Tick iron and heme metabolism - new target for an anti-tick intervention

Publication date: Available online 18 January 2016 Source:Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases Author(s): Ondrej Hajdusek, Radek Sima, Jan Perner, Gabriela Loosova, Adela Harcubova, Petr Kopacek Ticks are blood-feeding parasites and vectors of serious human and animal diseases. Ixodes ricinus is a common tick in Europe, transmitting tick-borne encephalitis, Lyme disease (borreliosis), anaplasmosis, or babesiosis. Immunization of hosts with recombinant tick proteins has, in theory, the potential to interfere with tick feeding and block transmission of pathogens from the tick to the host. However, the efficacy of tick antigens has, to date, not been fully sufficient to achieve this. We have focused on 11 in silico identified genes encoding proteins potentially involved in tick iron and heme metabolism. Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) expression profiling was carried out to preferentially target proteins that are up-regulated during the blood meal. RNA interference (RNAi) was then used to score the relative importance of these genes in tick physiology. Finally, we performed vaccination screens to test the suitability of these proteins as vaccine candidates. These newly identified tick antigens have the potential to improve the available anti-tick vaccines.
Source: Ticks and Tick borne Diseases - Category: Zoology Source Type: research

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Ticks and the diseases they carry have long been recognized as health concerns, especially in the warmer months when ticks (and humans) are more active. Ticks wait on grass tips or shrubs to latch onto new hosts when they brush by. Most of the hosts are animals, but a few tick species do bite and feed on humans. While doing so, they can transmit bacteria and viruses through their saliva. But here’s what’s changing: Tick species are being found in a wider geographic range. The number of case reports of tick-borne illnesses is increasing. Scientists continue to identify new pathogens (bacteria and viruses that c...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Health Infectious diseases Prevention Safety Travel health Source Type: blogs
Ticks and the diseases they carry have long been recognized as health concerns, especially in the warmer months when ticks (and humans) are more active. Ticks wait on grass tips or shrubs to latch onto new hosts when they brush by. Most of the hosts are animals, but a few tick species do bite and feed on humans. While doing so, they can transmit bacteria and viruses through their saliva. But here’s what’s changing: Tick species are being found in a wider geographic range. The number of case reports of tick-borne illnesses is increasing. Scientists continue to identify new pathogens (bacteria and viruses that c...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Health Infectious diseases Prevention Safety Travel health Source Type: blogs
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