycled back into products and animal feed (including pet food). In fact, we should demand answers about where the risky parts, such as the distal ileum, spinal cords, eyes, tonsils, and other specified risk material (SRM) are going now.

“The infectivity levels reported in these studies were much lower than the infectivity levels that were previously demonstrated in the distal ileum,” notes FDA. (It only takes one prion to kill you, so, I’m not feeling any safer despite this disclaimer.)

In light of these findings, FDA has reopened the comment period on its 2005 interim final rule in order to hear from anyone who has information on the topic. These are questions that should have been asked long ago.

When the FDA announced the reopened comment period, it stated that it believes that the trace levels of infectivity found in these other parts of the intestine don’t pose a risk of human exposure to BSE in the United States. That’s nonsense. Prions migrate, mutate and multiply. They can’t be stopped. So to say that the levels of infectivity are low further demonstrates the FDA’s and USDA’s incompetence or willingness to tolerate and unleash risks to the public.

“We want to hear from other people,” says Sebastian Cianci, spokesperson for FDA. “From what we’re seeing, we’ve concluded that there wouldn’t be a measurable reduction of risk from removing other parts. However, we want other people to weigh in before a final determination is made.”

In reaching its conclusion, FDA says it also considered a recent opinion from the European Union Food Safety Authority on the risk of BSE from parts of the small intestine other than the distal ileum. Why aren’t they actively seeking and sharing this information on a global basis? The bad news is that other prion risks remain unchecked and or mismanaged. The pathways to prion contamination in food, water, products and our healthcare systems are numerous.

A look at the opinion handed down from EFSA’s Panel on Biological Hazards shows that the group was unable to draw a conclusion about the safety of other parts of a cow’s intestine. Bullshit. It’s time to put all of the facts on the table and keep all risks off of our dinner table and out of our homes and hands. prions have been classified as a “select agent” by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Research is tightly controlled and extremely limited. Why are the USDA and FDA conducting chemistry experiments with them in our food, water, cosmetics and other products? What gives them the right to turn every human on the planet into a guinea pig? Any person or agency that violates the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Prevention Act of 2002 is, by definition, a terrorist.

“Due to limitations in the data currently available, an accurate quantification of the amount of infectivity in the intestinal parts other than ileum of Classical BSE infected cattle at different stages of the incubation period cannot be provided,” says the panel in its conclusion. Unfortunately, given the dangers of prions, it only takes one to multiply into millions. It only takes one prion to kill you. Quantification of this dynamic is very simple math.

The reopened comment period has been posted in the Federal Register. You can access it  here. Comments can be submitted by clicking the “Submit a Formal Comment” button.

Thanks to Gretchen Goetz and Food Safety News for their contribution to this article. http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2013/03/fda-seeks-comments-on-risk-of-bse-from-cow-intestines/#.UTYS9IXxOkF

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Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Indonesia Bans U.S. Beef Over Mad Cow Disease

Indonesia Closes Ports To American Beef

When authorities discovered a case of mad cow disease in Hanford, California last year, Indonesia became the first nation to ban beef from the United States. The fallout was immediate, and U.S. beef sales to Indonesia plummeted to nearly nothing.

mad cow disease and Indonesia

Much to the satisfaction of cattle producers in states such as California and Texas, the U.S. government has decided to fight back: In the latest case to go before the World Trade Organization, the Obama administration is pressing Indonesia to open its markets and its estimated 240 million consumers to more American exports or face consequences.

“There’s no scientific basis for turning away U.S. beef,” said John Harris, owner of Harris Ranch Beef Co., the family-run operation in Fresno County since the 1930s.

Kevin Kester, a fifth-generation rancher from Parkfield in the Coast Range foothills beyond Coalinga, called Indonesia’s action a “knee-jerk political action.”

And with U.S. beef exports accounting for nearly 13% of the industry’s market last year, cattle producers say they rely on selling meat to foreigners to make a living. Industry officials say that foreign markets have become particularly important for meat cuts that won’t sell here. The Japanese, for example, have shown an affinity for cow tongue, helping drive up the value of U.S. beef sold to Japan by 19% in 2012.

Last month, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said the United States had reached a new agreement with Japan to remove some of the restrictions on selling beef, a move that he said would result in hundreds of millions of dollars of additional sales in coming years.

“We’re not subsidized by the federal government at all — so we live and die by the marketplace,” said Kent Bacus, associate director of legislative affairs in Washington for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a trade group that represents 230,000 breeders, producers and feeders.

