eISSN: 1509-572x
ISSN: 1641-4640
Folia Neuropathologica
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2/2009
vol. 47
 
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abstract:

Kuru and D. Carleton Gajdusek: a close encounter

Folia Neuropathol 2009; 47 (2): 114-137
Online publish date: 2009/06/26
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Kuru, the first human transmissible spongiform encephalopathy, was transmitted to chimpanzees by D. Carleton Gajdusek (1923-2008). In this review, I briefly summarize the history of this seminal discovery alongside its epidemiology, clinical picture, neuropathology and molecular genetics. The discovery of kuru opened new windows into the realms of human medicine and was instrumental in the later transmission of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease as well as the prediction that bovine spongiform encephalopathy would be transmitted to humans. It was one of the greatest discoveries in biomedical sciences of the 20th century.
keywords:

kuru, prion diseases, neuropathology, Carleton Gajdusek


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