View Full Version : Mad Cow, Bird/Swine Flu, Foot and Mouth, E.coli, Salmonella, Ebola, Marburg...

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May 2nd, 2004, 08:12 PM
this site has all the current issues and articles on Mad Cow disease.



May 8th, 2004, 10:59 AM
FDA refuses to test a downed cow in Texas for mad cow....


Oct 13th, 2004, 01:18 PM
I thought I would tell you about what my dissertation tutor said to me when I was talking about my dissertation on veganisim. She said that her best friend of many years died in 1988 from the human form. When the people investigating his death came to asked her questions about how he might of contracted it they asked if had ever SAT ON A LEATHER SEAT or if he WORE A SHEEP SKIN COAT. They didnít have a clue how he contracted it! How frightening is that? From what I remember it was about 1996 (aged 16) when it first started to come out in the media about mad cow disease, that was when I gave up eating cows, my journey to veganism. Eight years after he died!

Oct 24th, 2004, 06:25 AM

All the more reason I'm glad to be a vegan!

Oct 24th, 2004, 03:25 PM
"This is someone with a wild imagination who wants zero risk,"said Gerald McEwen, vice president of science for the cosmetic trade group. "It isn't that easy to transmit that stuff. And find a product that has brain extract in it."

I think the above was my favorite part. I guess we vegans don't want to risk death. So weird of us.

Oct 24th, 2004, 03:30 PM
Also, Mary Kay Products (and other cosmetics) were found to have "cow spinal cord" in them. That is technically "brain matter"... ??? Are we the only ones with access to the truth or what??? (using my "wild imagination" to think of ways to live longer and keep the planet in balance as well...how dare I?!?!?!)

Oct 24th, 2004, 03:31 PM
A man is being treated in a Dublin hospital with what is believed to be the first case of variant CJD to originate in the Republic of Ireland.

Oct 24th, 2004, 03:49 PM
Also, Mary Kay Products (and other cosmetics) were found to have "cow spinal cord" in them. That is technically "brain matter"... ??? Are we the only ones with access to the truth or what??? (using my "wild imagination" to think of ways to live longer and keep the planet in balance as well...how dare I?!?!?!)

I don't think we are. It is amazing but a lot of people think it is 'utter nonsense' or really do not seem to care about a possible risk.:confused: It is a shame. :mad:

Oct 25th, 2004, 10:40 PM
I first stopped eating meat due to the BSE "scare" early this year. At the time I did a lot of research into the matter. What I was absolutely horrified by was the way the USDA is covering up the extent of BSE in the US. The external symptoms of variant Creutzfeld-Jacob Disease (vCJD) are the same as for CJD and for Alzheimer's. The only way to tell the difference is through an autopsy. However, the CDC (Centre for Disease Control) doesn't require Alzheimer's related deaths to be reported to them, so most Alzheimer's victims don't get autopsied.

There were several studies done to look at how many purported Alzheimer's cases were actually vCJD. The numbers ranged from 2%-20%, with a mean of somewhere in the 10%-12% range. If I recall correctly, something like 55,000 people die of Alzheimer's every year in the US. This means that, in reality, over 5,000 people die of vCJD every year in the US!! (This is why I put "scare" in quotes in the first sentence - it's not a "scare", this is for real!)

In Europe there scientists have been seeing an increase of spongiform diseases of the brain in humans that very closely follows occurrence of BSE (and equivalents in other animals) for several years now. BSE came to the cows from sheep, and it was long believed that the sheep version couldn't be transmitted to humans, but epidemiological data on the matter strongly indicates otherwise.

Farmers and their representatives claim that pigs don't have an analog disease, however the incubation period for all of these diseases in animals is around 4 years, and pigs aren't allowed to live that long - they're generally slaughtered at around 2 years old. Pigs are also kept in conditions which wouldn't allow the farmers to spot such conditions. We've all seen the disturbing images of cows with BSE walking funny and then toppling over. Pigs on pig farms are kept in tight confines where, even if they were to be unable to stand anymore, there would be no room for them to fall over.

