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Development of a Multi-marker Live Animal Diagnostic Specific to TSE Disease in Blood Plasma

Institutions
Institute for Animal Health
Start date
2007
End date
2010
Objective
Rather than look for single markers, the research will use an established proteomic technology, based on protein expression difference mapping (which has been successful in the diagnosis of other diseases), to establish a panel of protein markers in blood plasma for use as a pre-clinical TSE diagnostic test.

To establish a panel of protein markers for TSEs in sheep, a series of blood samples will be taken from donor sheep at several time points throughout the course of disease. Biomarkers will be established initially in the terminal animals infected with a TSE and then in a time course series. A panel of markers will be constructed taking into consideration markers present at the terminal stage and markers which appear at earlier time points thus providing a robust panel which will be used to build a mathematical classification model algorithm. Markers will be tested and validated in a blind study to assess their sensitivity and specificity.

More information
Background:
The development of TSE diagnostic tests to date has been focused on the detection of PrPSc as the only established marker of infection. Whilst this single marker approach has been adequate for surveillance testing purposes in post mortem brain tissue, PrPSc may not deliver the specificity and sensitivity required for a blood based pre-clinical assay.

Find more about this project and other FSA food safety-related projects at the Food Standards Agency Research webpage.

Funding Source
Food Standards Agency
Project number
M03062
Categories
Viruses and Prions
Bacterial Pathogens
Commodities
Meat, Poultry, Game