Article Text

Inconsistent detection of PrP in extraneural tissues of cats with feline spongiform encephalopathy
  1. S. J. Ryder, MA, VetMB, CertVR, PhD, MRCVS1,
  2. G. A. H. Wells, BVetMed, FRCPath, DipECVS, MRCVS1,
  3. J. M. Bradshaw, BSc, BVSc MRCPath, MRCVS2 and
  4. G. R. Pearson, BVM&S, PhD, FRCPath, MRCVS2
  1. 1 Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Woodham Lane, New Haw, Addlestone, Surrey KT15 3NB
  2. 2 School of Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, Langford House, Bristol BS40 5DU


Feline spongiform encephalopathy (FSE), a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy or prion disease of cats, first reported in Great Britain in 1990, is believed to result from the consumption of food contaminated by the agent of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). The accumulation of PrP in non-neural tissues of cats diagnosed as suffering from FSE was investigated by immunohistochemistry. In the majority of the cats no disease-specific PrP was detected in lymphoid tissues. Small amounts of PrP were detected in the spleen of only two of 13 samples examined, in Peyer's patches of one of the two cases for which suitable material was available, but in the myenteric plexus of all four cats in which sections of intestine were examined. In addition PrP immunostaining was found in the kidney of all the cats with FSE whose kidneys were examined.

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