It is desirable to make the diagnosis in live cattle with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), and thus surrogate markers for the disease have been eagerly sought. Serum proteins from BSE cattle were analyzed by 2-D Western blotting and TOF-MS. Autoantibodies against proteins in cytoskeletal fractions prepared from normal bovine brains were found in the sera of BSE cattle. The protein recognized was identified to be glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), which is expressed mainly in astrocytes in the brain. The antigen protein, GFAP, was also found in the sera of BSE cattle. The percentages of both positive sera in the autoantibody and GFAP were 44.0% for the BSE cattle, 0% for the healthy cattle, and 5.0% for the clinically suspected BSE-negative cattle. A significant relationship between the presence of GFAP and the expression of its autoantibody in the serum was recognized in the BSE cattle. These findings suggest a leakage of GFAP into the peripheral blood during neurodegeneration associated with BSE, accompanied by the autoantibody production, and might be useful in understanding the pathogenesis and in developing a serological diagnosis of BSE in live cattle.
- Animal proteomics
- Bovine spongiform encephalopathy
- Glial fibrillary acidic protein
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology