Bovine spongiform encephalopathy in a cow in the United Kingdom.

P. R. Scott, B. M. Aldridge, M. Clarke, R. Will

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) was diagnosed in a cow with a history of behavioral change, apprehension, hyperesthesia to auditory and tactile stimuli, wide-based stance, and marked hind limb hypermetria. Myoclonus involving individual muscles was observed in the shoulder region, ventral cervical region, and upper portion of the hind limb. Clonus was observed in the forelimbs. Clinicopathologic findings were normal, except for high serum globulin concentration, which was attributable mainly to an increase in the gamma-globulin fraction. Results of electroencephalography revealed almost continuous high-amplitude complexes in the occipital leads, interspersed with short runs of normal activity. There were generalized discharges, but these were not periodic. Current theory implicates the scrapie agent (prion) as the causal agent for BSE. The presence of scrapie in, and the possible entry of prion into bovine feedstuffs could result in the emergence of BSE in the United States.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1745-1747
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 15 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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