An explicit immunogenetic model of gastrointestinal nematode infection in sheep

Prada Jimenez de Cisneros, J., Stear, M. J., Mair, C. , Singleton, D., Stefan, T., Stear, A., Marion, G. and Matthews, L. (2014) An explicit immunogenetic model of gastrointestinal nematode infection in sheep. Journal of the Royal Society: Interface, 11(99), p. 20140416. (doi: 10.1098/rsif.2014.0416) (PMID:25121649) (PMCID:PMC4233724)

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Gastrointestinal nematodes are a global cause of disease and death in humans, wildlife and livestock. Livestock infection has historically been controlled with anthelmintic drugs, but the development of resistance means that alternative controls are needed. The most promising alternatives are vaccination, nutritional supplementation and selective breeding, all of which act by enhancing the immune response. Currently, control planning is hampered by reliance on the faecal egg count (FEC), which suffers from low accuracy and a nonlinear and indirect relationship with infection intensity and host immune responses. We address this gap by using extensive parasitological, immunological and genetic data on the sheep–Teladorsagia circumcincta interaction to create an immunologically explicit model of infection dynamics in a sheep flock that links host genetic variation with variation in the two key immune responses to predict the observed parasitological measures. Using our model, we show that the immune responses are highly heritable and by comparing selective breeding based on low FECs versus high plasma IgA responses, we show that the immune markers are a much improved measure of host resistance. In summary, we have created a model of host–parasite infections that explicitly captures the development of the adaptive immune response and show that by integrating genetic, immunological and parasitological understanding we can identify new immune-based markers for diagnosis and control.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Stear, Ms Abigail and Mair, Dr Colette and Stefan, Mr Thorsten and Singleton, Dr Darran and Stear, Professor Mike and Matthews, Professor Louise and Prada Jimenez de Cisneros, Dr Joaquin
Authors: Prada Jimenez de Cisneros, J., Stear, M. J., Mair, C., Singleton, D., Stefan, T., Stear, A., Marion, G., and Matthews, L.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Journal of the Royal Society: Interface
Publisher:The Royal Society
ISSN (Online):1742-5662
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2014 The Authors
First Published:First published in Journal of The Royal Society Interface 11(99:20140416
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
536761Why some hosts have high parasite burdens and the implications for the design of sustainable control strategiesLouise MatthewsWellcome Trust (WELLCOME)091717/Z/10/ZRI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED
468351The effect of selection for nematode resistance on mhc class II diversiityMichael StearBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)BB/F015313/1III - PARASITOLOGY