Quantitative analysis of wet-heat inactivation in bovine spongiform encephalopathy

Yuichi Matsuura, Yukiko Ishikawa, Xiao Bo, Yuichi Murayama, Takashi Yokoyama, Robert A. Somerville, Tetsuyuki Kitamoto, Shirou Mohri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


The bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) agent is resistant to conventional microbial inactivation procedures and thus threatens the safety of cattle products and by-products. To obtain information necessary to assess BSE inactivation, we performed quantitative analysis of wet-heat inactivation of infectivity in BSE-infected cattle spinal cords. Using a highly sensitive bioassay, we found that infectivity in BSE cattle macerates fell with increase in temperatures from 133°C to 150°C and was not detected in the samples subjected to temperatures above 155°C. In dry cattle tissues, infectivity was detected even at 170°C. Thus, BSE infectivity reduces with increase in wet-heat temperatures but is less affected when tissues are dehydrated prior to the wet-heat treatment. The results of the quantitative protein misfolding cyclic amplification assay also demonstrated that the level of the protease-resistant prion protein fell below the bioassay detection limit by wet-heat at 155°C and higher and could help assess BSE inactivation. Our results show that BSE infectivity is strongly resistant to wet-heat inactivation and that it is necessary to pay attention to BSE decontamination in recycled cattle by-products.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-91
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and biophysical research communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Mar 1


  • Bovine spongiform encephalopathy
  • Protein misfolding cyclic amplification
  • Quantitative assay
  • Transgenic mice
  • Wet-heat resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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