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News1998October › Quality of milk raises fears of crohn's disease › October 1998

Quality of milk raises fears of crohn's disease

The British Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries is investigating whether milk harbouring Mycobacterium paratuberculosis could cause Crohn's disease

The British Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries is investigating whether milk harbouring Mycobacterium paratuberculosis could cause Crohn's disease.

When a ministry survey in Northern Ireland found that six out of 31 pasteurised milk samples contained the micro organism, a lb200,000 study into the quality of milk was launched. And although the ministry says there is no sign of a public health risk, fears of the link between Crohn's disease and M paratuberculosis have prompted them to research this aspect, too.

Resarchers remain divided over a possible association with M tuberculosis, which can cause an illness similar to Crohn's in cattle. A recent study found the microorganism to be present in 65 per cent of a sample group of Crohn's disease patients (BMJ, 1998; 317: 491).


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