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Experts call for research into vCJD test despite only 70% accuracy

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g1415 (Published 06 February 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g1415
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. 1London

Experts have said that a test for variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) that has a 70% accuracy rate should be studied and possibly used universally.

The House of Commons Science and Technology Committee held an evidence session on 5 February for its inquiry into blood, tissue, and organ screening, in which MPs asked about the value of testing for vCJD.

The degenerative brain disease, sometimes called the human form of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), emerged after widespread exposure to BSE prions in the late 1980s and early 1990s through contaminated meat products in the food chain.

A study published in the BMJ last October1 estimated that one …

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