Thursday, July 31, 2014

EFSA Scrapie reduction unlikely without effective breeding programme

Scrapie reduction unlikely without effective breeding programme


30 July 2014


Over the last ten years Classical scrapie in sheep has decreased in countries where breeding programmes for resistance were effectively implemented, say EFSA experts.


EFSA has assessed the state of scrapie in the EU since the introduction ten years ago of a series of measures to monitor and control the disease. Scrapie is a fatal disease that affects sheep and goats. It belongs to the same family of diseases as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) which is found in cattle and is commonly known as mad cow disease. There is no evidence that scrapie has ever been transmitted to humans. The infectious agent is thought to be an abnormal form of a protein, also called a prion.


Experts of EFSA’s Panel on Biological Hazards have concluded that an eradication policy that relies only on the detection and culling of infected flocks and does not include breeding programmes for resistance is unlikely to succeed. This is both because of the characteristics of this disease and because the classical scrapie agent can persist in the environment for years.


“Sheep with a particular genetic makeup are resistant to Classical scrapie and breeding choices allow an increase in the flock’s resistance to the disease” explains Giuseppe Ru, Chair of EFSA’s Working Group on scrapie situation in the EU.


EFSA experts concluded that Classical scrapie in sheep may die out if the percentage of resistant sheep is above a certain threshold.


Occurrence of Classical scrapie varies greatly across the EU and its evolution over time should be considered country-by-country. Overall, it has been reported in 17 Member States; in some of them cases have decreased over time, while in others no clear trend was observed.


EFSA experts recommend strengthening surveillance activities to detect infected flocks and control the disease, increasing the implementation of breeding programmes for resistance in sheep and starting their use in goats too.


Scientific Opinion on the scrapie situation in the EU after 10 years of monitoring and control in sheep and goats




Notes to editors:


Scrapie comes in two variants. Classical scrapie is transmitted through exposure to scrapie-infected animals (e.g. via milk or placentae) and their environment. Scientific evidence suggests that Atypical scrapie, the second variant, is spontaneous and non-contagious. In this opinion EFSA experts have considered both variants, with a particular focus on Classical scrapie. For media enquiries please contact: EFSA Media Relations Office Tel. +39 0521 036 149 E-mail:



INTRODUCTION - Surveillance (Part 1)


Regulatory Scrapie Slaughter Surveillance (RSSS)


RSSS started April 1, 2003. It is a targeted slaughter surveillance program which is designed to identify infected flocks. Samples have been collected from 430,085 animals since April 1, 2003. There have been 473 NVSL confirmed positive animals* (465 classical cases and 8 Nor98-like cases) since the beginning of RSSS. As of June 30, 2014, 32,173 samples have been collected in FY 2014, 26,408 from sheep and 5,765 from goats. As of June 30, 2014, 2 white-faced and 2 black-faced sheep have tested positive for scrapie in FY 2014. The percentage of samples that have tested positive for each face color from FY 2003 through FY 2014 is depicted in Chart 3. In November 2013, administrative units within APHIS Veterinary Services reorganized from 2 Regions to 6 Districts (Figure 1). The distribution of sheep and goat populations by District is depicted in Chart 4a. The number of animals collected for FY 2014 by District where collected is shown in Chart 4b. A monthly comparison of RSSS collections by fiscal year is displayed in Chart 5. Chart 6 is a retrospective 6-month rolling average of the percent positive, black-faced sheep sampled at RSSS collection sites.


*RSSS positives are reported based on collection date and may have been confirmed after June 30, 2014.


INTRODUCTION - Surveillance (Part 2) On-Farm Surveillance Testing sheep and goats in the field is an essential part of scrapie surveillance, and it includes both regulatory testing and on-farm surveillance. As the National Scrapie Eradication Program moves closer towards meeting the goal of identifying the last remaining cases of classical scrapie, finding and testing all sheep and goats meeting targeted sampling criteria is even more important. As of June 30, 2014, 1,174 sheep and 440 goats have been tested on-farm for FY 2014. As of June 30, 15 sheep and 9 goats have tested positive. The number of animals tested on-farm by month and by species for FY 2014 is shown in Chart 7. Total Animals Sampled for Scrapie Testing As of June 30, 2014, 33,787 animals have been sampled for scrapie testing:


•32,173 RSSS samples and 1,614 on-farm samples [includes regulatory testing (necropsy and live-animal) and on-farm surveillance] (Chart 8);


•Of which 27,582 were sheep and 6,205 were goats. Distribution of sampling by type (RSSS or on-farm) and by species is shown in Chart 9.


Overall, all Nor98 isolates contained highly PK resistant PrPres aggregates, with the main PrPres being a non-glycosylated internal fragment, cleaved at both the N and C termini, which represent the distinctive biochemical feature of Nor98. This biochemical signature, unique among animal TSEs, is reminiscent of PrPres observed in human prion disorders such as GSS and VPSPr.




