"Chronic wasting disease" in deer and elk is caused by a specific infectious prion strain, related to "Mad Cow" disease. The Wyoming Game and Fish
Department wants to start regulating the disposal of deer and elk carcasses. Chronic wasting disease is found in wild herds in Wyoming and Colorado,
and also Nebraska, New Mexico, Illinois, South Dakota, Utah and Wisconsin. It has spread to domestic herds in Colorado, Montana and other states.
The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is proposing to regulate the disposal of deer and elk carcasses in hunt areas where chronic wasting disease is
known to exist.
First identified in Colorado and southeast Wyoming more than 30 years ago, chronic wasting disease causes deer and elk to behave erratically, become
emaciated and eventually die. The disease is related to mad-cow disease and scrapie, which infects sheep, but there is no evidence that it can be
spread to humans.
The agency to date has only asked hunters to voluntarily leave heads, spines and nervous tissue - which carry the disease - at kill sites or approved
Researchers have yet to discover how chronic wasting disease spreads. Besides Wyoming and Colorado, it has turned up in Nebraska, New Mexico,
Illinois, South Dakota, Utah and Wisconsin. It has also been found in captive herds in Colorado, Montana and other states.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
The Wildlife Research Center in Fort Collins, Colorado flagged the problem again last year, in the journal "Current Topics in Microbiology and
Chronic wasting disease (CWD) has recently emerged in North America as an important prion disease of captive and free-ranging cervids (species in the
deer family). CWD is the only recognized transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) affecting free-ranging species. ...CWD has also infected
farmed cervids in numerous jurisdictions, and has probably been endemic in North America's farmed deer and elk for well over a decade. Several
free-ranging foci distant to the Colorado-Wyoming core area have been discovered since 2000, and new or intensified surveillance may well identify
even more foci of infection. ...CWD is infectious, transmitting horizontally from infected to susceptible cervids. Early accumulation of PrP(CWD) in
alimentary tract-associated lymphoid tissues during incubation suggests agent shedding in feces or saliva as plausible transmission routes.
Residual infectivity in contaminated environments also appears to be important in sustaining epidemics. Improved tests allow CWD to be reliably
diagnosed long before clinical signs appear. ...Although recognized as a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) since the late 1970s
(Williams and Young 1980, 1982), interest in and concern about CWD has only recently emerged. ...The geographic extent of endemic CWD in free-ranging
wildlife was initially thought to be quite limited and its natural rate of expansion slow; however, recent investigations have revealed that CWD
has been inadvertently spread much more widely via market-driven movements of infected, farmed elk and deer. Both the ecological and economic
consequences of CWD and its spread remain to be determined; moreover, public health implications remain a question of intense interest.
Unfortunately, no one paid much attention. Still playing the "Strain Game," authorities insist that there is "no evidence chronic wasting disease
can spread to humans." Technically, this is true. Humans do not "get" that particular strain of prion disease and so, don't get deer and elk
chronic wasting disease. But, research shows that prion strains do cross species barriers, infect victims in other species and 'adapt' by mutating
into new strains. The new strains are specific to the new species, and cause new and different diseases in that species.
The second big myth about prion diseases involves transmission:
"Cross-species infection with transmissible spongiform encephalopathy agents may lead to subclinical infection and to adaptation of the
infection to new species."
* "Subclinical scrapie infection in a resistant species: persistence, replication, and adaptation of infectivity during four passages." Race R,
Meade-White K, Raines A, Raymond GJ, Caughey B, Chesebro B. Laboratory of Persistent Viral Diseases, Rocky Mountain Laboratories, 903 S. Fourth
Street, Hamilton, MT 59840, USA. J Infect Dis. 2002 Dec 1;186 Suppl 2:S166-70. PMID: 12424693
"...prions may overcome natural transmissibility barriers between two species of mammals. This may happen if prion proteins from one of these two
species have been exposed to abnormal prions from a third species."
* "Researchers Make Major Gain In Understanding How Prions Jump Species" Source: Case Western Reserve University
"Conformational variations in an infectious protein determine prion strain differences." Nature. 2004 Mar 18;428(6980):323-8. Tanaka M,
Chien P, Naber N, Cooke R, Weissman JS. Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, University of
California-San Francisco, San Francisco, California 94143, USA. PMID: 15029196
"...the (prion strain) biochemical isoform of PrP(Sc) found is influenced by the cell type in which it accumulates."
* "Peripheral Tissue Involvement in Sporadic, Iatrogenic, and Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease: An Immunohistochemical, Quantitative, and
Biochemical Study." Am J Pathol. 2004 Jan;164(1):143-153. Head MW, Ritchie D, Smith N, McLoughlin V, Nailon W, Samad S, Masson S, Bishop M, McCardle
L, Ironside JW. National Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Surveillance Unit and Division of Pathology, School of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, University
of Edinburgh, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, United Kingdom. PMID: 14695328
Also see: "Mad Cow" Disease Uses Immune System to Spread in Body
Prion researchers say underlying "subclinical" prion infections cause disease well before the infection moves to the brain; there is a
progressive, degenerative disease process affecting various body parts and systems.
