A number of studies have suggested that macrophages, dendritic cells, and follicular dendritic cells play an important role in the propagation of PrP Sc . Both accumulation and proteolysis of PrP Sc have been demonstrated in peripheral macrophages. Macrophages may act as reservoirs for PrP Sc particles if the cells die during transient PrP Sc propagation. However, whether cell death plays a role in PrP Sc propagation in macrophages remains unclear. In this study, we investigated the possibility of propagation and transmission of PrP Sc between dead immune cells and living neural cells. We found that under specific conditions, transient PrP Sc propagation occurs in dead cells, indicating that interaction between PrP C and PrP Sc on plasma membrane lipid rafts might be important for PrP Sc propagation. Co-culturing of killed donor PrP Sc -infected macrophages with recipient N2a-3 neuroblastoma cells accelerated PrP Sc transmission. Our results suggest that cell death may play an important role in PrP Sc propagation, whereas transient PrP Sc propagation in macrophages has little effect on PrP Sc transmission.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 1, 2015
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