Submitted to: Journal of Korean Poultry Science
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: December 1, 1999
Publication Date: N/A
Protozoa of the genus Eimeria causes coccidiosis, the most economically important parasitic disease for the poultry industry. Chemotherapy is extensively used to control coccidiosis. However, development of drug resistance by Eimeria parasites, the intensive cost and labor involved in the identification of new anticoccidial compounds and public awareness of drug residues in foods warrant alternative methods to prevent coccidiosis in the fast growing poultry industry. For these reasons, there is a great interest in developing vaccines against avian coccidiosis. Recombinant vaccines are biochemically purified proteins produced by genetic engineering that consist of particular epitopes or metabolites of Eimeria. Unlike live attenuated organisms, recombinant vaccines do not possess as much risk and generally are able to induce both humoral and cell mediated immunity. Although all of these different types of vaccines have been applied to coccidiosis, this disease continues to cause substantial morbidity and mortality in the poultry industry. Future development of an effective vaccine against coccidiosis will depend on further investigation of protective immunity to Eimeria infection and identification of important immunogenic parasite molecules.