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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Protective efficacy of Toxoplasma gondii calcium-dependent protein kinase 1 (TgCDPK1) adjuvated with recombinant IL-15 and IL-21 against experimental toxoplasmosis in mice.
BMC Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 09-06-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii can infect all warm-blooded animals including humans. Infection with T. gondii is probably the leading cause of posterior uveitis in humans and the most comment route of transmission is raw and undercooked meat from infected animals. T. gondii calcium-dependent protein kinase 1 (TgCDPK1) plays a critical role in direct parasite motility, host-cell invasion, and egress.
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Seroprevalence of hepatitis E virus among pregnant women and control subjects in China.
J. Med. Virol.
PUBLISHED: 08-27-2014
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Hepatitis E infection, caused by the hepatitis E virus (HEV), is an important global public health concern, with particularly high mortality in pregnant women. China is generally judged to be an HEV-endemic area, but epidemiological data for HEV among pregnant women are limited. Between June 2011 and July 2013, a case-control study was conducted to estimate the seroprevalence and potential risk factors associated with the acquisition of HEV infection by pregnant women in China. Nine-hundred and ninety pregnant women who visited hospitals for antenatal follow-up or medication in Qingdao and Weihai and 965 control subjects matched by age, gender and residence were examined for the presence of anti-HEV IgG and IgM antibodies by enzyme immunoassays. Socio-demographic and behavioral characteristics from the study subjects were obtained. The overall prevalence of anti-HEV IgG in all 1,955 samples was 20.7%. In pregnant women, 16.2% of samples were anti-HEV IgG positive whereas, in control subjects 25.3% of samples were anti-HEV IgG positive, (P?
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Toxocara seroprevalence among clinically healthy individuals, pregnant women and psychiatric patients and associated risk factors in Shandong Province, Eastern China.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis
PUBLISHED: 08-01-2014
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Toxocarosis is a widespread zoonosis caused by the ascarid nematodes Toxocara canis and Toxocara cati, which primarily infect dogs and cats, respectively. Most human infections with Toxocara are asymptomatic; however, some infected individuals may develop a serious illness and even death. Nevertheless, epidemiological knowledge regarding the prevalence and risks associated with Toxocara infection is limited in China. Therefore, we performed a cross-sectional pilot study and estimated the seroprevalence of Toxocara infection in humans in Shandong Province, eastern China for the first time, from June 2011 to July 2013, involving clinically healthy individuals, pregnant women and psychiatric patients, aiming to attract public attention to Toxocara infection.
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B7-H4 expression in bladder urothelial carcinoma and immune escape mechanisms.
Oncol Lett
PUBLISHED: 07-23-2014
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B7-H4 is a recently identified member of the B7 family considered to negatively regulate the immune response, and has been associated with the occurrence and development of certain types of tumor. However, little is known regarding the importance of human B7-H4 expression in bladder urothelial carcinoma. In the present study, B7-H4 expression in the tissues and sera of patients with bladder urothelial carcinoma was investigated, along with the clinical significance. In addition, the effects of activated T-lymphocyte in vitro cytotoxicity in the BIU-87 bladder cancer cell line following the blockade of the B7-H4 signaling pathway were also analyzed. The results showed that in normal bladder tissues, B7-H4 was not detected, but in the bladder urothelial carcinoma tissue samples, B7-H4 was detected in 24/49 (49.0%) specimens. Additionally, positive B7-H4 expression was significantly associated with increased TNM stage and pathological grade (P<0.05). Compared with the healthy control group, the serum-B7-H4 (sB7-H4) concentrations in the patients were also significantly increased (P<0.05). The sB7-H4 concentrations in cases with high-grade histology were significantly higher than those in patients with low-grade histology (P<0.05). Following the blockade of the B7-H4 antigen in BIU-87 cells, the cytotoxic activity of activated T cells against such BIU-87 cells was significantly enhanced compared with that against the control BIU-87 cells. This occurred in a T cell density-dependent and blocking antibody dose-dependent manner. These observations suggest that B7-H4 is involved in tumor occurrence, and the development and immune escape of bladder urothelial carcinoma cells. Therefore, B7-H4 may be an important target in the diagnosis and/or treatment of bladder urothelial carcinoma.
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Characterization of the complete nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences of Paramphistomum cervi.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 07-20-2014
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Sequences of the complete nuclear ribosomal DNA (rDNA) gene from five individual Paramphistomum cervi were determined for the first time. The five complete rDNA sequences, which included the 18S rDNA, the internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1), the 5.8S rDNA, the internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2), the 28S rDNA, and the intergenic spacer (IGS) regions, had a length range of 8,493-10,221 bp. The lengths of the investigated 18S, ITS1, 5.8S, ITS2, and 28S rDNA sequences, which were 1,994 bp, 1,293 bp, 157 bp, 286 bp, and 4,186 bp, respectively, did not vary. However, the IGS rDNA sequences had a length range of 577-2,305 bp. The 5.8S and ITS-2 rDNA sequences had 100% identity among the five investigated samples, while the identities among the IGS had a range of 53.7-99.8%. A comparative analysis revealed that different types and numbers of repeats were found within each ITS1 and IGS region, which may be related to the length polymorphism of IGS. The phylogenetic position of P. cervi in Paramphistomatidae was analyzed based on the 18S rDNA sequences. These results will aid in studying the intra- and interspecific variation of the Paramphistomatidae and the systematics and phylogenetics of Digenea.
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Seroprevalence and risk factors of Toxoplasma gondii infection in domestic sika deer (Cervus nippon) in northeastern China.
Acta Trop.
PUBLISHED: 07-14-2014
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Toxoplasmosis is a worldwide zoonosis caused by Toxoplasma gondii, which can infect warm-blooded animals and humans. A serological survey was undertaken to examine the seroprevalence and risk factors associated with T. gondii infection in sika deer in northeastern China. 114 (13.46%, 95% CI 11.16-15.76) out of 847 serum samples were positive to T. gondii by modi?ed agglutination test (MAT) at a 1:25 cut-off, with titers of 1:25 in 44, 1:50 in 32, 1:100 in 17, 1:500 in 11, 1:1500 or higher in 10. These samples were collected between November 2012 and October 2013 from Inner Mongolia, Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces in China. However, statistically signi?cant differences were not observed between T. gondii seroprevalence and genders or regions of sika deer in the logistic regression analysis (P>0.05) and left out of the ?nal model. Seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in male sika deer was 14.07% (95% CI 11.14-17.01), slightly higher than that in the female (12.38%) (95% CI 8.69-16.06) and seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in Harbin, Changchun city, Jilin city and Chifeng city were 12.02% (95% CI 7.60-16.44), 15.51% (95% CI 11.52-19.50), 12.27% (95% CI 7.23-17.31) and 12.50% (95% CI 7.38-17.63), respectively. Seasons of sampling were considered as main risk factors associated with T. gondii infection, autumn (15.32%) were more than two times (OR=1.98, 95% CI=1.18-3.33, P=0.01) at risk of acquiring T. gondii infection compared to winter (8.37%). Our results indicated a widespread exposure to T. gondii among sika deer in China. To our knowledge, this is the first report of T. gondii seroprevalence in sika deer in China.
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Sequence variation in Toxoplasma gondii rop17 gene among strains from different hosts and geographical locations.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 07-10-2014
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Genetic diversity of T. gondii is a concern of many studies, due to the biological and epidemiological diversity of this parasite. The present study examined sequence variation in rhoptry protein 17 (ROP17) gene among T. gondii isolates from different hosts and geographical regions. The rop17 gene was amplified and sequenced from 10 T. gondii strains, and phylogenetic relationship among these T. gondii strains was reconstructed using maximum parsimony (MP), neighbor-joining (NJ), and maximum likelihood (ML) analyses. The partial rop17 gene sequences were 1375 bp in length and A+T contents varied from 49.45% to 50.11% among all examined T. gondii strains. Sequence analysis identified 33 variable nucleotide positions (2.1%), 16 of which were identified as transitions. Phylogeny reconstruction based on rop17 gene data revealed two major clusters which could readily distinguish Type I and Type II strains. Analyses of sequence variations in nucleotides and amino acids among these strains revealed high ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous polymorphisms (>1), indicating that rop17 shows signs of positive selection. This study demonstrated the existence of slightly high sequence variability in the rop17 gene sequences among T. gondii strains from different hosts and geographical regions, suggesting that rop17 gene may represent a new genetic marker for population genetic studies of T. gondii isolates.
