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Second U.K. blood recipient had mad cow

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LONDON, Jul 22, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- Britain has identified a second case of a patient who acquired a variant of the human form of mad cow disease from a blood transfusion.

The Times of London said Thursday in the latest case, the patient received a transfusion of infected blood in 1999 from a donor who later went on to develop the brain-wasting variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.

The patient died of causes unrelated to vCJD, but a post-mortem showed traces of vCJD in the spleen, the National CJD Surveillance Unit said.

As a result, the rules governing who can give blood will be tightened as of Aug. 2, where donors who are unsure if they have previously had a blood transfusion will be banned from giving blood.

The first reported case of a patient developing vCJD from a blood transfusion was announced by Health Secretary John Reid in December.

That patient, who received donor blood during an operation in 1997, developed vCJD and died six years later.

A detailed account of the case is expected to appear soon in the medical journal The Lancet.

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.

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