Prion infection, but not disease, is common: study

After examining tissue samples from people who had their appendix removed between 2000 and 2012 at 41 hospitals in England, researchers commissioned and funded by the UK health department found 16 samples positive for abnormal prion protein (PrP).

This equated to a prevalence of PrP of 493 per million population, suggesting one in 2000 people in the UK were thus likely to be carriers, with no particular age or genotypes at higher risk.

Only 177 clinical cases of vCJD have been reported since 1996 when it was first identified and linked to BSE in