Thursday, May 26, 2011

Travel History, Hunting, and Venison Consumption Related to Prion Disease Exposure, 2006-2007 FoodNet Population Survey

Journal of the American Dietetic Association Volume 111, Issue 6 , Pages 858-863, June 2011.

Travel History, Hunting, and Venison Consumption Related to Prion Disease Exposure, 2006-2007 FoodNet Population Survey

Joseph Y. Abrams, MPH, Ryan A. Maddox, MPH , Alexis R. Harvey, MPH , Lawrence B. Schonberger, MD , Ermias D. Belay, MD

Accepted 15 November 2010. Abstract Full Text PDF References .


The transmission of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) to human beings and the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) among cervids have prompted concerns about zoonotic transmission of prion diseases. Travel to the United Kingdom and other European countries, hunting for deer or elk, and venison consumption could result in the exposure of US residents to the agents that cause BSE and CWD. The Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network 2006-2007 population survey was used to assess the prevalence of these behaviors among residents of 10 catchment areas across the United States. Of 17,372 survey respondents, 19.4% reported travel to the United Kingdom since 1980, and 29.5% reported travel to any of the nine European countries considered to be BSE-endemic since 1980. The proportion of respondents who had ever hunted deer or elk was 18.5%, and 1.2% had hunted deer or elk in a CWD–endemic area. More than two thirds (67.4%) reported having ever eaten deer or elk meat. Respondents who traveled spent more time in the United Kingdom (median 14 days) than in any other BSE-endemic country. Of the 11,635 respondents who had consumed venison, 59.8% ate venison at most one to two times during their year of highest consumption, and 88.6% had obtained all of their meat from the wild. The survey results were useful in determining the prevalence and frequency of behaviors that could be important factors for foodborne prion transmission.

Greetings Everyone et al,

I have not seen the full text of this study ;

Journal of the American Dietetic Association Volume 111, Issue 6 , Pages 858-863, June 2011.

Travel History, Hunting, and Venison Consumption Related to Prion Disease Exposure, 2006-2007 FoodNet Population Survey

more here ;

but seems the wording of risk factors of exposure of cwd infectious agent of the abstract from the above Travel warning of prions in the USA 2011, compared to the original Utah Symposium abstract by the same authors 2010, seems to me they watered it down on the risk factors, if it's the same study ;

>>> These findings indicate that a high percentage of the United States population engages in hunting and/or venison consumption. If CWD continues to spread to more areas across the country, a substantial number of people could potentially be exposed to the infectious agent. <<<

Potential Venison Exposure Among FoodNet Population Survey Respondents, 2006-2007

Ryan A. Maddox1*, Joseph Y. Abrams1, Robert C. Holman1, Lawrence B. Schonberger1, Ermias D. Belay1 Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, National Center for Zoonotic, Vector-Borne, and Enteric Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA *Corresponding author e-mail:

The foodborne transmission of bovine spongiform encephalopathy to humans, resulting in variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, indicates that humans can be susceptible to animal prion diseases. However, it is not known whether foodborne exposure to the agent causing chronic wasting disease (CWD) in cervids can cause human disease. The United States Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet) conducts surveillance for foodborne diseases through an extensive survey administered to respondents in selected states. To describe the frequency of deer and elk hunting and venison consumption, five questions were included in the 2006-2007 FoodNet survey. This survey included 17,372 respondents in ten states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, and Tennessee. Of these respondents, 3,220 (18.5%) reported ever hunting deer or elk, with 217 (1.3%) reporting hunting in a CWD-endemic area (northeastern Colorado, southeastern Wyoming, and southwestern Nebraska). Of the 217 CWD-endemic area hunters, 74 (34.1%) were residents of Colorado. Respondents reporting hunting were significantly more likely to be male than female (prevalence ratio: 3.3, 95% confidence interval: 3.1-3.6) and, in general, older respondents were significantly more likely to report hunting than younger respondents. Venison consumption was reported by more than half (67.4%) of the study population, and most venison consumers (94.1%) reported that at least half of their venison came from the wild. However, more than half (59.1%) of the consumers reported eating venison only one to five times in their life or only once or twice a year. These findings indicate that a high percentage of the United States population engages in hunting and/or venison consumption. If CWD continues to spread to more areas across the country, a substantial number of people could potentially be exposed to the infectious agent.

and now, for the rest of this TSE prion mad cow type disease saga ;

