Mad cow disease airborne

University of Zurich researchers have discovered that prions – the infectious proteins that can causeCreutzfeldt-Jakob (mad cow) disease – can be transmitted through the air. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is characterized by a progressive and invariably lethal breakdown of brain cells. The surprising finding will likely mean a whole new raft of precautionary measures for scientific labs, slaughterhouses and animal feed plants.

It was previously known that prions could be transmitted through contaminated surgical instruments and blood transfusions but prions were not generally considered to be airborne until now. Details of how inhalation of prion-tainted aerosols induced disease are published in the journal PLoS Pathogens.

In the new study, the researchers exposed mice to prion-containing aerosols which induced disease. Exposure to the aerosols for one minute was sufficient to induce disease in 100 percent of the mice. The researchers note that the longer the exposure, the shorter the incubation time in the recipient mice, after which they developed the clinical signs of a prion disease.

Interestingly, the prions appeared to transfer from the airways and colonize the brain directly, since various immune system defects – known from previous experiments to prevent the passage of prions from the gut to the brain – did not prevent infection.

The precautionary measures against prion infections have not typically included stringent protection against aerosols. Study leader Adriano Aguzzi recommends precautionary measures to minimize the risk of a prion infection in scientific laboratories, slaughterhouses and animal feed plants but he also emphasizes that the findings stem from laboratory conditions and that Creutzfeldt-Jakob patients do not exhale infectious prions.

Related:
Prions capable of evolutionary change
Scientists create species-jumping hybrid prions
Surgery linked to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
Mad cow disease… sans cow!

Source: University of Zurich

, ,

Comments are closed.

Robert Prion 2024 Bijou Calendar, Vintage Gay Calendars picture

Robert Prion 2024 Bijou Calendar, Vintage Gay Calendars

$17.95



Postcard 1911 Jackson State Prion East End Buildings Michigan D7 picture

Postcard 1911 Jackson State Prion East End Buildings Michigan D7

$6.55



2000 Pacific Pukey-Mon Pukeymon Cards (Pick Your Card) picture

2000 Pacific Pukey-Mon Pukeymon Cards (Pick Your Card)

$1.40



Prion  Safari Cards Rencontre Birds picture

Prion Safari Cards Rencontre Birds

$4.95



Vintage 1976 Animal Card - Prion - Printed In Japan picture

Vintage 1976 Animal Card - Prion - Printed In Japan

$5.97



Pukey-mon Gold Stamped Foil Chase Card Prion #100 picture

Pukey-mon Gold Stamped Foil Chase Card Prion #100

$3.99



Florida Fossil Gastropod Drilla prion Miocene Megalodon Age Shell picture

Florida Fossil Gastropod Drilla prion Miocene Megalodon Age Shell

$7.99



Vanity PRION 4 license plate Protein Mad Cow Disease Creutzfeldt–Jakob Kuru picture

Vanity PRION 4 license plate Protein Mad Cow Disease Creutzfeldt–Jakob Kuru

$69.99



CPA AK MOROCCO SEFROU AN Overview of the Camps of Fort Prion (720153) picture

CPA AK MOROCCO SEFROU AN Overview of the Camps of Fort Prion (720153)

$7.60



Australia Post Stamp Facts🏆Series 1 1996 #54 ANTARCTIC PRION Stamp Card🏆 picture

Australia Post Stamp Facts🏆Series 1 1996 #54 ANTARCTIC PRION Stamp Card🏆

$6.68



Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes