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Home Eurosurveillance Weekly Release  2005: Volume 10/ Issue 31 Article 1
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Eurosurveillance, Volume 10, Issue 31, 04 August 2005

Citation style for this article: Centro Nacional de Epidemiología, Instituto de Salud Carlos III. First case of vCJD reported in Spain. Euro Surveill. 2005;10(31):pii=2764. Available online:

First case of vCJD reported in Spain

Centro Nacional de Epidemiología, Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Madrid, Spain (

The Spanish Ministry of Health has reported the detection of a case of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) in Spain [1].

The patient was a 26 year old woman in Madrid who died on 10 July 2005. She had no specific risk factors for vCJD (no prior blood transfusions or visits to the United Kingdom).

The patient’s symptoms began in November 2004, with rapid progression to dementia, normal MRI and EEG, and 14-3-3 protein found in cerebral spinal fluid. Other neurological manifestations including ataxia, dysarthria, apraxia and myoclonus appeared in early 2005. The first abnormal MRI was observed in April 2005. The patient was methionine homozygous at codon 129 of the prion protein gene (PRPN). There were no identified PRPN mutations or family history of CJD.

The case was notified to the Spanish CJD state registry in May 2005 and initially fitted the criteria for both probable sporadic CJD (sCJD) and possible vCJD; it was registered as probable sCJD. Brain neuropathology results of tests conducted at Fundación Hospital de Alcorcón at Madrid subsequently confirmed vCJD. Materials have been sent to the European reference centre at the United Kingdom’s National CJD Surveillance Unit in Edinburgh for further study, and results are expected later in August.

  1. Ministerio de Sanidad y Consumo. La Comunidad de Madrid comunica al Ministerio de Sanidad la probable detección del primer caso de la variante de la enfermedad de Creutzfeldt-Jakob en España. Press release 29 July 2005. (

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