Monday, August 29, 2005

Better Than a Brain Biopsy -- a New Test for Prions

From Reuters:

Scientists at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston are developing a highly sensitive blood test for detecting prion particles, the infectious agents responsible for scrapie in sheep, mad cow disease, and the human form of the disease called variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease.

Prions are misfolded rogue proteins that can replicate and build up in the brain. Up until now, prions could only be detected biochemically in the brain and some lymph tissue, Dr. Claudio Soto and his associates explain in the online issue of Nature Medicine.

Technorati Tags: Prions, Mad Cow Disease, Creutzfeldt Jacob Disease

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