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Latest prions Stories

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2011-02-03 08:55:00

Researchers have developed what is being called "the world's first accurate blood test" for the human form of mad cow disease, and their discovery could change the way the illness is screened for and diagnosed, the UK-based Medical Research Council (MRC) announced Thursday. According to an MRC press release, the prototype test proved 100,000 times more sensitive than any previous method used to detect variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD)--a potentially fatal disease that attacks the brain...

2011-01-14 08:51:46

Airborne prions are also infectious and can induce mad cow disease or Creutzfeldt-Jakob disorder. This is the surprising conclusion of researchers at the University of Zurich, the University Hospital Zurich and the University of Tbingen. They recommend precautionary measures for scientific labs, slaughterhouses and animal feed plants. The prion is the infectious agent that caused the epidemic of mad cow disease, also termed bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), and claimed the life of over...

2011-01-14 08:50:08

Scientists at the University of Zurich (Switzerland) and the Federal Research Institute for Animal Health (FLI; Tuebingen) have challenged the notion that airborne prions are innocuous. Details of how inhalation of prion-tainted aerosols induced disease are published January 13 in the open-access journal PLoS Pathogens. It is known that prions can be transmitted through contaminated surgical instruments and, more rarely, through blood transfusions. However, prions are not generally considered...

2011-01-05 07:33:00

HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Samples taken from the 41 hunter-killed elk during the state's 2010 hunting season have all tested negative for chronic wasting disease (CWD) and tuberculosis, according to Dr. Walt Cottrell, the Pennsylvania Game Commission's wildlife veterinarian. Cottrell noted that sample collection was greatly facilitated by the tremendous cooperation of the elk hunters and taxidermists. He added that the Game Commission still is awaiting the...

2010-12-17 16:15:21

Findings Point to Normal Prion Protein as Most Effective Therapeutic Target for "Mad Cow" and Related Diseases Scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have shown that prions, bits of infectious protein that can cause fatal neurodegenerative disease such as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) or "mad cow disease," have the ability to adapt to survive in a new host environment. In this regard, although they lack DNA and RNA, they behave much like viruses,...

2010-12-03 13:27:50

A fast test to diagnose fatal brain conditions such as mad cow disease in cattle and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans could be on the horizon, according to a new study from National Institutes of Health scientists. Researchers at NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) have developed a highly sensitive and rapid new method to detect and measure infectious agents called prions that cause these diseases. "Although relatively rare in humans and other animals, prion...

2010-12-01 21:11:38

New research in the FASEB Journal suggests that plasminogen, which helps break down blood clots, puts rogue prion proteins into overdrive, causing devastating brain diseases The joy of a juicy hamburger could make a comeback thanks a new discovery by scientists from the University of Kentucky. In a new research report in the December 2010 print issue of The FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org), scientists found that a protein our body uses to break up blood clots speeds up the progress of...

2010-11-24 08:58:00

HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 24, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pennsylvania Game Commission officials, joined by veterinarians and laboratory technicians from the Pennsylvania and U.S. departments of Agriculture, will continue its efforts, starting Nov. 30, to sample thousands of hunter-killed deer in order to assess whether there are any known cases of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in the Commonwealth. "For nearly a decade, we have tested hunter-killed deer, and have not found, confirmed...

2010-11-08 10:00:00

HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 8, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Agriculture Secretary Russell C. Redding and Game Commission Executive Director Carl G. Roe today unveiled an updated plan designed prevent the spread of a disease that threatens the state's deer and elk populations but poses no threat to humans. The officials said the improved Chronic Wasting Disease, or CWD, response plan is part of the state's ongoing aggressive efforts to prevent the disease from establishing itself in...

2010-10-28 23:03:53

Mad Cow disease and its human variant Creutzfeldt"”Jakob disease, which are incurable and fatal, have been on a welcome hiatus from the news for years, but because mammals remain as vulnerable as ever to infectious diseases caused by enigmatic proteins called prions, scientists have taken no respite of their own. In the Oct. 29 edition of the journal Science, researchers at Brown University report a key new insight into how prion proteins "” the infectious agents "” become...