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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » National Animal Disease Center » Virus and Prion Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #314837

Title: Prion peripheralization is a host-driven trait of prion infection, independent of strain

item HALEY, NICHOLAS - Kansas State University
item SIEPKER, CHRISTOPHER - Kansas State University
item OLSEN, SARENA - Colorado State University
item TELLING, GLENN - Colorado State University
item HOOVER, EDWARD - Colorado State University
item Greenlee, Justin

Submitted to: Prion
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/5/2015
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Chronic wasting disease (CWD), like scrapie of sheep, is a horizontally transmissible spongiform encephalopathy. Proposed natural routes of transmission for both agents include saliva, urine, and feces, and are likely related to an accumulation of misfolded prion proteins in peripheral excretory tissues, including salivary glands and both gastrointestinal and urogenital tracts. In recent years, prion research has focused on the prion strain (e.g. bovine spongiform encephalopathy – BSE, scrapie, or CWD) as the source code for pathogenic information – encoded by tertiary conformation for example – with strain commonly used as the predominant criteria for classifying prions. In the present study, we compared the peripheral distribution of CWD prions in two experimental host species: transgenic cervidized mice and cattle. Following inoculation and demonstrable infection with CWD, a variety of central and peripheral tissues were collected at necropsy, including brain and both excretory and peripheral lymphoid tissues, and analyzed for prion seeding activity by real time quaking-induced conversion (RT-QuIC). While transgenic mice displayed broad and elevated levels of CWD prions in the periphery, as has been demonstrated with scrapie in mice and CWD in deer, the peripheralization of CWD prions in cattle was very limited and similar to that reported in BSE. Our findings imply that prion peripheralization is likely a trait imparted by the host, independent of the prion strain, though additional research investigating the peripheralization of BSE prions in cervids, for example, is required. It also remains to be seen if other prion phenotypes, e.g. zoonotic potential, are host-derived in nature.