Comparative Biology Investigation of H-gal-GP and H11 Specific Antibody Staining in Equine Cyathostomins

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The Ohio State University

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The ruminant parasite Haemonchus contortus is a blood feeding worm that uses the gut surface membrane multi-protease complex known as H-gal-GP to digest blood meals taken from the host. Drug resistance in the H. contortus species has pushed for the production of a biological-based vaccine (Barbervax®) which uses the H-gal-GP and H11 protein complex. Antibodies to the H-gal-GP and H11 protein complex cause the parasites to die after taking a blood meal. A comparative analysis of several parasite genera was performed to determine if a similar protein complex or one that is recognized by H-gal-GP and H11 specific antibodies was present. If so, it suggests the vaccine could be effective for other nematode parasites. Using the host's immune response to control parasites instead of anthelmintic drug treatments would reduce the reliance on drug use in animals. Ancylostoma caninum, Haemonchus contortus, equine cyathostomins, bovine Bunostomum phlebotomum, Ixodes scapularis, Amblyomma americanum, Dirofilaria immitis and Brugia malayi were evaluated for specific antibody binding using hyperimmunized antibodies against H-gal-GP and H11 native proteins. Specific and reproducible staining was observed in H. contortus, adult equine cyathostomins, and tissue encysted equine cyathostomins only. To further evaluate the similar reactivity's between cyathostomins and H. contortus, cross-reactivity of equine serum with antibodies to cyathostomins on H. contortus section was observed using immunofluorescence. These findings pave the way for future studies on the safety and efficacy of H-gal-GP and H11 protein complex as a potential control for equine cyathostomins.



Haemonchus contortus, Barbervax®, cyathostomins, H-gal-GP