The stakes are high for the U.S. economy, with the beef industry supporting 1.4 million jobs, according to industry statistics. And in 2011, the 742,000 beef herds roaming the nation’s pastures resulted in $44 billion of economic activity in the United States, the beef association said.

The Indonesian Embassy in Washington would not discuss the case but said in a statement that Indonesia “takes note” of the U.S. action and will respond in a timely manner.

“The government of Indonesia’s aim is not to restrict imports, but to ensure that all imported goods are safe for consumption by consumers and safe for the environment,” said the statement, released by Ni Made Ayu Marthini, a commercial attache.

The push to gain more access to Indonesia comes amid hard times for the U.S. cattle industry, the world’s largest supplier of beef.

John Keating, president of Cargill Beef, recently noted that the size of the U.S. cattle herd is now at its lowest point since 1952.

It’s a familiar story for Kester, 57, who owns a ranch in Monterey County, with more than 20,000 acres between the San Joaquin Valley and Central Coast. He has spent all his life in the cattle industry and has watched it shrink, with the average age of a rancher now approaching 60.

“It’s harder and harder for ranchers and farmers to be in business because of high regulatory costs and high land prices across the nation, especially places like here in California,” said Kester, former president of the California Cattlemen’s Association. “As time marches on, we just have less and less people in the business and less production.”

Industry officials say the ban in Indonesia now has been replaced with tight quotas and requirements that force U.S. exporters to apply for licenses, making it nearly impossible for cattle producers to sell their products.

Mad Cow disease is a form of prion disease. Prion disease in humans is called Creutzfeldt-Jakobs disease. Even Alzheimer’s disease is now considered a form of prion diseases. Prion diseases of all forms are always fatal. Prions themselves are known to migrate, mutate and multiply. As a rogue form of protein, prions cannot be killed, stopped or neutralized. Infected animals and humans contaminate their environment and risk infecting others via blood, saliva, urine and feces.

By Rob Hotakainen – Bee Washington Bureau. Read more here: http://www.fresnobee.com/2013/02/08/3166790/us-fights-indonesia-beef-ban-after.html#storylink=cpy 

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Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Criminal Puts Bad Beef Into Food Supply

The following case demonstrates how farmers are willing and able to ignore food safety laws around the world, while regulators have little leverage over the situation and the judicial system slaps them on the wrist for taking deadly risks with the health of millions of people. Prion mismanagement is a serious threat to life as we know it.

Another Case Of Prion Mismanagement

Carlisle Crown Court heard that the crimes committed by David Holmes, 52, led to the disappearance of 33 cattle. They likely became hamburgers and pot roast for unsuspecting families across the UK and could have contaminated the entire production chain.

mad cow disease and prions

Many of the cows were born before 1996, meaning that they posed a potential risk to humans if they ever got into the food chain. Infected meat has been blamed for causing most of the 170 deaths in the UK from the brain disease variant CJD, the human form of BSE, also known as mad cow disease.

Some of Holmes’ animals were at Crook Farm, Roadhead, north of Carlisle.

Passing sentence, Judge Peter Davies told the farmer: “I am satisfied that these offenses were committed deliberately for commercial profit.” The judge said that it was imperative that diseased cattle were not provided for human consumption.

Holmes flouted the regulations, deliberately obstructing the authorities and failing to keep proper records.

As a result, 33 of the defendant’s cattle could not be traced, having been sold “at great risk to the public”, said Judge Davies, who added: “It was a cynical pattern of offending, without consideration for the public.”

The court heard there was no evidence that any infected meat had actually entered the human food chain.

At an earlier hearing, Holmes, now living at Nutholm Farm, Lockerbie, admitted 30 counts of contravening cattle identification and movement regulations. He repeatedly failed to notify the British Cattle Movement Service (BCMS) that he was moving cattle between different locations.

The offences included failing to keep a proper register of his herds, using an ear tag on a cow previously that identified another animal, and giving officials misleading information about his cows.

The crimes were committed on a continuous basis between 2009 and 2011. They happened at the farm near Carlisle, and at others in Northumberland, Staffordshire, and Derbyshire.

Holmes has previous convictions which date back to the 1980s, including a number of animal cruelty offenses.

The farmer’s barrister pointed out he had given up cattle dealing, and the company he ran for that purpose – D&A Livestock Limited – was in liquidation and would not be resurrected.

The judge said figures showed the defendant’s business generated just short of £143,000 in the last nine months, while his remaining cattle are valued at between £30,000 and £45,000, so there was no reason for Holmes not to pay costs.