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Seroprevalence and Risk Factors of Chlamydia abortus Infection in Tibetan Sheep in Gansu Province, Northwest China.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 06-27-2014
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Chlamydia abortus, an important pathogen in a variety of animals, is associated with abortion in sheep. In the present study, 1732 blood samples, collected from Tibetan sheep between June 2013 and April 2014, were examined by the indirect hemagglutination (IHA) test, aiming to evaluate the seroprevalence and risk factors of C. abortus infection in Tibetan sheep. 323 of 1732 (18.65%) samples were seropositive for C. abortus antibodies at the cut-off of 1?:?16. A multivariate logistic regression analysis was used to evaluate the risk factors associated with seroprevalence, which could provide foundation to prevent and control C. abortus infection in Tibetan sheep. Gender of Tibetan sheep was left out of the final model because it is not significant in the logistic regression analysis (P > 0.05). Region, season, and age were considered as major risk factors associated with C. abortus infection in Tibetan sheep. Our study revealed a widespread and high prevalence of C. abortus infection in Tibetan sheep in Gansu province, northwest China, with higher exposure risk in different seasons and ages and distinct geographical distribution.
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Seroprevalence of hepatitis E virus infection in psychiatric patients and control subjects in Shandong Province, eastern China.
Int. J. Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 05-31-2014
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Hepatitis E, caused by the hepatitis E virus (HEV), is an important global public health concern. There are conflicting reports in regard to the association of HEV infection and psychiatric disorders. Therefore, we investigated this association in a Chinese population through a case-control seroprevalence study.
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Malignant Minor Salivary Gland Carcinomas of the Larynx.
ORL J. Otorhinolaryngol. Relat. Spec.
PUBLISHED: 05-27-2014
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Aims: To explore the clinical characteristics and treatment of malignant minor salivary gland carcinomas of the larynx. Methods: Clinical patient information regarding presentation, pathology, treatment and outcome was obtained through a review of patient charts. Results: Malignant minor salivary carcinomas in the larynx were confirmed pathologically in 15 patients (11 males, 4 females) between 2003 and 2010 in our hospital; 6 patients had mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC; 40%), 6 had adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC; 40%) and 3 had adenocarcinoma (20%). The most common tumour location was the subglottis (60%), followed by the supraglottis (33%). In total, 13 patients underwent surgery, of which 10 (77%) had positive/insufficient resection margins. The mean follow-up time was 42.3 months, with a range of 8-129 months. The 3- and 5-year overall survival rates were 46.7 and 20%, respectively. Conclusion: Malignant minor salivary gland carcinoma of the larynx is a rare disease that showed male predominance in our study. The carcinomas were most often localised in the subglottic region, and the most common histological types were ACC and MEC. Wide-margin surgery with postoperative radiotherapy is advocated. The overall prognosis is poor compared to squamous cell carcinomas of the same location and tumour stage. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
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First report of Toxoplasma gondii seroprevalence in pet parrots in China.
Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis.
PUBLISHED: 05-27-2014
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Toxoplasmosis, caused by the obligate intracellular protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, has become a serious public health problem worldwide. T. gondii can infect almost all warm-blooded animals, including parrots. However, little is known of T. gondii infection in parrots in China. Antibodies against T. gondii in 311 parrots including 202 Budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus), 26 Lovebirds (Agapornis sp.), 22 Cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus), and 61 Alexandrine Parakeets (Psittacula eupatria) in the cities of Beijing and Weifang in north China were tested using the modified agglutination test (MAT). Twenty-six (8.36%) out of 311 serum samples were positive for T. gondii at the cutoff of 1:5. Among the four species, a higher seroprevalence of T. gondii was found in Cockatiels (13.64%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.00-27.98), although the difference was not statistically significant (p=0.61). Seropositivity rates against T. gondii in male parrots (10.43%, 95% CI 5.74-15.12) were not statistically different from that in female parrots (6.08%, 95% CI 2.23-9.93, p=0.17). The seropositivity of T. gondii in parrots from Weifang and Beijing was 11.11% (95% CI 6.13-16.09) and 5.70% (95% CI 2.08-9.31), respectively. The seroprevalence varied in parrots of different age groups, ranging from 5.71% (95% CI 1.27-10.15) to 13.00% (95% CI 6.41-19.69), however, the difference among age groups was not statistically significant (p=0.12). The seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in parrots in summer (11.63%, 95% CI 6.84-16.42) was significantly higher than in spring (4.32%, 95% CI 0.94-7.70, p=0.02). The results of the present survey indicated that parrots in China are exposed to T. gondii. To our knowledge, this is the first report of T. gondii seroprevalence in parrots in China.
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The complete mitochondrial genome of the scab mite Psoroptes cuniculi (Arthropoda: Arachnida) provides insights into Acari phylogeny.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 05-15-2014
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Limited available sequence information has greatly impeded population genetics, phylogenetics and systematics studies in the subclass Acari (mites and ticks). Mitochondrial (mt) DNA is well known to provide genetic markers for investigations in these areas, but complete mt genomic data have been lacking for many Acari species. Herein, we present the complete mt genome of the scab mite Psoroptes cuniculi.
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Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome, an emerging tick-borne zoonosis.
Lancet Infect Dis
PUBLISHED: 05-15-2014
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Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is an emerging haemorrhagic fever that was first described in rural areas of China. The causative agent, SFTS virus (SFTSV), is a novel phlebovirus in the Bunyaviridae family. Since the first report in 2010, SFTS has been found in 11 provinces of China, with about 2500 reported cases, and an average case-fatality rate of 7·3%. The disease was also reported in Japan and Korea in 2012; Heartland virus, another phlebovirus genetically closely related to SFTSV, was isolated from two patients in the USA. The disease has become a substantial risk to public health, not only in China, but also in other parts of the world. The virus could undergo rapid evolution by gene mutation, reassortment, and homologous recombination in tick vectors and vertebrate reservoir hosts. No specific treatment of SFTS is available, and avoiding tick bites is an important measure to prevent the infection and transmission of SFTSV. This Review provides information on the molecular characteristics and ecology of this emerging tick-borne virus and describes the epidemiology, clinical signs, pathogenesis, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of human infection with SFTSV.
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Prevalence of antibody to Toxoplasma gondii in black-headed gulls (Chroicocephalus ridibundus), Dianchi Lake, China.
J. Wildl. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 05-07-2014
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Sera from 659 Black-headed Gulls (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) in Dianchi Lake, China were assayed for Toxoplasma gondii antibodies using the modified agglutination test (MAT). Specific T. gondii antibodies were detected in 131 (19.9%) Black-headed Gulls (MAT titer ? 1 ? 5). These results indicate that T. gondii infection is common in Black-headed Gulls.
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Evaluation of immune responses in mice after DNA immunization with putative Toxoplasma gondii calcium-dependent protein kinase 5.
Clin. Vaccine Immunol.
PUBLISHED: 04-30-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii can cause serious public health problems and economic losses worldwide. Calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) are key mediators of T. gondii signaling pathways and are implicated as important virulence factors. In the present study, we cloned a novel T. gondii CDPK gene, named TgCDPK5, and constructed the eukaryotic expression vector pVAX-CDPK5. Then, we evaluated the immune protection induced by pVAX-CDPK5 in Kunming mice. After injection of pVAX-CDPK5 intramuscularly, immune responses, determined with lymphoproliferative assays and cytokine and antibody measurements, were monitored, and mouse survival times and brain cyst formation were evaluated following challenges with the T. gondii RH strain (genotype I) and the PRU strain (genotype II). pVAX-CDPK5 effectively induced immune responses with increased specific antibodies, a predominance of IgG2a production, and a strong lymphocyte proliferative response. The levels of gamma interferon (IFN-?), interleukin 2 (IL-2), and IL-12(p70) and the percentages of CD3(+) CD4(+) and CD3(+) CD8(+) cells in mice vaccinated with pVAX-CDPK5 were significantly increased. However, IL-4 and IL-10 were not produced in the vaccinated mice. These results demonstrate that pVAX-CDPK5 can elicit strong humoral and cellular Th1 immune responses. The survival time of immunized mice challenged with the T. gondii RH strain (8.67 ± 4.34 days) was slightly, but not significantly, longer than that in the control groups within 7 days (P > 0.05). The numbers of brain cysts in the mice in the pVAX-CDPK5 group were reduced by ?40% compared with those in the control groups (P < 0.05), which provides a foundation for the further development of effective subunit vaccines against T. gondii.
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First Report of Genotyping of Toxoplasma gondii in Free-Living Microtus fortis in Northeastern China.
