Federal court blocks beef exporter from testing for mad cow disease

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48 Responses to “Federal court blocks beef exporter from testing for mad cow disease”

  1. Thebes says:

    This is just mad.

  2. vacant says:

    A synopsis of recent “free market” actions:

    Secret meetings between the oil and gas industry leaders and the VP where the nation’s energy policies are decided. Result – huge tax incentives for the oil and gas industry to allow them to develop alternative energy sources.

    The Bankrupcty Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 passes granting the credit card companies everything on their wish list. Maybe the “Consumer Protection” required the credit card companies to wear a condom. Result – $9 billion windfall to MBNA, etc. and tax dollars used to collect their receivables earning 30+%. 3 years later the supposed benefit to the consumers, rate realignment, hasn’t happened yet.

    I think I’ve figured it out. Any laws affecting “billions” is actually an “incentive” for industry in our “free market”. Small transactions, like $100,000 hospital bills, will be facilitated by strengthening laws against – oops, did I write “against”?; I mean “for” – consumers.

    Whatever you do, don’t let the government ruin our health care system! Let free market reign.

    Also – DON’T WORRY – Phil Gramm is on the way to rescue this nation of “whiners” as our economic adviser. Google Phil and Wendy Gramm and Enron for fun facts.

  3. dhawk says:

    How many corpses, dead from infectious disease, have you seen? Disease doesn’t kill people: statisticians kill people.

    That is the most asinine comment I’ve read in recent memory. People like you live in a dream world where we have an infinite number of resources to spend, and where wasting money on unnecessary testing doesn’t divert funds from more beneficial uses.

    Unfortunately, in the real world, we have to make decisions about where we spend our resources. Choosing to spend more on mad cow testing necessarily means that we spend less on other things. That may mean less testing for mercury in fish, or less testing for salmonella in chicken, or a variety of other things. We can’t do everything all the time.

    • Antinous says:

      That is the most asinine comment I’ve read in recent memory.

      Then answer my question. Until then, your credibility is non-existent. When you tell me that you’ve heaved the corpse of an AIDS victim off the floor, I might take you seriously. People die because of pencil pushers like you.

  4. Ugly Canuck says:

    Vacant: Agreed. they are criminals in the classical sense of that word, prior to Statute Rule…

  5. airdrummer says:

    u missed the brilliant ‘logic’ behind the ruling:

    U.S. Can Block Mad Cow Tests

    The Bush administration can prohibit meatpackers from testing their animals for mad cow disease, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit said. A federal judge ruled last year that Creekstone Farms Premium Beef, a Kansas meatpacker, must be allowed to test all its animals because the Agriculture Department can regulate only disease “treatment.” Since there is no cure for mad cow disease and the test is performed on dead animals, the judge ruled, the test is not a treatment. The court overturned that ruling, saying diagnosis can be considered part of treatment. The Agriculture Department tests about 1 percent of cows for the potentially deadly disease.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/08/29/AR2008082903243_pf.html

  6. arkizzle says:

    SO.. why don’t we just stop feeding brains to cows?

    Seems easier than dealing with the bovine zombies we’re creating. I imagine they like grass and soya-bean-meal better, anyway.

  7. minTphresh says:

    ARK, 100% WIN! it is without a doubt the loudest “Duh” in the history of agriculture. you DON’T feed dead, diseased, ground-up animal carcasses to grazing animals! the first i had heard of this practice just about freaked my shit. i mean, these animals are not designed to eat that stuff. it’s g-damn cannibalism! down here in fla, they take the leftovers from making o.j. and make cattle feed from that. there has gotta be a better way.

  8. subhan says:

    although both #5 & #10 raise some valid issues about the test the company wants to use not being effective, this really begs the question as to why the USDA basically approves THE SAME INEFFECTIVE TEST for the 1% of testing they do, as far as I know.
    CJD & vCJD is scary stuff, & are likely rampant in the US beef supply. A little google research reveals that there is a significant possibility that 10s of 1000s of people currently diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer may actually be infected with sporadic CJD from tainted meat. Note that sporadic CJD is different than the variant CJD known as mad cow disease, & is nearly indistinguishable from early onset Alzheimer’s without an autopsy. Makes me really glad I don’t eat beef any more!

