Navigation Links
CDC assesses potential human exposure to prion diseases
Date:5/22/2011

Philadelphia, PA, May 23, 2011 Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have examined the potential for human exposure to prion diseases, looking at hunting, venison consumption, and travel to areas in which prion diseases have been reported in animals. Three prion diseases in particular bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE or "Mad Cow Disease"), variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), and chronic wasting disease (CWD) were specified in the investigation. The results of this investigation are published in the June issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

"While prion diseases are rare, they are generally fatal for anyone who becomes infected. More than anything else, the results of this study support the need for continued surveillance of prion diseases," commented lead investigator Joseph Y. Abrams, MPH, National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, CDC, Atlanta."But it's also important that people know the facts about these diseases, especially since this study shows that a good number of people have participated in activities that may expose them to infection-causing agents."

Although rare, human prion diseases such as CJD may be related to BSE. Prion (proteinaceous infectious particles) diseases are a group of rare brain diseases that affect humans and animals. When a person gets a prion disease, brain function is impaired. This causes memory and personality changes, dementia, and problems with movement. All of these worsen over time. These diseases are invariably fatal. Since these diseases may take years to manifest, knowing the extent of human exposure to possible prion diseases could become important in the event of an outbreak.

CDC investigators evaluated the results of the 2006-2007 population survey conducted by the Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet). This survey collects information on food consumption practices, health outcomes, and demographic characteristics of residents of the participating Emerging Infections Program sites. The survey was conducted in Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, Oregon, and Tennessee, as well as five counties in the San Francisco Bay area, seven counties in the Greater Denver area, and 34 counties in western and northeastern New York.

Survey participants were asked about behaviors that could be associated with exposure to the agents causing BSE and CWD, including travel to the nine countries considered to be BSE-endemic (United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, France, Portugal, Switzerland, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain) and the cumulative length of stay in each of those countries. Respondents were asked if they ever had hunted for deer or elk, and if that hunting had taken place in areas considered to be CWD-endemic (northeastern Colorado, southeastern Wyoming or southwestern Nebraska). They were also asked if they had ever consumed venison, the frequency of consumption, and whether the meat came from the wild.

The proportion of survey respondents who reported travel to at least one of the nine BSE endemic countries since 1980 was 29.5%. Travel to the United Kingdom was reported by 19.4% of respondents, higher than to any other BSE-endemic country. Among those who traveled, the median duration of travel to the United Kingdom (14 days) was longer than that of any other BSE-endemic country. Travelers to the UK were more likely to have spent at least 30 days in the country (24.9%) compared to travelers to any other BSE endemic country. The prevalence and extent of travel to the UK indicate that health concerns in the UK may also become issues for US residents.

The proportion of survey respondents reporting having hunted for deer or elk was 18.5% and 1.2% reported having hunted for deer or elk in CWD-endemic areas. Venison consumption was reported by 67.4% of FoodNet respondents, and 88.6% of those reporting venison consumption had obtained all of their meat from the wild. These findings reinforce the importance of CWD surveillance and control programs for wild deer and elk to reduce human exposure to the CWD agent. Hunters in CWD-endemic areas are advised to take simple precautions such as: avoiding consuming meat from sickly deer or elk, avoiding consuming brain or spinal cord tissues, minimizing the handling of brain and spinal cord tissues, and wearing gloves when field-dressing carcasses.

According to Abrams, "The 2006-2007 FoodNet population survey provides useful information should foodborne prion infection become an increasing public health concern in the future. The data presented describe the prevalence of important behaviors and their associations with demographic characteristics. Surveillance of BSE, CWD, and human prion diseases are critical aspects of addressing the burden of these diseases in animal populations and how that may relate to human health."


'/>"/>

Contact: Francesca Costanzo
adajmedia@elsevier.com
215-239-3249
Elsevier Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Study assesses nuclear power assumptions
2. Study assesses impact of fish stocking on aquatic insects
3. Scientists find new class of compounds with great potential for research and drug development
4. Liquid smoke from rice shows potential health benefits
5. CHOP partners with Vascular Magnetics, Inc. to pursue commercial potential of blood vessel research
6. Discovery demonstrates potential MS therapy could kill brain cells
7. GW researchers reveal 18 novel subtype-dependent genetic variants for autism spectrum disorders and identify potential genetic markers for diagnostic screening
8. Satellite tracking of sea turtles reveals potential threat posed by manmade chemicals
9. Viral replicase points to potential cancer therapy
10. School energy audits find millions in potential energy savings
11. A diabetes drug, sitagliptin, also has a potential to prevent diabetes
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/14/2016)... , March 14, 2016 NXTD ... growing mobile commerce market, announces the airing of a new ... starting the week of March 21 st .  The commercials ... including its popular Squawk on the Street show. --> ... on the growing mobile commerce market, announces the airing of ...
(Date:3/11/2016)... , March 11, 2016 ... new market research report "Image Recognition Market by Technology ... (Marketing and Advertising), by Deployment Type (On-Premises and Cloud), ... To 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the global market is ... to USD 29.98 Billion by 2020, at a CAGR ...
(Date:3/9/2016)... -- This BCC Research report provides an overview of ... (RNA Seq) market for the years 2015, 2016 and ... data analysis, and services. Use this report ... such as RNA-Sequencing tools and reagents, RNA-Sequencing data analysis, ... segment and forecast their market growth, future trends and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/29/2016)... April 29, 2016 According ... Market Research "Separation Systems for Commercial Biotechnology Market ... and Forecast 2015 - 2023", the separation systems ... 10,665.5 Mn in 2014 and is projected to ... to 2023 to reach US$ 19,227.8 Mn in ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... ... 29, 2016 , ... Intelligent Implant Systems announced today that the two-level components ... in the United States. These components expand the capabilities of the system and ... beginning in October of 2015, the company has seen significant sales growth in 1Q ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... YORK , April 28, 2016 ... acceleration company reports the Company,s CEO  was featured ... titled Accelerators Enter When VCs Fear To Tread: ... Science Leader magazine is an essential ... for everything from emerging biotechs to Big Pharmas. ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... 28, 2016 , ... As part of an ongoing global ... expanding its LATAM network and logistics capabilities. Enhancements have been made to ... trial projects. , The expansion will provide unmatched clinical trial logistics services for ...
Breaking Biology Technology: