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From: TSS ()
Subject: MORE TESTIMONY OF USA COVERING UP MAD COW CASES WAY BACK TOO
Date: April 13, 2005 at 6:36 am PST

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: MORE TESTIMONY OF USA COVERING UP MAD COW CASES WAY BACK
Date: Wed, 13 Apr 2005 08:06:02 -0500
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
Reply-To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy
To: BSE-L@KALIV.UNI-KARLSRUHE.DE


##################### Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy #####################


U.S. accused of covering up mad cow cases

Last Updated Wed, 13 Apr 2005 08:26:23 EDT

OTTAWA - The United States has covered up cases of mad cow disease in
the past eight years, a former U.S. agriculture inspector said Tuesday
at a House of Commons committee.

*

Leslie Friedlander repeated a claim he has made before that cases of
bovine spongiform encephalopathy surfaced in the U.S. long before the
disease showed up in Canada, devastating this country's beef industry.

Friedlander, who was fired from his job as head of inspections at a
meat-packing plant in Philadelphia in 1995 after criticizing what he
called unsafe practices, says he's willing to take a lie detector test
to prove he is telling the truth.

Washington has denied the allegations.

But the testimony raises a question that has been asked many times: how
the U.S. industry has been able to essentially escape BSE when Canada's
much smaller industry, observing almost identical safety and testing
practices, has had four cases.

CBC investigation probes case in New York

Part of the answer could be in a slaughterhouse in Oriskany Falls, N.Y.,
which eight years ago may have become the home of the first American
case of mad cow.

Bobby Godfrey, who worked at the plant, remembers a cow that arrived one
day.

"I thought it was a mad dog, to tell you the truth," he told CBC's
Investigative Unit. "Didn't know what the hell it was. Never seen a cow
act like that in all the cows I saw go through there. There was
definitely something wrong with it."

The suspect cow, which was recorded on video obtained by CBC News, was
suspected of being the first American case of BSE.

Dr. Masuo Doi was the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) veterinarian
in charge of investigating the cow.

"Me and my vet, including our inspector, they thought it [the cow] was
quite different. They thought it was the BSE," he said.

Doi, who recently retired from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, says
he's haunted by fears the right tests were not done and that the case
was not properly investigated by his own department.

"I don't want to carry on off to my retirement. I want to hand it over
to someone to continue, to find out. I think it's very, very important,"
said Doi, who has never spoken out publicly about his concerns, until now.

Validity of tests called into question

Documents obtained by CBC News show that the U.S. government was
preparing for the worst. Initial signs pointed to mad cow disease. But
further tests were negative.

The final conclusion from an independent university lab: a rare brain
disorder never reported in that breed of cattle either before or since,
but not BSE.

But CBC News has learned that key areas of the brain were never tested.
The most important samples somehow went missing.

It's all in a USDA lab report that was left out of the documents
officially released by the department. It proves the scientist in charge
knew his investigation of the case was limited.

Without the samples, the question remains: Could scientists really rule
out mad cow disease?

Dr. Karl Langheindrich was the chief scientist at a USDA lab in Athens,
Ga., the lab that ran some of the early tests on the cow. Now retired,
he too never spoke publicly about this case before being interviewed by
CBC.


Without the missing brain tissue, he says, the USDA will never be able
to say for sure what was wrong with the cow.

"Based on the clinical symptoms and the description given by the
veterinarian you can verify, yes this animal had CNS, central nervous
system disease, but you can't specify it in your findings further than
that," he said.

Second suspected case surfaces at same plant

With questions about the first cow still lingering, three months later
at the same meat plant there was a second American cow with suspicious
symptoms.

The second cow's brain was sent for testing and officials were told
verbally the tests were negative.

Doi made repeated requests for documentary proof of the negative tests.
To this day, he's seen nothing.

"How many are buried?" he wonders. "Can you really trust our inspection
[system?]

For weeks, the USDA told CBC that it had no records for the second cow.
Then just a few days ago, it suddenly produced documents that it says
proves that a cow was tested and that the tests were negative for mad
cow disease.

But the documents also prove, once again, there were problems with the
testing. This time, so much brain tissue was missing it compromised the
examination.