J. Parasitol.
PUBLISHED: 03-31-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii is an intracellular protozoan parasite which imperils the health of almost all warm-blooded animals, including humans. The objective of this study was to determine genetic characterization of T. gondii in free-living Microtus fortis (reed vole) in Jilin province, northeastern China. A total of 104 DNA samples, 74 from Gongzhuling and 30 from Baicheng, were extracted from lung tissues of M. fortis , and 56 (53.8%) of them were positive for T. gondii by semi-nested polymerase chain reaction of the B1 gene. These positive DNA samples were typed at 10 genetic markers including SAG1, 5'- and 3'-SAG2, alternative SAG2, BUTB, GRA6, L358, PK1, c22-8, c29-2, and Apico. Four samples were successfully genotyped at all genetic loci and grouped to 2 distinct genotypes; 2 samples belonged to ToxoDB Genotype no. 10 (Type I) and the other 2 presented ToxoDB Genotype no. 9 ( http://toxodb.org/toxo/ ); 4 samples were genotyped at 8 genetic loci, in which 2 samples belonged to ToxoDB Genotype no. 10 and 2 presented ToxoDB Genotype no. 9. To our knowledge, this is the first report of genetic typing of T. gondii from free-living M. fortis in northeast China. The results suggest that the Type I and ToxoDB Genotype no. 9 could be a potential risk factor for transmission through the reed vole in this region.
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First report of Cryptosporidium spp. in white yaks in China.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 03-29-2014
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Cryptosporidium is an enteric apicomplexan parasite, which can infect yaks, leading to reduction of milk production and poor weight gain. White yak (Bos grunniens) is a unique yak breed inhabiting only in Tianzhu Tibetan Autonomous County, Gansu province, northwestern China. The objective of the present study was to molecularly determine Cryptosporidium infection and species in white yaks.
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Evaluation of recombinant granule antigens GRA1 and GRA7 for serodiagnosis of Toxoplasma gondii infection in dogs.
BMC Vet. Res.
PUBLISHED: 03-21-2014
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Toxoplasmosis, caused by the obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, is an important zoonotic disease worldwide. The precise detection of T. gondii infection in dogs has important public health significance. In this study, recombinant granule antigen proteins GRA1 and GRA7 were evaluated as potential diagnostic markers for T. gondii infection in dogs by an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
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Primary ectopic atypical meningioma in the renal hilum: a case report.
BMC Cancer
PUBLISHED: 03-16-2014
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Primary ectopic atypical meningioma involving the renal hilum is rare. This is, to our knowledge, only the second case report of a primary retroperitoneal meningioma and the first case of an atypical subtype in this location.
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Metabolic footprinting of extracellular metabolites of brain endothelium infected with Neospora caninum in vitro.
BMC Res Notes
PUBLISHED: 03-13-2014
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The survival of the intracellular protozoan parasite Neospora caninum depends on its ability to adapt to changing metabolic conditions of the host cell. Thus, defining cellular and metabolic changes in affected target tissues may aid in delineating pathogenetic mechanism. We undertook this study to assess the metabolic response of human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMECs) to N. caninum infection in vitro.
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Complete mitochondrial genomes of the 'intermediate form' of Fasciola and Fasciola gigantica, and their comparison with F. hepatica.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 03-11-2014
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Fascioliasis is an important and neglected disease of humans and other mammals, caused by trematodes of the genus Fasciola. Fasciola hepatica and F. gigantica are valid species that infect humans and animals, but the specific status of Fasciola sp. ('intermediate form') is unclear.
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Evaluation of immuno-efficacy of a novel DNA vaccine encoding Toxoplasma gondii rhoptry protein 38 (TgROP38) against chronic toxoplasmosis in a murine model.
BMC Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 03-05-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite which can infect almost all mammalian animals, leading to toxoplasmosis. T. gondii rhoptry protein 38 (TgROP38) is an active rhoptry protein kinase which is involved in the inhibitory effect on host cell transcription by down-regulating the MAPK signaling track.
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Rapid Detection and Differentiation of Clonorchis sinensis and Opisthorchis viverrini Using Real-Time PCR and High Resolution Melting Analysis.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 03-04-2014
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Clonorchis sinensis and Opisthorchis viverrini are both important fish-borne pathogens, causing serious public health problem in Asia. The present study developed an assay integrating real-time PCR and high resolution melting (HRM) analysis for the specific detection and rapid identification of C. sinensis and O. viverrini. Primers targeting COX1 gene were highly specific for these liver flukes, as evidenced by the negative amplification of closely related trematodes. Assays using genomic DNA extracted from the two flukes yielded specific amplification and their identity was confirmed by sequencing, having the accuracy of 100% in reference to conventional methods. The assay was proved to be highly sensitive with a detection limit below 1 pg of purified genomic DNA, 5 EPG, or 1 metacercaria of C. sinensis. Moreover, C. sinensis and O. viverrini were able to be differentiated by their HRM profiles. The method can reduce labor of microscopic examination and the contamination of agarose electrophoresis. Moreover, it can differentiate these two flukes which are difficult to be distinguished using other methods. The established method provides an alternative tool for rapid, simple, and duplex detection of C. sinensis and O. viverrini.
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Dicrocoelium chinensis and Dicrocoelium dendriticum (Trematoda: Digenea) are distinct lancet fluke species based on mitochondrial and nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences.
Mol. Phylogenet. Evol.
PUBLISHED: 03-04-2014
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Lancet flukes parasitize the bile ducts and gall bladder of a range of mammals, including humans, causing dicrocoeliosis. In the present study, we sequenced and characterized the complete mitochondrial (mt) genomes as well as the first and second internal transcribed spacers (ITS-1 and ITS-2=ITS) of nuclear ribosomal DNA (rDNA) of two lancet flukes, Dicrocoelium chinensis and D. dendriticum. Sequence comparison of a conserved mt gene and nuclear rDNA sequences among multiple individual lancet flukes revealed substantial nucleotide differences between the species but limited sequence variation within each of them. Phylogenetic analysis of the concatenated amino acid and multiple mt rrnS sequences using Bayesian inference supported the separation of D. chinensis and D. dendriticum into two distinct species-specific clades. Results of the present study support the proposal that D. dendriticum and D. chinensis represent two distinct lancet flukes. While providing the first mt genomes from members of the superfamily Plagiorchioidea, the novel mt markers described herein will be useful for further studies of the diagnosis, epidemiology and systematics of the lancet flukes and other trematodes of human and animal health significance.
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Genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii from cats in Yunnan Province, Southwestern China.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 02-26-2014
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Cats are the definitive hosts of Toxoplasma gondii. The distribution of genetic diversity of T. gondii in cats is of importance to understand the transmission of this parasite. The objective of this study was to genetically characterize T. gondii isolates from cats in Yunnan province, southwestern China.
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Genetic manipulation of a transcription-regulating sequence of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus reveals key nucleotides determining its activity.
Arch. Virol.
PUBLISHED: 02-23-2014
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The factors that determine the transcription-regulating sequence (TRS) activity of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) remain largely unclear. In this study, the effect of mutagenesis of conserved C nucleotides at positions 5 and 6 in the leader TRS (TRS-L) and/or canonical body TRS7 (TRS-B7) on the synthesis of subgenomic (sg) mRNA and virus infectivity was investigated in the context of a type 2 PRRSV infectious cDNA clone. The results showed that a double C mutation in the leader TRS completely abolished sg mRNAs synthesis and virus infectivity, but a single C mutation did not. A single C or double C mutation in TRS-B7.1 or/and TRS-B7.2 impaired or abolished the corresponding sg mRNA synthesis. Introduction of identical mutations in the leader and body TRSs partially restored sg mRNA7.1 and/or sg mRNA7.2 transcription, indicating that the base-pairing interaction between sense TRS-L and cTRS-B is a crucial factor influencing sg mRNA synthesis. Analysis of the mRNA leader-body junctions of mutants provided evidence for a mechanism of discontinuous minus-strand transcription. This study also showed that mutational inactivation of TRS-B7.1 or TRS-B7.2 did not affect the production of infectious progeny virus, and the sg mRNA formed from each of them could express N protein. However, TRS-B7.1 plays more important roles than TRS-B7.2 in maintaining the growth characteristic of type 2 PRRSV. These results provide more insight into the molecular mechanism of genome expression and subgenomic mRNA transcription of PRRSV.
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Synergy of mIL-21 and mIL-15 in enhancing DNA vaccine efficacy against acute and chronic Toxoplasma gondii infection in mice.
