Ablation of prion protein immunoreactivity by heating in saturated calcium hydroxideReport as inadecuate




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BMC Research Notes

, 1:99

Prions

Abstract

BackgroundPrions, the infectious agents that cause transmissible spongiform encephalopathies TSEs, are relatively resistant to destruction by physical, enzymatic, and chemical treatments. Hydrolysis in boiling saturated calcium hydroxide limewater utilizes inexpensive chemicals to digest protein components of offal. The purpose of this work was to determine if incubating brain material from scrapie-infected sheep in near-boiling saturated calcium hydroxide solution CaOH2 would abolish immunoreactivity of the infectious prion PrP as determined by western blot.

FindingsAfter incubating for as few as 10 minutes in saturated calcium hydroxide at 99°C, immunoreactivity of protease resistant bands by western blot analysis is completely lost.

ConclusionBoiling in limewater may offer an alternative for disposal of carcasses and enable alternative uses for rendered products from potentially infected carcasses.

Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1756-0500-1-99 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Author: Justin J Greenlee - Eric M Nicholson - Amir N Hamir - Gary P Noyes - Mark T Holtzapple - Marcus E KehrliJr

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