  9. Bugs says:

    @19 SUBHAM
    This is a minor nit-pick, but one cannot be infected with sporadic CJD. “Sporadic”, in this context, means that the CJD has formed in someone’s brain spontaneously. Some families carry a mutant gene that’s prone to forming prions, other times it seems to be sheer bad luck.

    vCJD is the famous one, caused by eating cows’ nervous tissue infected with BSE. I believe there are still a few labs which dispute the link. The evidence for association is pretty solid but because prions are so difficult to study, no-one’s ever been able to convincingly show a mechanism. Last time I looked (admittedly a few years now), the “misfolded protein” mechanism was still an unsupported hypothesis, albeit a very popular one. Personally I’m happy to buy it, but there is some legitimate wiggle-room for the skeptics.

    There’s a similar disease to BSE in sheep and goats, called scrapie. There’s evidence that Scrapie existed first and was spread to cows by using sheep and goat carcasses in making cows’ feed. The cows’ version is, of course, BSE. So far there’s no evidence that scrapie can infect humans directly. Nevertheless, there are drives in various countries to eradicate the disease through killing infected animals and breeding resistant sheep. Also, a lot of cats get F(eline)SE. Again there’s no evidence of transmission to humans; perhaps it’s impossible, or maybe too few people regularly feast on cat brains?

    Antinous –

    In a perfect world, of course it would make sense to apply (near-)perfect tests to every individual in a population, taking care to double check the results to eliminate false negatives or positives.

    However, we live in a world of imperfect tests, insufficient resources to test every individual in a population, and sensationalist reporting of results. The underlying statistics and the different requirements for selectivity and specificity are often counter-intuitive. (Although Anon @34 explains the basics well). However, given these details, a rough idea of the disease’s penetrance and the cost of administering treatment, one can accurately model the system to determine the most efficient set-up in terms of lives saved for resources expended. It’s a cruel pragmatism, but pouring all the resources into detecting and treating HIV would mean withdrawing resources from, eg, heart disease sufferers.

    Medical statistics and epidemiology aren’t the sciences of screwing people over just for the sake of stinginess; they’re tools to distribute the system’s limited resources as efficiently as possible.

    Certainly everyone who’s sexually active should be tested for STIs frequently. The potential harm and expected incidence are quite high while the tests’ false positive rates are fairly low.

    However, that doesn’t detract from DHAWK’s original point that, in some cases — such as when a test has an expected high false positive rate for a disease with expected low prevalence in the population — it can make sense to screen only a small proportion of the population.

    ARKIZZLE & MINTPHRESH –
    Yes. I don’t know about the USA, but feeding cattle with MBM was made illegal in the UK and the rest of Europe many years ago, almost immediately after the link was established. No-one knew it was diseased at the time, as the scraps were rigorously treated to destroy all bacterial and viral infections. Cattle are a woefully inefficient way to make food (in terms of calories in >> edible calories out), so you can understand the reasoning that any cheap form of protein for the cows to feed on was considered a good proposition.

    • Antinous says:

      It’s a cruel pragmatism, but pouring all the resources into detecting and treating HIV would mean withdrawing resources from, eg, heart disease sufferers.

      It’s a compassionate pragmatism, but pouring a mere one percent of the cost of the Iraq war into health care would save tens of thousands of lives per year. There are plenty of resources.

  10. Sean Blueart says:

    Four years ago I was traveling from London to Paris by train. Sitting across from me was a well-dressed British man. After exchanging introductions and a few light stories I asked what he did for a living.

    He told me that he was a geneticist specializing in animal biology and that his company had set up the current state of the art testing methods for screening mad cow. The process was the one that was ultimately adopted by the British Government as the definitive, official test for the disease and currently was the only one in use.

    He then went on to say that his test and company were repeatedly shunned by the U.S. Government. Despite submissions of his scientific findings and his grave warnings about the frequency and cow population sampling requirements in order to ensure absolute safety, the Administration turned a deaf ear.

    I remember struck by the frustration and sadness in his voice when he said; “I got the specific impression that they weren’t really serious about testing. It’s unbelievable?”.

  11. Takuan says:

    there is only one thing that can be done: they must immediate pass a law against any examination of the brain in human autopsy. Texas can lead the way.

  12. anthony says:

    If we don’t test for it very much, the frequency of the disease will remain low?

