Project Number: 1265-32000-082-00-D
Project Type: Appropriated
Start Date: Jan 22, 2007
End Date: Nov 9, 2011
Discover vaccine candidates that are effective in preventing and controlling neosporosis. Determine the role of management practices and on-farm exposure to dogs, rodents, and wildlife in the risk of contracting neosporosis. Determine life cycle, epidemiology, and control of Sarcocystis neurona.
Vaccine candidates will be discovered using genomics and proteomics tools and whole-cell and subunit vaccines will be tested in efficacy studies using the congenital and adult mouse model and the ovine model. Feed contamination with infective oocysts from the definitive canine host and rodent intermediate hosts will be determined as risk factors for horizontal transmission of neosporosis in cattle. Tissue parasitism in horses at different time periods after feeding various doses of S. neurona sporocysts will be evaluated. A search for additional intermediate and definitive hosts of S. neurona will also be conducted. The equine model will be characterized for testing vaccine efficacies and therapeutic interventions. Testing of ponazuril will continue in experimentally-infected horses. The gamma-interferon knock-out mouse model will continue to be used in the search for efficacious drugs against S. neurona. The study of immune basis of clinical EPM, S. neurona infections in various mouse models will continue. The genetic diversity and geographic distribution of S. neurona, microsatellite of new isolates from wildlife will continue.