Transcriptome analysis of CNS immediately before and after the detection of PrPSc in SSBP/1 sheep scrapie

Anton G. Gossner, John Hopkins*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Sheep scrapie is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE), progressive and fatal neurodegenerative diseases of the central nervous system (CNS) linked to the accumulation of misfolded prion protein, PrPSc. New Zealand Cheviot sheep, homozygous for the VRQ genotype of the PRNP gene are most susceptible with an incubation period of 193 days with SSBP/1 scrapie. However, the earliest time point that PrPSc can be detected in the CNS is 125 days (D125). The aim of this study was to quantify changes to the transcriptome of the thalamus and obex (medulla) at times immediately before (D75) and after (D125) PrPSc was detected. Affymetrix gene arrays were used to quantify gene expression in the thalamus and Illumina DGE-tag profiling for obex. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis was used to help describe the biological processes of scrapie pathology.

Neurological disease and Cancer were common Bio Functions in each tissue at D75; inflammation and cell death were major processes at D125. Several neurological receptors were significantly increased at D75 (e.g. CHRNA6, GRM1, HCN2), which might be clues to the molecular basis of psychiatric changes associated with TSEs. No genes were significantly differentially expressed at both D75 and D125 and there was no progression of events from earlier to later time points. This implies that there is no simple linear progression of pathological or molecular events. There seems to be a step-change between D75 and D125, correlating with the detection of PrPSc, resulting in the involvement of different pathological processes in later TSE disease.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-207
JournalVeterinary Microbiology
Issue number3-4
Early online date14 Aug 2014
Publication statusPublished - 29 Aug 2014

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • CNS+
  • Gene expression
  • Medulla
  • Prion
  • Scrapie
  • Thalamus


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