The problems were so severe that one USDA scientist wrote that his own
examination was of "questionable validity" because he couldn't tell what
part of the cow's brain he was looking at.

http://www.cbc.ca/story/canada/national/2005/04/12/usbse050412.html

MAYBE this is why they want to make all mad cow testing secret now ;

ANIMAL TEST CONFIDENTIALITY QUESTIONED
Bangor Daily News, ME - 1 hour ago

AUGUSTA - When state veterinarian Don Hoenig told the Legislature's
Agriculture Committee last week that veterinary records should be
treated in the same confidential manner as human medical records, he
raised a few eyebrows. Hoenig was testifying in favor of LD 1106, which
would establish a state animal response team that actually is a list of
resources that would work with county emergency management agency
directors and be able to be pressed into service in the case of natural
disasters or disease outbreaks. The team would be funded through U.S.
Department of Homeland Security money. There does not appear to be any
objection to creating the team, but a part of the bill that would
obliterate access to state records has some, including Maine's
newspapers, very concerned. "I don't think the analogy to humans holds
up," Sen. Kevin Raye, R-Perry, told Hoenig. "No one buys a human. I'm a
little bit troubled. There should be open disclosure here, such as when
you buy a car or a house." Hoenig said there are 21 livestock diagnostic
tests that would come under LD 1106's confidentiality clause. "It should
be up to the seller [of livestock] to provide disclosure," Hoenig said.
"The state doesn't publish the list of AIDS patients or TB patients in
the state." If the bill passes as proposed, the public would have no way
of knowing if mad cow disease, avian flu or hoof and mouth disease - all
extremely contagious - had arrived in Maine. Farmers would not be able
to determine which farms were infected, even if it were a farm abutting
their property. Galen Larrabee testified in favor of the bill on behalf
of the Maine Dairy Industry Association. "The long-term objective is to
prepare the state of Maine to be ready in case of a disease outbreak,"
he said. "It isn't that we don't want [disease] information to be
provided. It's just that we want to control what information is released
to minimize the [economic] impact" on farmers. Michael Mahoney, the
Maine Press Association's representative at the State House, requested
in written testimony that the Agriculture Committee refer the bill to
the Legislature's Judiciary Committee, as required by law in all
proposed freedom of access restrictions. The Agriculture Committee did
make the referral. Later in the week, Mahoney told a gathering of
newspaper reporters at the MPA's spring conference that he was going to
pursue his argument with the Legislature's Judiciary Committee. "They
are much more aware of [freedom of access] issues," Mahoney said. "They
will look at nine criteria. They serve as a clearinghouse, as the
gatekeepers for FOA issues."


http://www.bangornews.com/news/templates/?a=111959&z=12


I had acquired the transcript of the Oprah trial yeas ago,
I still have the news clippings about this, my favorite part ;


CHIP -

exhibit 280, ... According to this US Department of Agriculture report,
encephalitis caused by unknown reasons could be a warning sign for
bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or mad cow disease. Is that your
understanding?

MIKE - Well, that's one of the things they told us to look for.

CHIP - Yeah, that's my point. Now, would you pull out Exhibit 358,
please. Could you tell us what those documents are?

MIKE - Those are dead slips from Cactus Feeders.

CHIP - Your fathers company.

MIKE ENGLER - Yes.

CHIP - and these show that the cause of death was encephalitis, correct?

Mike studies Exhibit 358.

MIKE ENGLER

Encephalitis, yes.

CHIP

And that was one of the neurological diseases that we just saw the
United States Department of Agriculture was saying was a possible cause
of suspected BSE, correct?

MIKE - Correct.

CHIP - There's something else stamped on here.
It says ''picked up by your local used cow dealer''.
Do you see that?

MIKE - Yes

CHIP - And that stamp means that these cows had died of encephalitis
before being taken to the rendering plant where they were ground
up, or rendered, in to feed for other cattle, correct?

MIKE - That's a possibility. .....snip....end
==============================


FDA Statement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Statement
May 4, 2004

Media Inquiries: 301-827-6242
Consumer Inquiries: 888-INFO-FDA


Statement on Texas Cow With Central Nervous System Symptoms

On Friday, April 30 th , the Food and Drug Administration learned that a
cow with central nervous system symptoms had been killed and shipped to
a processor for rendering into animal protein for use in animal feed.

