The effect of dry heat on the ME7 strain of mouse-passaged scrapie agent

D M Taylor, Irene McConnell, Karen Fernie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Partial survival of lyophilized scrapie agent has been reported previously following exposure to dry heat at 360 degrees C for 1 h, and led to speculation that scrapie-like agents might not be completely inactivated by incineration. However, it is known that dried infectivity is more difficult to inactivate by heat than that in hydrated samples. In this present study it was shown that the infectivity in macerates of mouse-brain infected with the ME7 strain of scrapie agent was not completely inactivated by exposure to dry heat at temperatures up to 180 degrees C for 1 h but the titre of surviving infectivity reduced progressively as the temperature was increased. No infectivity was recovered after a 1 h exposure at 200 degrees C. These data suggest that scrapie-like agents are unlikely to survive incineration.
Original languageEnglish
Article number12
Pages (from-to)3161-4
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of General Virology
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1996


  • Animals
  • Heating
  • Mice
  • PrPSc Proteins/isolation & purification
  • PrPSc Proteins/pathogenicity
  • Scrapie/etiology
  • Scrapie/pathology
  • Time Factors


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