It is believed that the causal agent involved are microorganisms called "prions". These are not killed by the heats that meat is exposed to during cooking(!). Several studies were done to see what range of animals can be infected with prions. Some showed that species cross-contamination is impossible (good luck explaining that to the cows, cats, and humans that have already died from it). Others showed that prions are able to adapt to new host organism within one to two generations. Generations of prions, that is. They have been shown to be able to adapt to chickens despite insistent claims by poultry farmers that chicken is safe from this horrific disease. Others claim that certain methods of farming are responsible, yet even wild deer in the US have been shown to have this disease. And humans have died from eating the meat of such a deer they shot on a hunting trip.

Though there is no evidence that vCJD can be contracted through drinking cow's milk, there is also no evidence to the contrary, either. It seems to me that, in such a case, the burden of proof should be with proving the safety.

The incubation period for vCJD (in humans) is 7 years. The first officially acknowledged victim was a 20 year old vegetarian.

All in all, vCJD is a very major public health risk. It is utterly irresponsible of any government to ignore this reality.

Oct 26th, 2004, 12:28 PM
mysh, the external symptoms of vCJD are not the same as for Alzheimer's; there is a vast difference. However, vCJD is ghastly, and there have been quite a few people, some of them quite young, who have died of the disease in the UK. There have been people in Australia who have died of CJD, not vCJD. We have to be very careful to check sources.

I guess procedures vary betwen the US and Australia, because here there are autopsies for Alzheimers patients who die. I recall, when reading that aluminium is invariably found in the brain, many years ago, I decided to dump my aluminium saucepans and buy stainless steel!

Oct 26th, 2004, 12:35 PM
I recall, when reading that aluminium is invariably found in the brain, many years ago, I decided to dump my aluminium saucepans and buy stainless steel!

I also stopped using *any* aluminum years ago when I learned that it was toxic. Stainless steel and cast iron much better anyway.

Oct 26th, 2004, 04:52 PM
I am looking for a large iron Cauldron which is suitable for cooking, anyone know of a UK supplier??
We have a huge Aluminium plant near us, it scares me.

Oct 27th, 2004, 06:17 AM
mysh, the external symptoms of vCJD are not the same as for Alzheimer's; there is a vast difference. However, vCJD is ghastly, and there have been quite a few people, some of them quite young, who have died of the disease in the UK. There have been people in Australia who have died of CJD, not vCJD. We have to be very careful to check sources.

I'm sure that there will be lots of researchers happy to hear they've been barking up the wrong tree. And the victims who were diagnosed with Alzheimer's but were shown (after their death, of course) to have had CJD will also be relieved to know that the initial diagnosis was correct:

(The last one states: "Some symptoms of CJD can be similar to symptoms of other progressive neurological disorders, such as Alzheimerís or Huntingtonís disease. However, CJD causes unique changes in brain tissue which can be seen at autopsy. It also tends to cause more rapid deterioration of a personís abilities than Alzheimerís disease or most other types of dementia.")

Oh, right, you mean because young people are far more likely to die of vCJD than either Alzheimer's or CJD. Too bad they're still reported as Alzheimer's in the US. Cos that's what the diagnosis was. Stupid doctors, I guess.

So the above links represent what I found in 10 minutes. If you like, I can spend some more time to get you the original studies.

Oct 27th, 2004, 08:44 AM
mysh, you originally said that most Alzheimer's victims don't get autopsied. Now you say that victims who were diagnosed with Alzheimer's were shown (after their death, of course) to have had CJD. CJD is not the same as vCJD. You're right about stupid doctors, and actually the CDC doesn't seem to be doing the right thing either. The article by Perry states that the etiology of Alzheimers is unknown. But we certainly know the etiology of vCJD.

Thank you mysh, but no need to get me original studies, though I appreciate your kind offer. There are heaps of links in http://www.rense.com/health/madcowdata.html

Oct 27th, 2004, 04:43 PM
eve, in the US there is no requirement for victims of Alzheimer's to be autopsied. For a few studies some victims were autopsied to find the difference. But the vast majority of Alzheimer's victims are still not autopsied in the US.
From the links I posted I got that the main difference between CJD and vCJD is that vCJD supposedly occurs in clusters. A doctor looking at just one individual patient will not be able to spot this pattern, as such to him the two will look the same while the patient is alive. The clustering theory also seems a little suspect... all the officially acknowledged vCJD victims in the US contracted it in the UK (allegedly). And when clusters do occur (e.g. the hunters mentioned in one of the above links), they are frequently ignored.

