Gabriela Maggioli, Gualberto Bottini, Tatiana Basika, Pablo Alonzo, Gustavo Salinas, Carlos Carmona
The liver fluke Fasciola hepatica remains an important agent of food-borne trematode disease producing great economic losses due to its negative effect on productivity of livestock grazing in temperate areas.
The prevailing control strategy based on anthelmintic drugs is unsustainable due to widespread resistance hence vaccination appears as an attractive option to pursue.
In this study we evaluate the effect of vaccination in calves with a functional recombinant thioredoxin glutathione reductase (rFhTGR) from liver fluke, a critical antioxidant enzyme at the crossroads of the thioredoxin and glutathione metabolism in flatworms.
The recombinant enzyme produced in Escherichia coli was tested in two vaccination experiments; in the first trial rFhTGR was administered in combination with Freund´ıs Incomplete Adjuvant (FIA) in a three-inoculation scheme on weeks 0, 4 and 8; in the second trial rFhTGR was given mixed with Adyuvac 50 or Alum as adjuvants on weeks 0 and 4.
In both cases calves were challenged with metacercariae (400 in the first and 500 in the second trial) 2 weeks after the last inoculation.
Our results demonstrate that two or three doses of the vaccine induced a non-significant reduction in worm counts of 8.2% (FIA), 3.8% (Adyuvac 50) and 23.0% (Alum) compared to adjuvant controls indicating that rFhTGR failed to induce a protective immunity in challenged calves.
All vaccine formulations induced a mixed IgG1/IgG2 response but no booster was observed after challenge. No correlations between antibody titres and worm burdens were found.
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