Location: Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
Project Number: 8042-31320-076-000-D
Project Type: In-House Appropriated
Start Date: Oct 11, 2011
End Date: Oct 10, 2016
1) Determine the mechanisms controlling parasite development and induction of immunity in the host bird following infection. 2) Identify factors that impact the induction of immunity induced by coccidia vaccines. 3) Develop methods to assess the development of drug resistance in isolates of Eimeria recovered in the field.
Live Eimeria oocysts vaccines will be improved by testing the efficacy of and study immune responses elicited by gamma-irradiated Eimeria oocysts in protecting chickens against a coccidiosis. Optimum irradiation doses will be determined for the 3 major species of Eimeria that inhibits parasite development without affecting ability to elicit immunity. A novel delivery method by encapsulating Eimeria oocysts inside gelatin beads, and subsequent application onto feed for consumption by day-old chicks will be developed. Gel beads will be formulated to resist drying, and prepared containing low numbers of Eimeria oocysts. Day-old chicks will be fed gel beads, and tested at 4-5 weeks of age for immunity against coccidiosis. A rapid method for determining drug-sensitivity of Eimeria oocysts present in poultry facilities will be developed. Cell cultures containing various anti-coccidial compounds will be inoculated with field-strains of Eimeria sporozoites to determine sensitivity to these drugs.