I guess the point I was trying to make is that the people who claim vCJD is "one-in-a-million" are misleading the public. This is a scary thing that is entirely preventable. Go vegan, and you'll be safe. ;)

And thanks for the awesome link!

Oct 27th, 2004, 05:06 PM
Go vegan, and you'll be safe.

interesting you should say that mysh, because at the moment the UK government is addressing the possibility of CJD (or vCJD) being transmitted via blood transfusions. i don't understand the way they are going about tackling this issue, because at the moment they are only preventing people who have had transfusions since 1980 from giving blood themselves. this of course is totally ineffective for the people giving blood who may have eaten infected meat. they're usually very strict about stopping people with any risk of other diseases giving blood, but they don't seem to be taking this as seriously.

what i'm trying to say is, if you're unlucky enough to need a blood transfusion, even being vegan may not help you avoid CJD. :(

Oct 27th, 2004, 05:21 PM
Yeah... I feared something like that... Or that contact might be shown to pass it on.. :(

But if the whole world went vegan...

Oct 28th, 2004, 08:52 AM
Yes, here they don't accept blood donations from people who have lived in the UK during certain years. But as mysh says, "But if the whole world went vegan..." If only.

Dec 12th, 2004, 09:12 PM
But not by eradicating factory farming or going veggie or vegan...... so lets all do this the hard way.......

Jo Revill, health editor
Sunday December 12, 2004
The Observer

Emergency plans are being drawn up by government health advisers to deal with a potential outbreak of bird flu in Britain, which experts warn could claim many thousands of lives.
Measures being considered include closing schools, cinemas or theatres in affected areas, quarantining those who come into contact with victims, cancelling routine operations to allow hospitals to deal with the outbreak, and public education.

But highly sensitive consultations are also taking place over who would be given priority for early protective drug therapy.

The anti-viral drugs that can treat the disease have not yet been stockpiled and would probably cover only up to a third of the population.

Healthcare workers, as well as emergency service staff, would be given priority, following a plan drawn up during an earlier flu alarm, as would women in the later stages of pregnancy. The new scheme could include computer staff in a group of 'essential' workers who would have to be treated in order to ensure the economy did not collapse in the event of a pandemic.

The Whitehall blueprint is being given new urgency because of alerts from the World Health Organisation, which believes that the bird flu sweeping South-East Asia could move into the human population next year.

The virus carries a 73 per cent mortality rate, so fast action would need to be taken once the infection appeared on British shores. Sars, which hit Asia and Canada last year, revealed how air travel allows infections to cross the world in days if security measures are not taken in the countries of origin.

The last time Britain was hit by a flu virus was in 1968, when the Hong Kong strain arrived and affected 8 per cent of the adult population and caused 40,000 deaths. The new outbreak could be more virulent, because it is a new strain and there would be no pool of immunity against it.

The bird-flu virus, known as H5N1, surfaced in Asia seven years ago, and has now become embedded in poultry farms. So far, 44 people in Thailand and Vietnam have caught the infection, 32 of whom have died. All of them are thought to have contracted it from chickens. WHO officials are now trying to identify when it moves from a poultry virus to a human pathogen, something they regard as a near-certainty. No one can predict, however, when that will happen.

Next month, scientists will begin human testing of a vaccine to combat a pandemic that experts have warned could kill between seven million and 100 million people worldwide.

If it is successful, commercial production could start in six to eight months, Klaus Stohr, co-ordinator of the global influenza programme at the WHO, said yesterday. But he added: 'Even if all companies started full-scale production just before the beginning of a pandemic, there would still not be enough vaccine for the whole world.'

Some anti-viral drugs have already been shown to work, both as a preventive measure and for treatment when symptoms begin. Health Secretary John Reid has to decide how much to stockpile in the event of a pandemic, given that it would cost the NHS many millions as the drugs are still under patent.

Reid was in Paris last week for a meeting of the Global Health Security Group, an organisation made up of the G7 nations, WHO experts and Mexico, which was set up to consider many health security issues after 9/11. He agreed to put extra funding into disease surveillance work being carried out in Thailand, so that blood samples can be analysed quickly

A spokesman said: 'We've learnt some lessons from the Sars experience and we are well placed with the NHS to have a good reporting system through GPs and the Health Protection Agency if it does emerge here.'

But Professor John Oxford, professor of virology at Queen Mary Westfield medical school, said there was an urgent need to prepare now for a pandemic.

