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Vaccinomics: from systems biology of tick-pathogen interactions to vaccine development

AuthorsFuente, José de la
Issue Date2011
CitationGABBA Parasitology Week (2011)
AbstractTicks are blood feeding arthropod ectoparasites that transmit pathogens causing diseases in humans and animals worldwide. Tick-host-pathogen interactions have evolved trough dynamic processes involving genetic traits of hosts, pathogens and ticks that mediate their development and survival. New approaches for tick control are dependent on defining molecular interactions between hosts, ticks and pathogens to allow for discovery of key molecules that could be tested in vaccines for intervention of tick-pathogen cycles. Tick vaccines offer the important advantages of being a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative with a dual effect reducing tick infestations and preventing ticks from transmitting disease-causing pathogens. The challenge of developing improved tick vaccines arises from the need to understand the complex molecular relationship between vertebrate hosts, ticks and pathogens which requires a systems biology approach that will allow the integrated analysis of metabolomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and other omics data for discovery of key pathways molecules that mediate tick-pathogen interactions. A vaccinomics approach could then be used to identify and fully characterize candidate protective antigens and validate vaccine formulations, including development of effective screening platforms and algorithms for analysis and validation of data produced by the systems biology approach to tick research. New candidate protective antigens will most likely be identified by focusing on abundant proteins with relevant biological function in tick feeding, reproduction, development, immune response, subversion of host immunity and pathogen transmission. Additionally, the evolution of similar strategies for some pathogens such as A. phagocytophilum to infect vertebrate and tick cells suggest the possibility of developing strategies to control pathogen infection in both vertebrate hosts and tick vectors. Tick vaccines that affect both tick infestations and pathogen infection and transmission could then be developed and used to vaccinate human and animal populations at risk for disease prevention and also reservoir host species in order to reduce tick infections and their vector capacity for pathogens that affect human and animal health worldwide.
Appears in Collections:(IREC) Comunicaciones congresos
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