Host responses during experimental infection with Fasciola gigantica or Fasciola hepatica in Merino sheep

University of Vic, Vic, Catalonia, Spain
Veterinary Parasitology (Impact Factor: 2.46). 02/2007; 143(3-4):275-86. DOI: 10.1016/j.vetpar.2006.09.008
Source: PubMed


This study reports the early biochemical changes in plasma, comparative host-immune responses and parasite recovery data in Merino sheep during the first 10 weeks of infection with Fasciola gigantica and Fasciola hepatica. One group of sheep were uninfected, four groups of sheep received incremental challenge doses of F. gigantica metacercariae (50, 125, 225 and 400, respectively) and the sixth group was challenged with 250 F. hepatica metacercariae. At 10 weeks post infection (wpi), sheep challenged with F. hepatica showed the greatest fluke recovery (mean 119, range 84-166); a significantly higher biomass of parasites recovered (2.5-fold greater than the highest dose of F. gigantica); and a greater mean % parasite recovery (39.3%, range 27-55%) than any group challenged with F. gigantica. Within the groups dosed with F. gigantica a strong dose-dependent response was observed in both fluke recovery and fluke biomass with increasing dose of metacercariae. The mean % parasite recovery of F. gigantica infected groups 1-5 were 26, 23, 26 and 25%, respectively, suggesting a uniform viability of parasite establishment independent of infection dose. At 6 wpi, elevated levels of plasma GLDH were observed in the F. gigantica infected groups compared to the uninfected sheep (p<0.005) whereas the F. hepatica challenged group had four-fold higher levels of GLDH compared to the F. gigantica infected group (p<0.001). Elevated levels of GGT as an indicator of epithelial damage in the bile duct was only seen in the group challenged with F. hepatica at 10 wpi when it rose from below 100 IU/l to approximately 250 IU/l (p<0.0001) whereas no detectable increase in GGT was observed in any of the groups challenged with F. gigantica. The white blood cell response to F. hepatica infection was biphasic with the initial peak at 4 wpi and a second peak at 9 wpi, corresponding to the period of migration of juvenile fluke in the liver and the time when adult flukes are migrating into the bile duct, respectively. This biphasic response was also evident in the changes in the eosinophil counts and serum haemoglobin levels. There was a trend toward higher parasite-specific IgG2 titres in sheep infected with lower worm burdens, suggesting that higher F. gigantica or F. hepatica burdens suppress IgG2 responses. The findings of this study suggest that, in early infection in a permissive host, F. hepatica appears to be more pathogenic than F. gigantica because of its rapid increase in size and the speed of its progression through the migratory phases of its life cycle.

