Долгая тень коровьего бешенства

Оптимисты утверждают, что новый вариант болезни Крейцфельда – Якоба -  человеческая форма (всегда смертельная) губчатой энцефалопатии крупного рогатого скота или «коровьего бешенства» - идет на убыль. Естественно, учитывая страдания и общественное беспокойство, вызванное новым вариантом болезни Крейцфельда – Якоба, даже возможность отступления болезни является хорошей новостью. Но так ли это?

Болезнь Крейцфельда – Якоба принадлежит к семейству так называемых прионовых болезней – уникальной группе инфекционных нейродегенеративных заболеваний. Хотя точный характер распространения болезни до сих пор не установлен, главным явлением в этих расстройствах является превращение нормальных клеток прион-протеина в анормальные, что, по-видимому, является основным (если не единственным) компонентом заражения.

Новый вариант болезни Крейцфельда – Якоба был впервые описан в 1996 году после интенсивного наблюдения, предпринятого Национальным центром изучения болезни Крейцфельда – Якоба Великобритании в Эдинбурге. Эта новая форма прионового заболевания имела отличительные клинические и патологические характеристики и наблюдалась у молодых пациентов одной генетической подгруппы.

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