Molecular mechanism and therapeutic implications of prion disease strain types in sporadic Creutzfeldt Jakob Disease. [ 2007 - 2009 ]

Also known as: Understanding human prion diseases.

Research Grant

[Cite as]

Researchers: A/Pr Victoria Lawson (Principal investigator) ,  Prof Steven Collins

Brief description The prion diseases are a group of transmissible, neurodegenerative disorders affecting both humans and animals. The most common form in humans is sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), although acquired (variant CJD) and inherited (familial CJD) forms also exist. Prion diseases are transmissible by inoculation with, or dietary exposure to, infected tissues. The infectious agent, referred to as a prion , has not been conclusively identified. However, a major component of purified prions is an abnormal disease associated form of the host prion protein. Differences in the duration of illness and pathology of sporadic CJD suggests that the disease may be caused by different prion strains. The existence of different prion strains may explain the limited clinical success of anti-prion therapeutics modeled in rodent models of prion diseases. In this study a cell-free model of prion propagation will be used to investigate the basis of human prion strains. This assay will also be used to identify and determine whether the therapeutic efficacy of anti-prion compounds is influenced by human prion strain type. This study will represent the first host species and prion strain specific screen of anti-prion therapeutics aimed at developing the best possible model for the identification and development of therapeutics for human prion diseases.

Funding Amount $AUD 345,634.61

Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants

Notes Standard Project Grant

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