BSE in France: epidemiological analysis and predictions.
Attention throughout Europe continues to focus on bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) with increasing evidence linking it to the new variant of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) in humans. The age- and cohort-specific incidence of BSE in French cattle was modelled as a function of the survival distribution, the cohort-specific incidence of BSE infection, the underreporting rate of BSE cases, and the age-specific probability, conditional on survival, that an infected animal would experience clinical onset. The results reveal that thousands of French cattle were infected with BSE over the course of the epidemic. However, case incidence is predicted to decline in future years.