Genetic defence

UK's child haemophiliacs are to be given genetically-engineered clotting agents to remove any risk of their contracting Creutzfeltd-Jacob disease (CJD), a government spokesperson announced recently. A number of Britons could be incubating the new variant of CJD linked to meat from mad cow disease-infected cattle. Haemophiliacs, who receive clotting factors derived from thousands of pooled blood donations, face a higher risk of infection than people given transfusions of donated blood. Recently, the government announced the switch to recombinant clotting factors made in rodent cells for children with haemophilia ( New Scientist , Vol 157, No 2124).