PARIS (Reuters) – Switzerland reported a case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in the eastern region of Grisons, the World Organisation for Animal Health (WOAH) said on Tuesday, citing Swiss authorities.
The 12-year-old cow was sampled on Feb. 27 at slaughter as part of the BSE surveillance program. Brain stem material tested positive for the disease and the case was classified as “atypical”, the Paris-based WOAH said.
BSE, commonly called mad cow disease, is a fatal disease of the nervous system of cattle. Atypical cases can occur spontaneously in cattle while the classical type is usually caused by the ingestion of contaminated feed.
Widespread cases of mad cow disease hit cattle herds in Britain and other European countries in the 1990s. Atypical cases have occasionally been detected and can lead to temporary trade restrictions.
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(Reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide, editing by Ed Osmond)
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