FDA, which is responsible for the safety of animal feed, immediately
began an investigation. On Friday and throughout the weekend, FDA
investigators inspected the slaughterhouse, the rendering facility, the
farm where the animal came from, and the processor that initially
received the cow from the slaughterhouse.

FDA's investigation showed that the animal in question had already been
rendered into "meat and bone meal" (a type of protein animal feed). Over
the weekend FDA was able to track down all the implicated material. That
material is being held by the firm, which is cooperating fully with FDA.

Cattle with central nervous system symptoms are of particular interest
because cattle with bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE, also known
as "mad cow disease," can exhibit such symptoms. In this case, there is
no way now to test for BSE. But even if the cow had BSE, FDA's animal
feed rule would prohibit the feeding of its rendered protein to other
ruminant animals (e.g., cows, goats, sheep, bison).

FDA is sending a letter to the firm summarizing its findings and
informing the firm that FDA will not object to use of this material in
swine feed only. If it is not used in swine feed, this material will be
destroyed. Pigs have been shown not to be susceptible to BSE. If the
firm agrees to use the material for swine feed only, FDA will track the
material all the way through the supply chain from the processor to the
farm to ensure that the feed is properly monitored and used only as feed
for pigs.

To protect the U.S. against BSE, FDA works to keep certain mammalian
protein out of animal feed for cattle and other ruminant animals. FDA
established its animal feed rule in 1997 after the BSE epidemic in the
U.K. showed that the disease spreads by feeding infected ruminant
protein to cattle.

Under the current regulation, the material from this Texas cow is not
allowed in feed for cattle or other ruminant animals. FDA's action
specifying that the material go only into swine feed means also that it
will not be fed to poultry.

FDA is committed to protecting the U.S. from BSE and collaborates
closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture on all BSE issues. The
animal feed rule provides crucial protection against the spread of BSE,
but it is only one of several such firewalls. FDA will soon be improving
the animal feed rule, to make this strong system even stronger.

####

rule

http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/news/2004/NEW01061.html


FDA ANNOUNCES TEST RESULTS FROM TEXAS FEED LOT

Today the Food and Drug Administration announced the results of tests
taken on feed used at a Texas feedlot that was suspected of containing
meat and bone meal from other domestic cattle -- a violation of FDA's
1997 prohibition on using ruminant material in feed for other ruminants.
Results indicate that a very low level of prohibited material was found
in the feed fed to cattle.

FDA has determined that each animal could have consumed, at most and in
total, five-and-one-half grams - approximately a quarter ounce -- of
prohibited material. These animals weigh approximately 600 pounds.

snip...

http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/NEWS/2001/NEW00752.html

EFSA Scientific
Report on the Assessment of the Geographical BSE-Risk (GBR) of the United
States of America (USA)

Publication date: 20 August 2004

Adopted July 2004 (Question N° EFSA-Q-2003-083)

* 167 kB Report

* 105 kB Summary


Summary of the Scientific Report

The European Food Safety Authority and its Scientific Expert Working
Group on the Assessment of the Geographical Bovine Spongiform
Encephalopathy (BSE) Risk (GBR) were asked by the European Commission
(EC) to provide an up-to-date scientific report on the GBR in the United
States of America, i.e. the likelihood of the presence of one or more
cattle being infected with BSE, pre-clinically as well as clinically, in
USA. This scientific report addresses the GBR of USA as assessed in 2004
based on data covering the period 1980-2003.

The BSE agent was probably imported into USA and could have reached
domestic cattle in the middle of the eighties. These cattle imported in
the mid eighties could have been rendered in the late eighties and
therefore led to an internal challenge in the early nineties. It is
possible that imported meat and bone meal (MBM) into the USA reached
domestic cattle and leads to an internal challenge in the early nineties.

A processing risk developed in the late 80s/early 90s when cattle
imports from BSE risk countries were slaughtered or died and were
processed (partly) into feed, together with some imports of MBM. This
risk continued to exist, and grew significantly in the mid 90s when
domestic cattle, infected by imported MBM, reached processing. Given the
low stability of the system, the risk increased over the years with
continued imports of cattle and MBM from BSE risk countries.

