Effect of scrapie incubation on the concentrations of plasma amino acids and L-lactate in infected lambs

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Three groups of two weeks old growing lambs differing in PrP genotype were orally inoculated with scrapie and maintained under defined conditions until disease endpoint. Plasma concentrations of free alanine and serine, but not L-lactate increased during the final 6 months of the disease. At the same time, plasma concentrations of several essential and non-essential free amino acids decreased linearly, indicating reduced feed intake and are consistent with, but occurring before establishment, of cachexia. These observations are consistent with those reported previously from studies on cattle infected with BSE and with the hypothesis that scrapie may effect peripheral tissue metabolism.

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