Mysterious brain disease resembling the deadly ‘mad cow disease’ has been reported in 43 people in Canada
More than 40 cases of a mysterious brain disease similar to mad cow disease have been reported in Canada.
According to CBCthe disease bears similarities to the rare and fatal brain disease known as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and its variants, including bovine spongiform encephalopathy, also known as mad cow disease.
Health officials in New Brunswick, Canada, are now trying to understand how 43 people contracted the disease and what the unknown neurological disease is.
Five people have died, officials confirmed.
In Canada, more than 40 cases have been reported of a mysterious brain disease (image brain scan file) resembling ‘mad cow disease’.
As the research and investigation continue to find out what the disease is, neurologist Dr. Neil Cashman says he believes it could be an environmental toxin.
According to CBC, the first case diagnosed in the area occurred in 2015, but cases have continued to rise over the years. There were 24 reported cases in 2020 and six cases so far in 2021.
Bertrand Mayor Yvon Godin told the news site that residents are “very, very concerned” about the disease.
Residents are worried, they ask, ‘Is it moose meat? Is it deer? Is it contagious? ‘ We need to find out what causes this disease as soon as possible, ”said Goddess.
As the research and investigation continue to uncover what the disease is, neurologist Dr. Neil Cashman offered some insight into what it isn’t.
He says there is no evidence that it is a prion disease like Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.
There is no evidence, no hint – not even in the three autopsies that have been performed – of human prion disease. To be honest, that was a surprise to me, ”he told the CBC.
“So essentially this is something new, and we have to stick to it and find out what this is.”
As Cashman and a team of experts continue to search for more answers, he says that because cases are limited to certain regions, the disease “fits the idea of an environmental toxin.”
WHAT IS CRAZY COLD DISEASE?
Mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), is a deadly neurological disease in cattle caused by an abnormal protein that destroys the brain and spinal cord.
The disease was first diagnosed in Britain in 1986, although research suggests the first infections may have occurred spontaneously in the 1970s.
It is believed to be spread by feeding meat and bone meal from calves infected with BSE.
Nicknamed mad cow disease, bovine spongiform encephalopathy was first diagnosed in the 1980s, but the global ban on British beef was instituted by the European Union in 1996 after the British outbreak
Humans can contract variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease (vCJD) if beef products contaminated with central nervous system tissue from cattle infected with mad cow disease are consumed.
There is no treatment and 177 people have died from the variant.
In 1992, 36,000 cases of mad cow disease were diagnosed in Britain, banning British beef exports and killing dozens of people.
In August 1996, a British coroner ruled that Peter Hall, a 20-year-old vegetarian who died of vCJD, contracted the disease from eating beef burgers as a child.
The verdict was the first to legally link human death with mad cow disease.
“It will take a lot of scientific insight to pin it to a cause,” he said, adding that it is uncertain when they will have a more concrete answer for the public.
“It is possible that ongoing research will give us the cause within a week, or it is possible that it will give us the cause within a year,” he said.
Cashman encouraged the locals to continue with their usual daily routines and ‘keep calm’.
The outbreak of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) – a degenerative brain disease – in cattle in the mid-1990s decimated UK livestock farming and resulted in the slaughter of 4.4 million animals.
The human strain, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, has killed more than 170 people in the UK.
Nicknamed Mad Cow Disease, BSE was first diagnosed in the 1980s, but the global ban on British beef was instituted by the European Union in 1996 after the British outbreak.
The EU lifted the ban in 2006, but many countries continued to refuse to allow imports of British beef. This included Canada, which finally lifted its embargo in 2015.
British farmers recently signed five-year deals with China and Japan worth $ 317 million and $ 175 million respectively.
At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic that quickly spread across the US, US officials lifted the UK beef ban.
The move followed a series of inspections by US officials on UK farms and slaughterhouses in the summer of 2019.
British farmers believe they can take advantage of a growing demand in America for high-quality cuts of grass-fed beef, driven by consumers concerned about the growth hormones being pumped into American livestock.