EFSA concludes that the current GBR level of USA is III, i.e. it is
likely but not confirmed that domestic cattle are (clinically or
pre-clinically) infected with the BSE-agent. As long as there are no
significant changes in rendering or feeding, the stability remains
extremely/very unstable. Thus, the probability of cattle to be
(pre-clinically or clinically) infected with the BSE-agent persistently
increases.

http://www.efsa.eu.int/science/efsa_scientific_reports/gbr_assessments/573_en.html

USA BSE GBR RAISED TO BSE GBR III


Working Group Report on the Assessment of the Geographical BSE-Risk (GBR

III) of USA 2004 ''extremely/very unstable BSE/cattle system''

USA

http://www.efsa.eu.int/science/efsa_scientific_reports/gbr_assessments/scr_annexes/574/sr03_biohaz02_usa_report_annex_en1.pdf>


CANADA

http://www.efsa.eu.int/science/efsa_scientific_reports/gbr_assessments/scr_annexes/563/sr02_biohaz02_canada_report_annex_en1.pdf


MEXICO

http://www.efsa.eu.int/science/efsa_scientific_reports/gbr_assessments/scr_annexes/566/sr04_biohaz02_mexico_report_annex_en1.pdf


Canada and the United States have been raised to level III (presence of BSE
likely but not confirmed, or confirmed at a lower level) following a new
assessment taking into account the most recent evidence. EFSAs Scientific
Expert Working Group on geographic BSE risk assessment also evaluated the
status of Mexico and South Africa which were classified as level III.


http://www.efsa.eu.int/press_room/press_release/575_en.html


From: Terry S. Singeltary Sr. [flounder@wt.net]
Sent: Tuesday, July 29, 2003 1:03 PM
To: fdadockets@oc.fda.gov
Cc: ggraber@cvm.fda.gov; Linda.Grassie@fda.gov;
BSE-L
Subject: Docket No. 2003N-0312 Animal Feed Safety System [TSS SUBMISSION
TO DOCKET 2003N-0312]


Greetings FDA,


snip...


PLUS, if the USA continues to flagrantly ignore the _documented_ science
to date about the known TSEs in the USA (let alone the undocumented TSEs
in cattle), it is my opinion, every other Country that is dealing with
BSE/TSE
should boycott the USA and demand that the SSC reclassify the USA BSE GBR
II risk assessment to BSE/TSE GBR III 'IMMEDIATELY'. for the SSC to
_flounder_
any longer on this issue, should also be regarded with great suspicion as
well. NOT to leave out the OIE and it's terribly flawed system of disease
surveillance. the OIE should make a move on CWD in the USA, and make a risk
assessment on this as a threat to human health. the OIE should also change
the mathematical formula for testing of disease. this (in my opinion and
others) is terribly flawed as well. to think that a sample survey of 400
or so cattle in a population of 100 million, to think this will find
anything,
especially after seeing how many TSE tests it took Italy and other
Countries
to find 1 case of BSE (1 million rapid TSE test in less than 2 years, to
find 102 BSE cases), should be proof enough to make drastic changes of this
system. the OIE criteria for BSE Country classification and it's
interpretation
is very problematic. a text that is suppose to give guidelines, but is not
understandable, cannot be considered satisfactory. the OIE told me 2 years
ago that they were concerned with CWD, but said any changes might take
years.
well, two years have come and gone, and no change in relations with CWD
as a human health risk. if we wait for politics and science to finally make
this connection, we very well may die before any decisions
or changes are made. this is not acceptable. we must take the politics and
the industry out of any final decisions of the Scientific community. this
has been the problem from day one with this environmental man made death
sentence. some of you may think i am exaggerating, but you only have to
see it once, you only have to watch a loved one die from this one time,
and you will never forget, OR forgive...yes, i am still very angry... but
the transmission studies DO NOT lie, only the politicians and the industry
do... and they are still lying to this day...TSS


http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dockets/03n0312/03N-0312_emc-000001.txt

What GAO Found

United States Government Accountability Office

Why GAO Did This Study

Highlights

Accountability Integrity Reliability

www.gao.gov/cgi-bin/getrpt?GAO-05-101.

To view the full product, including the scope

and methodology, click on the link above.

