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1.  H-Type Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy 
Prion  2007;1(1):61-68.
We previously reported that some cattle affected by bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) showed distinct molecular features of the protease-resistant prion protein (PrPres) in Western blot, with a 1–2 kDa higher apparent molecular mass of the unglycosylated PrPres associated with labelling by antibodies against the 86–107 region of the bovine PrP protein (H-type BSE). By Western blot analyses of PrPres, we now showed that the essential features initially described in cattle were observed with a panel of different antibodies and were maintained after transmission of the disease in C57Bl/6 mice. In addition, antibodies against the C-terminal region of PrP revealed a second, more C-terminally cleaved, form of PrPres (PrPres #2), which, in unglycosylated form, migrated as a ≈ 14 kDa fragment. Furthermore, a PrPres fragment of ≈7 kDa, which was not labelled by C-terminus-specific antibodies and was thus presumed to be a product of cleavage at both N- and C-terminal sides of PrP protein, was also detected. Both PrPres #2 and ≈7 kDa PrPres were detected in cattle and in C57Bl/6 infected mice. These complex molecular features are reminiscent of findings reported in human prion diseases. This raises questions regarding the respective origins and pathogenic mechanisms in prion diseases of animals and humans.
PMCID: PMC2633710  PMID: 19164888
prion; BSE; Creutzfeldt-Jakob; Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker; Western blot; amyloid
2.  Is the presence of abnormal prion protein in the renal glomeruli of feline species presenting with FSE authentic? 
In a recent paper written by Hilbe et al (BMC vet res, 2009), the nature and specificity of the prion protein deposition in the kidney of feline species affected with feline spongiform encephalopathy (FSE) were clearly considered doubtful. This article was brought to our attention because we published several years ago an immunodetection of abnormal prion protein in the kidney of a cheetah affected with FSE. At this time we were convinced of its specificity but without having all the possibilities to demonstrate it. As previously published by another group, the presence of abnormal prion protein in some renal glomeruli in domestic cats affected with FSE is indeed generally considered as doubtful mainly because of low intensity detected in this organ and because control kidneys from safe animals present also a weak prion immunolabelling. Here we come back on these studies and thought it would be helpful to relay our last data to the readers of BMC Vet res for future reference on this subject.
Here we come back on our material as it is possible to study and demonstrate the specificity of prion immunodetection using the PET-Blot method (Paraffin Embedded Tissue - Blot). It is admitted that this method allows detecting the Proteinase K (PK) resistant form of the abnormal prion protein (PrPres) without any confusion with unspecific immunoreaction. We re-analysed the kidney tissue versus adrenal gland and brain samples from the same cheetah affected with TSE using this PET-Blot method. The PET-Blot analysis revealed specific PrPres detection within the brain, adrenal gland and some glomeruli of the kidney, with a complete identicalness compared to our previous detection using immunohistochemistry. In conclusion, these new data enable us to confirm with assurance the presence of specific abnormal prion protein in the adrenal gland and in the kidney of the cheetah affected with FSE. It also emphasizes the usefulness for the re-examination of any available tissue blocks with the PET-Blot method as a sensitive complementary tool in case of doubtful PrP IHC results.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-41
PMCID: PMC2923130  PMID: 20684771

Results 1-2 (2)