Monday, May 23, 2011

CDC Assesses Potential Human Exposure to Prion Diseases Travel Warning

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Variably Protease-Sensitive Prionopathy: a Novel Disease of the Prion Protein 17 May 2011

Journal of Molecular Neuroscience DOI: 10.1007/s12031-011-9543-1

Saturday, March 5, 2011


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Seven main threats for the future linked to prions

First threat

The TSE road map defining the evolution of European policy for protection against prion diseases is based on a certain numbers of hypotheses some of which may turn out to be erroneous. In particular, a form of BSE (called atypical Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy), recently identified by systematic testing in aged cattle without clinical signs, may be the origin of classical BSE and thus potentially constitute a reservoir, which may be impossible to eradicate if a sporadic origin is confirmed.

***Also, a link is suspected between atypical BSE and some apparently sporadic cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans. These atypical BSE cases constitute an unforeseen first threat that could sharply modify the European approach to prion diseases.

Second threat


Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee

The possible impacts and consequences for public health, trade and agriculture of the Government’s decision to relax import restrictions on beef Final report June 2010

2.65 At its hearing on 14 May 2010, the committee heard evidence from Dr Alan Fahey who has recently submitted a thesis on the clinical neuropsychiatric, epidemiological and diagnostic features of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.48 Dr Fahey told the committee of his concerns regarding the lengthy incubation period for transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, the inadequacy of current tests and the limited nature of our current understanding of this group of diseases.49

2.66 Dr Fahey also told the committee that in the last two years a link has been established between forms of atypical CJD and atypical BSE. Dr Fahey said that: They now believe that those atypical BSEs overseas are in fact causing sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. They were not sure if it was due to mad sheep disease or a different form. If you look in the textbooks it looks like this is just arising by itself. But in my research I have a summary of a document which states that there has never been any proof that sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease has arisen de novo—has arisen of itself. There is no proof of that. The recent research is that in fact it is due to atypical forms of mad cow disease which have been found across Europe, have been found in America and have been found in Asia. These atypical forms of mad cow disease typically have even longer incubation periods than the classical mad cow disease.50

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Generation of a new form of human PrPSc in vitro by inter-species transmission from cervids prions

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Presence and Seeding Activity of Pathological Prion Protein (PrPTSE) in Skeletal Muscles of White-Tailed Deer Infected with Chronic Wasting Disease


there are now two documented strains of CWD, and science is showing that indeed CWD could transmit to humans via transmission studies ;



Chad Johnson1, Judd Aiken2,3,4 and Debbie McKenzie4,5 1 Department of Comparative Biosciences, University of Wisconsin, Madison WI, USA 53706 2 Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutritional Sciences, 3 Alberta Veterinary Research Institute, 4.Center for Prions and Protein Folding Diseases, 5 Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton AB, Canada T6G 2P5

The identification and characterization of prion strains is increasingly important for the diagnosis and biological definition of these infectious pathogens. Although well-established in scrapie and, more recently, in BSE, comparatively little is known about the possibility of prion strains in chronic wasting disease (CWD), a disease affecting free ranging and captive cervids, primarily in North America. We have identified prion protein variants in the white-tailed deer population and demonstrated that Prnp genotype affects the susceptibility/disease progression of white-tailed deer to CWD agent. The existence of cervid prion protein variants raises the likelihood of distinct CWD strains. Small rodent models are a useful means of identifying prion strains. We intracerebrally inoculated hamsters with brain homogenates and phosphotungstate concentrated preparations from CWD positive hunter-harvested (Wisconsin CWD endemic area) and experimentally infected deer of known Prnp genotypes. These transmission studies resulted in clinical presentation in primary passage of concentrated CWD prions. Subclinical infection was established with the other primary passages based on the detection of PrPCWD in the brains of hamsters and the successful disease transmission upon second passage. Second and third passage data, when compared to transmission studies using different CWD inocula (Raymond et al., 2007) indicate that the CWD agent present in the Wisconsin white-tailed deer population is different than the strain(s) present in elk, mule-deer and white-tailed deer from the western United States endemic region.


