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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: TRANSMISSION, DIFFERENTIATION, AND PATHOBIOLOGY OF TRANSMISSIBLE SPONGIFORM ENCEPHALOPATHIES Project Number: 3625-32000-086-00
Project Type: Appropriated

Start Date: Jan 05, 2007
End Date: Sep 30, 2011

Objective:
Obj. 1. Assess the cross species transmissibility of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) in livestock and wildlife. Obj. 2. Investigate the pathobiology of TSEs in natural and secondary hosts. Obj. 3. Investigate pathogenesis and ante mortem detection of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). Obj. 4. Develop a method to detect central nervous system (CNS) tissue contamination on carcasses. Obj. 5. Discover effective methods to inactivate TSE agents in agricultural settings.

Approach:
Studies are focused on the four animal Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy (TSE) agents found in the United States: bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE); scrapie of sheep and goats; chronic wasting disease (CWD) of deer, elk, and moose; and transmissible mink encephalopathy (TME). These agents will be tested for cross-species transmissibility into various livestock and cervid species using both oral and intracerebral inoculation. Sites of accumulation, routes of infection, methods of isolate differentiation, and in the case of BSE, genetics of susceptibility and ante-mortem diagnostics, will be investigated. Existing technology developed at the National Animal Disease Center and those used in the meat packing industry for the detection of fecal contamination on carcasses will be adapted to detect CNS tissue contamination on carcasses. Methods of TSE inactivation will be evaluated for efficacy in agricultural settings. BSL-2; Recertified 11/17/10 #0275. BSL-Exempt; Cancelled 10/08/09 #0286. BSL-2; Recertified 7/16/10 #0301. BSL-2; Cancelled 8/10/10 #0302. BSL-2; Recertified 10/17/10 #0315. BSL-2; Certified 9/22/10 #0321. BSL-2; Certified 9/22/10 #0323.

Last Modified: 7/25/2014
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