Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study Suggests New Human Genotype May Be Prone To Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

Date:
May 19, 2006
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
A small study in this week's British Medical Journal suggests a new human genotype may be prone to variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD). Although this new evidence may rekindle fears of a larger epidemic, others warn that it is important to be cautious in interpreting these results.

A small study in this week's British Medical Journal suggests a new human genotype may be prone to variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD).

Although this new evidence may rekindle fears of a larger epidemic, others warn that it is important to be cautious in interpreting these results.

Since the initial discovery of vCJD in the United Kingdom a decade ago, there has been concern about the ultimate extent of the epidemic. Fortunately the magnitude of the epidemic at present seems to match the lower limit of the early estimates, with 161 definite or probable cases in the UK.

Researchers at the University of Edinburgh analysed DNA from two tissue samples that harboured prion proteins (a marker for vCJD infection) to identify the genetic make-up (genotype) of the patients.

So far, all clinical cases of vCJD have occurred in individuals with the homozygous methionine (MM) genotype, and it was hoped that this was the only susceptible population group. But both these samples carried the homozygous valine (VV) genotype, suggesting that individuals with the VV genotype may also be susceptible to vCJD infection.

The fear is that individuals with this genotype may be at risk of developing the condition, possibly with longer incubation periods, say the authors. Alternatively, these people may be asymptomatic carriers who might transmit the condition to other susceptible individuals by blood transfusion or surgery.

Though they warn against over-interpreting data from only two positive cases, they conclude that these uncertainties further underline the need for continued surveillance of vCJD in the UK.

It is important to be cautious in interpreting the results of this study, warn experts from Canada in an accompanying editorial. The study shows the existence of the prion protein in two tissue samples, not clinical evidence of vCJD in two patients. The study also provides no evidence to suggest that tissue from these two people could transmit vCJD to others.

"Studies such as this are essential to the continuing effort to control the extent of the epidemic and highlight the urgent need for ongoing surveillance for vCJD," they add. "They also pose challenges to health officials who have to formulate policies comprising difficult trade-offs based on uncertain evidence."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Study Suggests New Human Genotype May Be Prone To Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 May 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060519102407.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2006, May 19). Study Suggests New Human Genotype May Be Prone To Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 3, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060519102407.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Study Suggests New Human Genotype May Be Prone To Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060519102407.htm (accessed September 3, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Snack Attack: Study Says Action Movies Make You Snack More

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) You're more likely to gain weight while watching action flicks than you are watching other types of programming, says a new study published in JAMA. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctors Fear They're Losing Battle Against Ebola

Doctors Fear They're Losing Battle Against Ebola

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) As a third American missionary is confirmed to have contracted Ebola in Liberia, doctors on the ground in West Africa fear they're losing the battle against the outbreak. (Sept. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tech Giants Bet on 3D Headsets for Gaming, Healthcare

Tech Giants Bet on 3D Headsets for Gaming, Healthcare

AFP (Sep. 2, 2014) When Facebook acquired the virtual reality hardware developer Oculus VR in March for $2 billion, CEO Mark Zuckerberg hailed the firm's technology as "a new communication platform." Duration: 02:24 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins