(EnviroNews Utah) – Following Stericycle’s admission last Thursday night where the company acknowledged it is allowed to accept and burn deadly and largely indestructible prions, protestors took to the streets outside one of the nation’s last standing medical waste incineration plants.
Prions are the malformed proteins responsible for causing mad cow disease in cattle, chronic wasting disease (CWD) in deer, elk and moose as well as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), prion infections such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob carry a 100% fatality rate in human beings, and no known host of a prion infection has ever survived.
Researchers also believe prion illnesses are able to jump the species barrier more readily than bacterium and viruses. In addition, it is well understood that prions are not destroyed through standard medical waste industry techniques such as autoclaving or incineration.
In follow-up fashion, Dr. Brian Moench, Founder and President of the Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment (UPHE) was interviewed by local EnviroNews Utah at the Stericycle protest regarding the possible medical implications of prion incineration in a densely populated area.