Vaccine
PUBLISHED: 02-19-2014
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The synergistic protective efficacy of murine interleukin 21 (mIL-21) and mIL-15 administrated with DNA vaccine against acute and chronic Toxoplasma gondii infection in mice was investigated using T. gondii MIC8 (TgMIC8) as a model. We cloned mIL-21 and mIL-15 from splenic tissues of Kunming mice, and constructed eukaryotic plasmid pVAX/mIL-15, pVAX/mIL-21, and pVAX/mIL-21/mIL-15, respectively. After immunizing with pVAX/TgMIC8 in the presence or absence of these cytokines, immune responses were analyzed using lymphoproliferative assay, cytokine and serum antibody measurements, flow cytometric surface markers on lymphocytes and protection against acute and chronic T. gondii infection. Mice receiving pVAX/TgMIC8 alone developed a strong humoral responses and Th1 type cellular immune responses, and showed an increase of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells compared with all the controls. Adding pVAX/mIL-21 to pVAX/TgMIC8 compared to pVAX/TgMIC8 resulted in only a slight increase in humoral and cellular immune responses, and this immune response was lower than that induced by the pVAX/mIL-15 combined with pVAX/TgMIC8. Co-administration of pVAX/mIL-21/mIL-15 combined with pVAX/TgMIC8 elicited the strongest humoral and cellular immune responses among all the groups, leading to significantly increased survival time against acute infection and the significant reduction of tissue cysts, compared to all the controls. Synergy of mIL-21 and mIL-15 can facilitate specific humoral as well as cellular immune responses elicited by DNA vaccine against acute and chronic T. gondii infection in mice.
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Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in pigs in Jiangxi Province, Southeastern China.
Foodborne Pathog. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 02-19-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii is the causative agent of toxoplasmosis in humans and a wide range of animal species. In the current study, a serological investigation using an indirect hemagglutination (IHA) test was carried out to determine the seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in pigs in Jiangxi Province, southeastern China. A total of 1232 serum samples were collected from pigs in 10 administrative districts in Jiangxi, and specific antibodies were detected in 282 pigs (22.9%) with the titers ?1:64. Positive pigs were found in each administrative district, with prevalence ranging from 5.0% to 46.2%. Age and season were found to be associated with T. gondii infection. Lactating sows (odds ratio [OR]=15.4, 95% confidence interval [CI]=6.8-35.2, p<0.01), pregnant sows (OR=11.5, 95% CI=5.3-24.8, p<0.01), nonpregnant sows (OR=13.7, 95% CI=6.4-29.3, p<0.01), breeding boars (OR=9, 95% CI=3.8-21.4, p<0.01), and fattening pigs (OR=4.9, 95% CI=2.1-11.7, p<0.01) all had a greater risk of acquiring infection compared to the weanling pigs. There is a higher risk of infection in the spring (OR=1.7, 95% CI=1.1-2.6, p=0.01) and the summer (OR=2.1, 95% CI=1.3-3.2, p<0.01) than in the winter. This is the first documentation of T. gondii seroprevalence in pigs in Jiangxi Province, which enriches the epidemiological data of T. gondii infection in pigs in China. The results of this study indicate that pigs in Jiangxi Province are frequently exposed to T. gondii, posing a direct threat to the pig industry as well as to public health. Integrated strategies are needed to strengthen future prevention and control of T. gondii infection in pigs in this region.
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Seroprevalence and genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii in three species of pet birds in China.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 02-18-2014
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Toxoplasmosis, caused by the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, is one of the most common zoonosis worldwide, affecting a wide range of warm-blooded mammals and birds worldwide. However, no information on T. gondii infection in pet birds in China is available. Therefore, this study was performed to determine the prevalence of T. gondii infection in pet birds in Gansu province, China.
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Major emerging and re-emerging zoonoses in China: a matter of global health and socioeconomic development for 1.3 billion.
Int. J. Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 02-14-2014
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Emerging and re-emerging zoonoses are a significant public health concern and cause considerable socioeconomic problems globally. The emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1, avian influenza H7N9, and severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS), and the re-emergence of rabies, brucellosis, and other zoonoses have had a significant effect on the national economy and public health in China, and have affected other countries. Contributing factors that continue to affect emerging and re-emerging zoonoses in China include social and environmental factors and microbial evolution, such as population growth, urbanization, deforestation, livestock production, food safety, climate change, and pathogen mutation. The Chinese government has devised new strategies and has taken measures to deal with the challenges of these diseases, including the issuing of laws and regulations, establishment of disease reporting systems, implementation of special projects for major infectious diseases, interdisciplinary and international cooperation, exotic disease surveillance, and health education. These strategies and measures can serve as models for the surveillance and response to continuing threats from emerging and re-emerging zoonoses in other countries.
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Comparative analyses of the complete mitochondrial genomes of the two ruminant hookworms Bunostomum trigonocephalum and Bunostomum phlebotomum.
Gene
PUBLISHED: 02-04-2014
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Bunostomum trigonocephalum and Bunostomum phlebotomum are blood-feeding hookworms of sheep and cattle, causing considerable economic losses to the live stock industries. Studying genetic variability within and among hookworm populations is critical to addressing epidemiological and ecological questions. Mitochondrial (mt) DNA is known to provide useful markers for investigations of population genetics of hookworms, but mt genome sequence data are scant. In the present study, the complete mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences of the sheep and goat hookworm B. trigonocephalum were determined for the first time, and the mt genome of B. phlebotomum from yak in China was also sequenced for comparative analyses of their gene contents and genome organizations. The lengths of mt DNA sequences of B. trigonocephalum sheep isolate, B. trigonocephalum goat isolate and B. phlebotomum China yak isolate were 13,764bp, 13,771bp and 13,803bp in size, respectively. The identity of the mt genomes was 99.7% between B. trigonocephalum sheep isolate and B. trigonocephalum goat isolate. The identity of B. phlebotomum China yak isolate mt genomes was 85.3% with B. trigonocephalum sheep isolate, and 85.2% with B. trigonocephalum goat isolate. All the mt genes of the two hookworms were transcribed in the same direction and gene arrangements were consistent with those of the GA3 type, including 12 protein-coding genes, 2 rRNA genes and 22 tRNA genes, but lacking ATP synthetase subunit 8 gene. The mt genomes of B. trigonocephalum and B. phlebotomum were similar to prefer bases A and T, the contents of A+T are 76.5% (sheep isolate), 76.4% (goat isolate) and 76.9% (China yak isolate), respectively. Phylogenetic relationships reconstructed using concatenated amino acid sequences of 12 protein-coding genes with three methods (maximum likelihood, Bayesian inference and neighbor joining) revealed that the B. trigonocephalum and B. phlebotomum represent distinct but closely-related species. These data provide novel and useful genetic markers for studying the systematics, and population genetics of the two ruminant hookworms.
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Comparative analysis of microRNA profiles between adult Ascaris lumbricoides and Ascaris suum.
BMC Vet. Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-03-2014
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The parasitic nematodes Ascaris lumbricoides and A. suum are of great public health and economic significance, and the two taxa were proposed to represent a single species. miRNAs are known with functions of gene regulations at post-transcriptional level.
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Geographical patterns of Toxoplasma gondii genetic diversity revealed by multilocus PCR-RFLP genotyping.
Parasitology
PUBLISHED: 01-31-2014
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In recent years, an extensive collection of Toxoplasma gondii samples have been typed using a set of 10 PCR-RFLP genetic markers. Here we summarize the data reported until the end of 2012. A total of 1457 samples were typed into 189 genotypes. Overall, only a few genotypes dominate in the northern hemisphere, which is in stark contrast to the southern hemisphere where hundreds of genotypes coexist with none being notably dominant. PCR-RFLP genotype #1 (Type II clonal), #2 (Type III), #3 (Type II variant) and #10 (Type I) are identified globally. Genotypes #2 and #3 dominate in Africa, genotypes #9 (Chinese 1) and #10 are prevalent in Asia, genotypes #1, #2 and #3 are prevalent in Europe, genotypes #1, #2, #3, #4 and #5 dominate in North America (#4 and #5 are collectively known as Type 12). In Central and South America, there is no clear dominance of any genotype even though a few have relatively higher frequencies. Statistical analysis indicates significant differences among populations in Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, and Central and South America, with only Europe and North America exhibiting similar diversity. Collectively, the results revealed distinct population structures and geographical patterns of diversity in T. gondii.
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High seroprevalence of Chlamydia infection in sows in Hunan province, subtropical China.
Trop Anim Health Prod
PUBLISHED: 01-28-2014
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Chlamydia spp. are Gram-negative obligate intracellular bacteria, which are responsible for significant public health problems in humans and have major economic impact on animals. In the present study, the seroprevalence of Chlamydia infection in sows in Hunan province, subtropical China, was examined using indirect hemagglutination assay (IHA). Antibodies to Chlamydia were detected in 747 of 1,191 (62.7%, 95% CI 60-65.5) serum samples (IHA titer ? 1:16). The Chlamydia seroprevalence ranged from 35% (95% CI 25.7-44.4) to 77.1% (95% CI 69.1-85.2) among different regions in Hunan province, and the differences were statistically significant (P < 0.01). In addition, the seroprevalence of Chlamydia infection in sows was higher in summer (75.7%, 95% CI 71.3-80) and spring (63.2%, 95% CI 57.5-68.8) than in autumn (56.9%, 95% CI 51.5-62.3) and winter (48.6%, 95% CI 42-55.3), and the differences were statistically significant (P < 0.01). The results of the present investigation indicated the high seroprevalence of Chlamydia infection in sows in Hunan province, subtropical China, which poses a potential risk for human infection with Chlamydia in this province. This is the first report of Chlamydia seroprevalence in sows over the last two decades in Hunan province, subtropical China.
