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Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy Unit (TSE)

Unit Head: Currently vacant

Technical Manager and Appendix study: Dr Reza Dabaghian

Tel: 020 8327 6684
Fax: 020 8200 1569


The TSE Unit, through the National Anonymous Tissue Archive, is involved with projects investigating the prevalence of vCJD in the English population. This work is supported by translational research aimed at developing more sensitive and specific tests for the detection of the abnormal prion protein responsible for vCJD.

The Unit is also interested in the discovery and characterisation of unrecognised and novel viruses, especially those that may be responsible for encephalitis of unknown aetiology.

The transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE) are a class of diseases characterised by the appearance of a misfolded form of a cellular protein, known as the prion protein or PrPC. The misfolded form of this prion protein is called PrPSc or PrPres or PrPTSE or PrPCJD.

Examples of TSE diseases are Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) in human, bovine spongiform encephalopathy in cattle and scrapie in sheep. The TSE Unit manages the laboratory aspects of the National Anonymous Tissue Archive.