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New mad cow victim in France

Doctors confirm new case of vCJD - making the second this year

10 July 2012

A NEW case of Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease - the human form of mad cow disease - has been reported in France, the second this year.

The disease is fatal and, so far, 25 people have died from vCJD in France since it was first spotted in 1996.

Doctors are looking after the latest victim, a man, but he is not expected to survive as only the two latest victims are still alive.

No details of his whereabouts have been given but, of the cases so far, eight lived in Ile-de-France and the other 19 in the rest of the country; 15 have been women, and the average age on death or diagnosis is 36.

In the UK, there were 175 cases between 1996 and 2011 and the final five known victims died last year.

The disease (known as vMCJ in France) has been linked to the eating of contaminated meat, such as that containing brain or nerve tissue.

First symptoms are similar to dementia and the patient can develop a form of schizophrenia or depression.

*Our article Blood ban for UK donors set to remain, with information on vCJD, appears in this month's issue of The Connexion, available in newsagents now.

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