WE'RE WRONG ABOUT CJD AND MAD COW COWS

I'M APPALLED by the unfounded assumptions of 'experts' about the hyper-infectious nature of the BSE/CJD agent (Mail). Basic evidence suggests variant CJD didn't arise from eating BSE-affected cattle. Third World countries imported even greater quantities of the incriminated British meat than we consumed here, but no cases of vCJD have occurred in those countries.

I've travelled worldwide carrying out analyses of areas with prion diseases, of which vCJD is one. These diseases increase only in areas with a high manganese/low copper imbalance. Experiments at Cambridge and Case Western, Cleveland, universities confirmed my findings that misshapen prions develop whenever brain cells are exposed to this imbalance.

I found one organophosphate - poured on cows to counteract warble fly and on humans for headlice -which bonded with copper in the brain, starving the prion protein of its copper partner. When this happens, foreign metals, such as manganese, are more likely to bond with prions, which can have devastating consequences.

Manganese is increasing in the environment due to its use as a fertiliser and fungicide, a lead substitute in petrol, and emission from factories. It was fed to UK cattle in calf milk replacement powder (at levels up to 1,000 times higher than in normal cow's milk) and as supplements for bone growth.

Manganese is also fed to humans (in health food supplements), deer (for antler growth) and cats - and all have had prion disease. The totalitarian mindset about the origins of prion diseases betrays an agenda. It's more about global profits for the GM soya protein empires than about the illusory health risks of animal proteins to humans.

MARK PURDEY, Taunton, Somerset.