By Robert Cohen Executive Director Text Only

C = Crohn's Disease

The most serious bacterial disease of cows is caused by mycobacterium paratuberculosis.

Mycobacterium paratuberculosis causes a bovine disease called "Johne's."

Cows diagnosed with Johne's Disease have diarrhea, and heavy fecal shedding of bacteria. This bacteria becomes cultured in milk, and is not destroyed by pasteurization. Occasionally, the milkborne bacteria will begin to grow in the human host, and irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn's results.

"It is reasonable to conjecture that M. paratuberculosis may be responsible for some cases of Crohn's disease."

Journal of Clinical Microbiology 1992;30(12):3070-3073

"Johne's disease and Crohn's disease are remarkably similar in clinical signs and intestinal pathology."

Hoard's Dairyman, January 24, 1995

"Of 77 milk samples (taken from cows with Johne's disease), 11.6% were culture-positive (contained M. paratubercolosis)."

Journal of Clinical Microbiology 1992;30(1):166-171

"Mycobacterium paratuberculosis was isolated from tissue taken from patients with Crohn's disease and is implicated in the etiology of this disease."

Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 1993, May 31(5)

"Mycobacterium Paratuberculosis crosses the species barrier to infect and cause disease in humans."

J Hermon-Taylor, British Medical Journal, Feb 1998.315

"Mycobacterium paratuberculosis is capable of surviving commercial pasteurization, when there are more than 10 bacteria per millilitre in raw milk."

N. Sung, Applied and Environmental Microbiology: 64(3), Mar 1998.

"Mycobacterium paratuberculosis RNA was found in 100% of Crohn's disease patients, compared with 0% of controls."

D. Mishina, Proceedings National Academy of Sciences USA :93: September, 1996

Read what Dr. Greger has to say about Paratuberculosis And Crohn's Disease (211kb)

"Please use the Internet Resource Guide to learn more about Crohn’s and its association with Mycobacterium paratuberculosis."

Chris Piromalli - Crohn’s Research Coordinator

Robert Cohen author of:   MILK A-Z

Executive Director (
Dairy Education Board

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