At present the only epidemiological link between animal and human TSEs has been demonstrated for classical BSE and variant CJD [16], [78], showing for the first time the zoonotic potential of TSEs. Since then, the implementation of active surveillance in livestock has led to the identification of Nor98 and other previously unrecognised animal prion strains, mainly with a sporadic occurrence, whose origin and zoonotic potential are still poorly understood [79]. It has been previously shown that peripheral tissues of sheep with Nor98 might harbour detectable levels of infectivity [49], [50], indicating that infectious material might enter the food chain. On the other hand, the well known genetic aetiology of GSS suggests that the similar PrPSc conformations found in Nor98 and GSS P102L are unlikely to indicate a common infectious source, but might derive from a similar molecular mechanisms involved in PrPC-to-PrPSc conversion.




Citation: Pirisinu L, Nonno R, Esposito E, Benestad SL, Gambetti P, et al. (2013) Small Ruminant Nor98 Prions Share Biochemical Features with Human Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker Disease and Variably Protease-Sensitive Prionopathy. PLoS ONE 8(6): e66405. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0066405


Editor: Corinne Ida Lasmezas, The Scripps Research Institute Scripps Florida, United States of America


Received: January 24, 2013; Accepted: May 6, 2013; Published: June 24, 2013


Copyright: © 2013 Pirisinu et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Funding: This work was supported by grants from the Italian Ministry of Health (RF-2009-1474624); the European Union (Neuroprion Network of Excellence CT-2004–506579); the National Institutes of Health (NIH) NS062787, NIH AG-08012, AG-14359; Alliance BioSecure, as well as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention Contract UR8/CCU515004. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.


Competing interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.



*** The discovery of previously unrecognized prion diseases in both humans and animals (i.e., Nor98 in small ruminants) demonstrates that the range of prion diseases might be wider than expected and raises crucial questions about the epidemiology and strain properties of these new forms. We are investigating this latter issue by molecular and biological comparison of VPSPr, GSS and Nor98.




OR-10: Variably protease-sensitive prionopathy is transmissible in bank voles


Romolo Nonno,1 Michele Di Bari,1 Laura Pirisinu,1 Claudia D’Agostino,1 Stefano Marcon,1 Geraldina Riccardi,1 Gabriele Vaccari,1 Piero Parchi,2 Wenquan Zou,3 Pierluigi Gambetti,3 Umberto Agrimi1 1Istituto Superiore di Sanità; Rome, Italy; 2Dipartimento di Scienze Neurologiche, Università di Bologna; Bologna, Italy; 3Case Western Reserve University; Cleveland, OH USA


Background. Variably protease-sensitive prionopathy (VPSPr) is a recently described “sporadic”neurodegenerative disease involving prion protein aggregation, which has clinical similarities with non-Alzheimer dementias, such as fronto-temporal dementia. Currently, 30 cases of VPSPr have been reported in Europe and USA, of which 19 cases were homozygous for valine at codon 129 of the prion protein (VV), 8 were MV and 3 were MM. A distinctive feature of VPSPr is the electrophoretic pattern of PrPSc after digestion with proteinase K (PK). After PK-treatment, PrP from VPSPr forms a ladder-like electrophoretic pattern similar to that described in GSS cases. The clinical and pathological features of VPSPr raised the question of the correct classification of VPSPr among prion diseases or other forms of neurodegenerative disorders. Here we report preliminary data on the transmissibility and pathological features of VPSPr cases in bank voles.


Materials and Methods. Seven VPSPr cases were inoculated in two genetic lines of bank voles, carrying either methionine or isoleucine at codon 109 of the prion protein (named BvM109 and BvI109, respectively). Among the VPSPr cases selected, 2 were VV at PrP codon 129, 3 were MV and 2 were MM. Clinical diagnosis in voles was confirmed by brain pathological assessment and western blot for PK-resistant PrPSc (PrPres) with mAbs SAF32, SAF84, 12B2 and 9A2.


Results. To date, 2 VPSPr cases (1 MV and 1 MM) gave positive transmission in BvM109. Overall, 3 voles were positive with survival time between 290 and 588 d post inoculation (d.p.i.). All positive voles accumulated PrPres in the form of the typical PrP27–30, which was indistinguishable to that previously observed in BvM109 inoculated with sCJDMM1 cases.


In BvI109, 3 VPSPr cases (2 VV and 1 MM) showed positive transmission until now. Overall, 5 voles were positive with survival time between 281 and 596 d.p.i.. In contrast to what observed in BvM109, all BvI109 showed a GSS-like PrPSc electrophoretic pattern, characterized by low molecular weight PrPres. These PrPres fragments were positive with mAb 9A2 and 12B2, while being negative with SAF32 and SAF84, suggesting that they are cleaved at both the C-terminus and the N-terminus. Second passages are in progress from these first successful transmissions.


Conclusions. Preliminary results from transmission studies in bank voles strongly support the notion that VPSPr is a transmissible prion disease. Interestingly, VPSPr undergoes divergent evolution in the two genetic lines of voles, with sCJD-like features in BvM109 and GSS-like properties in BvI109.


