Location: Animal Disease Research
Project Number: 2090-32000-042-005-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Aug 14, 2023
End Date: Aug 13, 2026
Optimize and validate novel protein misfolding assay protocols to the antemortem detection of early preclinical natural infections of white-tailed deer with chronic wasting disease.
A validation tissue set of recto-anal mucosa-associated tissue (RAMALT) biopsies will be assembled from white-tailed deer naturally infected with chronic wasting disease (CWD). The presence of CWD infectivity in RAMALT biopsies will be determined by transgenic mouse bioassay. A homogenate-based method to assess RAMALT biopsy quality will be developed using lymphoid tissue markers. Novel applications of existing and newly designed prion-specific aptamers will be evaluated in prion protein misfolding assays and sample preparation. The diagnostic performance of a new commercially available substrate will be determined for homogenates of RAMALT biopsies using an optimized real-time quaking-induced conversion (RT-QuIC) assay.