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Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies

European Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease surveillance

EC contribution
: 176 645
: 36 months
Starting date
: September 1, 2004
: IP
: Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease; epidemiology; risk factors
Project Number
: 2003201


The European Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease Surveillance System (EUROCJD) has achieved all the objectives in the original grant application to DG SANCO (Directorate-General for Health and Consumers). The ability to continue to coordinate CJD surveillance in Europe has had major benefits and, in particular, the facility to provide real-time data on variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) internationally. Through the EUROCJD system, it has been possible to establish travel history in all cases of vCJD internationally, and to confirm in each case the country of likely human exposure to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). Cases of secondary iatrogenic transmission of vCJD through blood transfusion have been identified in the UK.


The primary objective of this project has been the identification and characterisation of all cases of vCJD in participating countries by establishing surveillance systems for all forms of human prion disease in these countries. Another objective of the system has been to identify novel forms of human prion disease that might be related to BSE infection and cases caused by secondary iatrogenic transmission. The project aimed to provide an early warning system for new cases of vCJD and to disseminate information via a website and through scientific publications.

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