'What we are preparing for is the first global outbreak of the 21st century, and there is now this window of opportunity to prepare for it.

'But that window is closing fast, because no one knows how soon it will be before it becomes transmitted by people. A proper plan is our insurance policy against the worst.'

Dec 14th, 2004, 12:22 PM
Banned in Scotland but good enough for English children

Katharine Quarmby and Will Woodward
Tuesday December 14, 2004
The Guardian

Turkey meals produced by Bernard Matthews are still being served up to English pupils - even though they fail healthy eating guidelines established for Scottish primary schools.

At least 12 Scottish local authorities have dropped the company's products - turkey Twizzlers, burgers and nuggets - from their school menus, an investigation by Education Guardian reveals today.

The Twizzlers have 21.2% fat when cooked, more than twice the 10% maximum recommended for processed meats under the Scottish guidelines. The burgers are 19.8% fat and the nuggets 17.3% fat.

Bernard Matthews has promised to redesign the meals. But two big catering firms serving English schools, Scolarest and Sodexho, continue to supply the three products, and they are on the menu in authorities including Knowsley, Wakefield, Somerset and Tameside.

Gillian Kynoch, the health tsar overseeing Hungry for Success, the Scottish executive's £63.5m campaign to improve the quality of school meals, says the government in England needs to "raise its game" by putting pressure on food manufacturers to improve their products.

"I would go so far as to say that England is holding us back," she said.

Stephen Twigg, the schools minister in England, said: "If products are being rejected on quality grounds in Scotland and are available in England, then we will take a serious look at that."

A spokeswoman for Bernard Matthews said: "We are working on the redevelopment of those items highlighted above [twizzlers, burgers and nuggets], together with several other products for launch/relaunch in the next few months."

Campaigners in England are putting pressure on ministers to improve school meals. The government has promised to revise its nutritional standards and bring in the schools inspectorate, Ofsted, to inspect the meals.

Scolarest says it wants direct intervention from Whitehall to improve standards. According to the Soil Association, the government spends 35p a head on each school meal and 60p on each prison meal.

Dec 23rd, 2004, 06:13 AM
Japan has confirmed its first case of a human infected with bird flu. Officials say one man has definitely caught the potentially deadly bird flu and four other people are likely to be infected. Four of them used to work at a chicken farm which in February was caught trying to cover up a bird flu outbreak.

The fifth victim was a city official who helped disinfect the farm. The Health Ministry says none of the five has developed serious symptoms.

Officials say there is no risk of the infection spreading.
The above info from today's abc-news on line.

Feb 20th, 2005, 09:50 AM
Risk of deadly global epidemic as bid to halt spread of bird flu is foiled
By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Editor
20 February 2005

Thailand, one of two countries at the centre of the bird flu outbreak, is refusing to act against its spread, scuppering attempts to stop a devastating pandemic expected to kill tens of millions of people around the globe.

An emergency plan to tackle the disease, drawn up by the country's Deputy Prime Minister, would have involved slaughtering more than ten million ducks and chickens, and distributing face masks to protect people from catching the flu. But it has been rejected on the grounds that it could alarm the public.

The country's decision contrasts with the effective action being taken in nearby Vietnam, the only nation to be hit harder than Thailand, which has slowed the spread of the disease by killing 1.5 million birds since December.

A ban on raising poultry came into force in the capital, Ho Chi Minh City, last week. A major UN conference called to consider how to combat the disease opens in the city on Wednesday. Although outbreaks of the disease continue in Vietnam, it appears to have been beaten, at least temporarily, in seven of the country's provinces.

Twenty-nine people are so far confirmed dead in Vietnam and 12 in Thailand, but the virus, codenamed H5N1, has yet to mutate into a form which can spread rapidly among people. Experts agree that the best way of preventing this is to stamp the disease out among poultry.

Hong Kong is thought to have averted a worldwide catastrophe in 1997, after 18 people were affected, by slaughtering its entire poultry population in only three days.

Thailand's decision not to act, the personal initiative of its Prime Minister, Thaksin Shinawatra, marks the second time in two months that it has failed to take life-saving action in the face of a looming disaster. On Boxing Day, it was one of only two Indian Ocean countries to receive an immediate warning of the tsunami. But it failed to relay this to its coastal people or to tourists on the beaches until after long after the wave hit. Experts suggested that the warning was delayed because it might damage tourism.

