Title: Bovine spongiform encephalopathy and variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease risk management in Switzerland

Authors: Margaret A. Wilson, Daniel Krewski, Michael G. Tyshenko

Addresses: Risk Sciences International, 449 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, Ontario, K1N 6Z4, Canada; McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment, Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa, 1 Stewart St., Ottawa, Ontario, K1N 6N5, Canada. ' McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment, Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa, 1 Stewart St., Ottawa, Ontario, K1N 6N5, Canada; Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa, 451 Smyth Road, Ottawa Ontario, K1H 8M5, Canada. ' McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment, Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa, 1 Stewart St., Ottawa, Ontario, K1N 6N5, Canada

Abstract: In 1990, Switzerland became the first country in mainland Europe to report a native case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), despite a low level of live bovine and meat and bone meal (MBM) imports from the UK, the country generally recognised as the origin of the epidemic. Although an MBM to ruminant feed ban was immediately put into effect, the incidence of BSE continued to increase in cohorts born subsequently, possibly because of cross-contamination. The prompt decision to remove specified risk material (SRM) such as bovine brain and spinal cord from human food contributed to a low risk of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD); despite having had one of the highest rates of BSE of any country, Switzerland has yet to report a case of vCJD.

Keywords: bovine spongiform encephalopathy; BSE; variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease; vCJD; Switzerland; risk management; mad cow disease; food safety; variant CJD.

DOI: 10.1504/IJRAM.2010.035267

International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management, 2010 Vol.14 No.3/4, pp.212 - 224

Available online: 18 Sep 2010 *

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