Although human prion diseases are rare, they are invariably fatal, and treatments remain elusive. Hundreds of iatrogenic prion transmissions have occurred in the past two decades, and the bovine spongiform encephalopathy epidemic has raised concerns about prion transmission from cattle to humans. Research into therapeutics for prion disease is being pursued in several centres and prominently includes immunological strategies. Currently, the options that are being explored aim either to mobilize the innate and adaptive immune systems towards prion destruction or to suppress or dedifferentiate the lymphoreticular compartments that replicate prions. This article reviews the pathophysiology of prion diseases in mouse models and discusses their relevance to immunotherapeutic and immunoprophylactic antiprion strategies.