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Work with experimental scrapie in sheep has been performed on-site for many years including studies on PrPSc dissemination and histopathology of organs and tissues both at preclinical and clinical stages. In this work serum was sampled at regular intervals from lambs which were infected immediately after birth and from parallel healthy controls, and examined for acute phase proteins. In contrast to earlier experiments, which extensively studied PrPSc dissemination and histopathology in peripheral tissues and brain, this experiment is focusing on examination of serum for non-PrPSc markers that discriminates the two groups, and give insight into other on-going processes detectable in serum samples.
There was clear evidence of an acute phase response in sheep with clinical scrapie, both experimental and natural. All the three proteins, ceruloplasmin, haptoglobin and serum amyloid A, were increased at the clinical stage of scrapie.
There was evidence of a systemic measurable acute phase response at the clinical terminal end-stage of classical scrapie.