  13. ill lich says:

    Whether you want to call it BSE or CJD or Mad-Cow or Kuru, it’s still the same essential beast in my view. And what a beast it is– there are still warehouses full of the ashes of British cattle that are off-limits to anyone not wearing a protective suit. Nothing found so far has the ability to break down a prion. It’s not alive so it can’t be killed. It’s like some sort of mathematical inevitability.

    The idea that the test being used is inaccurate is the only interesting point here, but of course if it’s inaccurate why is it being used at all?

    The public in general should be forgiven for thinking that the Bush administration is ignoring public safety in favor of beef industry profits– they have always sided with industry over the concerns of the public, so why should this time be any different? The implication (as I see it) is that the test is not inaccurate, and the beef industry is afraid what of 100% testing will reveal.

  14. Baldhead says:

    What? a US industry interested more in money than potential harm? And the US government supporting it? I find this impossible to believe! *Smokes cigarettes while driving SUV to gun range*

  15. Bugs says:

    Perhaps I misinterpreted your posts. When you replied to DHAWK’s explanations of the logic behind limited random sampling for diseases with:

    That’s a fantasy-based view of epidemiology.

    …and…

    “How many corpses, dead from infectious disease, have you seen? Disease doesn’t kill people: statisticians kill people.

    [my emphasis]

    …and…

    “When you tell me that you’ve heaved the corpse of an AIDS victim off the floor, I might take you seriously. People die because of pencil pushers like you.”

    [my emphasis]

    …I thought you were saying that people die due to the choices made by stastiticians and epidemiologists not to test everyone in the population for rare diseases. I didn’t realise you were making a wider point about the government’s healthcare funding policy.

  16. Anonymous says:

    The reason the government screens 100% of airline passengers and only 1% of cattle is obvious. It’s all security theater designed to give the appearance of doing something to protect consumers when in fact it’s there primarily to protect the profits of businesses.

  17. Takuan says:

    http://www.dehs.umn.edu/bio_pracprin_prions_sp.htm

    there’s the supreme irony: centuries from now, our descendants sit among blocks of glassified nuclear waste, cursing us bitterly because they all have prion disease from the unregarded masses of prion-waste built up by the beef industry.

  18. Anonymous says:

    #23. False positives are a big issue, especially for a rare disease. Imagine the test had a 99% accuracy (i.e., 99% of the time a diseased cow was tested it came up signal positive). That’s called the sensitivity. The specificity is how often a non-diseased cow is (correctly) comes up signal negative. The question, though, is how often a signal positive cow actually has the disease. To do that we use Bayes’ rule.

    probability of disease given signal positive = (prob of signal positive given disease X probability of disease) / probability of signal positive

    The probability of signal positive = probability of signal positive given disease X probability of disease + probability of signal positive given no disease X probability of no disease

    So, say the test has a 99% sensitivity and the probability of the disease is 5 in a thousand (0.005). The probability of signal positive = 0.99 * 0.005 + 0.01 * 0.995 = 0.00495+ 0.00995 = 0.0149.

    Therefore, the probability of disease given signal positive = (0.99 * 0.005)/ 0.0149 = 0.332. So, one third of the time a signal positive comes up the cow is actually diseased.

    If the disease is rarer, say 1 in a thousand, that probability drops to 0.09. If the test is less accurate (and it sounds like it is) the probability drops further.

    So, for a rare disease it usually doesn’t make sense to screen every single individual. The result is that most people/cows who get a positive test result don’t even have the disease. This is one of the reasons everyone doesn’t automatically get screened for HIV, I believe, because getting a positive result would deeply upset people and would be wrong most of the time. What happens when a cow gets a signal positive? The whole herd gets slaughtered? I’m not sure.

  19. Takuan says:

    oooh, they are gonna love this in Japan!

  20. Daemon says:

    They should test 100% of all animals for at least one full generation, preferably two or three.

  21. codesuidae says:

    It doesn’t make sense to have low-rate testing for low-occurrence events. I’d think one would set a figure for the lower limit of detection level that is desired for each event (such as a BSE positive animal), then perform the requisite number of tests to rule out the presence of the event above that limit.

    I can see putting the kibosh on practices that are wasteful and serve only to make a product look better than the competitor’s product (e.g. marketing), but if they’re going to get into doing that I think that they’re opening a substantial can of worms.

  22. slywy says:

    What happened to capitalism? If this company wants to give themselves a competitive advantage (and make the “premium” meaningful) and if they can obtain customers for their product, those who advocate the free market should be congratulating them, not hindering them. Test away.

