Reservoir sheep


By Andy Coghlan SHEEP may harbour the twisted proteins called prions that cause BSE in cows, says Stanley Prusiner, who received the Nobel Prize in Medicine for his theory of how prions can cause disease. If they do, the infectious agent could still be at large, ready to bounce back to cows. Prusiner told the Birmingham meeting that Mike Scott, his colleague at the University of San Francisco, believes that sheep carry two strains of prions. One causes scrapie in sheep. The other causes BSE if it spreads to cows, Scott believes. Scrapie has long been known to infect sheep,
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