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Global characterization of microRNAs in Trichomonas gallinae.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 01-20-2014
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Trichomonas gallinae is a protozoan parasite causing trichomonosis in many species of domestic poultry and birds world-wide. microRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small non-coding RNAs that play key roles in gene regulation. However, no miRNAs have been characterized from T. gallinae.
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Chabertia erschowi (Nematoda) is a distinct species based on nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences and mitochondrial DNA sequences.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 01-18-2014
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Gastrointestinal nematodes of livestock have major socio-economic importance worldwide. In small ruminants, Chabertia spp. are responsible for economic losses to the livestock industries globally. Although much attention has given us insights into epidemiology, diagnosis, treatment and control of this parasite, over the years, only one species (C. ovina) has been accepted to infect small ruminants, and it is not clear whether C. erschowi is valid as a separate species.
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Toxoplasma gondii: protective immunity induced by rhoptry protein 9 (TgROP9) against acute toxoplasmosis.
Exp. Parasitol.
PUBLISHED: 01-17-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii rhoptry protein 9 (ROP9) is involved in the early stages of host invasion, and contains B cell epitopes. The aim of this study was to evaluate the immune protective efficacy of a DNA vaccine encoding TgROP9 gene against acute T. gondii infection in mice. A DNA vaccine (pVAX-ROP9) encoding TgROP9 inserted into eukaryotic expression vector pVAX I was constructed, and the efficacy of intramuscular vaccination of Kunming mice with pVAX-ROP9 was analyzed. Mice immunized with pVAX-ROP9 induced a high level of specific anti-T. gondii antibodies, as well as a mixed IgG1/IgG2a response with predominance of IgG2a production. Also, injection of pVAX-ROP9 induced a specific lymphocyte proliferative responses and Th1-type cellular immune response with production of IFN-? and interleukin-2. The percentages of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells were significantly increased in mice immunized with pVAX-ROP9, compared to empty vector, PBS or blank controls. Immunization with pVAX-ROP9 significantly (P<0.05) prolonged survival time (12.9±2.9days) after challenge infection with the virulent T. gondii RH strain (Type I), compared with the control groups which died within 6days. DNA vaccination with pVAX-ROP9 triggered strong humoral and cellular responses, and induced effective protection in mice against acute T. gondii infection, indicating that TgROP9 is a promising vaccine candidate against acute toxoplasmosis.
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Sequence variability in four mitochondrial genes among rabbit pinworm (Passalurus ambiguus) isolates from different localities in China.
Mitochondrial DNA
PUBLISHED: 01-14-2014
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Abstract Passalurus ambiguus is a common pinworm which parasitizes in the caecum and colon of rabbits. This study examined genetic variability among P. ambiguus isolated from naturally infected rabbits in four different provinces in China. The partial mitochondrial (mt) cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (pcox1), cytochrome b (pcytb) and NADH dehydrogenase subunits 1 and 5 (pnad1 and pnad5) were amplified separately from individual nematodes by PCR and sequenced. The results showed that pcox1, pcytb, pnad1 and pnad5 were 714, 663, 645 and 546?bp in length, respectively. The intra-specific sequence variations within P. ambiguus were 0-1.1% for pcox1, 0-1.2% for pcytb, 0-0.6% for pnad1 and 0-1.3% for pnad5, whereas inter-specific sequence differences with other members of the Oxyuridae were 16.2-17.3% for pcox1, 27.8-30.4% for pcytb, 20.2-24.0% for pnad1 and 27.1-30.3% for pnad5. Phylogenetic analyses using Bayesian inference (BI), maximum likelihood (ML) and maximum parsimony (MP) methods, based on the combined sequences of the four partial mtDNA sequences, revealed that all the P. ambiguus samples form monophyletic groups. This study demonstrated the existence of low-level intra-specific variation in cox1, cytb, nad1 and nad5 genes among P. ambiguus isolates from different geographic regions in China, and these four mtDNA sequences can be used as genetic markers for the population genetic studies of P. ambiguus, as well as the differentiation of P. ambiguus from other oxyurid nematodes.
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Seroprevalence and risk factors associated with Haemophilus parasuis infection in Tibetan pigs in Tibet.
Acta Trop.
PUBLISHED: 01-05-2014
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Haemophilus parasuis is the causative agent of Glässer's disease, an important emerging infectious disease, but little is known of H. parasuis infection in Tibetan pigs in Tibet. The objective of the present investigation was to examine H. parasuis seroprevalence in Tibetan pigs in Tibet, China. Serum samples from 423 Tibetan pigs in Nyingchi, Tibet, China from April to December in 2010 were examined independently for the presence of antibodies against H. parasuis. A total of 147 (34.75%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 30.21-39.29) Tibetan pigs were tested positive for H. parasuis antibodies by the indirect hemagglutination assay (IHA) using a kit commercially available. 80 of 231 in Nyingchi (34.63%, 95% CI 28.50-40.77) and 67 of 192 in Mainling (34.89%, 95% CI 28.15-41.64) were tested positive, but the difference was not statistically significant (P>0.05, ?(2)=0.003). The prevalence ranged from 19.72% (95% CI 10.46-28.97) to 75.00% (95% CI 32.57-100) varying in different age groups, with higher prevalence in breeding boars than in piglets, and the difference was statistically significant (P<0.05). The prevalence of H. parasuis infection in males (45.03%, 95% CI 37.57-52.49) was significantly higher than that in the female (30%, 95% CI 22.41-37.59) pigs (P<0.05, ?(2)=7.361). Gender of Tibetan pigs was the main risk factor associated with H. parasuis infection. The results of the present survey indicated a wide distribution of H. parasuis among Tibetan pigs in Tibet, China and further investigation should better assess circulation of H. parasuis in Tibetan pigs. To the best of our knowledge, the present study represents the first report of H. parasuis infection in Tibetan pigs in China.
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Advances in studies of disease-navigating webs: Sarcoptes scabiei as a case study.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 01-02-2014
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The discipline of epidemiology is the study of the patterns, causes and effects of health and disease conditions in defined anima populations. It is the key to evidence-based medicine, which is one of the cornerstones of public health. One of the important facets of epidemiology is disease-navigating webs (disease-NW) through which zoonotic and multi-host parasites in general move from one host to another. Epidemiology in this context includes (i) classical epidemiological approaches based on the statistical analysis of disease prevalence and distribution and, more recently, (ii) genetic approaches with approximations of disease-agent population genetics. Both approaches, classical epidemiology and population genetics, are useful for studying disease-NW. However, both have strengths and weaknesses when applied separately, which, unfortunately, is too often current practice. In this paper, we use Sarcoptes scabiei mite epidemiology as a case study to show how important an integrated approach can be in understanding disease-NW and subsequent disease control.
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Prevalence of Sarcoptes scabiei infection in pet dogs in southern China.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Little is known about the prevalence of Sarcoptes scabiei infection in pet dogs in China. In the present study, the prevalence of S. scabiei infection in pet dogs in Guangzhou, southern China, was investigated between January and December, 2009. A total of 3,977 pet dogs admitted to animal hospitals were examined for the presence of S. scabiei using a parasitological approach. The average prevalence of S. scabiei infection in pet dogs is 1.18% (95% confidence interval (CI): 0.85-1.52%). The prevalence of S. scabiei was higher in winter (1.42%; 95% CI: 0.29-2.55%), summer (1.39%; 95% CI: 0.83-1.96%), and autumn (1.1%; 95% CI: 0.53-1.68%) than in spring (0.63%; 95% CI: 0.02-1.25%). Furthermore, the prevalence of S. scabiei was the highest in Pekingese (21.88%; 95% CI: 7.55-36.2%), followed by Papillon (5.26%; 95% CI: 0-11.06%) and Bichon Frise (3.19%; 95% CI: 0-6.75%). The results of the present investigation indicate that S. scabiei infection is prevalent in pet dogs in Guangzhou, China, which provides relevant "baseline" data for conducting control strategies and measures against scabies in this region and elsewhere in China. To our knowledge, this is the first comprehensive report of S. scabiei prevalence in pet dogs in China.
