Bone/ Blood Meal and Mad Cow Disease

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Does anyone know of any research that has been done on the potential for contracting mad cow disease from using bone meal or blood meal as a soil amendment for veggies or herbs. That is, assuming no direct contact with the stuff.
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Human CJD has been attributed to eating beef contaminated with brain or spinal cord material (where the harmful prions live.) If you do not eat garden bone meal, you need not fear it as a disease vector.
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs (Ottawa, Canada)
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Take peak at
http://www.newscientist.com/hottopics/bse /;jsessionid=HOOGIMOCHNGF
On a rainy day!
Bill
--
"No Progress without contraries" William Blake.

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Four cases in Great Britain were not traceable to any meat eaten, but all four were inveterate gardeners who used bonemeal. It is believed they inhaled the initial prion infection while spreading bone meal in their gardens.
Agricultural lobby & spin doctors have hired scientific spokespersons to state pretty much "there is no evidence that BSE can infect humans by inhaling bone meal." The guys hired to say this usually have five or six degrees in science, but never did any actual studies, & get paid by Agribusiness which uses bonemeal.
It remains that the four cases in England have never been explained by any alternative theory, since those four gardeners had not been exposed to infected meat.
It is also not being studied to what degree the BSE prions can be absorbed, unaltered, into edible tubors & plants --thus entering the food chain even for vegetarians. It is theoretically possible, but it isn't being studied, so there is no evidence one way or the other.
The prions have reached the bone meal product by several methods. While it is no longer legal to put infected sheep & cattle meat in feeds for dogs, cats, pigs, or cattle, it is still legal to make a rendering product from waste meats that are not to be used as animal feeds. BSE infects game animals in the United States, especially elk, & these end up at rendering plants as roadkill. They also render sheep, the most commonly infected farm animals in the United States. Lastly, while it is widely believed that chickens cannot be infected, some scientists speculate that chickens have "safely" eaten prion-infected feeds merely because their lifespans are too short for the infection to injur them -- but the prions could nevertheless be in their brainstem & spine, & rendered chicken meal could also be a source of the prions.
And the rendering plant industry is self-regulating (meaning largely unregulated). On the rare occasion when anyone ever checked to see if self-regulation worked, the vats obviously had everything from zoo animals & roadkill to dog & cat carcasses from animal control & run-over racoons, with wildlly inadequate methods of monitoring which end-product batch gets labeled liver meal or chicken meal or beefmeal allegedly suitable to feed even pets -- & you can bet they care even less what goes into their garden-grade garbage. Not much in the news was an American recall of Canadian pet foods found to be contaminated by BSE prions, but if anyone thinks they're more careful in say Milwaukee than in Alberta, they're kiddin' themselves.
Because the risks of bone meal in garfdening is not being studied for publication in peer-review contexts, it is possible to say there is no definitive evidence of risk, & fail to mention no one is looking for the evidence because vested parties fund such research & can pick & choose what suits agribusiness best. And those four British cases remain a haunting answer to any Agribusiness spin about it all beikng unproven. One of these victims reportly "never wore a mask & used to grind up the soil & make a big cloud of dust" when adding bonemeal to his rose garden, & was exposed to it on many occasions over a great length of time. The majority of Britain's human cases ate at MacDonalds -- MacDonalds was the sole source of the contaminated meat! -- but four victims were evidently exposed only to bone meal fertilizers. That fact doesn't qualify as a "study" so agribusiness dismisses the cases as unproven, & will certainly never admit how extremely likely it is.
In a garden that is not used for harvested vegetables, & if a gardener wears a high-end face mask while spreading bonemeal (not one of those worthless felt paper mouth guards), the possibility of risk would seem largely to be mitigated. Not that I've ever seen a gardener with even one of the worthless felt-paper face guards which stop nothing from going up the snout, let alone an industrial grade real-deal filter mask.
But even if it were reasonable to assume it is safe to breathe in bone meal while fertilizing the garden, I would not use it. I do not want to look at my gardens & have to think, "I've sprinkled rendered animals all over that."
-paghat the ratgirl
--
"Of what are you afraid, my child?" inquired the kindly teacher.
"Oh, sir! The flowers, they are wild," replied the timid creature.
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from snipped-for-privacy@netscape.net (paghat) contains these words:

Some of the victims were vegetarians. I have not heard that all the vegetarians were inveterate gardeners who used bonemeal.
The majority

Er, for the benefit of others who may not know..Paghat is joking. No single source of infected meat was identifiable.