For more information, contact Robert A.

Robinson at (202) 512-3841 or

robinsonr@gao.gov.

Highlights of GAO-05-101, a report to

congressional requesters

February 2005

MAD COW DISEASE

FDAs Management of the Feed Ban Has

Improved, but Oversight Weaknesses

Continue to Limit Program Effectiveness

FDA has made needed improvements to its management and oversight of the

feed-ban rule in response to GAOs 2002 report, but program weaknesses

continue to limit the effectiveness of the ban and place U.S. cattle at
risk of

spreading BSE. Improvements made include FDA establishing a uniform

method of conducting compliance inspections and training FDA inspectors,

as well as state inspectors who carry out inspections under agreements with

FDA, on the new method. FDA also implemented new data-entry procedures

that are designed to more reliably track feed-ban inspection results.

Consequently, FDA has a better management tool for overseeing compliance

with the feed-ban rule and a data system that better conforms to standard

database management practices. However, various program weaknesses

continue to undermine the nations firewall against BSE. For example:

" FDA acknowledges that there are more feed manufacturers and

transporters, on-farm mixers, and other feed industry businesses that are

subject to the feed ban than the approximately 14,800 firms inspected to

date; however, it has no uniform approach for identifying additional

firms.

" FDA has not reinspected approximately 2,800, or about 19 percent, of

those businesses, in 5 or more years; several hundred are potentially

high risk. FDA does not know whether those businesses now use

prohibited material in their feed.

" FDAs feed-ban inspection guidance does not include instructions to

routinely sample cattle feed to test for potentially prohibited material as

part of the compliance inspection. Instead, it includes guidance for

inspectors to visually examine facilities and equipment and review

invoices and other documents.

" Feed intended for export is not required to carry a caution label Do not

feed to cattle or other ruminants, when the label would be required if

the feed were sold domestically. Without that statement, feed containing

prohibited material could be inadvertently or intentionally diverted back

to U.S. cattle or given to foreign cattle.

" FDA has not always alerted USDA and states when it learned that cattle

may have been given feed that contained prohibited material. This lapse

has been occurring even though FDAs guidance calls for such

communication.

" Although research suggests that cattle can get BSE from ingesting even a

small amount of infected material, inspectors do not routinely inspect or

review cleanout procedures for vehicles used to haul cattle feed.

More than 5 million cattle across

Europe have been killed to stop the

spread of bovine spongiform

encephalopathy (BSE), commonly

called mad cow disease. Found in

26 countries, including Canada and

the United States, BSE is believed

to spread through animal feed that

contains protein from BSE-infected

animals. Consuming meat from

infected cattle has also been linked

to the deaths of about 150 people

worldwide. In 1997, the Food and

Drug Administration (FDA) issued

a feed-ban rule prohibiting certain

animal protein (prohibited

material) in feed for cattle and

other ruminant animals. FDA and

38 states inspect firms in the feed

industry to enforce this critical

firewall against BSE. In 2002, GAO

reported a number of weaknesses

in FDAs enforcement of the feed

ban and recommended corrective

actions. This report looks at FDAs

efforts since 2002 to ensure

industry compliance with the feed

ban and protect U.S. cattle.

What GAO Recommends

GAO recommends FDA, among

other things, develop procedures

for finding additional firms subject

to the feed-ban and using tests to

augment inspections. FDA said the

study was thorough but disagreed

on four of nine recommendations.

GAO continues to believe that,

given the discovery of BSE in North

America and the oversight gaps

described in the report, the

recommended actions are needed

to protect U.S. cattle from BSE.

3. Mad Cow Disease: FDA's Management of the Feed Ban Has Improved,

but Oversight Weaknesses Continue to Limit Program Effectiveness.

GAO-05-101, Feb. 25.

http://www.gao.gov/cgi-bin/getrpt?GAO-05-101

Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d05101high.pdf

Docket No. 2003N-0312 Animal Feed Safety System [TSS SUBMISSION]

http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dockets/03n0312/03N-0312_emc-000001.txt

Docket Management Docket: 02N-0273 - Substances Prohibited From Use in

Animal Food or Feed; Animal Proteins Prohibited in Ruminant Feed

Comment Number: EC -10

Accepted - Volume 2

http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/03/Jan03/012403/8004be07.html

PART 2

http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/03/Jan03/012403/8004be09.html

Terry S. Singeltary Sr. P.O. BOX 42 Bacliff, TEXAS USA


Gerald Wells: Report of the Visit to USA, April-May 1989

snip...

