Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Second Case of Mad Cow Traced to Texas

WASHINGTON - The second U.S. case of mad cow disease was a cow from Texas killed last November, two government officials said Wednesday.

The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because the Agriculture Department planned an announcement later, said USDA officials traced the infected cow to a rendering plant for animals unfit for human consumption.

The Agriculture Department confirmed the case on Friday but had to wait for DNA analysis to confirm the cow's origin. Tracing the cow proved difficult the animal's breed was mislabeled and its tissues got mixed with parts from other cows. It was killed at a pet food plant.

Officials suspected last November that the cow was infected because initial screening had indicated the presence of the disease. But more sophisticated tests came back negative, and officials announced then that the suspect cow was free of the ailment.

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