Submitted to: Parasite Immunology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/12/2003
Publication Date: 10/1/2003
Citation: Goff, W.L., Johnson, W.C., Horn, R.H., Barrington, G.M., Knowles Jr, D.P. 2003. The innate immune response to calves in boophilus microplus tick transmitted babesia bovis involves type-1 cytokine induction and nk-like cells in the spleen. Parasite Immunology. 25:185-188 Interpretive Summary: Babesia bovis is a tick-transmitted microorganism, causing disease in cattle throughout much of the tropical and subtropical world. An improved vaccine against this disease has been difficult to develop due to the complex nature of the parasite and the lack of understanding of what constitutes a protective immune response in cattle. Young calves possess a strong innate immunity to this particular infection, and understanding the nature of the response should provide clues for what a successful vaccine must be able to stimulate. Our study further characterizes this innate immunity identifying important molecules that are produced and related to the protection as well as a cell type that appears to be involved in the response. This particular cell type may be the source of at least one of the important molecules involved in protection.
Technical Abstract: The innate immune response to Babesia bovis infection in cattle is age-related, spleen-dependent and, in stabilate inoculated calves, has type-1 characteristics including the early induction of IL-12 and IFN-gamma. In this study with three calves, parameters of innate immunity were followed for two weeks after tick transmission of B. bovis. Each calf survived the acute disease episode without drug intervention, and responded with increased levels of plasma interferon-gamma and type-1 cytokine expression, monocyte/macrophage activation, and CD8+ cellular proliferation in the spleen. The proliferating CD8+ population consisted primarily of NK-like cells, and the expansion occurred in parallel with an increase in IL-15 mRNA expression in the spleen.