The mission of every Infectious Awareables tie is to generate interest, discussion, even excitement about serious public health issues such as this silk Mad Cow tie in yellow. Believing that humor can be a powerful educational tool, Infectious Awareables neckties take an atypical, slightly irreverent approach to some very serious subjects. Shop and take pride in knowing that a portion of the proceeds will be donated to disease research/education. "Start the Conversation!" Mad Cow Disease (formally, Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy)is a degenerative, fatal disease affecting the central nervous system (CNS)of adult cattle. It's believed that BSE is caused by a protein gone bad, called a Prion. A similar disease in humans is called variant CJD, and is believed to be caused by eating neural tissues from BSE-infected cattle. Our design depicts a few bad guys glomming on to the good guys, eventually taking over and turning them all-bad. The twig-like structures in the background represent another configuration of these prions. Needless to say, none of this is good news for that undercooked burger. A back-of-tie "Awareness Note" and a source citation are incorporated in the pattern design, which reads: "MAD COW DISEASE (BSE) is a degenerative, fatal disease affecting the CNS of adult cattle. It is believed that BSE is caused by a protein known as a Prion – gone bad. A similar disease in humans is called variant CJD, and is believed to be caused by eating neural tissues from BSE-infected cattle." "Design based on artistic representation of early prior studies" Note: IA contributes a portion of proceeds to research, education or support associated with important non-profit public health agencies and organizations.