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Curr Opin Microbiol. 1998 Aug;1(4):442-7.

Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies: transmission, mechanism of disease, and persistence.

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  • 1Institute for Animal Health Biotechnology and Biological Sciences, Neuropathogenesis Unit, Ogston Building, West Mains Road, Edinburgh EH93JF, UK. Jim.Foster@bbsrc.ac.uk


Prion protein is central to the control of development of all transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. Controversy exists as to whether the protein itself is responsible for disease manifestation, in one of perhaps several isoforms, or whether an additional informational molecule must be involved in conjunction with the protein. Recent studies have been trying to resolve these issues.

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