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The Media and Mad Cow Disease
Mad cow disease or Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy is a disease that was most commonly found in sheep until it started to affect cows, then people. At least that's what the media told us. Scientists like Joe Gibbs of the National Institute of Neurology in Bethesda, MD-on the other hand-are saying meat itself only carries a "minimal" risk of infection, and milk and dairy products are safe.
Now for a little history on Mad Cow Disease: It was a disease that was typical in sheep for hundreds of years (Scrapie) and then it crossed the species border and appeared in cattle in Britain about 15 years ago where it is known as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy or BSE. Mad Cow Disease is just a nickname-the cows do not actually go mad. The British government just recently decided that it has crossed another species barrier and appeared in humans as a disease known as Creutzfeld-Jakob Disease or CJD.…
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