The discovery of previously unrecognized prion diseases in both humans and animals (i.e., Nor98 in small ruminants) demonstrates that the range of prion diseases might be wider than expected and raises crucial questions about the epidemiology and strain properties of these new forms. We are investigating this latter issue by molecular and biological comparison of VPSPr, GSS and Nor98.



Wednesday, March 28, 2012





Thursday, October 10, 2013


CJD REPORT 1994 increased risk for consumption of veal and venison and lamb



*** The discovery of previously unrecognized prion diseases in both humans and animals (i.e., Nor98 in small ruminants) demonstrates that the range of prion diseases might be wider than expected and raises crucial questions about the epidemiology and strain properties of these new forms. We are investigating this latter issue by molecular and biological comparison of VPSPr, GSS and Nor98.


Increased Atypical Scrapie Detections


Press reports indicate that increased surveillance is catching what otherwise would have been unreported findings of atypical scrapie in sheep. In 2009, five new cases have been reported in Quebec, Ontario, Alberta, and Saskatchewan. With the exception of Quebec, all cases have been diagnosed as being the atypical form found in older animals. Canada encourages producers to join its voluntary surveillance program in order to gain scrapie-free status. The World Animal Health will not classify Canada as scrapie-free until no new cases are reported for seven years. The Canadian Sheep Federation is calling on the government to fund a wider surveillance program in order to establish the level of prevalence prior to setting an eradication date. Besides long-term testing, industry is calling for a compensation program for farmers who report unusual deaths in their flocks.



Thursday, March 29, 2012


atypical Nor-98 Scrapie has spread from coast to coast in the USA 2012


NIAA Annual Conference April 11-14, 2011San Antonio, Texas



Monday, April 25, 2011


Experimental Oral Transmission of Atypical Scrapie to Sheep


Volume 17, Number 5-May 2011 However, work with transgenic mice has demonstrated the potential susceptibility of pigs, with the disturbing finding that the biochemical properties of the resulting PrPSc have changed on transmission (40).



Monday, December 14, 2009


Similarities between Forms of Sheep Scrapie and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Are Encoded by Distinct Prion Types


(hmmm, this is getting interesting now...TSS)


Sporadic CJD type 1 and atypical/ Nor98 scrapie are characterized by fine (reticular) deposits,


see also ;


All of the Heidenhain variants were of the methionine/ methionine type 1 molecular subtype.



see full text ;


Monday, December 14, 2009


Similarities between Forms of Sheep Scrapie and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Are Encoded by Distinct Prion Types





Aspects of the Cerebellar Neuropathology in Nor98


Gavier-Widén, D1; Benestad, SL2; Ottander, L1; Westergren, E1 1National Veterinary Insitute, Sweden; 2National Veterinary Institute,


Norway Nor98 is a prion disease of old sheep and goats. This atypical form of scrapie was first described in Norway in 1998. Several features of Nor98 were shown to be different from classical scrapie including the distribution of disease associated prion protein (PrPd) accumulation in the brain. The cerebellum is generally the most affected brain area in Nor98. The study here presented aimed at adding information on the neuropathology in the cerebellum of Nor98 naturally affected sheep of various genotypes in Sweden and Norway. A panel of histochemical and immunohistochemical (IHC) stainings such as IHC for PrPd, synaptophysin, glial fibrillary acidic protein, amyloid, and cell markers for phagocytic cells were conducted. The type of histological lesions and tissue reactions were evaluated. The types of PrPd deposition were characterized. The cerebellar cortex was regularly affected, even though there was a variation in the severity of the lesions from case to case. Neuropil vacuolation was more marked in the molecular layer, but affected also the granular cell layer. There was a loss of granule cells. Punctate deposition of PrPd was characteristic. It was morphologically and in distribution identical with that of synaptophysin, suggesting that PrPd accumulates in the synaptic structures. PrPd was also observed in the granule cell layer and in the white matter. The pathology features of Nor98 in the cerebellum of the affected sheep showed similarities with those of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans.


***The pathology features of Nor98 in the cerebellum of the affected sheep showed similarities with those of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans.







R. Nonno1, E. Esposito1, G. Vaccari1, E. Bandino2, M. Conte1, B. Chiappini1, S. Marcon1, M. Di Bari1, S.L. Benestad3, U. Agrimi1 1 Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Department of Food Safety and Veterinary Public Health, Rome, Italy (; 2 Istituto Zooprofilattico della Sardegna, Sassari, Italy; 3 National Veterinary Institute, Department of Pathology, Oslo, Norway


Molecular variants of PrPSc are being increasingly investigated in sheep scrapie and are generally referred to as "atypical" scrapie, as opposed to "classical scrapie". Among the atypical group, Nor98 seems to be the best identified. We studied the molecular properties of Italian and Norwegian Nor98 samples by WB analysis of brain homogenates, either untreated, digested with different concentrations of proteinase K, or subjected to enzymatic deglycosylation. The identity of PrP fragments was inferred by means of antibodies spanning the full PrP sequence. We found that undigested brain homogenates contain a Nor98-specific PrP fragment migrating at 11 kDa (PrP11), truncated at both the C-terminus and the N-terminus, and not N-glycosylated. After mild PK digestion, Nor98 displayed full-length PrP (FL-PrP) and N-glycosylated C-terminal fragments (CTF), along with increased levels of PrP11. Proteinase K digestion curves (0,006-6,4 mg/ml) showed that FL-PrP and CTF are mainly digested above 0,01 mg/ml, while PrP11 is not entirely digested even at the highest concentrations, similarly to PrP27-30 associated with classical scrapie. Above 0,2 mg/ml PK, most Nor98 samples showed only PrP11 and a fragment of 17 kDa with the same properties of PrP11, that was tentatively identified as a dimer of PrP11. Detergent solubility studies showed that PrP11 is insoluble in 2% sodium laurylsorcosine and is mainly produced from detergentsoluble, full-length PrPSc. Furthermore, among Italian scrapie isolates, we found that a sample with molecular and pathological properties consistent with Nor98 showed plaque-like deposits of PrPSc in the thalamus when the brain was analysed by PrPSc immunohistochemistry. Taken together, our results show that the distinctive pathological feature of Nor98 is a PrP fragment spanning amino acids ~ 90-155. This fragment is produced by successive N-terminal and C-terminal cleavages from a full-length and largely detergent-soluble PrPSc, is produced in vivo and is extremely resistant to PK digestion.


*** Intriguingly, these conclusions suggest that some pathological features of Nor98 are reminiscent of Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker disease.





A newly identified type of scrapie agent can naturally infect sheep with resistant PrP genotypes


Annick Le Dur*,?, Vincent Béringue*,?, Olivier Andréoletti?, Fabienne Reine*, Thanh Lan Laï*, Thierry Baron§, Bjørn Bratberg¶, Jean-Luc Vilotte?, Pierre Sarradin**, Sylvie L. Benestad¶, and Hubert Laude*,?? +Author Affiliations


*Virologie Immunologie Moléculaires and ?Génétique Biochimique et Cytogénétique, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, 78350 Jouy-en-Josas, France; ?Unité Mixte de Recherche, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique-Ecole Nationale Vétérinaire de Toulouse, Interactions Hôte Agent Pathogène, 31066 Toulouse, France; §Agence Française de Sécurité Sanitaire des Aliments, Unité Agents Transmissibles Non Conventionnels, 69364 Lyon, France; **Pathologie Infectieuse et Immunologie, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, 37380 Nouzilly, France; and ¶Department of Pathology, National Veterinary Institute, 0033 Oslo, Norway


***Edited by Stanley B. Prusiner, University of California, San Francisco, CA (received for review March 21, 2005)


Abstract Scrapie in small ruminants belongs to transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs), or prion diseases, a family of fatal neurodegenerative disorders that affect humans and animals and can transmit within and between species by ingestion or inoculation. Conversion of the host-encoded prion protein (PrP), normal cellular PrP (PrPc), into a misfolded form, abnormal PrP (PrPSc), plays a key role in TSE transmission and pathogenesis. The intensified surveillance of scrapie in the European Union, together with the improvement of PrPSc detection techniques, has led to the discovery of a growing number of so-called atypical scrapie cases. These include clinical Nor98 cases first identified in Norwegian sheep on the basis of unusual pathological and PrPSc molecular features and "cases" that produced discordant responses in the rapid tests currently applied to the large-scale random screening of slaughtered or fallen animals. Worryingly, a substantial proportion of such cases involved sheep with PrP genotypes known until now to confer natural resistance to conventional scrapie. Here we report that both Nor98 and discordant cases, including three sheep homozygous for the resistant PrPARR allele (A136R154R171), efficiently transmitted the disease to transgenic mice expressing ovine PrP, and that they shared unique biological and biochemical features upon propagation in mice. *** These observations support the view that a truly infectious TSE agent, unrecognized until recently, infects sheep and goat flocks and may have important implications in terms of scrapie control and public health.



Monday, December 1, 2008


When Atypical Scrapie cross species barriers




Andreoletti O., Herva M. H., Cassard H., Espinosa J. C., Lacroux C., Simon S., Padilla D., Benestad S. L., Lantier F., Schelcher F., Grassi J., Torres, J. M., UMR INRA ENVT 1225, Ecole Nationale Veterinaire de Toulouse.France; ICISA-INlA, Madrid, Spain; CEA, IBiTec-5, DSV, CEA/Saclay, Gif sur Yvette cedex, France; National Veterinary Institute, Postboks 750 Sentrum, 0106 Oslo, Norway, INRA IASP, Centre INRA de Tours, 3738O Nouzilly, France.




Atypical scrapie is a TSE occurring in small ruminants and harbouring peculiar clinical, epidemiological and biochemical properties. Currently this form of disease is identified in a large number of countries. In this study we report the transmission of an atypical scrapie isolate through different species barriers as modeled by transgenic mice (Tg) expressing different species PRP sequence.


