Purdey theory report inconclusive

18 April 1997




Purdey theory report inconclusive

CONFLICTING reports have emerged on the outcome of an inquiry by MAFFs BSE advisory committee into a Somerset farmers theory that BSE is linked to organophosphate chemical exposure.

Mark Purdey, who was interviewed by the committee on Tuesday, told FW that he understood the committee was now considering setting up further laboratory research to test the central tenets of his theory.

But Jeff Almond, a SEAC member said SEAC had not advised that there should be major expenditure on experimental investigation at this stage. He said it had suggested a full analysis of existing data, which could be carried out fairly quickly.

"That will then either kill the hypothesis totally, or it will indicate to us that there is a need for further research," he said.

Mr Purdey mow was confidant that two laboratory trials would be set up and would be carried out by members of MAFFs pesticide advisory committee. But Mr Almond said that SEAC was not at all convinced that the hypothesis was valid. "There remains a faint possibility, but in our view it is unlikely."

While SEAC had a duty to look at all possible explanations for BSE, Mr Almond said his own view was that OP theory was not very tenable. "And I think that was the prevailing view (of other committee members)," he added. &#42

CONFLICTING reports have emerged on the outcome of an inquiry by MAFFs BSE advisory committee into a Somerset farmers theory that BSE is linked to organophosphate chemical exposure.

Mark Purdey, who was interviewed by the committee on Tuesday, told FW that he understood the committee was now considering setting up further laboratory research to test the central tenets of his theory.

But Jeff Almond, a SEAC member said SEAC had not advised that there should be major expenditure on experimental investigation at this stage. He said it had suggested a full analysis of existing data, which could be carried out fairly quickly.

"That will then either kill the hypothesis totally, or it will indicate to us that there is a need for further research," he said.

Mr Purdey mow was confidant that two laboratory trials would be set up and would be carried out by members of MAFFs pesticide advisory committee. But Mr Almond said that SEAC was not at all convinced that the hypothesis was valid. "There remains a faint possibility, but in our view it is unlikely."

While SEAC had a duty to look at all possible explanations for BSE, Mr Almond said his own view was that OP theory was not very tenable. "And I think that was the prevailing view (of other committee members)," he added. &#42


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