The judge imposed a fine of £3,000 and prosecution costs of £6,600. Holmes will have to serve three months in jail if he fails to pay up.

In addition he was given a 12-month jail term, suspended for two years, and told to do 150 hours of unpaid work in the community.

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Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Takes Teenager

Girl Died Rapidly From Neurological Disorder

When 15-year-old Claire McVey appeared reluctant to eat in front of her family, her mother Annie assumed she was just having teen wobbles about her weight. But Claire was showing the first signs of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (prion disease) or vCJD – a condition that would leave the bubbly teenager dead within six months. It’s the human form of mad cow disease and an overall prion epidemic that is spreading exponentially.

annie and claire mcvey

It was in 1996 that Annie, like all mothers, was horrified to learn that dozens of people had been infected with an incurable degenerative brain condition caught by eating beef from cattle infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE (there are other vectors of concern).

“Being vegetarian, I always cooked meat-free dishes at home but my two children would occasionally eat meat elsewhere,” says Annie who lives in Kentisbury Ford in Devon. “When I heard about BSE being passed on to humans I was horrified. I wasn’t going to risk my children’s health so I immediately stopped Claire and her brother from eating all meat. What I didn’t know was that it was already too late.”

It was four years later, in July 1999, that Annie, who worked as a risk manager at their local district hospital, first noticed her daughter had become withdrawn and was behaving oddly.

“She stopped eating in front of us,” she recalls. “At first I thought she might be developing an eating disorder but it was more an anxiety about people seeing her eat. Then she started to have an issue about going to school and she didn’t want to wear her shoes. I couldn’t understand what had got into her.”

Worried, Annie took Claire to see their GP, who diagnosed the teenager with suspected depression. But still feeling uneasy about her daughter’s behavior, she arranged for Claire to see a pediatrician.

“After carrying out a neurological examination he told me that he suspected Claire had a brain tumor,” recalls Annie. “My world just fell apart.”

land application sewage sludge

Claire was immediately admitted to Frenchay Children’s Hospital in Bristol, 100 miles away, for more tests.

“Over the next week she was tested from head to toe,” says Annie. “She had MRI scans, a lumbar puncture, biopsies, neurological testing and seemingly every blood test going but the doctors couldn’t find anything.”

Yet Claire’s health was deteriorating rapidly. She had trouble with her balance, felt very weak and couldn’t walk.

“Eventually, they told me the news I’d dreaded the most,” recalls Annie. “Claire had suspected vCJD. It was like being punched in the stomach. I knew what it meant. Claire was being handed a death sentence.”

Since doctors are not able to confirm a patient had vCJD until a brain biopsy is conducted after their death, there were no more answers.

All Annie could do was take Claire back to the home they shared with Annie’s partner, Wayne, and Claire’s older brother.

“Back home, Claire asked me if she was going to die,” recalls Annie. “All I could say was that I didn’t know. She said she was scared that it would hurt, so I promised Claire that if there was any pain I would make sure it was relieved. She seemed eerily calm, like she’d accepted her fate. I could hardly believe what was happening.”

Over the next four months, Claire grew weaker and weaker, rapidly becoming less and less mobile. She was on medication to ease her anxiety and painkillers for her muscle spasms. She needed help dressing herself and eating and drinking but as she didn’t want to go back to hospital, a place was arranged for Claire at Little Bridge House, a children’s hospice in Fremington near Barnstaple. There, staff doted on Claire and she was able to find peaceful moments, listening to music in their sensory room.

“As time went on she couldn’t move at all,” says Annie. “She began to slur her speech and I wondered if she’d remember me the next day.”

biosolids land application and disease

Claire spent Christmas at home, returning to the hospice a few days later. She had been excited about the millennium New Year’s Eve but, fading rapidly, she slept through all the celebrations.

“The next morning she couldn’t believe she’d missed it all,” says Annie. “When the nurse asked what she’d like for breakfast she requested Buck’s Fizz! Then she asked to be lifted into her chair so she could go around and say ‘Happy New Year’ to everyone. I think that was her way of saying goodbye – she died 10 days later on January 11. Her brother and I were sat by her side as Claire slipped away in her sleep.”

Over the following months the pain of losing her daughter took its toll and in November 2000 Annie began to experience problems with her own health. She was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and chronic fatigue. She developed an autoimmune disorder, which left her weak and immobile. Too weak to get out of bed, Annie felt eaten up by grief.