That theory has not been publicised in Britain afaik, so could you provide a source for it please?
Janet.
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wrote:

for
soil
with
all
The most recent [ West of England Medical School-pub. May2004] research suggests that eating meat might very well have little or no relevance~~ the prion being capable of withstanding autoclaving of instruments. The work has shown that removed tonsils and appendixes from healthy patients show a significant [but small] proportion having the prion. The proportion, when extrapolated, means there are several thousand carriers of vCJD who could have contaminated others, or been contaminated, via contact with affected, but supposedly sterilised, instruments. It is not known if these will eventually succumb to vCJD or even if this is 100% related to BSE.
I suppose I should take precautions when using bone meal but I'm always too busy to bother. Others suggest that if I did get 'mad cow disease' they would notice little difference~~and they are my friends!! Brian.
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Bill is too!
--
"No Progress without contraries" William Blake.

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Exactly.

Or via blood donations. In the UK, people who recieved a transfusion during the early 80s are banned from donating blood. Some countries no longer import any human blood products from the UK.
Janet
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On Sat, 29 May 2004 22:46:55 +0100, I found this from Janet

So the animal products are now in the clear. Blood transfusion and instruments are now responsible. And of course scientific sources are impecable, truthful and honest. They don't indulge in spin. Who pays the piper.....
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contains these words:

research
the
The
carriers of

contact
Nothing is 'in the clear'. Potential avenues of infection are all under investigation to avoid further contamination. The only recent conclusion is that animal products might not be/have been the only method of infection. Or even at all. Brian.
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Actually there is no such journal of any so-called "West of England Medical School, May 2004" & that isn't even the name of Department of Health & Social Care at the University of the West of England, Bristol. The citation was incomplete because entirely bogus. Brian's fake citation is either misremembered hearsay, or he just made it up. And the University of the West of England doesn't even have fascilities for the study of BSE/mad cow, though that school has many experts in economics of cattle agriculture, and has been involved in longterm studies of safer cattle farming techniques funded by the beef industry.
The claim that prion-infected meat & meat byproducts are in the clear is just wacky. The journey of these prions from infected sheep, to rendering plant cattle feeds, to cattle, to humans is not in debate. How original infections are passed between ruminants, however, is still an unknown process. But BSE (Bovine spongiform encephalopathy) & CJD ( Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease) in humans have repeatedly been shown to have the same causitive agent, a prion that is not damaged even by high temperatures & survives any degree of meat processing or byproduct rendering.
There is a separate form of CJD called "sporadic CJD" which might not be connected to beef & beef byproducts. A meat-industry propoganda campaigne attempted to misuse information about sporadic CJD as evidence that beef didn't cause the sudden rash of cases in humans. No science supports the cluster of red herrings & half-truths the meat industry put out there. And though the University of the West of England does a lot of work for the beef industry, I do not believe the fake citation has any basis in reality, the Bristol test farms being aimed at healthier farm practices rather than participation in the propoganda blitz on both sides of the Atlantic.
The key source of misinformation on the web is the anti-consumer industry-sponsored & misleadingly named Center for Consumer Freedom. It was founded as a front group for the restaurant, alcohol, & tobacco industries, but in the last few years been well funded additionally by the beef industry. They oppose anything that makes meat, fast food, or alcohol look bad, & have served as attack-dogs equally against activists & scientists. In a May 11, 2002 San Francisco Chronicle article, Center for Consumer Freedom spokesman John Doyle was actually cajoled by a reporter into this amazing confession: " our enemies are just about every consumer & environmental group, chef, legislator or doctor who raises objections to things like pesticide use, genetic engineering of crops or antibiotic use in beef and poultry." The CCF claims "reputable scientists" have proven beef is not involved in human infection -- but no scientists are named. Here's a synopsis of the pure-propoganda all-the-time "take" paid for by the beef industry to a PR group pretending to be a consumer organization: <http://www.consumerfreedom.com/madcowFAQ.cfm?CFID 2094&CFTOKEN900063>
They never provide any sources for these extreme minority opinions of beef never having caused this disease in humans, & nobody who is not a lunatic with some of their brain cells already spongiformed could seriously fall for it.
-paghat the ratgirl -paghat the ratgirl
--
"Of what are you afraid, my child?" inquired the kindly teacher.
"Oh, sir! The flowers, they are wild," replied the timid creature.
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research
relevance~~ the

The
carriers of

contact
________________________________
The above was headlined in all the National Press and was extracted from appropriate publications ~this month. The research is totally available. The Medical School is Plymouth/Exeter based and highly regarded though relatively recently founded. However, their research has been ongoing for many years. Our daughter was involved with the team. Google should be able to give the details more precisely.
We can only hope that they search for a means of eliminating T-AVD. Those infected with this form of Verbal Diarrhoea are only found Trans-Atlantic and might find a simpleton to believe them. I would personally prescribe Grammoxone~ even though it is a fairly painless termination. Brian.

