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From: TSS ()
Subject: First case of vCJD reported in a Japanese patient: update
Date: March 17, 2006 at 9:19 am PST

First case of vCJD reported in a Japanese patient: update
Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:40

First case of vCJD reported in a Japanese patient: update

Editorial team (, Eurosurveillance editorial office

A detailed description of the first case of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) in Japan, originally reported in February 2005, has just been published [1,2]. The patient was a 51 year old man, who had spent around 24 days in the United Kingdom in 1990, during the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) outbreak. He is known to have eaten mechanically recovered meat during his visit, and although exposure in other European countries he visited, including France and Japan, cannot be excluded, it is thought that he may have been exposed to the BSE agent during his UK visit. If exposure in the UK was the source of his infection, then the incubation period to illness onset was 11.5 years.

It is also noted that the patientís illness duration was unusually long, at 42 months, and that periodic synchronous discharges (PSD), which have not been reported in other vCJD cases, appeared on the patientís electroencephalogram, 12 months before death. The working group reporting on the case suggest that the World Health Organization vCJD case definition [3] be revised to state that PSD does not exclude the possibility of vCJD.

This article is adapted from reference 1

Yamada M, Variant CJD Working Group. The first Japanese case of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease showing periodic electroencephalogram. Lancet 2006; 367: 874.
Eurosurveillance. First case of vCJD reported in a Japanese patient. Eurosurveillance 2005; 10(2): 050210. (
The Revision of the Surveillance Case Definition for Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD). Report of a WHO consultation, Edinburgh, United Kingdom 17 May 2001. WHO/CDS/CSR/EPH/2001.5. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2001 (


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