Florid plaques in ovine PrP transgenic mice infected with an experimental ovine BSE

Carole Crozet, Anna Bencsik, Frédéric Flamant, Stéphane Lezmi, Jacques Samarut, Thierry Baron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The occurrence of the variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), related to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), raises the important question of the sources of human contamination. The possibility that sheep may have been fed with BSE-contaminated foodstuff raises the serious concern that BSE may now be present in sheep without being distinguishable from scrapie. Sensitive models are urgently needed given the dramatic consequences of such a possible contamination on animal and human health. We inoculated transgenic mice expressing the ovine PrP gene with a brain homogenate from sheep experimentally infected with BSE. We found numerous typical florid plaques in their brains. Such florid plaques are a feature of vCJD in humans and experimental BSE infection in macaques. Our observation represents the first description, after a primary infection, of this hallmark in a transgenic mouse model. Moreover, these mice appear to be a promising tool in the search for BSE in sheep.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)952-956
Number of pages5
JournalEMBO Reports
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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