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Immunotherapy against Prion Disease

by Yue Ma and Jiyan Ma *
Center for Neurodegenerative Science, Van Andel Institute, 333 Bostwick Avenue N.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49503, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Pathogens 2020, 9(3), 216;
Received: 31 January 2020 / Revised: 12 March 2020 / Accepted: 12 March 2020 / Published: 14 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Prions and Prion-like Transmissible Protein Pathogens)
The term “prion disease” encompasses a group of neurodegenerative diseases affecting both humans and animals. Currently, there is no effective therapy and all forms of prion disease are invariably fatal. Because of (a) the outbreak of bovine spongiform encephalopathy in cattle and variant Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease in humans; (b) the heated debate about the prion hypothesis; and (c) the availability of a natural prion disease in rodents, the understanding of the pathogenic process in prion disease is much more advanced compared to that of other neurodegenerative disorders, which inspired many attempts to develop therapeutic strategies against these fatal diseases. In this review, we focus on immunotherapy against prion disease. We explain our rationale for immunotherapy as a plausible therapeutic choice, review previous trials using either active or passive immunization, and discuss potential strategies for overcoming the hurdles in developing a successful immunotherapy. We propose that immunotherapy is a plausible and practical therapeutic strategy and advocate more studies in this area to develop effective measures to control and treat these devastating disorders. View Full-Text
Keywords: prion disease; PrP; immunotherapy; vaccine; antibody prion disease; PrP; immunotherapy; vaccine; antibody
MDPI and ACS Style

Ma, Y.; Ma, J. Immunotherapy against Prion Disease. Pathogens 2020, 9, 216.

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