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Stanley B. Prusiner and prions

Stanley B. Prusiner

Born in 1942 year United States.  Doctor, Professor of Neurology and biochemistry at the University of California in San Francisco.  The Nobel Prize in Physiology or medicine in 1997 year.
Let’s see some more about him.

Already by the middle of the twentieth century were known all kinds of pathogens: bacteria, protozoa, fungi, viruses.  But from 1920, no one has been able to establish the pathogen very severe disease in cattle (and contagious to humans) causing the destruction of the central nervous system of the body, primarily in the brain.  German physiologist Creutzfeldt described the symptoms of this deadly disease, his fellow countryman and colleague, neurologist Jacob linked symptoms with lesions of the spinal cord and the pyramid system.  Today, this disease is known as ‘ mad cow disease ‘ or ‘ Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease ‘.

During this period, many researchers are trying to find the illness, some want to close, but nobody publishes an article about its achievements in a reputable scientific journal.  Under an unwritten rule of scientific only one who does, is considered to be the author of the opening.  And did it in 1982 year Stanley Prusiner’s prions cause slow infection.  The slow-developing disease infection for years, leading to death. He brought into use the term ‘ prion ‘ (proteinaceous infection-protein infection) and showed the infection mechanism.  Prion is a protein molecule, but with broken protein structure-it lacks the genetic material in the form of DNA and RNA.

Before Prusiner believed that cells lacking the DNA is not able to reproduce, because the DNA governs the reproduction.  B. Prusiner  has shown that it can, and the process of development of the disease is similar to multiplication routine infections, but the process is slower, the infection can last for several years.  Defective prion’s protein possesses abnormal qualities, he has a high ability to infect any nearby neurons.  The number of abnormal prions gradually grows, they accumulate in healthy cells and destroying the normal location of the protein molecules in these cells.  Primarily suffers from a nervous system, prions cause slow infection-disease developing over the years, resulting in death.  Prions are very resistant in the environment Wednesday.  Do not destroy them, neither bleach nor UV or radiation, no fever.  Some researchers even relate them to inanimate nature.  Opening Prusiner powerfully has expanded our understanding of the mechanisms of infection, the Nobel Prize he received ‘ for the discovery of prions, a new biological principle of infection ‘.  It is interesting to note that B. PRUSINER is one of American scientists with Russian roots: his grandfather Benny B. PRUSINER (Pruzhiner) emigrated from Moscow to the United States in the year 1896.

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