Anti-Aging Wrinkle Creams
'Exposed Women To Risk
Of Mad Cow/BSE'

Women who bought expensive anti-ageing creams could have unwittingly exposed themselves to BSE, according to the official report into the disease.
The report by Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers stated that there was a "potential pathway to infection" from the products which, unbeknown to most consumers, might have included cattle brain and placenta. The warning was contained in one of 16 volumes of the report, which also criticised the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for failing to act swiftly enough on the dangers posed by cosmetics using bovine material.
Last night the DTI told The Telegraph that it would accept the report's recommendation that it undertake an urgent review of its procedures. The report highlights the fact that the regulation of the cosmetics industry by the DTI was "less stringent" than those covering medicines and vaccines - another possible source of infection - at the time that concerns about BSE in cattle were first raised.
It said that the category of products presenting the highest risk compromised "exotica" or "premium products", such as anti-ageing creams, which might contain lightly processed brain extracts, placental material, spleen and thymus.
The Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Food (MAFF) and the Department of Health failed to alert the DTI to the risks when they were first identified in 1989. Although guidance was provided to the cosmetics industry in the following year, the report said "a muddled situation developed about lead responsibility for action".
In 1991, one veterinary expert said in private correspondence that MAFF should find out from the cosmetics industry exactly what was being used in products. Raymond Bradley, of the Central Veterinary Laboratory, said: "I am not satisfied that the industry is in the clear and it is us that may shoulder some blame if it is later found ladies are rubbing cow brain or placenta on to their faces."
The issue became embroiled in drawn-out negotiations with the European Union and it was not until 1994 that updated guidance to British manufacturers emerged. Use of potentially dangerous bovine material was banned by the EU in 1997.
The Phillips report concluded: "The hallmarks of the handling of BSE in relation to cosmetics were [a] lack of leadership and an absence of urgency. Manufacturers were left to use up stocks, and checks were not made to ensure they reformulated their products."
The Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association told the BSE inquiry that it was confident early on from consultation with members that no products were using British material. -A spokesman for the Association said yesterday: "In 1990, at the request of the DTI, the sourcing of these ingredients was investigated and it was confirmed that they were of non-UK bovine origin".
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