The general opinion of those present was that BSE, as an
overt disease phenomenon, _could exist in the USA, but if it did,
it was very rare. The need for improved and specific surveillance
methods to detect it as recognised...

snip...

It is clear that USDA have little information and _no_ regulatory
responsibility for rendering plants in the US...

snip...

3. Prof. A. Robertson gave a brief account of BSE. The US approach
was to accord it a _very low profile indeed_. Dr. A Thiermann showed
the picture in the ''Independent'' with cattle being incinerated and
thought
this was a fanatical incident to be _avoided_ in the US _at all costs_...

snip...

http://www.bseinquiry.gov.uk/files/mb/m11b/tab01.pdf

To be published in the Proceedings of the
Fourth International Scientific Congress in
Fur Animal Production. Toronto, Canada,
August 21-28, 1988

Evidence That Transmissible Mink Encephalopathy
Results from Feeding Infected Cattle

R.F. Marsh* and G.R. Hartsough

"Department of Veterinary Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison,
Madison,
Wisconsin 53706; and ^Emba/Creat Lakes Ranch Service, Thiensville,
Wisconsin 53092

ABSTRACT
Epidemiologic investigation of a new incidence of
transmissible mink encephalopathy (TME) in Stetsonville, Wisconsin
suggests that the disease may have resulted from feeding infected
cattle to mink. This observation is supported by the transmission of
a TME-like disease to experimentally inoculated cattle, and by the
recent report of a new bovine spongiform encephalopathy in
England.

INTRODUCTION

Transmissible mink encephalopathy (TME) was first reported in 1965 by
Hartsough
and Burger who demonstrated that the disease was transmissible with a
long incubation
period, and that affected mink had a spongiform encephalopathy similar
to that found in
scrapie-affecied sheep (Hartsough and Burger, 1965; Burger and
Hartsough, 1965).
Because of the similarity between TME and scrapie, and the subsequent
finding that the
two transmissible agents were indistinguishable (Marsh and Hanson,
1969), it was
concluded that TME most likely resulted from feeding mink
scrapie-infecied sheep.
The experimental transmission of sheep scrapie to mink (Hanson et al.,
1971)
confirmed the close association of TME and scrapie, but at the same time
provided
evidence that they may be different. Epidemiologic studies on previous
incidences of
TME indicated that the incubation periods in field cases were between
six months and
one year in length (Harxsough and Burger, 1965). Experimentally, scrapie
could not be
transmitted to mink in less than one year.
To investigate the possibility that TME may be caused by a (particular
strain of
scrapie which might be highly pathogenic for mink, 21 different strains
of the scrapie
agent, including their sheep or goat sources, were inoculated into a
total of 61 mink.
Only one mink developed a progressive neurologic disease after an
incubation period of
22 mon..s (Marsh and Hanson, 1979). These results indicated that TME was
either caused
by a strain of sheep scrapie not yet tested, or was due to exposure to a
scrapie-like agent
from an unidentified source.

OBSERVATIONS AND RESULTS

A New Incidence of TME. In April of 1985, a mink rancher in
Stetsonville, Wisconsin
reported that many of his mink were "acting funny", and some had died.
At this time, we
visited the farm and found that approximately 10% of all adult mink were
showing
typical signs of TME: insidious onset characterized by subtle behavioral
changes, loss of
normal habits of cleanliness, deposition of droppings throughout the pen
rather than in a
single area, hyperexcitability, difficulty in chewing and swallowing,
and tails arched over
their _backs like squirrels. These signs were followed by progressive
deterioration of
neurologic function beginning with locomoior incoordination, long
periods of somnolence
in which the affected mink would stand motionless with its head in the
corner of the
cage, complete debilitation, and death. Over the next 8-10 weeks,
approximately 40% of
all the adult mink on the farm died from TME.
Since previous incidences of TME were associated with common or shared
feeding
practices, we obtained a careful history of feed ingredients used over
the past 12-18
months. The rancher was a "dead stock" feeder using mostly (>95%) downer
or dead dairy
cattle and a few horses. Sheep had never been fed.

