Mad Cow Disease

2138 WordsOct 22, 19999 Pages
Mad Cow Disease Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), better know as Mad cow disease is a relatively new disease. Most sources state that BSE first showed up in Great Britain in 1986 [Dealler p.5] but some say it popped up in 1985 [Greger p.1]. However the official notification was not until 21 June, 1988 [Dealler stats. p.1]. Spongiform encephalopathies are invariable fatal neurodegenerative diseases and there is no treatment nor is there a cure for this disease [Greger p.1]. The recent scare of BSE has arisen because of the contraction of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD: see Appendix B) in humans from eating beef products. Although there are many forms of Spongiform encephalopathies that affect a wide range of animals, BSE has…show more content…
Great Britain is the site where the major problem of BSE started. The increase of BSE in the UK was mostly due to the fact that farmers were feeding their cattle a bovine food which included parts of dead sheep that had scrapie [see Appendix B.]and also the offal [see Appendix B] of dead cows that carry the BSE disease. This method of preparing the bovine food started in 1980, in order to be protein concentrated which in return made the cows increase their milk yield. Most people did not know BSE could be transmitted through the food derived from dead sheep and cattle. Because the normal incubation period for a cow is 2-8 years, most of the BSE infected cattle did not start to show signs until sixth and seventh year. Due to the fact that a very small amount of the cows that were infected with BSE showed the symptoms early in the 1980's , they were not detected as having BSE. Most of these cows were then recycled into bovine food, which was then feed to more cattle and more cattle became infected. It was not until July of 1988 that the feed manufacturers were issued a warning to stop the production of bovine food with the presence of cattle offal that were infected with BSE [Dealler pg.2]. And it was not until 25 September, 1990 that bovine offal were specified to be banned from the food of all species [Dealler stats. p.1]. In 1987 the
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