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Lab Reports
October 2, 2013

Researchers Trigger Prion Formation in Mouse Models of Disease

JAMA. 2013;310(13):1331. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.279213

Two cell lines from mice with 2 different types of spongiform encephalitis—with each expressing the same prion protein with a single amino acid difference—spontaneously created prions that could be transmitted among mice to induce human-like symptoms of their respective diseases, report researchers from institutions in Cambridge and Worcester, Massachusetts (Jackson WS et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013;110[36]:14759-14764). A third, normal cell line that differed at the same amino acid did not create transmissible prions.