"Diverse human disorders …arise from misfolding and aggregation of an underlying protein."
"Protein misfolding and disease: the case of prion disorders." Cell Mol Life Sci. 2003 Jan;60(1):133-43. Hetz C, Soto C. Serono Pharmaceutical
Research Institute, 14 Chemin des Aulx, 1228 Plan les Ouates, Switzerland. PMID: 12613663
* "Chronic Subclinical Prion Disease Induced by Low-Dose Inoculum" Received September 24, 2001; J Virol. 2002 March; 76 (5): 2510–2517 Alana M.
Thackray,1 Michael A. Klein,2 Adriano Aguzzi,3 and Raymond Bujdoso www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov...
"Subclinical prion infection in humans and animals." Br Med Bull. 2003;66:161-70. Hill AF, Collinge J. MRC Prion Unit, Department of
Neurodegenerative Disease, Institute of Neurology, London, UK. PMID: 14522857
"Researchers have yet to discover how chronic wasting disease spreads."
Again, technically true. No one has tracked the 'chronic wasting disease' prion to confirm that it spreads exactly like other prions are known to
spread. Unfortunately, research on prion transmission in the USA was stalled when President Bush defined prions as "select agents" under
The old news is that prions spread in urine and other bodily fluids, including blood - which means that soil and groundwater are contaminated easily,
then waterways and finally, tapwater. So burying diseased carcasses is a really bad idea - even in 'approved' landfills. Burning carcasses only
works at very high temperatures; if temperatures are not high enough, the prions are simply released into the air. And just to make matters really
interesting, prions can use insects and microbes like viruses as vehicles of transmission.
"How does chronic wasting disease (CWD) in deer and elk spread from animal to animal? … University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers show that
prions - infectious proteins considered to be at the root of the disease - literally stick to some soil types, suggesting that the landscape may
serve as an environmental reservoir for the disease."
* Prion transmission in blood and urine: what are the implications for recombinant and urinary-derived gonadotrophins? Hum Reprod. 2002
Oct;17(10):2501-8. Reichl H, Balen A, Jansen CA. PMID: 12351519
"This finding indicates that previous attempts to quantify BSE and scrapie prions in milk or non-neural tissues, such as muscle, may
have underestimated infectious titers by as much as a factor of 10,000, raising the possibility that prions could be present in these products in
sufficient quantities to pose risk to humans..."
* UCSF-Led Team Reports New Test Improves Detection of Prions in Animals
"It is possible that infectious prions have leached into the water supply, government scientists admit. … The main risks to human health are
contamination of water supplies from buried animals, or carcasses awaiting disposal, and pollution of the air from burning pyres."
"Fly larvae and mites were exposed to brain-infected material and were readily able to transmit scrapie (prions) to hamsters. New lines of
evidence have confirmed that adult flies are also able to express prion proteins. Several cell types found on the human skin, including keratinocytes,
fibroblasts and lymphocytes, are susceptible to the abnormal infective isoform of the prion protein, which transforms the skin to produce a potential
target for prion infection."
* Could ectoparasites act as vectors for prion diseases? Int J Dermatol. 2003 Jun;42(6):425-9. Lupi O. Center for Vaccine Development, University of
Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, Galveston, TX, USA. PMID: 12786866
This 1986 paper describes how "proteinaceous capsids" use viruses as vehicles of transmission, and how the subsequent RNA interference silences
* "Viral influences on aflatoxin formation by Aspergillus flavus." Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 24:248-252. Schmidt FR, Lemke PA, Esser K (1986)
"Epidemiological observations indicate that a microbial vector is responsible for the transmission of natural prion disease in sheep and goats
… A similar phenomenon was already described with a protein antigen of the ameba Naegleria gruberi. ...It is proposed that many microbial
proteins may be capable of replicating themselves in mammalian cells eliciting and sustaining thereby degenerative and/or autoimmune reactions
subsequent to infections with microorganisms."
* Med Hypotheses. 1999 Aug;53(2):91-102. Is the pathogen of prion disease a microbial protein? Fuzi M. Budapest Institute of National Public Health
and Medical Officer Service, Hungary. PMID: 10532698
"Although composting reaches high enough temperatures for a long enough time to kill most pathogens ...it would be highly unlikely that composting
would inactivate prions."
The technology now exists to kill prions, and prevent their spread. It is not being used. It will not be used until people stand together and demand
protection, and prevention.
Related News Links:
Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
OP/ED: The Final Solution
ATS: Merck and Vioxx: A Twisted Tale of Cover-ups, Pork and Profits
NEWS: Mad Cow Disease Is Found In Goat
SCI/TECH: "Mad Cow" Disease Uses Immune System to Spread in Body
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