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You seem to have misread. Nobody has suggested that "animal products are in the clear".
There is another way to contract nv CJD, via human blood products and contaminated surgical instruments, which may explain why vegetarians also develop the disease.
Janet.
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On Mon, 31 May 2004 01:01:05 +0100, I found this from Janet

Thy did not have surgery!!!
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Please provide a citation of a case of BSE/vCJD transmitted by blood transfusion. Blood transfusion is an inefficient method of transmission in sheep, and as far as I know, there has never been a case in humans. If you have a case, please cite it.
More important, please cite the actual calculated risk (for example, see: Dealler S. Transfus Med. 1996 Sep;6(3):217-22 A matter for debate: the risk of bovine spongiform encephalopathy to humans posed by blood transfusion in the UK.)
It's one thing to trumpet a theoretical risk. It's another to look at what the risk actually *is.*
billo
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Bill Oliver wrote:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt stract&list_uids962520
Lancet. 2004 Feb 7;363(9407):417-21.
Comment in: Lancet. 2004 Feb 7;363(9407):411-2. Possible transmission of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease by blood transfusion.
Llewelyn CA, Hewitt PE, Knight RS, Amar K, Cousens S, Mackenzie J, Will RG.
National Blood Service, Cambridge Centre, Cambridge CB2 2PT, UK.
BACKGROUND: Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) is a novel human prion disease caused by infection with the agent of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). Epidemiological evidence does not suggest that sporadic CJD is transmitted from person to person via blood transfusion, but this evidence may not apply to vCJD. We aimed to identify whether vCJD is transmissible through blood transfusion. METHODS: The national CJD surveillance unit reported all cases of probable or definite vCJD to the UK blood services, which searched for donation records at blood centres and hospitals. Information on named recipients and donors was provided to the surveillance unit to establish if any matches existed between recipients or donors and the database of cases of vCJD. Recipients were also flagged at the UK Office of National Statistics to establish date and cause of death. FINDINGS: 48 individuals were identified as having received a labile blood component from a total of 15 donors who later became vCJD cases and appeared on the surveillance unit's register. One of these recipients was identified as developing symptoms of vCJD 6.5 years after receiving a transfusion of red cells donated by an individual 3.5 years before the donor developed symptoms of vCJD. INTERPRETATION: Our findings raise the possibility that this infection was transfusion transmitted. Infection in the recipient could have been due to past dietary exposure to the BSE agent. However, the age of the patient was well beyond that of most vCJD cases, and the chance of observing a case of vCJD in a recipient in the absence of transfusion transmitted infection is about 1 in 15000 to 1 in 30000.
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Note the *possible.*

Or not.

Oh.
And what was the chance of observing a case of vCJD in a random transfusion?
That was the question I asked.
I didn't claim that it was impossible. Once again, I am noting that small risks should be identified as small. As noted in the article you quote, this is not, in fact, a proven case. But even if it is, the existence of *one* case after all these years indicates the miniscule risk.
Once again, what *is* the calculated risk? With the presence of one *possible* case, the hysteria that abounds is hardly appropriate.
billo
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Bill Oliver wrote:

And here's a description of the possible mechanism of infection:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt stract&list_uids058746
Br J Biomed Sci. 2004;61(1):48-54.
Leucodepletion for transmissible spongiform encephalopathies.
St Romaine C, Hazlehurst G, Jewell AP.
School of Life Sciences, Kingston University, Penrhyn Road, Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey KT1 2EE, UK.
Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) have been recognised around the world for many years. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), one of the human forms of TSE, has been studied widely and thus far has not proved a great threat to human health. The emergence of two new TSEs--bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle and variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) in humans in the UK--has caused great concern. BSE has had an economic impact and vCJD is a threat to human health. It has been shown that these two diseases are caused by the same prion agent and are linked. Research indicates that vCJD behaves differently to CJD and there is strong evidence to suggest that vCJD is present in lymphoid tissues and B lymphocytes, which presents a theoretical risk that it may be transmitted by transfusion of blood and blood products. To minimise/prevent this risk, the UK government has decided that plasma should be sourced from abroad and has instructed the National Blood Service to leucodeplete all blood and blood products, at a cost of 70 million pounds per annum, although it is not known if this will remove this risk.
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Bill Oliver wrote:

Regarding the risk of transmission of BSE/vCJD by blood transfusion in the U.S.:
1. What doofus would rely on a 1996 paper for an assessment of risk of transmission? The link between BSE and vCJD was not recognized until 1996. Even now, our "ignorance is encyclopedic."
2. In the words of the National Acadamies of Science report entitled "Advancing Prion Science (published in 2004)":
"These studies provide some assurances for the lack of blood transmission of TSE agents, but the inherent deficiencies of epidemiological approaches, the rarity of the conditions, the difficulty of correctly diagnosing true cases, and the long incubation period prior to case expression make these assurances both tentative and infirm. This is particularly true for assessing the risk of transmitting the vCJD agent through the transfusion of blood or one of its derivatives since this is such a new TSE."
3. Consequently, Mr. Oliver, you ask a question that only a FOOL would consider answerable at this time.
So, what's your answer? ;-)
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Ah, yes, the standard approach of someone who doesn't have the facts, start with the personal attacks.
In fact, a 1996 estimate is a good place to start, since the risk has gone down since then. Thus, a 1996 estimate places an *upper bound* on the actual risk. You do understand the concept of upper bound?