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Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in sows in Hunan province, China.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Toxoplasma gondii infections are prevalent in animals and humans worldwide. Although the prevalence of T. gondii has been reported in many animals in China, little is known of T. gondii infection in sows. Antibodies to T. gondii in sows in Hunan province, subtropical China, were examined using indirect hemagglutination test (IHAT). Overall, 31.3% (373/1191) of the examined sows were seropositive for T. gondii. Among 11 representative regions of Hunan province, the seroprevalence ranged from 14.8% to 45.1%. In addition, the T. gondii seroprevalence was higher in summer (37.4%) and autumn (34.9%) than in spring (24.6%) and winter (23.9%). Regarding different antibody titers, the seroprevalence ranged from 1.8% (titer ? 1: 1024) to 17.4% (titer = 1:64). The findings of the present investigation revealed the high seroprevalence of T. gondii in sows in Hunan province, China, which poses a potential risk for T. gondii infection in humans and animals in this province. Therefore, effective measures should be taken to prevent and control toxoplasmosis of pigs in this province. This is the first report of the comprehensive survey of T. gondii seroprevalence in sows in Hunan Province, subtropical China.
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Genetic differences between Chabertia ovina and C. erschowi revealed by sequence analysis of four mitochondrial genes.
Mitochondrial DNA
PUBLISHED: 12-17-2013
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Abstract This study examined sequence differences in mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox1), large subunit ribosomal RNA (rrnL) and NADH dehydrogenase subunits 1 and 4 (nad1 and nad4) between Chabertia ovina and C. erschowi from yaks in Qinghai and goats in Shaanxi provinces, China. A part of the cox1 (pcox1), rrnL (prrnL), nad1 and nad4 genes (pnad1 and pnad4) were amplified separately from individual nematodes by PCR and sequenced. The length of the sequences of pcox1, prrnL, pnad1 and pnad4 was 441?bp, 450?bp, 526?bp and 914?bp for C. ovina, and 441?bp, 451?bp, 517?bp and 810?bp for C. erschowi, respectively. The intra-specific sequence variations within C. ovina were 0.2-2.9% for pcox1, 0-0.9% for prrnL, 0.6-2.3% for pnad1, and 0.4-2.0% for pnad4, and were 0.5-1.6% for pcox1, 0-1.1% for prrnL, 0.2-1.7% for pnad1, and 0.4-1.1% for pnad4 within C. erschowi. Whereas, the inter-specific sequence differences between the two species were obviously higher, being 11.6-12.9% for pcox1, 9.8-11.1% for prrnL, 14.4-15.9% for pnad1, and 16.4-17.7% for pnad4. Phylogenetic analyses using Bayesian inference (BI), based on combined sequences of four genes, indicated that the C. ovina and C. erschowi represent distinct species. These results demonstrate that these mt gene sequences provide novel genetic markers for the identificaiton and differentiation C. ovina and C. erschowi, and have implications for studying the population genetics and molecular epidemiology of Chabertia spp.
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The complete mitochondrial genome sequence of Eimeria magna (Apicomplexa: Coccidia).
Mitochondrial DNA
PUBLISHED: 12-17-2013
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Abstract In the present study, we determined the complete mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequence of Eimeria magna from rabbits for the first time, and compared its gene contents and genome organizations with that of seven Eimeria spp. from domestic chickens. The size of the complete mt genome sequence of E. magna is 6249?bp, which consists of 3 protein-coding genes (cytb, cox1 and cox3), 12 gene fragments for the large subunit (LSU) rRNA, and 7 gene fragments for the small subunit (SSU) rRNA, without transfer RNA genes, in accordance with that of Eimeria spp. from chickens. The putative direction of translation for three genes (cytb, cox1 and cox3) was the same as those of Eimeria species from domestic chickens. The content of A?+?T is 65.16% for E. magna mt genome (29.73% A, 35.43% T, 17.09 G and 17.75% C). The E. magna mt genome sequence provides novel mtDNA markers for studying the molecular epidemiology and population genetics of Eimeria spp. and has implications for the molecular diagnosis and control of rabbit coccidiosis.
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Vaccines against Toxoplasma gondii: new developments and perspectives.
Expert Rev Vaccines
PUBLISHED: 10-04-2013
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Toxoplasmosis caused by the protozoan Toxoplasma gondii is a major public health problem, infecting one-third of the world human beings, and leads to abortion in domestic animals. A vaccine strategy would be an ideal tool for improving disease control. Many efforts have been made to develop vaccines against T. gondii to reduce oocyst shedding in cats and tissue cyst formation in mammals over the last 20 years, but only a live-attenuated vaccine based on the S48 strain has been licensed for veterinary use. Here, the authors review the recent development of T. gondii vaccines in cats, food-producing animals and mice, and present its future perspectives. However, a single or only a few antigen candidates revealed by various experimental studies are limited by only eliciting partial protective immunity against T. gondii. Future studies of T. gondii vaccines should include as many CTL epitopes as the live attenuated vaccines.
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Genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii from Qinghai vole, Plateau pika and Tibetan ground-tit on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 09-15-2013
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The distribution of genetic diversity of Toxoplasma gondii in wildlife is of interest to understand the transmission of this parasite in the environment. Limited information on T. gondii genotypes has been reported in wildlife in China. The objective of this study was to carry out the genetic characterization of T. gondii isolates from wild animals on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.
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First report of seroprevalence of swine influenza a virus in Tibetan pigs in Tibet, China.
Trop Anim Health Prod
PUBLISHED: 08-06-2013
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Swine influenza A virus (SIV) is zoonotic pathogen that can be acquired by food-borne transmission because food animals, for example pigs, are recognized as a reservoir. The objectives of this study were to determine the seroprevalence of anti-SIV (H1N1 and H3N2) in Tibetan pigs in Tibet Nationality Autonomous Region, China, a region with cold weather and high altitude. A total of 421 serum samples were randomly collected from Tibetan pigs in Tibet and were evaluated for antibodies against SIV using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Overall, 52 % (219/421) of the animals was positive for H1N1, 16.9 % (71/421) positive for H3N2, and 8.8 % (37/421) positive for both H1N1 and H3N2. The results of the present survey indicated that SIV is highly prevalent among Tibetan pigs in Tibet, China. The results of the present investigation have implications for the ongoing control of SIV infection in Tibetan pigs in Tibet, China and elsewhere.
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Protective immunity against Toxoplasma gondii induced by DNA immunization with the gene encoding a novel vaccine candidate: calcium-dependent protein kinase 3.
BMC Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 08-05-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii can infect almost all warm-blood animals including human beings. The plant-like calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) harbored by T. gondii are involved in gliding motility, cell invasion, egress and some other developmental processes, and so have been implicated as important virulence factors.
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Genetic variability among Schistosoma japonicum isolates from the Philippines, Japan and China revealed by sequence analysis of three mitochondrial genes.
Mitochondrial DNA
PUBLISHED: 08-02-2013
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Abstract The present study examined sequence variability in the mitochondrial (mt) protein-coding genes cytochrome b (cytb), NADH dehydrogenase subunits 2 and 6 (nad2 and nad6) among 24 isolates of Schistosoma japonicum from different endemic regions in the Philippines, Japan and China. The complete cytb, nad2 and nad6 genes were amplified and sequenced separately from individual schistosome. Sequence variations for isolates from the Philippines were 0-0.5% for cytb, 0-0.6% for nad2, and 0-0.9% for nad6. Variation was 0-0.5%, 0.1-0.8%, 0-0.7% for corresponding genes for schistosome samples from mainland China. For worms in Japan, genetic variations were 0-0.2%, 0.1-0.2% and 0 for the three genes, respectively. Sequence variations were 0-1.0%, 0-1.8% and 0-1.1% for cytb, nad2 and nad6, respectively, among schistosome isolates from different geographical strains in the Philippines, Japan and China. Of the three countries, lowest sequence variations were found between isolates from mainland China and the Philippines and highest were detected between Japan and the Philippines in three mtDNA genes. Phylogenetic analyses based on the combined sequences of cytb, nad2 and nad6 revealed that all isolates in the Philippines clustered together sistered to samples from Yunnan and Zhejiang provinces in China, while isolates from Yamanashi in Japan were in a solitary clade. These results demonstrated the usefulness of the combined three mtDNA sequences for studying genetic diversity and population structure among S. japonicum isolates from the Philippines, China and Japan.
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Seroprevalence and risk factors of Chlamydia infection in dogs in Southwestern China.
Acta Trop.
