French sheep tested for mad cow disease

10th March 2006, Comments 0 comments

EU experts test three sheep for mad cow disease

EU experts test three sheep for mad cow disease

BRUSSELS, March 9, 2006 (AFP) - European health experts have identified three cases of a strange brain disorder in sheep and will conduct tests to see whether it is mad cow disease, the European Commission said on Thursday.

The experts said tests on two sheep from France and one from Cyprus had uncovered an "unusual molecular profile" that must be further investigated, the EU executive said in a statement.

No case of mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), has ever been found in sheep although scientists have long thought it would be possible for them to contract it. The first case of BSE in a goat was found last year.

The experts said some data on the sheep -- which had contracted a disease with symptoms like mad cow disease -- suggested they may not have the brain-wasting illness but "there is insufficient evidence to definitively rule out BSE".

The family of brain tissue degenerating diseases known as Transmissible Spongiform Encephalophathies (TSEs) appear in bovines as mad cow disease, in sheep as scrapie and in humans as Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD).

A variant of CJD has been linked to people who have eaten meat tainted with mad cow disease, and the EU has banned the sale of certain risk materials in cows such as brain, spinal cord and parts of the intestines to contain its spread.

The commission said on Thursday that the three sheep presented no public health risk as they did not enter the food or feed chain.

The next phase of tests involves injecting specially-bred mice with brain tissue from the infected sheep. The EU executive said the results would not be available for 12-18 months.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

BRUSSELS, March 9, 2006 (AFP) - European health experts have identified three cases of a strange brain disorder in sheep and will conduct tests to see whether it is mad cow disease, the European Commission said on Thursday.

The experts said tests on two sheep from France and one from Cyprus had uncovered an "unusual molecular profile" that must be further investigated, the EU executive said in a statement.

No case of mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), has ever been found in sheep although scientists have long thought it would be possible for them to contract it. The first case of BSE in a goat was found last year.

The experts said some data on the sheep -- which had contracted a disease with symptoms like mad cow disease -- suggested they may not have the brain-wasting illness but "there is insufficient evidence to definitively rule out BSE".

The family of brain tissue degenerating diseases known as Transmissible Spongiform Encephalophathies (TSEs) appear in bovines as mad cow disease, in sheep as scrapie and in humans as Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD).

A variant of CJD has been linked to people who have eaten meat tainted with mad cow disease, and the EU has banned the sale of certain risk materials in cows such as brain, spinal cord and parts of the intestines to contain its spread.

The commission said on Thursday that the three sheep presented no public health risk as they did not enter the food or feed chain.

The next phase of tests involves injecting specially-bred mice with brain tissue from the infected sheep. The EU executive said the results would not be available for 12-18 months.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

0 Comments To This Article