The donor isolate was collected in 1995 in a French commercial sheep flock. inoculation into AHQ/AHQ sheep induced a disease which had all neuro-pathological and biochemical characteristics of atypical scrapie. Transmitted into Transgenic mice expressing either ovine or PrPc, the isolate retained all the described characteristics of atypical scrapie.


Surprisingly the TSE agent characteristics were dramatically different v/hen passaged into Tg bovine mice. The recovered TSE agent had biological and biochemical characteristics similar to those of atypical BSE L in the same mouse model. Moreover, whereas no other TSE agent than BSE were shown to transmit into Tg porcine mice, atypical scrapie was able to develop into this model, albeit with low attack rate on first passage.


Furthermore, after adaptation in the porcine mouse model this prion showed similar biological and biochemical characteristics than BSE adapted to this porcine mouse model. Altogether these data indicate.


(i) the unsuspected potential abilities of atypical scrapie to cross species barriers


(ii) the possible capacity of this agent to acquire new characteristics when crossing species barrier


These findings raise some interrogation on the concept of TSE strain and on the origin of the diversity of the TSE agents and could have consequences on field TSE control measures.



Friday, February 11, 2011


Atypical/Nor98 Scrapie Infectivity in Sheep Peripheral Tissues



Saturday, August 14, 2010


BSE Case Associated with Prion Protein Gene Mutation (g-h-BSEalabama) and VPSPr PRIONPATHY


(see mad cow feed in COMMERCE IN ALABAMA...TSS)



why do we not want to do TSE transmission studies on chimpanzees $


5. A positive result from a chimpanzee challenged severly would likely create alarm in some circles even if the result could not be interpreted for man. I have a view that all these agents could be transmitted provided a large enough dose by appropriate routes was given and the animals kept long enough. Until the mechanisms of the species barrier are more clearly understood it might be best to retain that hypothesis.







1: J Infect Dis 1980 Aug;142(2):205-8


Oral transmission of kuru, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and scrapie to nonhuman primates.


Gibbs CJ Jr, Amyx HL, Bacote A, Masters CL, Gajdusek DC.


Kuru and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease of humans and scrapie disease of sheep and goats were transmitted to squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus) that were exposed to the infectious agents only by their nonforced consumption of known infectious tissues. The asymptomatic incubation period in the one monkey exposed to the virus of kuru was 36 months; that in the two monkeys exposed to the virus of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease was 23 and 27 months, respectively; and that in the two monkeys exposed to the virus of scrapie was 25 and 32 months, respectively. Careful physical examination of the buccal cavities of all of the monkeys failed to reveal signs or oral lesions. One additional monkey similarly exposed to kuru has remained asymptomatic during the 39 months that it has been under observation.




The successful transmission of kuru, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and scrapie by natural feeding to squirrel monkeys that we have reported provides further grounds for concern that scrapie-infected meat may occasionally give rise in humans to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.


PMID: 6997404



Recently the question has again been brought up as to whether scrapie is transmissible to man. This has followed reports that the disease has been transmitted to primates. One particularly lurid speculation (Gajdusek 1977) conjectures that the agents of scrapie, kuru, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and transmissible encephalopathy of mink are varieties of a single "virus". The U.S. Department of Agriculture concluded that it could "no longer justify or permit scrapie-blood line and scrapie-exposed sheep and goats to be processed for human or animal food at slaughter or rendering plants" (ARC 84/77)" The problem is emphasised by the finding that some strains of scrapie produce lesions identical to the once which characterise the human dementias"


Whether true or not. the hypothesis that these agents might be transmissible to man raises two considerations. First, the safety of laboratory personnel requires prompt attention. Second, action such as the "scorched meat" policy of USDA makes the solution of the acrapie problem urgent if the sheep industry is not to suffer grievously.







Nature. 1972 Mar 10;236(5341):73-4.


Transmission of scrapie to the cynomolgus monkey (Macaca fascicularis).


Gibbs CJ Jr, Gajdusek DC.


Nature 236, 73 - 74 (10 March 1972); doi:10.1038/236073a0


Transmission of Scrapie to the Cynomolgus Monkey (Macaca fascicularis)




National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland


SCRAPIE has been transmitted to the cynomolgus, or crab-eating, monkey (Macaca fascicularis) with an incubation period of more than 5 yr from the time of intracerebral inoculation of scrapie-infected mouse brain. The animal developed a chronic central nervous system degeneration, with ataxia, tremor and myoclonus with associated severe scrapie-like pathology of intensive astroglial hypertrophy and proliferation, neuronal vacuolation and status spongiosus of grey matter. The strain of scrapie virus used was the eighth passage in Swiss mice (NIH) of a Compton strain of scrapie obtained as ninth intracerebral passage of the agent in goat brain, from Dr R. L. Chandler (ARC, Compton, Berkshire).




Suspect symptoms


What if you can catch old-fashioned CJD by eating meat from a sheep infected with scrapie?