Prion Transmission from Cervids to Humans is Strain-dependent

Qingzhong Kong, Shenghai Huang,*Fusong Chen, Michael Payne, Pierluigi Gambetti and Liuting Qing Department of Pathology; Case western Reserve University; Cleveland, OH USA *Current address: Nursing Informatics; Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center; New York, NY USA

Key words: CWD, strain, human transmission

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is a widespread prion disease in cervids (deer and elk) in North America where significant human exposure to CWD is likely and zoonotic transmission of CWD is a concern. Current evidence indicates a strong barrier for transmission of the classical CWD strain to humans with the PrP-129MM genotype. A few recent reports suggest the presence of two or more CWD strains. What remain unknown is whether individuals with the PrP-129VV/MV genotypes are also resistant to the classical CWD strain and whether humans are resistant to all natural or adapted cervid prion strains. Here we report that a human prion strain that had adopted the cervid prion protein (PrP) sequence through passage in cervidized transgenic mice efficiently infected transgenic mice expressing human PrP, indicating that the species barrier from cervid to humans is prion strain-dependent and humans can be vulnerable to novel cervid prion strains. Preliminary results on CWD transmission in transgenic mice expressing human PrP-129V will also be discussed.

Acknowledgement Supported by NINDS NS052319 and NIA AG14359.


Generation of a Novel form of Human PrPSc by Inter-species Transmission of Cervid Prions

Marcelo A. Barria,1 Glenn C. Telling,2 Pierluigi Gambetti,3 James A. Mastrianni4 and Claudio Soto1 1Mitchell Center for Alzheimer's disease and related Brain disorders; Dept of Neurology; University of Texas Houston Medical School; Houston, TX USA; 2Dept of Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics and Neurology; Sanders Brown Center on Aging; University of Kentucky Medical Center; Lexington, KY USA; 3Institute of Pathology; Case western Reserve University; Cleveland, OH USA; 4Dept of Neurology; University of Chicago; Chicago, IL USA

Prion diseases are infectious neurodegenerative disorders affecting humans and animals that result from the conversion of normal prion protein (PrPC) into the misfolded and infectious prion (PrPSc). Chronic wasting disease (CWD) of cervids is a prion disorder of increasing prevalence within the United States that affects a large population of wild and captive deer and elk. CWD is highly contagious and its origin, mechanism of transmission and exact prevalence are currently unclear. The risk of transmission of CWD to humans is unknown. Defining that risk is of utmost importance, considering that people have been infected by animal prions, resulting in new fatal diseases. To study the possibility that human PrPC can be converted into the infectious form by CWD PrPSc we performed experiments using the Protein Misfolding Cyclic Amplification (PMCA) technique, which mimic in vitro the process of prion replication. Our results show that cervid PrPSc can induce the pathological conversion of human PrPC, but only after the CWD prion strain has been stabilized by successive passages in vitro or in vivo. Interestingly, this newly generated human PrPSc exhibits a distinct biochemical pattern that differs from any of the currently known forms of human PrPSc, indicating that it corresponds to a novel human prion strain. Our findings suggest that CWD prions have the capability to infect humans, and that this ability depends on CWD strain adaptation, implying that the risk for human health progressively increases with the spread of CWD among cervids.


Biochemical and Biophysical Characterization of Different CWD Isolates

Martin L. Daus and Michael Beekes Robert Koch Institute; Berlin, Germany

Key words: CWD, strains, FT-IR, AFM

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is one of three naturally occurring forms of prion disease. The other two are Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans and scrapie in sheep. CWD is contagious and affects captive as well as free ranging cervids. As long as there is no definite answer of whether CWD can breach the species barrier to humans precautionary measures especially for the protection of consumers need to be considered. In principle, different strains of CWD may be associated with different risks of transmission to humans. Sophisticated strain differentiation as accomplished for other prion diseases has not yet been established for CWD. However, several different findings indicate that there exists more than one strain of CWD agent in cervids. We have analysed a set of CWD isolates from white-tailed deer and could detect at least two biochemically different forms of disease-associated prion protein PrPTSE. Limited proteolysis with different concentrations of proteinase K and/or after exposure of PrPTSE to different pH-values or concentrations of Guanidinium hydrochloride resulted in distinct isolate-specific digestion patterns. Our CWD isolates were also examined in protein misfolding cyclic amplification studies. This showed different conversion activities for those isolates that had displayed significantly different sensitivities to limited proteolysis by PK in the biochemical experiments described above. We further applied Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy in combination with atomic force microscopy. This confirmed structural differences in the PrPTSE of at least two disinct CWD isolates. The data presented here substantiate and expand previous reports on the existence of different CWD strains.


