▪ Abstract 

Just as nucleic acids can carry out enzymatic reactions, proteins can be genes. These heritable infectious proteins (prions) follow unique genetic rules that enable their identification: reversible curing, inducible “spontaneous generation,” and phenotype surprises. Most prions are based on self-propagating amyloids, depend heavily on chaperones, show strain phenomena and, like other infectious elements, show species barriers to transmission. A recently identified prion is based on obligatory self-activation of an enzyme . Although prions can be detrimental, they may also be beneficial to their hosts.

Keyword(s): [Het-s][PIN][PSI][URE3]amyloidPrP

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  • Article Type: Review Article
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