As “Mad Cow Disease”, or “Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy” (BSE) appears all over Europe – one will remember Russia’s first reported case of nvCJD, the human variant of the disease in Murmansk this week – a new theory has been put forward: it came from space. Professor Wickramasinghe, of Wales University, Cardiff, stated that every day, up to 100 tonnes of organic materials reach Earth from space. He believes that the prion which causes BSE could be among these materials. “The fact is that this theory is gaining support from the academic community”, he said. “We believe that life is too complex to have begun here (on Earth). It all started in space”. Professor Wickramasinghe believes that the prion, a form of protein which causes BSE, lodging itself in the host’s brain and then destroying it, arrived on Earth on comets or meteorites and after hitting the ground, was eaten by cows and this caused BSE. The findings of Wales University are to be respected but it would seem much more probable that the practice of feeding cows, which are herbivores, with pulverised brains and bone marrow produced by incinerating the carcasses of dead animals, forcing the animals to be cannibals, is the cause of the disease. This is an enormous issue in the EU, with some countries refusing to buy the beef produced in Britain and Portugal. It is not proved definitively but it is feared that if a human eats beef infected with BSE, the prion can migrate to the human brain and cause New Variant Creuzfeld-Jacob Disease (nvCJD), producing the same results as BSE. Playing with nature, trying to force-feed animals unnaturally, trying to produce a cow in six months when in their natural state, they take at least two years to reach maturity, is bound to bring problems. New evidence starts to appear that BSE is only the tip of the iceberg. The same practice of using artificial hormone-rich protein feed to fatten pigs, chickens, sheep and goats in ever-record low times, will produce more scandals in future. The alarming fact is that this disease can take up to thirty years to appear, so people are aware that not only do they have to worry about what they eat today, but also what they have eaten since the 1970s. Bon appetit…if any cosmonaut on the International Space Station sees a mad cow coming our way, tell it that it has the wrong planet!

John Ashtead Pravda.Ru London

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