Researchers at the Paul Ehrlich Institute in Germany have successfully
introduced antibodies to a prion protein (Prp) in mice in the hopes of
eventually developing a variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) vaccine.
Prp, in an abnormal form, is the protein associated with mad cow disease
in animals and vCJD in humans, both prion-related diseases. Immunizing
against an abnormal form of this protein would theoretically prevent
the development of these diseases in animals and humans who might eat
bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)-contaminated meat.
Although the researchers are encouraged by the initial progress, continued
tests are being conducted to prove that the technique is effective and
Source: New Scientist, March 26, 2005