Which makes my point. The event is so *rare* that it is difficult to get decent statistics. It's like calculating the probability of being hit by a meteorite.
But, hey. don't let that stop you from engaging in hysteria and in pretending that every little exposure to things like bone meal will end in death. And don't let that stop you from decreasing the blood supply by 10-15% -- which results in *real* death, and *real* disease, and *real* costs. But *those* deaths, and *those* illnesses and *those* costs are a small price to pay for a theoretical risk that is so miniscule that the *rarity* of it makes calculating the risk difficult.
What was that you were saying about a "doofus?" What kind of doofus would choose to have people die because they can't get the right kind of blood in an emergency in order to placate an irrational hysteria?

Well, I'll go with FOOLS like Dr. Bernadette Healy -- who calls the risk "tiny." ( http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/1503744.stm )
Or FOOLS like Brown, et al. in The distribution of infectivity in blood components and plasma derivatives in experimental models of transmissible spongiform encephalopathy. Transfusion 38(9):810,1998 who call it "minimal."
Or FOOLS like Wilson K, Code C, Ricketts MN., Risk of acquiring Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease from blood transfusions: systematic review of case-control studies. BMJ. 2000 Jul 1;321(7252):17-9. who conclude: "Case-control studies do not suggest a risk of developing Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease from blood transfusion. Rather, a trend seems to exist towards a lower frequency of previous blood transfusion in patients with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease than in controls."
Or FOOLS like Ricketts MN, Brown P. Transmissible spongiform encephalopathy update and implications for blood safety. Clin Lab Med. 2003 Mar;23(1):129-37 who conclude "At this time, the accumulated evidence does not support the implementation of measures targeted against the risk of transfusion transmission of sporadic, familial, or iatrogenic CJD."
Or FOOLS like Brown P. Variant CJD transmission through blood: risks to predictors and "predictees". Transfusion. 2003 Apr;43(4):425-7. who noted: "With the passage of time, systematically collected epidemiologic data substantiated the absence of CJD transmissions in blood recipients and began to weigh more heavily on the perception of risk to humans. It was finally decided that any such risk was negligible, and plasma pools were no longer discarded upon knowledge of a contributing CJD donor (although deferrals designed to eliminate "high-risk" donor categories, such as growth hormone and dura mater recipients, remained in force).. .
    
1) While it is true that the number of vCJD "carriers" remains unknown, early estimates of as many as 100,000 cases have in recent years shriveled to a maximum of just a few hundred cases, assuming the entirely reasonable estimate of 15 to 20 years as the average incubation period. 1,2 The increasing time period during which the evolution of cases has been observed continues to improve the precision of mathematical modeling and to alleviate concern about the extent of infection of the exposed UK population. 2.
2) Although the concentration of prion protein is indisputably higher in the organs of patients with vCJD than sporadic CJD, and probably does indicate a correspondingly higher concentration of infectivity, infectivity is demonstrable in tissues of patients with both diseases, 3,4 and no studies directly comparing infectivity levels have been performed. Furthermore, the presence of infectivity in blood-interactive organs is not equivalent to infectivity in the blood, as is well demonstrated in studies of circulating and splenic lymphocytes in an experimental mouse model of scrapie. 5 3.
3) Transmission of disease in experimental models via blood and blood components should not be considered in isolation. The only meaningful approach comes from a consideration of data that compare infectivity in vCJD and BSE experimental models to other experimental disease models or that compare epidemiologic observations in humans. These data are summarized in Table 1 (references 6-9 and unpublished data) and lead to the conclusion that, at the very least, the risk associated with vCJD and BSE is not yet demonstrably worse than the risk from non-vCJD forms of disease, which has been shown to be negligible.
end excerpt.
Considering the millions and millions of blood transfusions that have occurred since the BSE hysteria over a decade ago, and in that time there has only been *one* ***possible*** example, which is actually *more* likely to be diet-related, I'll go along with the FOOLS who use words like "tiny," "negligible," and "minimal."
I would rate it somewhere less than a thousand times less than being hit by lightning and *perhaps* slightly more than being hit by a meteor as I go out to get my mail tomorrow morning.
But hey, all these people are FOOLS, I know, and are slaves to the evil medical-industrial complex. Go with the experts like paghat. Watch out, the sky is falling.
And that's Dr. Oliver, to you.
billo
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