Researchers make major gain in understanding how prions jump species

CLEVELAND Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have taken a major step towards understanding how abnormal prion proteins, the suspected cause of mad cow and related diseases, change shape to jump from one animal species to another. In test tube experiments, they were able to make human prion proteins exhibit characteristics of mouse prions or hamster prions through the substitution of either one or two amino acids. Furthermore, they describe how prions may overcome natural transmissibility barriers between two species of mammals. This may happen if prion proteins from one of these two species have been exposed to abnormal prions from a third species.

The Case team's findings are reported in the April 9 issue of Molecular Cell. The senior author of the study is Witold Surewicz, Ph.D., professor of physiology and biophysics at Case. It is co-authored by David Vanik, Ph.D., and Krystyna Surewicz, Ph.D.

The new study demonstrates that fundamental aspects of prion propagation in mammals, including the species barrier and strain diversity, can be reproduced in a test tube using a highly purified protein, a finding that provides a strong support for the hypothesis that mad cow disease and related disorders are caused by prion proteins only.

Prion diseases, also known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, are a group of infectious neurodegenerative disorders that include Creuzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans, bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow disease) in cattle, and chronic wasting disease in deer and elk. It is generally believed that the infectious agent responsible for these fatal diseases is not a virus, but an abnormally shaped form of the prion protein. This highly unusual pathogen is believed to propagate by acting as a template that binds to normal prion protein and forces it to change shape into an abnormal, pathogenic form.

"While abnormally shaped proteins can readily act as templates

Contact: George Stamatis
Case Western Reserve University

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Researchers determine genetic cause of Timothy syndrome
2. Researchers find color sensitive atomic switch in bacteria
3. Researchers identify protein promoting vascular tumor growth
4. Researchers devise potent new tools to curb ivory poaching
5. Researchers create nanotubes that change colors, form nanocarpet and kill bacteria
6. Researchers ID chlorophyll-regulating gene
7. Researchers develop fast track way to discover how cells are regulated
8. Researchers identify distinctive signature for metastatic prostate cancer
9. Researchers report new gene test for isolated cleft lip and palate
10. Researchers discover why mutant gene causes colon cancer
11. Researchers identify the genomes controlling elements

Post Your Comments:

(Date:8/23/2020)... ... August 21, 2020 , ... ... has been published and is now available on the company’s global website. Crystallography ... X-ray analysis community, presenting current news and crystallographic research. , The latest ...
(Date:8/21/2020)... ... August 19, 2020 , ... ... and expo uniting life science, data science, informatics and IT leaders goes VIRTUAL ... this period of uncertainty and change, Bio-IT takes the leadership role of keeping ...
(Date:8/12/2020)... ... August 12, 2020 , ... Mosio recently announced ... for public health agencies of all sizes. With a focus on tracking symptoms ... find appropriate health care, Mosio helps public health departments automate communications and provide ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 09, 2020 , ... ... therapy, today announced the hiring of Allen R. Nissenson, M.D., F.A.C.P., as its ... the clinical development of Sentien’s lead product, SBI-101. Dr. Nissenson serves as ...
(Date:7/7/2020)... , ... July 06, 2020 , ... ... Awards. Entries from Roche, Eli Lilly, Bristol-Myers Squibb, the University of Chicago, Massachusetts ... Bio-IT World has hosted an elite awards program, highlighting outstanding examples of how ...
(Date:7/1/2020)... ... 29, 2020 , ... The Interlocal Purchasing System (TIPS), a ... recently named BioFit Engineered Products an Awarded Vendor. Awarded Vendor status ... cafeteria tables, book trucks and carts at discounted pricing without the delay and ...
(Date:6/28/2020)... Calif. (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2020 , ... The ... the launch of Safe Space™ for businesses of all types to ensure cleanliness, distancing ... LiDAR. , A Safe Space™ enabled business will provide a health performance ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: