Title of project or programme

Preclinical diagnosis of prion disease

Principal Investigators of project/programme grant
Title Forname Surname Institution Country
Professor Martha Ulvund Norwegian School of Veterinary Science Norway
Address of institution of lead PI
Institution Norwegian School of Veterinary Science
Street Address PO Box 8146 Dep
City Oslo
Postcode NO-0033


Source of funding information

The Research Council of Norway

Total sum awarded (Euro)


Start date of award


Total duration of award in months


The project/programme is most relevant to
  • Prion disease
  • Neurodegenerative disease in general

TSE, prion disorders, neurodegenerative disorders, biomarker, preclinical diagnose

Research abstract in English

Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) are a threat to food safety and to human and animal health. Diagnosis of these diseases and early detection of the infective agent is vital for future spread and prevention of disease. The identification of candidate molecules as biomarkers of preclinical disease is a major objective in this project. The molecular mechanisms responsible for these prion diseases share similarities with a wider group of neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimers and Parkinsons diseases, and the central pathological event is a disturbance of protein folding of a normal cellular protein that is eventually accompanied by neuronal cell death and the death of the host. The quest for a pre-clinical blood screening test for TSE and similar diseases is a hot topic (Brown 2006). In this project, we will use blood (serum and white blood cells, WBC) and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from sheep experimentally infected with scrapie and killed at various stages of infection, to explore t he possibilities of diagnosing the prion disease at an early preclinical stage. We will be using modern technology (proteomics, multivariat analyses, immonoPCR, WB, other) in cooperation with national and foreign partners. Pilot experiments already performed are promising.

Lay summary

Types: Investments > €500k
Member States: Norway
Diseases: Neurodegenerative disease in general, Prion disease
Years: 2011
Database Categories: N/A
Database Tags: N/A

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