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New assay offers improved detection of deadly prion diseases
Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs), or prion diseases, are a family of rare progressive, neurodegenerative illnesses that affect both humans and animals. TSE surveillance is important for public health and food safety because TSEs have the potential of crossing from animals to humans, as seen with the spread of mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). A new study describes an advanced assay that offers better sensitivity than currently available tests for detecting a prion disease affecting elk.
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