  23. themindfantastic says:

    actually this is not what it seems to be… the test that was to be used was not actually going to be effective given the circumstances. So the company could go about saying 100% tested and yet any potentially tainted meat would slip by because the type of test wasn’t the appropriate one. Here in canada, one rancher had a single case of Creutzfeld-Jacob found and the entire country has been blocked for a time from exporting. I don’t say that the other countries were wrong in this reaction, but imagine that something that was reported TESTED free from such things and found to be tainted what would that do to the industry within the US? Consumer confidence would drop to zero in the world market.

    Should it be tested with appropriate tests, there are arguments saying yes, testing 100% however is more likely to report a definite case of CJD, based on the nature of false positives. Which would also cause problems. The current testing procedure perhaps could be made more stringent than the 1% testing regimen currently holding sway, but testing 100% with an ineffectual test, is more dangerous than current methods.

    Either way however Vegans are sitting pretty smug.

  24. themindfantastic says:

    I should be corrected, Creutzfeld-Jacob Disease, is from what I understand only when found in humans, while Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy is when found in cattle. CJD and BSE respectively. My bad.

  25. frankiez says:

    @ Takuan! Yes we do! I hope they will stop import soon…
    Kobe beef forever!!! ^_^

  26. Phikus says:

    You see? De-regulation works. The free market always fixes itself. bushco are totally fiscally conservative, serving the public trust and not the elite few. Go back to sleep, America. Vote for this old guy we’ve decided to prop up, this time. And vote for a woman, because she’s a woman. (Don’t look into the policies and decisions she’s made.) Or stay home and don’t vote at all. Everything has been taken care of for you in this best of all possible governments. Look at this flag we’re waving. See how we talk tough. Don’t think.

  27. mdhatter says:

    Now the terrorists can reliably deploy Mad Cow disease.

    Bravo!

  28. dhawk says:

    #19,

    The issue of false positives is inescapable. Every test has a non-zero rate of false positives, and you have to balance the negative impact of false positives with the negative impact of not detecting actual cases of the disease.

    Where exactly that balance lies is different for every disease, and depends on 1) what the rate of false positives is, and 2) what the consequences of a false positive are.

    For example, routine screening for HIV only makes sense for high-risk populations, like pornographic actors. If everyone got tested at their yearly checkup, you’d have a very large number of false positives, which would then be forced to undergo more time-consuming and costly testing to confirm the diagnosis.

    • Antinous says:

      For example, routine screening for HIV only makes sense for high-risk populations, like pornographic actors.

      That’s a fantasy-based view of epidemiology. Porn actors (I know lots of them) are doing a job. They use protection. They know the risks. Regular folks, on the other hand, assume that their partners are safe. They get drunk to have sex. They let people talk them into unsafe sex.

      You’re spouting the misbegotten offspring of early 1980s ideas about HIV and infectious disease in general. If you’re sexually active, you get tested regularly. Any other theory falls under the category of gambling, not medicine.

  29. dhawk says:

    I forgot one other factor that must be taken into consideration when deciding how much to test. 3) The true rate of disease in the population.

  30. Todd Knarr says:

    Like themindfantastic pointed out, the USDA’s objection wasn’t to testing, it was using the test results in a deceptive/misleading way. The test the company wanted to use only starts to detect BSE about 3 months before the animal starts to display symptoms. The incubation period for BSE’s long, averaging 5 years or so before symptoms develop, and the number of contaminated cattle that show symptoms before 30 months of age is negligible. In the US, cattle are slaughtered for meat at about 2 years old, 24 months. That means that the tests the company would do would show pretty much 100% clean cattle even if 100% of them were actually contaminated. But the company was going to claim that the tests showed their meat was 100% clean, conveniently ignoring that the test they used couldn’t detect what they were claiming. And that is what the USDA objected to.

    I’d like to see 100% testing myself, but not using a test that won’t detect what you’re testing for.

  31. ill lich says:

    Seems like the opposite of Cheney’s “1% Doctrine” (If there’s even a 1% chance that a nation is developing nuclear weapons, we must attack). Of course they also don’t apply that logic to global warming, so. . . .

  32. FoetusNail says:

    SLYWY @#4 Great question.

  33. FoetusNail says:

    Todd – is there a test that detects BSE earlier?

  34. dainel says:

    #10 Todd Knarr’s explanation makes sense. If that was the USDA’s actual position, they’re to be applauded. Unfortunately that does not seem to be the case.