28 Mar 01


Like lambs to the slaughter 31 March 2001 by Debora MacKenzie Magazine issue 2284. Subscribe and get 4 free issues. FOUR years ago, Terry Singeltary watched his mother die horribly from a degenerative brain disease. Doctors told him it was Alzheimer's, but Singeltary was suspicious. The diagnosis didn't fit her violent symptoms, and he demanded an autopsy. It showed she had died of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.


Most doctors believe that sCJD is caused by a prion protein deforming by chance into a killer. But Singeltary thinks otherwise. He is one of a number of campaigners who say that some sCJD, like the variant CJD related to BSE, is caused by eating meat from infected animals. Their suspicions have focused on sheep carrying scrapie, a BSE-like disease that is widespread in flocks across Europe and North America.


Now scientists in France have stumbled across new evidence that adds weight to the campaigners' fears. To their complete surprise, the researchers found that one strain of scrapie causes the same brain damage in mice as sCJD.


"This means we cannot rule out that at least some sCJD may be caused by some strains of scrapie," says team member Jean-Philippe Deslys of the French Atomic Energy Commission's medical research laboratory in Fontenay-aux-Roses, south-west of Paris. Hans Kretschmar of the University of Göttingen, who coordinates CJD surveillance in Germany, is so concerned by the findings that he now wants to trawl back through past sCJD cases to see if any might have been caused by eating infected mutton or lamb.


Scrapie has been around for centuries and until now there has been no evidence that it poses a risk to human health. But if the French finding means that scrapie can cause sCJD in people, countries around the world may have overlooked a CJD crisis to rival that caused by BSE.


Deslys and colleagues were originally studying vCJD, not sCJD. They injected the brains of macaque monkeys with brain from BSE cattle, and from French and British vCJD patients. The brain damage and clinical symptoms in the monkeys were the same for all three. Mice injected with the original sets of brain tissue or with infected monkey brain also developed the same symptoms.


As a control experiment, the team also injected mice with brain tissue from people and animals with other prion diseases: a French case of sCJD; a French patient who caught sCJD from human-derived growth hormone; sheep with a French strain of scrapie; and mice carrying a prion derived from an American scrapie strain. As expected, they all affected the brain in a different way from BSE and vCJD. But while the American strain of scrapie caused different damage from sCJD, the French strain produced exactly the same pathology.


"The main evidence that scrapie does not affect humans has been epidemiology," says Moira Bruce of the neuropathogenesis unit of the Institute for Animal Health in Edinburgh, who was a member of the same team as Deslys. "You see about the same incidence of the disease everywhere, whether or not there are many sheep, and in countries such as New Zealand with no scrapie." In the only previous comparisons of sCJD and scrapie in mice, Bruce found they were dissimilar.


But there are more than 20 strains of scrapie, and six of sCJD. "You would not necessarily see a relationship between the two with epidemiology if only some strains affect only some people," says Deslys. Bruce is cautious about the mouse results, but agrees they require further investigation. Other trials of scrapie and sCJD in mice, she says, are in progress.


People can have three different genetic variations of the human prion protein, and each type of protein can fold up two different ways. Kretschmar has found that these six combinations correspond to six clinical types of sCJD: each type of normal prion produces a particular pathology when it spontaneously deforms to produce sCJD.


But if these proteins deform because of infection with a disease-causing prion, the relationship between pathology and prion type should be different, as it is in vCJD. "If we look at brain samples from sporadic CJD cases and find some that do not fit the pattern," says Kretschmar, "that could mean they were caused by infection."


There are 250 deaths per year from sCJD in the US, and a similar incidence elsewhere. Singeltary and other US activists think that some of these people died after eating contaminated meat or "nutritional" pills containing dried animal brain. Governments will have a hard time facing activists like Singeltary if it turns out that some sCJD isn't as spontaneous as doctors have insisted.


Deslys's work on macaques also provides further proof that the human disease vCJD is caused by BSE. And the experiments showed that vCJD is much more virulent to primates than BSE, even when injected into the bloodstream rather than the brain. This, says Deslys, means that there is an even bigger risk than we thought that vCJD can be passed from one patient to another through contaminated blood transfusions and surgical instruments.



Sunday, December 12, 2010


EFSA reviews BSE/TSE infectivity in small ruminant tissues News Story 2 December 2010



Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Selection of Distinct Strain Phenotypes in Mice Infected by Ovine Natural Scrapie Isolates Similar to CH1641 Experimental Scrapie


Journal of Neuropathology & Experimental Neurology: February 2012 - Volume 71 - Issue 2 - p 140–147



Thursday, July 14, 2011


Histopathological Studies of "CH1641-Like" Scrapie Sources Versus Classical Scrapie and BSE Transmitted to Ovine Transgenic Mice (TgOvPrP4)



Wednesday, January 18, 2012




February 1, 2012



Thursday, December 23, 2010


Molecular Typing of Protease-Resistant Prion Protein in Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies of Small Ruminants, France, 2002-2009