PUBLISHED: 07-27-2013
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Chlamydia spp. are obligate intracellular bacteria distributed globally, known to cause various forms of diseases in animals and humans. To date, there is limited information about the seroprevalence of Chlamydia and the risk factors associated with Chlamydia infection in dogs in the world. In the present study, a serological survey was undertaken to examine the seroprevalence and risk factors associated with dog chlamydiosis in Yunnan Province, southwestern China. A total of 591 dogs were sampled, antibodies to Chlamydia were determined by indirect hemagglutination assay (IHA). The overall seroprevalence was estimated at 17.6%. The risk factors associated with seroprevalence were determined by a multivariate logistic regression analysis. Gender and age of dogs were not significant in the logistic regression analysis (P>0.05) and left out of the final model. Type and geographical origin of dogs were considered as main risk factors associated with Chlamydia infection, stray dogs (31.37%) were more than 16 times (OR=16.167, 95% CI=6.283-41.599, P<0.01) at risk of acquiring the infection compared to the police dogs (7.62%), while pet dogs (14.41%) had a 3 times (OR=2.968, 95% CI=1.349-6.529, P=0.007) higher risk. Positive dogs were found in 5 districts of Yunnan Province with prevalence ranging from 2.56% to 31.67% except Diqing (0/56). Dogs in Kunming (20.21%) had a 9 times higher risk of being seropositive compared to dogs in Lijiang (2.56%) (OR=9.057, 95% CI=1.211-67.714, P=0.032), although no regional differences were found in other 4 administrative divisions compared to Lijiang (P>0.05). Our study revealed a widespread and high prevalence of Chlamydia infection in dogs in Yunnan Province, southwestern China, with higher exposure risk in stray dogs and distinct geographical distribution. These findings suggest the potential importance of dogs in the transmission of zoonotic Chlamydia infection, and thus Chlamydia should be taken into consideration in diagnosing dog diseases.
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Consumption of hydrogen-rich water protects against ferric nitrilotriacetate-induced nephrotoxicity and early tumor promotional events in rats.
Food Chem. Toxicol.
PUBLISHED: 07-24-2013
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The aim of this work was to test whether consumption with hydrogen-rich water (HW) alleviated renal injury and inhibited early tumor promotional events in Ferric nitrilotriacetate (Fe-NTA)-treated rats. Rats were injected with Fe-NTA solution (7.5mg Fe/kg body weight) intraperitoneally to induce renal injury and simultaneously treated with HW (1.3±0.2mg/l). We found that consumption with HW ameliorated Fe-NTA-induced renal injuries including suppressing elevation of serum creatinine and blood urea nitrogen and inhibited early tumor promotional events including decreasing ornithine decarboxylase activity and incorporation of [3H]thymidine into renal DNA. Consumption with HW suppressed Fe-NTA-induced oxidative stress through decreasing formation of lipid peroxidation and peroxynitrite and activities of NADPH oxidase and xanthine oxidase, increasing activity of catalase, and restoring mitochondrial function in kidneys. Consumption with HW suppressed Fe-NTA-induced inflammation marked by reduced NF-?B, IL-6, and MCP-1 expression and macrophage accumulating in kidneys. In addition, consumption with HW suppressed VEGF expression, STAT3 phosphorylation and PCNA expression in kidneys of Fe-NTA-treated rats. Consumption with HW decreased the incidence of renal cell carcinoma and suppressed tumor growth in Fe-NTA-treated in rats. In conclusion, drinking with HW attenuated Fe-NTA-induced renal injury and inhibited early tumor promotional events in rats.
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DNA immunization with eukaryotic initiation factor-2? of Toxoplasma gondii induces protective immunity against acute and chronic toxoplasmosis in mice.
Vaccine
PUBLISHED: 07-06-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii infection is a serious health problem of humans and animals worldwide. T. gondii eukaryotic initiation factor-2? (TgIF2?) plays a crucial role in parasite viability and is an important virulence factor of T. gondii. To evaluate the vaccine potential of TgIF2?, we constructed a novel eukaryotic plasmid pVAX-IF2? expressing TgIF2? from the RH strain and validated expression and immunogenicity in vitro in the Marc145 cell expression system by indirect immunofluorescence (IFA). Administration of pVAX-IF2? intramuscularly induced specific humoral immune responses including high levels of specific TgIF2? IgG antibody and a mixed IgG1/IgG2a response with a predominance of IgG2a production. The cellular immune response was elicited, showing significant production of IFN-? and IL-2 associated with Th1 type response, and thus strong cell-mediated cytotoxic activity with increased frequencies of IFN-? parameters analyzed in both CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cell compartments (CD4(+) IFN-?(+) T cells and CD8(+) IFN-?(+) T cells). Immunization resulted in partial protection against acute and chronic toxoplamosis in outbred Kunming mice, demonstrated by a significantly prolonged survival time (15.9±4.6 days) after challenge with the virulent RH strain and significant reduction in brain cysts (44.1%) against chronic infection with PRU cyst in contrast to control mice. Our data suggested that pVAX-IF2? could be used as a DNA vaccine candidate against both acute and chronic T. gondii infection by the activation of effective humoral and cellular immune responses.
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The complete mitochondrial genomes of three parasitic nematodes of birds: a unique gene order and insights into nematode phylogeny.
BMC Genomics
PUBLISHED: 06-19-2013
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Analyses of mitochondrial (mt) genome sequences in recent years challenge the current working hypothesis of Nematoda phylogeny proposed from morphology, ecology and nuclear small subunit rRNA gene sequences, and raise the need to sequence additional mt genomes for a broad range of nematode lineages.
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Genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii from pigs from different localities in China by PCR-RFLP.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 06-14-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii is a widely prevalent protozoan parasite that causes serious toxoplasmosis in humans and animals. The present study aimed to determine the genetic diversity of T. gondii isolates from pigs in Jiangxi, Sichuan, Guangdong Provinces and Chongqing Municipality in China using multilocous polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) technology.
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The complete mitochondrial genome of Toxascaris leonina: Comparison with other closely related species and phylogenetic implications.
Infect. Genet. Evol.
PUBLISHED: 06-13-2013
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Adults of Toxascaris leonina (Nematoda: Ascarididae) live in the gastrointestinal tract of both dogs and cats, and cause significant economic losses and potential public health problem worldwide. Although many studies have given insights into this significant pathogen, to date, the complete mitochondrial (mt) genome sequence is still not available for T. leonina. Here, we sequenced the complete mt genome of T. leonina. This AT-rich (71.53%) mt genome (14,310bp) is circular and consists of 36 genes, including 12 genes for proteins, 2 genes for rRNA and 22 genes for tRNA. All mt genes of T. leonina are transcribed in the same direction. The gene order is the same as those of Ascaris spp. (Ascarididae), Toxocara spp. (Toxocaridae), Anisakis simplex and Contracaecum rudolphii B (Anisakidae), but distinct from that of Ascaridia spp. (Ascaridiidae). Phylogenetic analyses using concatenated amino acid sequences of 12 protein-coding genes by Bayesian inference (BI) showed distinct groups with high statistical support, and our data confirm that T. leonina is a member of the Ascarididae, and that this family is more closely related to the Toxocaridae rather than the Anisakidae within the Ascaridoidea. The determination of mt genome sequences of T. leonina provides novel genetic markers for studies into the systematics, population genetics and epidemiology of this parasite.
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Identification and characterization of microRNAs in Baylisascaris schroederi of the giant panda.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 06-12-2013
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Baylisascaris schroederi is one of the most significant threats to the giant pandas survival, responsible for half of the deaths reported from 2001 to 2005. MicroRNA (miRNA) has been identified as one of the key factors for gene regulations at the post-transcriptional level, and also considered as a potential control and treatment target against infectious diseases.
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Chlamydia felis exposure in companion dogs and cats in Lanzhou, China: a public health concern.
BMC Vet. Res.
PUBLISHED: 05-17-2013
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Chlamydiaceae is a family of obligate intracellular pathogens with a worldwide distribution in many animal species, including humans. No information exists on the prevalence of Chlamydia felis infections in cats and dogs in Lanzhou, the geographical center of China. The aim of this study was to carry out a census of cats and dogs in Lanzhou and document the seroprevalence of C. felis exposure in these companion animals.
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DNA prime and peptide boost immunization protocol encoding the Toxoplasma gondii GRA4 induces strong protective immunity in BALB/c mice.
BMC Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 05-06-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii is a widespread intracellular parasite, which infects most vertebrate animal hosts and causes zoonotic infection in humans. Vaccine strategy remains a promising method for the prevention and control of toxoplasmosis. T. gondii GRA4 protein has been identified as a potential candidate for vaccine development. In our study, we evaluated the immune response induced by four different immunization vaccination strategies encoding TgGRA4.
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Mitochondrial genomes of Anisakis simplex and Contracaecum osculatum (sensu stricto) - Comparisons with selected nematodes.
Infect. Genet. Evol.
