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Ediacara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 12:19 PM
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Lab challenges usual theory on mad cow | Seattle P-I
Friday, January 23, 2004

Lab challenges usual theory on mad cow
'These diseases are real, fundamental scientific mysteries'


HAMILTON, Mont. -- At the eastern edge of the Bitterroot Mountains, a craggy range of peaks that defines the border between Idaho and Montana, is a lab full of skeptics who don't hold with the majority scientific consensus on mad cow disease.

They are world-class researchers on these kinds of diseases, categorically called "transmissible spongiform encephalopathies" -- or TSEs.

Some of these diseases have been recognized for a long time, but they captured wide public attention only when it appeared -- first in Britain -- that the disease could get passed on to people who eat beef from a cow with this type of brain infection, which eats holes in the brain.

Americans were reminded of this risk recently after the nation's first known case of mad cow disease (technically bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE) was identified just before Christmas in Eastern Washington.

More at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer
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