Mother and son may be first relatives to die from mad cow (vCJD) disease
August 28, 2008
Madrid-Spanish health authorities are investigating the death of a woman whose son died earlier this year of the variant of the Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) linked to the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) or mad cow disease, experts said Wednesday in Madrid.
If it is confirmed that the woman and her son died from the same cause, they would be the first members of the same family in the world to succumb to the CJD variant, neuropathologist Alberto Rabano said.
The woman, 64, passed away last week in the northern city of Leon. The son, 41, died in February. Their identities were not given.
The woman suffered from a neurological disease. Laboratory tests to determine the nature of the disease were expected to take a month.
Veterinary experts believe the son caught the disease by eating infected meat before 2001, when preventative measures were adopted.
If laboratory tests confirm the woman had Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD), the human variant of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) or mad cow disease, it will be the fourth death from the disease in Spain.