PUBLISHED: 04-24-2013
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Anisakid nematodes parasitize mainly fish, marine mammals and/or fish-eating birds, and can be transmitted to a range of fish-eating mammals, including humans, where they can cause gastrointestinal disease linked to larval infection or allergic responses. In spite of the animal and human health significance of these parasites, there are still gaps in our understanding of the systematics, biology, epidemiology and ecology of anisakids. Mitochondrial (mt) DNA provides useful genetic markers for investigations in these areas, but complete mt genomic data have been lacking for most anisakids. In the present study, the mt genomes of Anisakis simplex sensu stricto and Contracaecum osculatum sensu stricto were amplified from genomic DNA by long-range polymerase chain reaction and sequenced using 454 technology. The circular mt genomes of these species were 13,926 and 13,823bp, respectively, and each of them contained 12 protein-coding, 22 transfer RNA, and 2 ribosomal RNA genes consistent for members of the Ascaridida, Oxyurida, Spirurida, Rhabditida and Strongylida. These mt genomes provide a stepping-stone for future comparative analyses among a range of anisakids and a basis for reinvestigating their genetic relationships. In addition, these markers might be used in prospecting for cryptic species and exploring host affiliations.
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Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in horses and donkeys in Yunnan Province, Southwestern China.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 04-22-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii is an intracellular protozoan parasite that infects almost all warm-blooded animals, including humans, with a worldwide distribution. There have been limited reports about the seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in equids around the world and little is known about the seroprevalence of T. gondii in equids in southwestern China, in particular in Yunnan Province. The objective of the present investigation was to estimate the seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in equids in this area.
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Identification and characterization of Toxoplasma gondii aspartic protease 1 as a novel vaccine candidate against toxoplasmosis.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 04-20-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite that can pose a serious threat to human health by causing toxoplasmosis. There are no drugs that target the chronic cyst stage of this infection; therefore, development of an effective vaccine would be an important advance. Aspartic proteases play essential roles in the T. gondii lifecycle. The parasite has four aspartic protease encoding genes, which are called toxomepsin 1, 2, 3 and 5 (TgASP1, 2, 3 and 5, respectively).
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Characterization of mouse brain microRNAs after infection with cyst-forming Toxoplasma gondii.
Parasit Vectors
PUBLISHED: 04-16-2013
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BACKGROUND: The obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii can interfere with host cell signaling pathways, alter host defense systems and cell cycle control, and establish a chronic infection in the central nervous system. T. gondii infection may alter the expression profile of host microRNAs (miRNAs) which have key regulatory functions at the post-transcriptional level. METHODS: Using high-throughput sequencing and real-time quantitative PCR technology, we compared the miRNA expression profiles of uninfected mouse brains with brains from mice at 14 days and 21 days after infection with cyst-forming T. gondii (Type II). RESULTS: A total of 51.30 million raw reads were obtained from all samples and 495 (14d infected mouse sample), 511 (14d sham-infected control), 504 (21d infected mouse sample) and 514 (21d sham-infected control) miRNA candidates identified. Among these, 414 miRNAs were consistent across all the studied groups, 17 were specific to the 14d infected group and 32 were specific to the 21d infected group. In addition, 9 miRNAs were common to both the 14d- and 21d-infected groups. Enrichment analysis for the targets of these miRNAs showed a high percentage of "protein tag" functions. Immune related targets including chemokines, cytokines, growth factors and interleukins were also found. CONCLUSIONS: These results not only showed that the miRNA expression of the host can be changed by the invasion of cyst-forming T. gondii, but also indicated that the host attempts to respond using two tactics: marking proteins with "protein tags" and adaptation of immune related systems.
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The genome and developmental transcriptome of the strongylid nematode Haemonchus contortus.
Genome Biol.
PUBLISHED: 04-10-2013
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The barbers pole worm, Haemonchus contortus, is one of the most economically important parasites of small ruminants worldwide. Although this parasite can be controlled using anthelmintic drugs, resistance against most drugs in common use has become a widespread problem. We provide a draft of the genome and the transcriptomes of all key developmental stages of H. contortus to support biological and biotechnological research areas of this and related parasites.
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Growth and expression of rat bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells modified by nerve growth factor in diabetic rat bladders.
Mol Med Rep
PUBLISHED: 03-13-2013
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The aim of the present study was to determine whether rat bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) transfected with the nerve growth factor (NGF) gene and then transplanted into diabetic rat bladder tissues survive and continue to express NGF. A recombinant lentiviral vector carrying the NGF gene was constructed and transfected into rat bone marrow MSCs. BrdU?labeled immunohistochemistry was used to observe NGF expression in the transfected MSCs. BrdU?labeled and NGF?transfected MSCs were transplanted into diabetic rat bladder tissues. BrdU?labeled immunohistochemistry was used to observe the growth of NGF?transfected MSCs in the tissue samples. NGF mRNA and protein expression levels in MSCs were analyzed using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and ELISA, respectively. The recombinant NGF gene lentiviral vector and NGF gene-modified rat bone marrow MSCs were successfully constructed. NGF gene-modified rat MSCs survived in the diabetic rat bladders 4 weeks following injection and NGF gene expression was increased. In the present study, NGF gene-modified MSCs were shown to be capable of survival in diabetic rat bladder tissues and stably expressed NGF.
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Serological evidence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in five species of bats in China.
Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis.
PUBLISHED: 03-08-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite that can infect almost all warm-blooded animals and humans with a worldwide distribution. Bats are reservoirs for an increasing number of emerging zoonotic viruses, such as henipaviruses and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV). However, little is known of T. gondii infection in bats. The objective of the present study was to determine the seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in bats in China. A total of 217 serum samples from 5 species of bats were collected between April, 2010, and August, 2011, from 4 provinces in China. Antibodies to T. gondii were determined using the modified agglutination test (MAT, 1:25 or higher). Antibodies to T. gondii were found in 26.5% (18/68) Megaderma lyra, 13.6% (12/88) Rousettus leschenaulti, 13.6% (3/22) Cynopterus sphinx, 20% (4/20) Vespertilio superaus, and 15.8% (3/19) Pipistrellus javanicus. Antibody titers ranged from 1:25 to 1:400, with titers of 1:200 detected in 4 of the 5 bat species. The present study suggests the likely occurrence of T. gondii infection in bats in China, and these bats are new putative hosts for T. gondii, which may pose a threat to human health.
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Toxoplasma gondii cathepsin proteases are undeveloped prominent vaccine antigens against toxoplasmosis.
BMC Infect. Dis.
PUBLISHED: 03-01-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii, an obligate intracellular apicomplexan parasite, infects a wide range of warm-blooded animals including humans. T. gondii expresses five members of the C1 family of cysteine proteases, including cathepsin B-like (TgCPB) and cathepsin L-like (TgCPL) proteins. TgCPB is involved in ROP protein maturation and parasite invasion, whereas TgCPL contributes to proteolytic maturation of proTgM2AP and proTgMIC3. TgCPL is also associated with the residual body in the parasitophorous vacuole after cell division has occurred. Both of these proteases are potential therapeutic targets in T. gondii. The aim of this study was to investigate TgCPB and TgCPL for their potential as DNA vaccines against T. gondii.
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Evaluation of protective effect of pVAX-TgMIC13 plasmid against acute and chronic Toxoplasma gondii infection in a murine model.
Vaccine
PUBLISHED: 02-21-2013
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Toxoplasma gondii is a significant zoonotic parasite which can cause congenital infection and abortion in warm-blooded animals and humans. Microneme protein 13 (MIC13) plays an important role in attachment and penetration of the host cell by T. gondii. In this study, a DNA vaccine expressing mic13 of T. gondii was constructed and its protective efficacy was evaluated in Kunming L615(H2k) mice. Immunization with pVAX-TgMIC13 induced a strong immune responses demonstrated by significant lymphocyte proliferation, cytokine production and antibody responses. Immunized mice showed increased survival time (21.3±11.3 days) and reduced number of cysts in brain of mice (57.14%) after challenge with tachyzoites of the virulent T. gondii RH strain and cysts of the T. gondii PRU strain, respectively, demonstrating that T. gondii MIC13 is a potential vaccine candidate, worth being included in future vaccine development against acute and chronic T. gondii infection.
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Genotyping Cryptosporidium andersoni in cattle in Shaanxi Province, Northwestern China.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 02-21-2013
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The present study examined the prevalence and genotypes of Cryptosporidium andersoni in cattle in Shaanxi province, China. A total of 2071 fecal samples (847 from Qinchuan cattle and 1224 from dairy cattle) were examined for the presence of Cryptosporidium oocysts, and 70 samples (3.4%) were C. andersoni-positive and those positive samples were identified by PCR amplification of the small subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rRNA) and the Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein (COWP) genes. C. andersoni was the only species found in the examined cattle in this province. Fifty-seven C. andersoni isolates were characterized into 5 MLST subtypes using multilocus sequence typing analysis, including a new subtype in the native beef breed Qinchuan cattle. All of these C. andersoni isolates presented a clonal genetic structure. These findings provide new insights into the genetic structure of C. andersoni isolates in Shaanxi province and basic data of Cryptosporidium prevalence status, which in turn have implications for controlling cryptosporidiosis in this province.
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