Wednesday, September 08, 2010



October 1994

Mr R.N. Elmhirst Chairman British Deer Farmers Association Holly Lodge Spencers Lane BerksWell Coventry CV7 7BZ

Dear Mr Elmhirst,


Thank you for your recent letter concerning the publication of the third annual report from the CJD Surveillance Unit. I am sorry that you are dissatisfied with the way in which this report was published.

The Surveillance Unit is a completely independant outside body and the Department of Health is committed to publishing their reports as soon as they become available. In the circumstances it is not the practice to circulate the report for comment since the findings of the report would not be amended. In future we can ensure that the British Deer Farmers Association receives a copy of the report in advance of publication.

The Chief Medical Officer has undertaken to keep the public fully informed of the results of any research in respect of CJD. This report was entirely the work of the unit and was produced completely independantly of the the Department.

The statistical results reqarding the consumption of venison was put into perspective in the body of the report and was not mentioned at all in the press release. Media attention regarding this report was low key but gave a realistic presentation of the statistical findings of the Unit. This approach to publication was successful in that consumption of venison was highlighted only once by the media ie. in the News at one television proqramme.

I believe that a further statement about the report, or indeed statistical links between CJD and consumption of venison, would increase, and quite possibly give damaging credence, to the whole issue. From the low key media reports of which I am aware it seems unlikely that venison consumption will suffer adversely, if at all.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Experimental Oral Transmission of Atypical Scrapie to Sheep

Volume 17, Number 5-May 2011

Monday, November 30, 2009


Thursday, June 2, 2011

USDA scrapie report for April 2011 NEW ATYPICAL NOR-98 SCRAPIE CASES Pennsylvania AND California

Sunday, March 27, 2011


Sunday, April 18, 2010


Wednesday, February 16, 2011




Sunday, May 01, 2011

STUDY OF ATYPICAL BSE 2010 Annual Report May 2011

Friday, May 13,

2011 EFSA Joint Scientific Opinion on any possible epidemiological or molecular association between TSEs in animals and humans

Monday, May 23, 2011

Atypical Prion Diseases in Humans and Animals 2011

Top Curr Chem (2011)

DOI: 10.1007/128_2011_161

# Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Michael A. Tranulis, Sylvie L. Benestad, Thierry Baron, and Hans Kretzschmar


Although prion diseases, such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) in humans and scrapie in sheep, have long been recognized, our understanding of their epidemiology and pathogenesis is still in its early stages. Progress is hampered by the lengthy incubation periods and the lack of effective ways of monitoring and characterizing these agents. Protease-resistant conformers of the prion protein (PrP), known as the "scrapie form" (PrPSc), are used as disease markers, and for taxonomic purposes, in correlation with clinical, pathological, and genetic data. In humans, prion diseases can arise sporadically (sCJD) or genetically (gCJD and others), caused by mutations in the PrP-gene (PRNP), or as a foodborne infection, with the agent of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) causing variant CJD (vCJD). Person-to-person spread of human prion disease has only been known to occur following cannibalism (kuru disease in Papua New Guinea) or through medical or surgical treatment (iatrogenic CJD, iCJD). In contrast, scrapie in small ruminants and chronic wasting disease (CWD) in cervids behave as infectious diseases within these species. Recently, however, so-called atypical forms of prion diseases have been discovered in sheep (atypical/Nor98 scrapie) and in cattle, BSE-H and BSE-L. These maladies resemble sporadic or genetic human prion diseases and might be their animal equivalents. This hypothesis also raises the significant public health question of possible epidemiological links between these diseases and their counterparts in humans.

M.A. Tranulis (*)

Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, Oslo, Norway


S.L. Benestad

Norwegian Veterinary Institute, Oslo, Norway

T. Baron

Agence Nationale de Se´curite´ Sanitaire, ANSES, Lyon, France

H. Kretzschmar

Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich, Munich, Germany

Keywords Animal Atypical Atypical/Nor98 scrapie BSE-H BSE-L Human Prion disease Prion strain Prion type

snip...SEE MORE HERE ;

Friday, May 13,

2011 EFSA Joint Scientific Opinion on any possible epidemiological or molecular association between TSEs in animals and humans

Tuesday, May 24, 2011 2:24 PM

O.I.E. Terrestrial Animal Health Standards Commission and prion (TSE) disease reporting 2011


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