    Creekstone wants to use the same test that the USDA itself is using. This undermines the argument that the test is ineffective and unsuitable. Maybe it is, but then the USDA itself should switch to a more effective test, BEFORE it tries to prohibit other people from using it.

    #23 dhawk is wrong to worry about false positives. What’s the problem? Sure, another BSE case will cause losses to the industry. But to know whether it’s a false or true positive, you only need to test it again, using a more accurate/expensive test.

    The USDA is really more worried about true positives. Those that don’t go away with further tests. If the USDA believes that there exists undetected cases of BSE in the US herd, they would not want too much testing. The more you test, the more likely it is that it will be detected.

    Creekstone’s plan for 100% tests means they would be making 50% more tests than the USDA itself. If other farms followed suit, the situation would be worse (as in, it would be harder to hide the undetected BSE).

    BTW: Creekstone originally wanted to do 100% testing because it was required by Japan, which banned imports from the US after one case was detected in Washington in 2003.

  35. ecobore says:

    Surely this is an individual decision – I would have thought it would be unconstitutional to prevent one company from running these tests. The US is f*cked up!

  36. dhawk says:
    For example, routine screening for HIV only makes sense for high-risk populations, like pornographic actors.

    That’s a fantasy-based view of epidemiology.

    Umm… no, that’s just standard epidemiology. Very few tests are routinely performed on all members of the population, even tests for deadly diseases.

    Porn actors (I know lots of them) are doing a job. They use protection. They know the risks. Regular folks, on the other hand, assume that their partners are safe. They get drunk to have sex. They let people talk them into unsafe sex.

    Porn actors for reputable studios are tested much more often than the general public.

    You’re spouting the misbegotten offspring of early 1980s ideas about HIV and infectious disease in general. If you’re sexually active, you get tested regularly. Any other theory falls under the category of gambling, not medicine.

    You simply don’t understand statistics. That’s okay, most people don’t either.

    • Antinous says:

      You simply don’t understand statistics.

      How many corpses, dead from infectious disease, have you seen? Disease doesn’t kill people: statisticians kill people.

  37. pauldrye says:

    What happened to capitalism?

    On food testing? It disappeared about 100 years ago, the the US anyway, after endless scandals over food quality as food preparation entered its early industrial age, and as part of Teddy Roosevelt’s Progressive ideas.

    To wit, the Meat Inspection Act and the Pure Food and Drug Act were passed on the same day in 1906, and have largely shaped American food and agriculture as is down to this day.

  38. dhawk says:

    #23 dhawk is wrong to worry about false positives. What’s the problem? Sure, another BSE case will cause losses to the industry. But to know whether it’s a false or true positive, you only need to test it again, using a more accurate/expensive test.

    Dainel, the problem, as you pointed out at the bottom of the post, is that some countries have placed absurd requirements on US beef. South Korea and Japan have cost the US beef industry billions of dollars over the past decade.

    And it’s not just about lining corporate profits. It’s naive to think that the loss of billions of dollars doesn’t also indirectly affect the lives of thousands of workers, including in terms of healthcare, standard of living, etc.

    The USDA is really more worried about true positives. Those that don’t go away with further tests. If the USDA believes that there exists undetected cases of BSE in the US herd, they would not want too much testing. The more you test, the more likely it is that it will be detected.

    That’s a circumstantial ad hominem. Just because you have identified a possible motive to ignore actual cases does not mean that they aren’t legitimately controlling the rate of testing. Your argument is fallacious. You need actual evidence that their actions aren’t consistent with a scientifically and economically responsible approach.

  39. Anonymous says:

    The USDA is just a branch of the cattle industry — Film at 11!

  40. bwcbwc says:

    So much for the free market at work. Where’s the republican laissez-faire economic policy now?

