Pre-Clinical Changes Observed by Magnetic Resonance Imaging in a Hamster Model of Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy: a Potential Biomarker of Prion Infection
2Viral Diseases Division, National Microbiology Laboratory, Public Health Agency of Canada, Canadian Science Centre for Human and Animal Health, 1015 Arlington St., Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3E 3R2, Canada
- *Corresponding Author:
- Tim F Booth
National Microbiology LaboratoryWinnipeg, Manitoba Canada
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: October 12, 2011; Accepted Date: November 15, 2011; Published Date: November 21, 2011
Citation: Baydack RS, McKenzie EJ, Robertson C, Booth SA, Jackson M, et al. (2011) Pre-Clinical Changes Observed by Magnetic Resonance Imaging in a Hamster Model of Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy: a Potential Biomarker of Prion Infection. J Mol Biomark Diagn 2:120. doi:10.4172/2155-9929.1000120
Copyright: © 2011 Baydack RS, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
The objective of the study was to develop a model for the diagnosis of prion diseases in live animals, using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Hamsters experimentally infected with the 263K strain of scrapie were imaged periodically during the course of prion infection. Changes in the brain, particularly the hippocampus, were observed during the first quarter of the incubation period. These changes included an increase in T2 relaxation time and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC), indicative of an increase in the water content of tissues. These changes were apparent well before the appearance of clinical symptoms, and did not correlate with the typical histological changes characteristic of prion disease, (vacuolation, accumulation of PrP protein, gliosis) suggesting that the changes are caused by a progressive accumulation of fluid. This oedema may be a novel early marker of prion disease, and could play a role in pathogenesis.