Similar charges are being made this weekend, after the failure to act on bird flu. The Prime Minister intervened to stop the $124.7m (£66m) plan, after the cabinet had already approved it, concerned that it would alarm the public and other countries.

The government says that it needs more information. Yesterday it announced a two-year research programme into developing a vaccine against the disease.

Flu pandemics sweep through the world three or four times a century, and experts agree that a new one is long overdue. They happen when new viruses emerge to which no one is immune.

Most pandemics come from birds and start in China and South-east Asia. The crucial development comes when a patient suffering from ordinary flu also catches the bird flu, thus enabling the two viruses to mix and create a highly infectious, deadly strain.

Bird flu is causing particular alarm, since it has killed more than three-quarters of all the people so far known to have caught it. They have mainly contracted it directly from chickens, suggesting that a new pandemic would surpass the last one in 1918, which killed 50 million people worldwide. Like the 1918 strain, the disease appears to target healthy teenagers and young adults.

Experts warn that because of air travel the pandemic could reach Britain within a day of breaking out in the Far East. A drug that can treat it, oseltamivir, already exists, and is mainly marketed as Tamiflu. But although other countries are rushing to stockpile Tamiflu, the Department of Health says it will make no decision before the spring.

Feb 22nd, 2005, 02:00 PM

CDC Chief: Bird Flu Could Become Epidemic
6 hours ago
By PAUL RECER, AP Science Writer

WASHINGTON - A bird flu virus may mutate to a human form that becomes as deadly as the ones that killed millions during three influenza pandemics of the 20th century.

Dr. Julie L. Gerberding, head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Monday that scientists believe it is highly likely that the virus that has swept through bird populations in Asia will evolve into a pathogen deadly for humans.

"We are expecting more human cases over the next few weeks because this is high season for avian influenza in that part of the world," Gerberding said in remarks at the national meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Although cases of human-to-human transmission have been rare, "our assessment is that this is a very high threat" based on the known history of the flu virus, she said.

In Asia, there have already been a number of deaths among people who caught the flu from chickens or ducks. The mortality rate is very high _ about 72 percent of identified patients, said Gerberding. There also have been documented cases of this strain of flu being transferred from person-to-person, but the outbreak was not sustained, she said.

The avian flu now spreading in Asia is part of what is called the H1 family of flu viruses. It is a pathogen that is notorious in human history.

"Each time we see a new H1 antigen emerge, we experience a pandemic of influenza," said Gerberding. In 1918, H1 appeared and millions died worldwide. In 1957, the Asian flu was an H2, and the Hong Kong flu in 1968 was a H3.

There had been small appearances of the H1-type of avian viruses in other years, but nothing like the H5 now rampaging through the birds of Asia.

"We are seeing a highly pathogenic strain of influenza virus emerge to an extraordinary proportion across the entire western component of Asia," she said. "The reason this is so ominous is because of the evolution of flu. ... You may see the emergence of a new strain to which the human population has no immunity."

Study already has shown that the virus can infect cats who can then infect other cats, which Gerberding said was "another harbinger" of the possibility of a human pandemic.

"The science here is all alerting us that we have a great deal to be concerned about," she said.

The CDC chief said her agency is getting ready for a possible pandemic next year.

A special flu team, organized last year, continues to monitor the spread of the avian flu and to analyze the strains as they appear.

The government has ordered 2 million doses of vaccine that would protect against the known strains of avian flu. Gerberding said this would give manufacturers a head start on making the shots that would be needed to combat a full-blown epidemic of an H1-type of flu in this country.

CDC is also plugged into an international communication and monitoring system that, it is hoped, will give an early warning of the emergence of a deadly new flu.


On the Net:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://www.cdc.gov

Feb 22nd, 2005, 05:31 PM
Does anyone know exactly how many people have died from avian flu?

Feb 23rd, 2005, 11:32 AM
Apparently there have been 55 cases of avian flu with 42 deaths. 'Ordinary' flu kills up to 4,000 people annually in the Uk alone.

Study already has shown that the virus can infect cats who can then infect other cats, which Gerberding said was "another harbinger" of the possibility of a human pandemic.

I wonder if we will see the mass panic culling of cats in the same way as birds.