There is a new hope for people suffering from a rare brain disease. A research that was published yesterday has revealed that they discovered prions in patients who had succumbed to the disease. For starters, the scientists explained that prions are the abnormal proteins that are responsible for the disease. These proteins were found in the skin of close to 23 people who had participated in the study. For those wondering how this is good news, the scientist further explained that the discovery would make it easier for doctors to detect the disease in its early states. The disease been referenced here is the Creutzfeldt-Jacon disease. For you to be diagnosed with this disease, you must undergo expensive and difficult procedures.
Some of the procedures used include autopsies as well as brain biopsies. However, there are some new concerns that have arisen with the discovery of the prions in the skin. Some medical experts argue that the skin will now contaminate surgical instruments during procedures that are not related to the brain disease. This adds a fear that the disease could be passed to other patients without suspicion. The scientists said that the prions are very hard to destroy especially when they stick to stainless steel. However, the disease is very rare. This means that only one person is infected in a million people. In the United States alone, only 300 cases are reported annually. This is according to the information that was produced by the National Institutes of Health. The disease affects older people. The most common age is 60 years. However, the disease is fatal and cruel meaning that people who contract the disease die within a year.
Some of the symptoms of this disease include the inability to speak, becoming blind as well as moving uncontrollably. The patients may also weaken or even deteriorate mentally. According to the scientists, the disease can only be classified in the category of diseases like the mad cow disease. However, the scientists warned that the new finding is not an indication that the disease will be transmitted by casual contact or touch. The senior author of the research is from Case Western University School of Medicine. His name is Dr. Wen-Quan Zou and he confirmed these claims. He warned people that they should not consider these patients as dangerous. He also confirmed that the levels found on the skin were small compared to those found in the brain.