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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: TRANSMISSION, DIFFERENTIATION, AND PATHOBIOLOGY OF TRANSMISSIBLE SPONGIFORM ENCEPHALOPATHIES

Location: Virus and Prion Research

Title: Scrapie transmits to white-tailed deer by the oral route and has a molecular profile similar to chronic wasting disease

Author
item Greenlee, Justin
item Moore, S
item Smith, Jodi
item Kunkle, Robert
item West Greenlee, M

Submitted to: American College of Veterinary Pathologists Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/12/2015
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The purpose of this work was to determine susceptibility of white-tailed deer (WTD) to the agent of sheep scrapie and to compare the resultant PrPSc to that of the original inoculum and chronic wasting disease (CWD). We inoculated WTD by a natural route of exposure (concurrent oral and intranasal (IN); n=5) with a US scrapie isolate. All scrapie-inoculated deer had evidence of PrPSc accumulation. PrPSc was detected in lymphoid tissues at preclinical time points, and deer necropsied after 28 months post-inoculation had clinical signs, spongiform encephalopathy, and widespread distribution of PrPSc in neural and lymphoid tissues. Western blotting (WB) revealed PrPSc with 2 distinct molecular profiles. WB on cerebral cortex had a profile similar to the original scrapie inoculum, whereas WB of brainstem, cerebellum, or lymph nodes revealed PrPSc with a higher profile resembling CWD. Homogenates with the 2 distinct profiles from WTD with clinical scrapie were further passaged to mice expressing cervid prion protein and intranasally to sheep and WTD. In cervidized mice, the two inocula have distinct incubation times. Sheep inoculated intranasally with WTD derived scrapie developed disease, but only after inoculation with the inoculum that had a scrapie-like profile. The WTD study is ongoing, but deer in both inoculation groups are positive for PrPSc by rectal mucosal biopsy. In summary, this work demonstrates that WTD are susceptible to the agent of scrapie, two distinct molecular profiles of PrPSc are present in the tissues of affected deer, and inoculum of either profile readily passes to deer.

Last Modified: 10/20/2017
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