Anything on Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

Robert M. Stowe rs8d+ at andrew.cmu.edu
Wed Aug 16 23:06:32 EST 1995


Excerpts from netnews.bionet.neuroscience: 9-Aug-95 Re: Anything on
Creutzfeldt.. by Betty Martini at noel.pd.or
> I suspect there is going to be a lot more health problems associated with 
> BST milk than just Jakob Creutzfeldt.  BST dosed lab animals presented [...]

Excerpts from netnews.bionet.neuroscience: 14-Aug-95 Re: Anything on
Creutzfeldt.. by Betty Martini at noel.pd.or 
> You asked for references.  I gave you references on IGF which supports 
> that the insulin growth factor is the regulator of cancer.  It explains 
> how serious this problem is.  I didn't start this post on 
> Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, someone in this neuroscience newsgroup did.
> Don't ask me why this is relevant to this group - ask whoever started it.
> I simply added more information to the discussion.  [...]  

Well, I'm not sure I'm ecstatic to see the cattle industry use rBST, but
I am a little worried about unjustified leaps being made from an
inadequate knowledge base ... which is what seems to be the case with
Betty Martini's attribution of risk of Creutzfeld-Jakob disease to
drinking milk from cattle treated with RECOMBINANT (note r=recombinant,
i.e. genetically engineered) BST is. That's not information, Betty,
that's MISINFORMATION.

To my knowledge, the ONLY documented cases of Creutzfeld-Jakob disease
(CJD) attributed to growth hormone (GH, or somatostatin) treatment have
been linked to the administration of HUMAN growth hormone extracted from
the pituitary glands of cadavers. CJD is a TRANSMISSIBLE spongiform
encephalopathy that is thought to be induced by an unusual proteinaceous
particle ("prion") in genetically succeptible individuals, and generally
speaking when transmission can be documented it is the result of
inoculation by contamined cerebrospinal fluid, intracranial electrodes
or spinal needles previously used on infected individuals) or cranial
contents (contamined dura, and corneal transplants) into the recipient
(usually into the spinal fluid or cranium). The cases of CJD in the HGH
recipients are thought to have resulted from inadvertent inclusion of
prion-contaminated pituitary glands harvested from one or more
individuals who had CJD brewing in their brains when they died.

Excerpts from netnews.bionet.neuroscience: 14-Aug-95 Re: Anything on
Creutzfeldt.. by Betty Martini at noel.pd.or 

> It just happened that before this subject ever appeared in this newsgroup 
> I had been discussing it.  You see, they said that BST was not active - 
> after all, they gave it to dwarfs in the 50's.  We decided to go back to 
> the 50's and find out what happened to the dwarfs who used BST.  They got 
> this disease and died.  Robert Cohen said - and now we could see it in 
> the population.  The next day a note appeared in this newsgroup asking 
> about this disease!  

IF any of the recipients of BOVINE somatostatin from the 50's died of
CJD (and I'd sure like a reference on this from peer-reviewed journal,
although I don't doubt that it could happen), it's because it would've
been because they received prion-contaminated pituitary tissue from
animals that had bovine encephalopathy (the cattle analogue of human
CJD). They didn't have RECOMBINANT BST in those days, Betty. If growth
hormone (either bovine or human) is genetically engineered the DNA
sequence it is synthesized from is "pure" and there is no way it can
contain the CJD, scrapie, kuru, or any other prion agent!

So whatever the other problems with rBST might be, I for one am NOT
gonna worry about getting CJD from it. 

Frankly, Betty, I wish you'd leave BST alone and have a good look at
monosodium glutamate (MSG) instead. Now THERE'S something to get upset
about. Nowadays it's hard to find prepared foods, canned soups, or
restaurant meals (not just Chinese but often Italian and others these
days) that haven't been liberally laced with the stuff. If you're
unfortunately enough to be one of the (supposedly small) minority of
people who get MSG reactions (like the author) or have your migraines
triggered by the stuff, and you know about how toxic just a leetle extra
glutamate can be in the brain (even if the stuff isn't supposed to cross
the blood-brain barrier, I wish somebody would explain why those of us
who have MSG reactions frequently get clear-cut CNS symptoms including
insomnia, anxiety and akathisia as part of the whole affair), you'd love
to see someone go toe-to-toe with the stinkers in the FDA and Congress
who allowed the food industry lobby to use the terms "natural flavor"
and "seasoning" as synonyms for MSG in their package labels. (Oh yeah,
and "hydrolyzed vegetable protein" is supposed to contain up to 30% MSG
BTW....)





More information about the Neur-sci mailing list