Experimental Transmission. The clinical diagnosis of TME was confirmed by
histopaihologic examination and by experimental transmission to mink
after incubation
periods of four months. To investigate the possible involvement of
cattle in this disease
cycle, two six-week old castrated Holstein bull calves were inoculated
intracerebrally
with a brain suspension from affected mink. Each developed a fatal
spongiform
encephalopathy after incubation periods of 18 and 19 months.

DISCUSSION
These findings suggest that TME may result from feeding mink infected
cattle and
we have alerted bovine practitioners that there may exist an as yet
unrecognized
scrapie-like disease of cattle in the United States (Marsh and
Hartsough, 1986). A new
bovine spongiform encephalopathy has recently been reported in England
(Wells et al.,
1987), and investigators are presently studying its transmissibility and
possible
relationship to scrapie. Because this new bovine disease in England is
characterized by
behavioral changes, hyperexcitability, and agressiveness, it is very
likely it would be
confused with rabies in the United Stales and not be diagnosed.
Presently, brains from
cattle in the United States which are suspected of rabies infection are
only tested with
anti-rabies virus antibody and are not examined histopathologically for
lesions of
spongiform encephalopathy.
We are presently pursuing additional studies to further examine the
possible
involvement of cattle in the epidemiology of TME. One of these is the
backpassage of
our experimental bovine encephalopathy to mink. Because (here are as yet
no agent-
specific proteins or nucleic acids identified for these transmissible
neuropathogens, one
means of distinguishing them is by animal passage and selection of the
biotype which
grows best in a particular host. This procedure has been used to
separate hamster-
adapted and mink-udapted TME agents (Marsh and Hanson, 1979). The
intracerebral
backpassage of the experimental bovine agent resulted in incubations of
only four months
indicating no de-adaptation of the Stetsonville agent for mink after
bovine passage.
Mink fed infected bovine brain remain normal after six months. It will
be essential to
demonstrate oral transmission fiom bovine to mink it this proposed
epidemiologic
association is to be confirmed.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
These studies were supported by the College of Agricultural and Life
Sciences,
University of Wisconsin-Madison and by a grant (85-CRCR-1-1812) from the
United
States Department of Agriculture. The authors also wish to acknowledge
the help and
encouragement of Robert Hanson who died during the course of these
investigations.

REFERENCES
Burger, D. and Hartsough, G.R. 1965. Encephalopathy of mink. II.
Experimental and
natural transmission. J. Infec. Dis. 115:393-399.
Hanson, R.P., Eckroade, R.3., Marsh, R.F., ZuRhein, C.M., Kanitz, C.L.
and Gustatson,
D.P. 1971. Susceptibility of mink to sheep scrapie. Science 172:859-861.
Hansough, G.R. and Burger, D. 1965. Encephalopathy of mink. I.
Epizoociologic and
clinical observations. 3. Infec. Dis. 115:387-392.
Marsh, R.F. and Hanson, R.P. 1969. Physical and chemical properties of the
transmissible mink encephalopathy agent. 3. ViroL 3:176-180.
Marsh, R.F. and Hanson, R.P. 1979. On the origin of transmissible mink
encephalopathy. In Hadlow, W.J. and Prusiner, S.P. (eds.) Slow
transmissible
diseases of the nervous system. Vol. 1, Academic Press, New York, pp
451-460.
Marsh, R.F. and Hartsough, G.R. 1986. Is there a scrapie-like disease in
cattle?
Proceedings of the Seventh Annual Western Conference for Food Animal
Veterinary
Medicine. University of Arizona, pp 20.
Wells, G.A.H., Scott, A.C., Johnson, C.T., Cunning, R.F., Hancock, R.D.,
Jeffrey, M.,
Dawson, M. and Bradley, R. 1987. A novel progressive spongiform
encephalopathy
in cattle. Vet. Rec. 121:419-420.

MARSH

http://www.bseinquiry.gov.uk/files/mb/m09/tab05.pdf

Terry S. Singeltary SR.
P.O. Box 42
Bacliff, Texas USA 77518


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