Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Fast, sensitive blood test for human prion disease

Date:
May 9, 2011
Source:
NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
Summary:
Scientists have developed a method -- 10,000 times more sensitive than other methods -- to detect variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease (vCJD) in blood plasma. vCJD is a type of prion disease in humans that leads to brain damage and death. The researchers also used the test to rapidly detect scrapie, a prion disease of sheep, in infected hamsters, some pre-symptomatic.

Scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), report that they have developed a method -- 10,000 times more sensitive than other methods -- to detect variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease (vCJD) in blood plasma. vCJD is a type of prion disease in humans that leads to brain damage and death. The NIAID researchers also used the test to rapidly detect scrapie, a prion disease of sheep, in infected hamsters, some pre-symptomatic.

Prion diseases, also known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, are difficult to diagnose, untreatable and ultimately fatal. Scientists believe disease-causing prions are abnormal infectious clusters of prion protein molecules. Normally, prion protein molecules exist in every mammal in an unclustered, harmless form. In prion diseases, tissue damage leaves microscopic sponge-like holes in the brain. Along with vCJD and scrapie, other forms of prion disease include chronic wasting disease in deer, elk and moose, and bovine spongiform encephalopathy, also known as mad cow disease.

Because animals and people can be infected for years before symptoms of disease appear, scientists have tried to develop a rapid and sensitive screening tool to detect prion diseases in blood, which would assist in efforts to prevent the spread of prion diseases among and between species, via the blood supply or otherwise.

Collaborating with scientists from Switzerland-based Prionics AG, the NIAID group combined an antibody-based approach with an improved real-time quaking-induced protein conversion (RT-QuIC) reaction. RT-QuIC, developed in recent years, detects when normal prion protein converts to an abnormal form. The resulting test -- which they call enhanced QuIC (eQuIC) -- improves prospects for routinely detecting low levels of abnormal prions in tissues, fluids or environmental samples such as soil. The group plans to study eQuIC as a potential tool to diagnose various prion diseases in different animals.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. C. Orru et al. Prion disease blood test using immunoprecipitation and improved quaking-induced conversion. mBio, 2011; DOI: 10.1128/mBIo.00078-11
  2. Jason M. Wilham, Christina D. Orrϊ, Richard A. Bessen, Ryuichiro Atarashi, Kazunori Sano, Brent Race, Kimberly D. Meade-White, Lara M. Taubner, Andrew Timmes, Byron Caughey. Rapid End-Point Quantitation of Prion Seeding Activity with Sensitivity Comparable to Bioassays. PLoS Pathogens, 2010; 6 (12): e1001217 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1001217

Cite This Page:

NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. "Fast, sensitive blood test for human prion disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110509171851.htm>.
NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. (2011, May 9). Fast, sensitive blood test for human prion disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110509171851.htm
NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. "Fast, sensitive blood test for human prion disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110509171851.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) — A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur on Monday when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers. (April 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) — Drake University hosts 35th annual Beautiful Bulldog Contest. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) — One Florida fisherman caught a 805-pound shark off the coast of Florida earlier this month. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

AP (Apr. 21, 2014) — Breakfast is now being served with a side of sticker shock. The cost of morning staples like bacon, coffee and orange juice is on the rise because of global supply problems. (April 21) Video provided by AP
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