“I was in a terrible place,” she says. “I was devastated, frustrated and unable to do anything. All I could think about was Claire and what had happened to her. I felt consumed by anger that the government compensation promised was taking so long, not just for me, but for the vCJD families still caring for people. These families were going through the worst time of their lives and finding the process of getting compensation very difficult. I wanted to do something to help but the legal process confused me. I needed to understand it, to make sense of it, so in 2004 I decided to study law through the Open University,” says Claire. “My aim was to support families so they could get a care package and be compensated fairly.”

Wheelchair-bound and still suffering from debilitating fatigue, Annie made it her mission to complete her degree.

During her six years of study with the OU she put her learning into practice, too, regularly fighting tooth and nail for the rights of other vCJD families (prion disease). Although Annie, now 54, did receive a payout in 2006, she was dismayed by the system that compensated families purely on the basis of how well they could express the severity of their suffering. So in 2010, she and other families took their case to the High Court, claiming the compensation scheme was flawed. Although their challenge and a subsequent Court of Appeal action failed, Annie was able to find peace in the fact she had done everything she could.

prion disease epidemic

“The judge said he sympathized with our case but he had to apply legal principles,” she says. “It was disappointing but we kept it in the public eye for a long time. We made our mark.”

Later that year, Annie graduated with a Bachelor of Law honors degree, which she dedicated to Claire’s memory during the ceremony. She now plans to take a masters degree in Medical Ethics.

“I cannot praise the Open University enough,” she says. “It allows people like me, who can’t go to university full time, to study for a degree. The quality of the courses and the support they have given me has been excellent.”

And Annie is still putting her studies to good use.

“There are so many downtrodden people out there because they don’t know where to start with the law,” she says. “I work for a couple of unions, looking at cases, giving them advice, assisting their members and helping them with personal injury claims.

“When you have a law degree in a small town, everyone comes for help. I’m very busy and quite content with that. I can’t think of anything more worthwhile.”

And despite the hardships she has endured, she remains upbeat.

“Losing Claire was the worst moment of my life,” she says. “I’m in a life that doesn’t feel real. I’m waiting for my girl to come back but she won’t. It is a physical pain. But what I went through was nothing compared to Claire.

“I’ve had a good life. I may be incapacitated but whenever I feel sorry for myself she pops into my head. Claire was interested in law and she might well have gone on to study it herself if she’d had the chance. She missed out on so many chances so I’m determined to make the most of mine.”

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Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Another Case Of Mad Cow Disease In U.S.

Mad Cow Disease Exposes Prion Mismanagement

The random testing system for BSE (mad cow disease) caught another dairy cow last year in Central California. The good news is that the meat was kept from the food supply. The question is whether or not humans consumed her milk? Or that of other animals that never exhibited clinical signs of the disease, but were carriers of deadly prions–as officials claim happened in Brazil recently.

mad cow disease

What also isn’t addressed is the fact that prions have been found in the saliva of cattle. We must assume that prions are in urine, feces, blood and milk at the very least. Therefore, how much land, water, equipment and livestock does a prion carrier contaminate among the path to its demise? Why did they reopen the dairy where the cow with BSE came from?

The soil, pens, water tanks, and milk stalls were all likely exposed to prions, which can’t be sterilized. Why are we still marketing beef tongue? Why do we allow untested livestock to roam public lands, where they can expose wildlife to prions and visa versa. Why do we render untested animals and use the byproducts in pet food, lotions, gel caps and other products that are potential prion pathways? Why are we sending hunters into CWD zones to kill and consume sick deer, elk, and moose? Are they informed of the prion dangers to their homes and families when animals subsequently test positive (weeks later if tested at all)? Why are we killing wolves in states such as Wisconsin, Wyoming and Minnesota and others that have chronic wasting disease among wildlife? Wolves can help limit the spread of deadly prions by taking down sick animals as soon as they become weakened by the disease.

What are we doing to protect our blood supplies and dental equipment? Shouldn’t we start treating Alzheimer’s disease like a prion disease and put up the appropriate safeguards in our homes, hospital and communities?

Alzheimer's disease prevention

Given the amount of people with Alzheimer’s disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), we undoubtedly have contaminated our sewage systems with deadly prions (again, prions are in urine, feces, blood, milk and other bodily fluids–ask a surgeon or a coroner). Therefore, why are we recycling waste water and disease via water and biosolids? Prions cannot be neutralized or removed from sewage. Spreading them on golf courses, parks and crops is not a great idea.

land application sewage sludge

The prion peril is real. We can’t afford to mismanage this issue or misinform stakeholders.  Unlike radiation, prions do not have a half life. They grow exponentially and they seem to mutate along the way. There is not a cure for prion disease in any species. Since so much is still unknown, we must assume that all mammals are ravaged by prions in a similar manner. Therefore, we can’t afford to duplicate studies among all species before we alter policies, procedures and overall safeguards accordingly for the sake of better prion management and containment. It’s better to error on the safe side of prion management, if we are to error at all. The following video is an interesting punctuation point.

http://www.examiner.com/video/u-s-finds-first-case-of-mad-cow-disease-six-years

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Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

UK Stops Testing For Mad Cow Disease

Mad Cow Disease Impossible To Stop

The Food Standards Agency has advised ministers that routine BSE (more commonly known as mad cow disease) testing on the carcasses of healthy cattle slaughtered for food is no longer necessary.

The agency board says testing of healthy cattle is no longer necessary as long as other existing safety controls be enforced vigilantly. Other safeguards, such as removal of the most risky parts of the animals from food and banning animal protein in cattle feed, should be more than sufficient to protect consumers from unsafe consumption.

mad cow disease and prions

However, testing will continue on animals that die for reasons other than for human food. The recommendation marks the end of an era, 26 years after the first BSE case was found in Sussex in 1986 and 16 years after the first linked cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (a form of brain damage that leads to a rapid decrease of mental function and movement) in humans were identified.

Up until 1996, only animals under 30 months could be eaten by people in the UK until a testing regime allowing for food from older cattle was introduced in 2005. Currently, the upper age limit before testing has been gradually raised and is now necessary only on cattle over six years old. Regardless, huge numbers of cattle have continued to slaughtered merely because they could not be sold for food. During testing, the cattle are slaughtered where the meat is destined for human consumption.

So far this year, only two confirmed cases of BSE have been reported in the United Kingdom. This compares with over 37,000 in 1992. The decision follows the European commission’s proposal to allow some member states, including the UK, to decide to stop testing these cattle. Food agency chairman Jeff Rooker said he believed the decision was a proportionate measure.

mad cow disease

Rooker states, “The FSA is here to protect the public and, with no new BSE cases in cattle slaughtered for their meat for more than three years, we believe the decision to stop this particular testing requirement is a proportionate measure. However, this is not a green light for the industry to cut corners, so it is imperative the other controls, including the other surveillance measures, are maintained vigilantly.”

land application sewage sludge

He added that if ministers agreed to stop testing in January, the FSA would produce a report after six months detailing the results of BSE monitoring and the enforcement of other controls to ensure confidence in the continued effectiveness of the anti-BSE measures. Further reports would be published annually.

In all, 176 people in the UK are thought to have died from vCJD. No one thought to have contracted the disease is still alive.

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Crossbow Communications specializes in issue management and public affairs. Alzheimer’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and the prion disease epidemic is an area of special expertise. Please contact Gary Chandler to join our coalition for reform gary@crossbow1.com.

Brazil’s First Case of Mad Cow Disease Hidden for Months

Mad Cow Disease Mismanaged In Brazil

Brazil has notified international animal health regulators of its first case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, BSE, commonly called mad cow disease. The cow died two years ago, but the test confirming the deadly brain disease was not done until 18 months later, and the results not made public until Thursday.

This time lag allowed Brazil to export roughly 67 million pounds of beef to the United States since the suspect Brazilian cow was identified. Mad cow disease is transmissible to humans who eat beef contaminated with the prions that cause the disease, which is invariably fatal.

mad cow disease

R-CALF USA, a U.S. national, non-profit cattle producers association, warns that this situation points up the need for defending U.S. mandatory country-of-origin labeling now under attack before the World Trade Organization.

“That means the U.S. imported enough beef from Brazil in 2011 and 2012 to feed over one million Americans their annual consumption of beef,” said R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard.

“None of that Brazilian beef imported into the U.S. during the past two years was subject to BSE mitigations that are supposed to apply to countries where BSE is known to exist, meaning U.S. consumers have been subjected to an unnecessary and avoidable risk of mad cow disease from Brazil,” said Bullard.

A Brazilian notification submitted Thursday to the World Organization for Animal Health, OIE, identifies a 13-year-old cow that died in December 2010 in Parana state as a suspect for bovine spongiform encephalopathy, BSE, or mad cow disease.

Read More> http://ens-newswire.com/2012/12/07/brazils-first-case-of-mad-cow-disease-hidden-for-months/

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