!gEapIYWEa2 (ID: 65efcc) No.202058
File: 1542959171525.jpg (84.14 KB, 900x900, 3436 - blood pinkie_pie rainbo…)
Oh, prions are fun. There's this one particular protein in our bodies, and in all animals, called PrPC and nobody's really sure what it does, but it has something to do with myelin, the insulator for our neurons.
PrPC is special because if you bend it a little out of shape, it becomes PrPSc. And the only thing PrPSc does is take PrPC and bend it into more PrPSc. It’s an impossible coincidence that a protein would have the function to act upon itself like that. About as likely as a car radio that installs car radios in other cars. And yet that’s what’s all over the place in the brains of every animal.
PrPSc is extraordinarily stable. Even high temperatures can’t always destroy it. So cooking, freezing, stomach acid, it still gets into the body, and eventually starts propagating through the brain. PrPSc molecules hook together into these long, stiff fibers, sort of like how ice crystals grow, except PrPSc fibers are solid at room temperature or above. It physically shreds our brain tissue, driving us insane, killing us, and leaving a ton of PrPSc left over in our dead brain flesh.
Good news is that without PrPSc in there already, it’s very unlikely that PrPC is gonna spontaneously convert. Bad news is it’s unlikely, but not impossible. So that’s why cannibals get kuru, because an old dead dude’s brain has had much longer to tempt fate, so eventually someone’s gonna get a PrPSc in there, and instead of it getting buried in their dead skull, someone eats it, and they die full of PrPSc, and more people eat them, and they die, and so on.