Brazil government denies reports of 2010 mad cow case

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MadCowboy wrote:

According to the O.I.E., a report received on Dec. 7, 2012 from Dr Figueiredo Marques Guilherme Henrique , Director, Departamento de Saúde Animal , Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuaria e Abastecimento , Brasilia, Brazil stated that the Official Veterinary Services (OVS) were notified of a cow that was recumbent and showing limb stiffness. Before OVS got there the next day, the cow had died. OVS took CNS samples that eventually were tested for BSE, following “routine procedures to be implemented in case of suspected neurological diseases.” While the report from Brazil claims that an “epidemiological investigation shows that the animal’s death was not cause by BSE,” (1) an epidemiological investigation cannot rule out BSE as a cause of death, and (2) a bovine can have BSE even if that is not what the bovine died of, despite implications in the Brazilian report to the contrary. (Do you say an elderly man did not have Alzheimer’s Disease just because he died of pneumonia?) Even if we could be sure the cow did not die of BSE (and nothing in the report allows that conclusion), that does not mean we can ignore the presence of prions in the cow’s brain and cavalierly dismiss this as not a case of BSE and not warranting further investigation and surveillance. Apparently none of this cows herdmates or offspring were tested, and the long delay in sample testing of this animal raises questions at a minimum. The fact that the cow was older and apparently mostly grass-fed does not show that it did not have BSE or that it has “atypical” BSE — older, primarily grass-fed cattle in other countries certainly have been identified as infected with BSE. This appears to be yet another example of wishful thinking prevailing rather than sticking to the demonstrated facts: A Brazilian cow tested positive for BSE (atypical or not).

Dec 07, 2012 6:31pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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