Germany fears first v-CJD death

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The Independent Online
German doctors are to perform a post-mortem examination on a 41- year-old woman whom they suspect may have died from the "new variant" form of the brain disorder Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), which has been linked to mad-cow disease, or BSE.

If the case is confirmed, then the woman would be the first known victim of v-CJD in Germany. A growing body of evidence has linked the new variant to exposure to BSE-infected products - almost certainly food. The test on the woman follows the announcement last week of the death of a cow, born to an animal imported from Britain, in the fifth case of BSE reported in Germany, which has already ordered the slaughter of more than 5,000 cattle imported from Britain and Switzerland. Charles Arthur