Prion diseases (or transmissible spongiform encephalopathies) are a unique group of subacute, fatal, infectious neurodegenerative disorders that affect humans and animals. Prions are considered to comprise solely of an abnormally folded isoform of the cellular prion protein. BSE prions are a concern for animal and human health as they are can cause zoonoses in humans following consumption of contaminated food. How are prion diseases acquired and transmitted amongst domestic animals? Describe the pathogenesis of prion diseases in different domestic animal species. Are there any differences in the pathogenesis of certain prion diseases in different species? Do all prion diseases in domestic animals have the potential to cause zoonosis in humans? Are all domestic animals susceptible to prion disease? Currently no therapies are available to treat prion diseases. Discuss the strategies that have been employed in an attempt to reduce the incidence/transmission of prion diseases in domestic animals.
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