Volume 17, Number 1 January 2011



Thursday, November 18, 2010


Increased susceptibility of human-PrP transgenic mice to bovine spongiform encephalopathy following passage in sheep



Monday, December 14, 2009


Similarities between Forms of Sheep Scrapie and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Are Encoded by Distinct Prion Types


(hmmm, this is getting interesting now...TSS)


Sporadic CJD type 1 and atypical/ Nor98 scrapie are characterized by fine (reticular) deposits,


see also ;


All of the Heidenhain variants were of the methionine/ methionine type 1 molecular subtype.



see full text ;


Monday, December 14, 2009


Similarities between Forms of Sheep Scrapie and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Are Encoded by Distinct Prion Types



Thursday, July 21, 2011


A Second Case of Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker Disease Linked to the G131V Mutation in the Prion Protein Gene in a Dutch Patient Journal of Neuropathology & Experimental Neurology:


August 2011 - Volume 70 - Issue 8 - pp 698-702



Monday, April 25, 2011


Experimental Oral Transmission of Atypical Scrapie to Sheep


Volume 17, Number 5-May 2011



Sunday, April 18, 2010





Thursday, November 18, 2010


Increased susceptibility of human-PrP transgenic mice to bovine spongiform encephalopathy following passage in sheep



Wednesday, January 19, 2011


EFSA and ECDC review scientific evidence on possible links between TSEs in animals and humans Webnachricht 19 Januar 2011



Monday, June 27, 2011


Comparison of Sheep Nor98 with Human Variably Protease-Sensitive Prionopathy and Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker Disease



Thursday, November 18, 2010


Increased susceptibility of human-PrP transgenic mice to bovine spongiform encephalopathy following passage in sheep



Wednesday, November 13, 2013


Atypical Scrapie Prions from Sheep and Lack of Disease in Transgenic Mice Overexpressing Human Prion Protein









Conclusions. To our knowledge, this is the first established experimental model of CWD in TgSB3985. We found evidence for co-existence or divergence of two CWD strains adapted to Tga20 mice and their replication in TgSB3985 mice. Finally, we observed phenotypic differences between cervid-derived CWD and CWD/Tg20 strains upon propagation in TgSB3985 mice. Further studies are underway to characterize these strains.


We conclude that TSE infectivity is likely to survive burial for long time periods with minimal loss of infectivity and limited movement from the original burial site. However PMCA results have shown that there is the potential for rainwater to elute TSE related material from soil which could lead to the contamination of a wider area. These experiments reinforce the importance of risk assessment when disposing of TSE risk materials.


The results show that even highly diluted PrPSc can bind efficiently to polypropylene, stainless steel, glass, wood and stone and propagate the conversion of normal prion protein. For in vivo experiments, hamsters were ic injected with implants incubated in 1% 263K-infected brain homogenate. Hamsters, inoculated with 263K-contaminated implants of all groups, developed typical signs of prion disease, whereas control animals inoculated with non-contaminated materials did not.


Our data establish that meadow voles are permissive to CWD via peripheral exposure route, suggesting they could serve as an environmental reservoir for CWD. Additionally, our data are consistent with the hypothesis that at least two strains of CWD circulate in naturally-infected cervid populations and provide evidence that meadow voles are a useful tool for CWD strain typing.


Conclusion. CWD prions are shed in saliva and urine of infected deer as early as 3 months post infection and throughout the subsequent >1.5 year course of infection. In current work we are examining the relationship of prionemia to excretion and the impact of excreted prion binding to surfaces and particulates in the environment.


Conclusion. CWD prions (as inferred by prion seeding activity by RT-QuIC) are shed in urine of infected deer as early as 6 months post inoculation and throughout the subsequent disease course. Further studies are in progress refining the real-time urinary prion assay sensitivity and we are examining more closely the excretion time frame, magnitude, and sample variables in relationship to inoculation route and prionemia in naturally and experimentally CWD-infected cervids.


Conclusions. Our results suggested that the odds of infection for CWD is likely controlled by areas that congregate deer thus increasing direct transmission (deer-to-deer interactions) or indirect transmission (deer-to-environment) by sharing or depositing infectious prion proteins in these preferred habitats. Epidemiology of CWD in the eastern U.S. is likely controlled by separate factors than found in the Midwestern and endemic areas for CWD and can assist in performing more efficient surveillance efforts for the region.


