SHEEP BANK FARM LITTLEBOROUGH LANCS OL15 OLH 17.1.2008
The must informative information on pesticide poisoning is contained in a small book entitled, "Recognition and Management of Pesticide Poisoning" author Donald P Morgan MD PhD. My copy was sent to me by the Environmental Agency Washington. The chapter on organophosphates explains the effect these chemicals have on the enzyme cholinesterase. All warm blooded creatures have this enzyme, the amount in man varying between 40 and 60 units per 100 ml of blood. I have been unable to find out what the expected norm in cattle is but have always felt that this was important in the diagnosis of cattle with B.S.E.
I have read "Scared to Death" by Christopher Booker/Richard North with a great deal of interest. Page 17 gave me an important message when I read the sentence "The vet who examined the first known case of B.S.E suspected toxic poisoning."
With a little help from my friend we traced the vets submission to the B.S.E. Inquiry.... Submission to the B.S.E.Inquiry Feb. 1998 by David Bee MA Vet MB MRCVS. Item 15 in his report states "About that time we also examined samples for cholinesterase activity (which would have been elevated in case of organo-phosphorous poisoning) again with negative results."
Now was this an honest mistake, a monumental error, or the first desperate attempts to hide the truth about the cause of B.S.E.? There is no suggestion that David Bee is anything but an honourable man faced with an unenviable task but the mistake in expecting a rise in cholinesterase levels when we know that the cholinesterase levels in all poisoned species would have been depleted needs explaining.
To do this test effectively would have meant that they would need to know the cholinesterase levels before the poisoning took place. Did they? The argument often put forward against the toxic theory is that cattle have got B.S.E. without having been treated for warble fly, that may be so but that does not mean that they have not eaten organophosphate contaminated feed or drunk contaminated water, with the ability to affect up to the third generation of offspring, I would also question whether the parents or grandparents of the cattle had been treated . There is also the question of possibly contaminated sperm from the sire. Are we positive that this is safe?
We need some sensible answers which even at this late stage must contain an element of truth. Perhaps the Central Veterinary Laboratory can provide this. Let us hope so.
Signed: Brenda Sutcliffe.
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