The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) is reporting the first case of Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Brazil and says that it "may be atypical". The affected animal was a beef breeding cow of almost 13 years of age at the time of death (December 2010).
Brazil is still recognized by the OIE as having a negligible BSE risk in accordance with Chapter 11.5. of the OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code.
Having attended the latest TAFS meeting as guests, Prof. Franz Rubel and Assist.-Prof. Katharina Brugger have decided to become members of the TAFS forum. They are both working at the Biometeorology & Mathematical Epidemiology Group, Institute for Veterinary Public Health at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna, Austria and are specialists in the epidemiology and modelling of mosquito-borne diseases.
A news article published by NBC News reports on suspected toxicological effects of chemicals used by the petrol industry for 'fracking'. Available data are insufficient for proper risk assessment. The issue involves livestock, humans, and the environment and hence calls for a 'One Health' approach.
Zensho Holdings, a member of the TAFS forum, Ltd., has conceptualized and designed its ‘Safe Feed Cattle (SFC)’ program as an accreditation system for enhancing the safety of the beef products served to its customers.
The TAFS forum has carefully reviewed the SFC program of Zensho Holdings, Ltd., and concludes that it is a science-based program suitable to enhance the safety of beef products. The TAFS forum acknowledges Zensho Holdings’ contribution to the protection of its consumers and endorses its SFC Program.
A letter of endorsement was handed over to Zensho's President Ogawa in Tokyo on October 26th.
Please see the summary article 'The Prion Puzzle' on BSE and other prion diseases by our member Professor Adriano Aguzzi on the website of 'Project Syndicate'.
The Health Protection Agency of the UK has released its summary results of the second national survey of abnormal prion prevalence in archived appendix specimens. The Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) TSE Risk Assessment Subgroup published a comment on the these results in a position paper.
A final investigation summary into the Californian case of BSE in April this year has been published by FDA. The BSE case is confirmed to have been 'isolated', but there is no reason to assume it was unique.
Two new important reports on zoonotic diseases and options to address them (‘One Health’) have been published online. Both of them list the World Bank/TAFS livestock disease atlas in their references, underlining the usefulness of our work.
The reports will be presented in detail at the next TAFS meeting.
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