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Prion. 2011 Jul-Sep;5(3):150-3. doi: 10.4161/pri.5.3.16893. Epub 2011 Jul 1.

Real-time quaking-induced conversion: a highly sensitive assay for prion detection.

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Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Nagasaki University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Nagasaki, Japan.


We recently developed a new in vitro amplification technology, designated "real-time quaking-induced conversion (RT-QUIC)", for detection of the abnormal form of prion protein (PrPSc) in easily accessible specimens such as cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). After assessment of more than 200 CSF specimens from Japanese and Australian patients, we found no instance of a false positive, and more than 80% accuracy for the correct diagnosis of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (sCJD). Furthermore, the RT-QUIC can be applied to other prion diseases, including scrapie, chronic wasting disease (CWD), and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), and is able to quantify prion seeding activity when combined with an end-point dilution of samples. These results indicate that the RT-QUIC, with its high sensitivity and specificity, will be of great use as an early, rapid and specific assay for prion diseases.

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