Florid prion protein (PrP) plaques in patients with variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) are spatially related to blood vessels

Richard A. Armstrong*, Nigel J. Cairns, J.W. Ironside, Peter L. Lantos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study tested the hypothesis that variations in the density of the florid prion protein (PrP) plaques in the brain of patients with variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) were spatially related to blood vessels. In 81% of areas of the cerebral cortex sampled and in 37% of the remaining areas, which included the hippocampus, dentate gyrus, and cerebellum, there was a positive spatial correlation between the density of the florid plaques and the larger blood vessel profiles. The frequency of the positive spatial correlations was similar in different anatomical areas of the cerebral cortex and in the upper compared with the lower cortical laminae. The data support the hypothesis that the florid plaques cluster around the larger blood vessels in vCJD, the density of associated plaques increasing with vessel size. The development of florid plaques close to blood vessels may be due to factors associated with the blood vessels that enhance the aggregation of PrP to form the dense cores of florid plaques and is unlikely to reflect the haematogenous spread of PrP into the brain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-36
Number of pages8
JournalNeuroscience Research Communications
Volume32
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2003

Keywords

  • blood vessels
  • florid plaques
  • haematogenous spread
  • prion protein (PrP) deposits
  • spatial correlation
  • variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD)

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