Ministry did work with BSE tester: Letter

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The Independent Online
Sir: Dr Grant's letter (11 October) suggests that the Ministry has persistently refused to co-operate with Dr Narang on the development of tests for BSE. This is simply not true.

In 1990, Maff assisted Dr Narang with trials to validate a test on brain sections he had developed at that time. It was not taken any further because the results did not show it to be significantly better than other tests already available.

Since then Dr Narang has developed a diagnostic test on urine for BSE. Far from refusing to co-operate with Dr Narang we are in discussion with him regarding a trial to see whether his new test works, under the scrutiny of an independent observer.

We would hope to reach agreement with Dr Narang in the near future. The results of the trial should be published once complete.

K C MELDRUM

Chief Veterinary Officer, Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food

Surbiton, Surrey

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