Download full-text


Available from: Herman W Raadsma
  • Source
    • "But various studies indicated that in helminth diseases, an early phase of infection showed a mixed type of Th1/Th2 response, and as the disease progresses, the cellular immune response is polarized towards Th2 cytokines with the suppression of Th1 cytokines (Hoyle and Taylor 2003; Waldvogel et al. 2004). The host genetic differences in the cellular immunity at intraspecies or interspecies level causing up or downregulation in cytokine expression are thought to influence the courses of several helminth infections (Molina and Skerratt 2005; Raadsma et al. 2007). In the present study, "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Th1 and Th2 cytokine gene expression in buffalo calves during primary infection with Fasciola gigantica as well as in response to immunization with the parasite recombinant fatty acid binding protein (rFABP) and recombinant glutathione S-transferase (rGST) proteins was measured at 14th week of infection by real-time PCR with the double-stranded DNA-binding dye SYBR Green. Experimental animals were randomly distributed into FABP, GST, cocktail, challenge and healthy groups. Animals in groups FABP and GST were immunized with 400 μg rFABP and rGST, respectively, and cocktail group with a mixture of 400 μg each of rFABP and rGST in the neck and thigh muscles. All animals received three immunizations at 3-week interval. Calves were challenged per os with 400 viable metacercariae along with the unimmunized challenge control group 1 month after the last immunization. Expression of various cytokines in response to the immunization and parasite primary infection was measured by real-time PCR. Expression of IL-2 (4.5-fold) and IFN-γ (3.2-fold), followed by IL-6 (1.7-fold) and IL-4 (1.6-fold), with downregulation of TNF-α and IL-10 was observed in response to F. gigantica infection in these animals. However, there was a sharp increase in the expression of the IL-4 (211.93 and 111.81-fold) and IL-6 mRNA (219.22 and 48.29-fold) to GST and FABP immunizations, respectively. A downregulation of the IL-1α, a Th1 cytokine in response to FABP and GST immunization in these calves, was also observed. Overall, a mixed type of Th1 and Th2 cytokine environment was evoked to chronic F. gigantica infection and immunization with the above two recombinant proteins in buffaloes.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · Parasitology Research
  • Source
    • "Additionally, these results are consistent with previous reports from sheep and mice immunized with mimotopes and subsequently challenged with F. hepatica metacercariae (Villa-Mancera et al., 2008, 2011). The mean fluke implantation rate (30.3% in control group) was within the range reported in previous experimental F. hepatica infections in sheep that showed implantation rates between 26.4% and 39.0% (Wijffels et al., 1994; Piacenza et al., 1999; Raadsma et al., 2007). The implantation rates in groups 1 and 2 was 14.6% and 19.4%, slightly lower than those found in previous vaccine studies, ranging from 21.8% to 26.4% (Wijffels et al., 1994; Piacenza et al., 1999). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Fluke burdens, liver fluke size and biomass, fecal eggs counts, serum levels of hepatic enzymes and immune response were assessed in sheep immunized with peptide mimotopes of cathepsin L1 and challenged with Fasciola hepatica metacercariae. Twenty sheep were randomly allocated to four groups of five animals each; groups 1 and 2 were immunized at weeks 0 and 2 with mimotopes YVYRWVEAECVA and FSPAYLRDAALK, respectively; group 3 was immunized with wild-type M13KE phage and the control group received phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). All groups were challenged with 300 metacercariae at week 6 and slaughtered 16weeks later. Groups 1 and 2 showed a reduction in fluke burden of 51.7% and 35.9%, respectively, when compared to the control group, but only the former was significant at the 5% level. Vaccinated animals showed a significant reduction in fluke length and width, wet weights and egg output. A significant diminution in the total biomass of parasites recovered was also observed in group 1. Levels of anti-phage total IgG increased rapidly within 2weeks of the first immunization and were always significantly higher in groups 1 and 2 than in the infected control group. The fluke burden in group 1 was significantly correlated with IgG1 and total IgG. The vaccinated sheep with phage clones produced significantly high titres of IgG1 and IgG2 antibodies indicating a mixed Th1/Th2 response.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2012 · The Veterinary Journal
  • Source
    • "In relation to plasma proteins, values did not reach hypoproteinemia levels, which is associated with a marked decrease in serum albumin values. The increases of the GGT activity confirmed the presence of adult forms in the bile ducts and the therapeutic failure (Galtier et al. 1986; Ferre et al. 1997; Raadsma et al. 2007). Nitroxynil is an anthelmintic with a limited efficacy against immature stages (50–90%), and this increase shows that the drug was not effective against them. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of triclabendazole (TCBZ) and nitroxynil against a TCBZ-resistant Fasciola hepatica strain in a naturally infected sheep flock. The efficacies were measured by the faecal egg count reduction test. The level of F. hepatica antigens was tested in faeces; and haematological indices such as total proteins (TP), albumin, hepatic enzymes and total IgG were also studied. The results confirmed the resistance of F. hepatica against TCBZ in the flock with an efficacy during the first month post-treatment between 59.4% and 73.8%. In the nitroxynil group, the efficacy during the same period ranged between 81.3% and 86%, likely because the efficacy of this drug against 7- to 9-week-old immature stages is only 50-90%. Anemia was showed in all groups and white blood cells were always higher than the reference range. The values of TP and albumin were within normal range in most of the sheep, and an increase in hepatic enzymes confirmed the liver damage. Regarding total IgG, some negative correlations were found with egg excretion, and in relation to the level of antigens in faeces, these ones decreased immediately after treatment. We conclude that nitroxynil could be an alternative in case of TCBZ resistance.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2010 · Parasitology Research
Show more