Intracerebral distribution of the abnormal isoform of the prion protein in sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and fatal insomnia

Piero Parchi, Sabina Capellari, Pierluigi Gambetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Molecular genetics and protein chemistry have led to major advances in our understanding of the molecular basis of phenotypic variability of prion diseases. A large body of evidence indicates that a common methionine/valine polymorphism at codon 129 in the prion protein gene (PRNP), alone or in conjunction with PRNP mutations, modulates both disease susceptibility and phenotypic expression of human prion diseases. In addition, there are physico-chemical properties of the abnormal isoform of the prion protein (PrP(SC)), such as relative molecular mass and glycosylation, that correlate with distinct phenotypes even in subjects carrying the same PRNP genotype. Different PrP(SC) 'type'-PRNP genotype combinations are found associated with pathological phenotypes that differ in the relative severity of lesions among distinct brain regions, the presence and morphology of certain lesions such as amyloid plaques, and the pattern of intracerebral and tissue deposition of PrP(SC). This review summarizes the currently available data on the molecular pathology of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, the most common human prion disease, and fatal insomnia, a more recently defined entity that has rapidly become one of the best characterized of the human prion diseases. (C) 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16-25
Number of pages10
JournalMicroscopy Research and Technique
Volume50
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2000

Keywords

  • Brain mapping
  • Dementia
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Prion protein gene
  • Prion strains

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Anatomy
  • Instrumentation

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