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From: TSS ()
Subject: PrPSc in salivary glands of scrapie-affected sheep
Date: February 15, 2007 at 9:33 am PST

J. Virol. doi:10.1128/JVI.02148-06
Copyright (c) 2007, American Society for Microbiology and/or the Listed Authors/Institutions. All Rights Reserved.

PrPSc in salivary glands of scrapie-affected sheep

Marta Vascellari*, Romolo Nonno, Franco Mutinelli, Michela Bigolaro, Michele Angelo Di Bari, Erica Melchiotti, Stefano Marcon, Claudia D'Agostino, Gabriele Vaccari, Michela Conte, Luigi De Grossi, Francesca Rosone, Francesco Giordani, and Umberto Agrimi
Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie, Histopathology Department, Viale dell'Università 10, 35020 Legnaro (PD), Italy; Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Department of Food Safety and Animal Health, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Roma, Italy; Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Regioni Lazio e Toscana, Strada Terme, 01100 Viterbo, Italy

* To whom correspondence should be addressed. Email: .


The salivary glands of scrapie-affected sheep and healthy controls were investigated for the presence of the pathological prion protein (PrPSc). PrPSc was detected in major (parotid and mandibular) and minor (buccal, labial and palatine) salivary glands of naturally and experimentally infected sheep. By western blot, PrPSc concentration in glands was estimated as 0.02-0.005% of brain. Immunohistochemistry revealed intracellular deposition of PrPSc in ductal and acinar epithelium and occasional labeling into the lumen of salivary ducts. The presence of PrPSc in salivary glands highlights the possible role of saliva in the horizontal transmission of scrapie.


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