  41. hlasny says:

    Actions of the USDA are correct and safe. WHY?According to my opinion mad cow disease (BSE) is not an infectious disease. See my recent presentation at 29th World Veterinary Congress in Vancouver (http://www.meet-ics.com/wvac2008/pdf/PS1-3June2008_003.pdf) ; Neurodegenerative Diseases and Schizophrenia as a Hyper or Hypofunction of the NMDA Receptors. There is the abstract about this article;

    Neurodegenerative diseases, including BSE, Alzheimer’s disease etc. are caused by different mechanisms but may share a final common pathway to neuronal injury due to the overstimulation of glutamate receptors, especially of the N-methyl-D -aspartate (NMDA) receptor subtype. It is generally accepted that the influx of Ca2+ as a result of excessive activation of the NMDA receptor underlies the toxic actions of glutamate in many systems. Also, ammonia intoxication leads to excessive activation of NMDA receptors in brain. On the other hand, Mg2+ competes with Ca2+ at voltage- gated calcium channels both intracellularly and on the cell surface membrane. So, Mg2+ can protect against NMDA- induced neurodegeneration and Ca2+ deficiency can be important about “NMDA hypofunction” in schizophrenia. In addition there can be another example about hypoglutamatergic condition; cannabinoids are known to inhibit Ca2+ channels- glutamate release in schizophrenia, and to inhibit progression of certain neurodegenerative diseases.
    There are no scientific references to date in which high intake of crude protein (and potassium) high enough to lead to a state of hyperammonemia (and hypomagnesemia) during the incubation period of the BSE. Therefore there is the first idea of this review; to show the hyperammonemia plus hypomagnesemia”simultaneous” action on the ruminant tissues. So the various clinical symptoms can be observed because the nervous system controlling both voluntary and unvoluntary muscles is affected (Mg and Ca disturbances). If the BSE is involved; a longer- chronic action of corresponding biochemical changes in the blood (CSF) is necessary, to rise irreversible neurodegenerative changes.
    Recently was found that elevated manganese in blood was associated with “prion infection” in ruminants. These findings about “manganese theory” act in concert with this “BSE ammonia- magnesium theory”. So I will perform some interpretations about this connection and some details will be presented to the Congress, and also second idea of this review; to show that cannabis use can be a proof about the link between the NMDA receptor hyperfunction (neurodegeneration) and hypofunction (schizophrenia).

    Comments about this abstract; as a proof concerning Mg-deficiency (and hepatopathy; see http://www.bse-expert.cz) , according to the alternative BSE ammonia- magnesium theory;
    1. In biological systems, only Mn2+ is readily capable of replacing Mg2+, and only in a limited set of circumstances. The body can replace Mn with Mg with similar efficiency in Mn-activated proteins (1990). Similarly, Mn can occupy Mg allosteric sites in Mg-activated proteins, such as the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca- ATPase (1981). It was found (1999) that feeding rats a diet deficient in Mg; decreased urinary – fecal Mn excretion and greater Mn retention in skeletal muscle, heart and kidney (except the liver and trabecular bone) in Mg-deficient rats was observed.
    2. Other cause about Mn deposits in tissues is liver disease. People with chronic liver disease have neurological pathology and behavioral signs of Mn neurotoxicity, probably because elimination of Mn in bile is impaired (1994- 1996). This impairment results in higher circulating concentrations of Mn, which then has access to the brain via transferrin. It was reported that whole blood Mn concentrations significantly increased in patients with chronic liver disease.
    Comments about two recent „Canada experiments“ as another confirmation about the BSE ammonia- magnesium theory (hyperammonemia-proteinemia and hypomagnesemia) in the neurodegeneration;
    1. Normal prion protein (PrPc) might function to block some NMDA receptors and thereby prevent overexcitement and death of neurons. Recently researchers at the University of Calgary (April, 2008) found; when the nerve cells received the messenger glutamate, they went into hyperactive mode, however, when also Mg was removed from the cells, the brain cells went into seizure mode.
    2. Scientists from the University of Manitoba (September, 2008) found that changed levels of a set of proteins in cattle urine indicates the presence of BSE with 100 per cent accuracy in a small sample set. So the discovery of elevated protein levels in the urine of some cattle with mad cow disease raises the possibility that live animals could be screened.
    Sincerely,
    Josef Hlasny, DVM,PhD., Czech Republic

  42. Todd Knarr says:

    #13: I think there are, but they involve a lot of lab work and take several weeks to return results. Even those won’t detect the contamination in the early stages, the prion concentration just isn’t high enough and there’s no known secondary indicators for the abnormal prions.

  43. strathmeyer says:

    Wow, I was wondering what the biased spin on this occurrence would be.

  44. fxlsobserves says:

    I first read about this some weeks ago, and I promptly ordered from Creekstone. It is a pleasure to take even a small step to offset this sort of heavy handed protection for factory ranching.

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