Conclusions. During the pre-symptomatic stage of CWD infection and throughout the course of disease deer may be shedding multiple LD50 doses per day in their saliva. CWD prion shedding through saliva and excreta may account for the unprecedented spread of this prion disease in nature.


see full text and more ;


Monday, June 23, 2014





Thursday, July 03, 2014


*** How Chronic Wasting Disease is affecting deer population and what’s the risk to humans and pets?



Tuesday, July 01, 2014





Sunday, July 13, 2014


Louisiana deer mystery unleashes litigation 6 does still missing from CWD index herd in Pennsylvania Great Escape



Monday, July 28, 2014


*** Mitigating the Risk of Transmission and Environmental Contamination of Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies 2013 Annual Report




Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy TSE Prion Disease North America 2014


Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy TSE Prion Disease have now been discovered in a wide verity of species across North America. typical C-BSE, atypical L-type BASE BSE, atypical H-type BSE, atypical H-G BSE, of the bovine, typical and atypical Scrapie strains, in sheep and goats, with atypical Nor-98 Scrapie spreading coast to coast in about 5 years. Chronic Wasting Disease CWD in cervid is slowly spreading without any stopping it in Canada and the USA and now has mutated into many different strains. Transmissible Mink Encephalopathy TME outbreaks. These Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy TSE Prion Disease have been silently mutating and spreading in different species in North America for decades.


The USDA, FDA, et al have assured us of a robust Triple BSE TSE prion Firewall, of which we now know without a doubt, that it was nothing but ink on paper. Since the 1997 mad cow feed ban in the USA, literally tons and tons of banned mad cow feed has been put out into commerce, never to return, as late as December of 2013, serious, serious breaches in the FDA mad cow feed ban have been documented. The 2004 enhanced BSE surveillance program was so flawed, that one of the top TSE prion Scientist for the CDC, Dr. Paul Brown stated ; Brown, who is preparing a scientific paper based on the latest two mad cow cases to estimate the maximum number of infected cows that occurred in the United States, said he has "absolutely no confidence in USDA tests before one year ago" because of the agency's reluctance to retest the Texas cow that initially tested positive. see ;


The BSE surveillance and testing have also been proven to be flawed, and the GAO and OIG have both raised serious question as to just how flawed it has been (see GAO and OIG reports). North America has more documented TSE prion disease, in different documented species (excluding the Zoo BSE animals in the EU), then any other place on the Globe. This does not include the very likelihood that TSE prion disease in the domestic feline and canine have been exposed to high doses of the TSE prion disease vid pet food. To date, it’s still legal to include deer from cwd zone into pet food or deer food. Specified Risk Material i.e. SRM bans still being breach, as recently as just last month.


nvCJD or what they now call vCJD, another case documented in Texas last month, with very little information being released to the public on about this case? with still the same line of thought from federal officials, ‘it can’t happen here’, so another vCJD blamed on travel of a foreign animal disease from another country, while ignoring all the BSE TSE Prion risk factors we have here in the USA and Canada, and the time that this victim and others, do spend in the USA, and exposed to these risk factors, apparently do not count in any way with regard to risk factor. a flawed process of risk assessment.


sporadic CJD, along with new TSE prion disease in humans, of which the young are dying, of which long duration of illness from onset of symptoms to death have been documented, only to have a new name added to the pot of prion disease i.e. sporadic GSS, sporadic FFI, and or VPSPR. I only ponder how a familial type disease could be sporadic with no genetic link to any family member? when the USA is the only documented Country in the world to have documented two different cases of atypical H-type BSE, with one case being called atypical H-G BSE with the G meaning Genetic, with new science now showing that indeed atypical H-type BSE is very possible transmitted to cattle via oral transmission (Prion2014). sporadic CJD and VPSPR have been rising in Canada, USA, and the UK, with the same old excuse, better surveillance. You can only use that excuse for so many years, for so many decades, until one must conclude that CJD TSE prion cases are rising. a 48% incease in CJD in Canada is not just a blip or a reason of better surveillance, it is a mathematical rise in numbers. More and more we are seeing more humans exposed in various circumstance in the Hospital, Medical, Surgical arenas to the TSE Prion disease, and at the same time in North America, more and more humans are becoming exposed to the TSE prion disease via consumption of the TSE prion via deer and elk, cattle, sheep and goats, and for those that are exposed via or consumption, go on to further expose many others via the iatrogenic modes of transmission of the TSE prion disease i.e. friendly fire. I pondered this mode of transmission via the victims of sporadic FFI, sporadic GSS, could this be a iatrogenic event from someone sub-clinical with sFFI or sGSS ? what if?


Two decades have passed since Dr. Ironside first confirmed his first ten nvCJD victims in 1995. Ten years later, 2005, we had Dr. Gambetti and his first ten i.e. VPSPR in younger victims. now we know that indeed VPSPR is transmissible. yet all these TSE prion disease and victims in the USA and Canada are being pawned off as a spontaneous event, yet science has shown, the spontaneous theory has never been proven in any natural case of TSE prion disease, and scientist have warned, that they have now linked some sporadic CJD cases to atypical BSE, to atypical Scrapie, and to CWD, yet we don’t here about this in the public domain. We must make all human and animal TSE prion disease reportable in every age group, in ever state and internationally, we must have a serious re-evaluation and testing of the USA cattle herds, and we must ban interstate movement of all cervids. Any voluntary effort to do any of this will fail. Folks, we have let the industry run science far too long with regards to the TSE prion disease. While the industry and their lobbyist continues to funnel junk science to our decision policy makers, Rome burns. ...end





Sunday, June 29, 2014


Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy TSE Prion Disease North America 2014






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