New panel set up to monitor nvCJD

16 September 1997

New panel set up to monitor nvCJD

THE Government has set up the Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) Epidemiology Sub-Group to monitor the new variant of CJD that has been linked to BSE. It is part of the Spongiform Encephalopathy Advisory Committee.

Peter Smith, professor of epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, will be the chairman. It will advise on any trend in the incidence of the new variant. At least 20 people are believed to have died from it in the UK so far.

The fifth annual survey by the specialist unit in Edinburgh, set up to monitor the illness, found people who ate beef regularly before the offal ban in
1989 appear to have trebled the risk of catching the disease. Those who ate
brains, even occasionally, ran a fourfold higher risk. However, it found no
convincing evidence of specific dietary risk factors.

But the unit agrees the most plausible explanation of the new variant is
exposure to BSE before the introduction of the offal ban.

  • Financial Times 16/09/97 page 14
  • The Times 16/09/97 page 6
  • The Guardian 16/09/97 page 7
  • The Independent 16/09/97 page 4
  • The Daily Telegraph 16/09/97 page 10

See more