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The integrity of peripheral nerves relies on communication between axons and Schwann cells. The axonal signals that ensure myelin maintenance are distinct from those that direct myelination and are largely unknown. Here we show that ablation of the prion protein PrP(C) triggers a chronic demyelinating polyneuropathy (CDP) in four independently targeted(More)
Methods enabling prion replication ex vivo are important for advancing prion studies. However, few such technologies exist, and many prion strains are not amenable to them. Here we describe a prion organotypic slice culture assay (POSCA) that allows prion amplification and titration ex vivo under conditions that closely resemble intracerebral infection.(More)
The differentiation of follicular dendritic cells (FDC) is essential to the remarkable microanatomic plasticity of lymphoid follicles. Here we show that FDC arise from ubiquitous perivascular precursors (preFDC) expressing platelet-derived growth factor receptor β (PDGFRβ). PDGFRβ-Cre-driven reporter gene recombination resulted in FDC labeling, whereas(More)
Peripheral infection is the natural route of transmission in most prion diseases. Peripheral prion infection is followed by rapid prion replication in lymphoid organs, neuroinvasion and progressive neurological disease. Both immune cells and nerves are involved in pathogenesis, but the mechanisms of prion transfer from the immune to the nervous system are(More)
Prion infectivity is typically restricted to the central nervous and lymphatic systems of infected hosts, but chronic inflammation can expand the distribution of prions. We tested whether chronic inflammatory kidney disorders would trigger excretion of prion infectivity into urine. Urinary proteins from scrapie-infected mice with lymphocytic nephritis(More)
The occurrence of multiple strains of prions may reflect conformational variability of PrP(Sc), a disease-associated, aggregated variant of the cellular prion protein, PrP(C). Here we used luminescent conjugated polymers (LCPs), which emit conformation-dependent fluorescence spectra, for characterizing prion strains. LCP reactivity and emission spectra of(More)
Prions typically accumulate in nervous and lymphoid tissues. Because proinflammatory cytokines and immune cells are required for lymphoid prion replication, we tested whether inflammatory conditions affect prion pathogenesis. We administered prions to mice with five inflammatory diseases of the kidney, pancreas, or liver. In all cases, chronic lymphocytic(More)
Progressive accumulation of PrP(Sc), a hallmark of prion diseases, occurs when conversion of PrP(C) into PrP(Sc) is faster than PrP(Sc) clearance. Engulfment of apoptotic bodies by phagocytes is mediated by Mfge8 (milk fat globule epidermal growth factor 8). In this study, we show that brain Mfge8 is primarily produced by astrocytes. Mfge8 ablation induced(More)
Prion neuroinvasion is accompanied by maximal activation of microglia, the significance of which for pathogenesis is unknown. Here, we used bone marrow (BM) cells expressing GFP (green fluorescent protein) to study the turnover of microglia in mouse scrapie. We found that >or=50% of all brain microglia were replaced by BM-derived cells before clinical(More)
Within the CNS, the normal form of cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) is expressed on neurons, oligodendrocytes, and astrocytes. The contribution of these cell types to prion replication and pathogenesis is unclear. To assess the role of oligodendrocytes, we expressed PrP(C) under the control of the myelin basic protein (MBP) promoter in mice lacking(More)