Interleukin 13 as a Biomarker for Parasite Resistance in Goats Naturally Exposed to Haemonchus contortus

  •  M. M. Corley    
  •  A. A. Jarmon    


Gut expulsion of some mammalian nematodes requires IL-13 secreted by Th2 cells. Interleukin 13 enhances gut contractions and glycoprotein hyper-secretion that propel parasites to detach from the gut wall. Haemonchus contortus is a gastrointestinal blood sucking nematode of small ruminants. This study evaluated expression of IL-13 in selected parasite resistant Spanish and Myotonic goats. Whole blood, and abomasal and intestinal tissues were harvested from goats exhibiting susceptibility and resistance to Haemonchus contortus through standard and molecular detection methods. An indirect Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay was performed to determine IL-13 expression. Results showed that IL-13 was expressed 70% more in intestinal than abomasal tissues. Parasite resistant goats expressed more IL-13 than susceptible goats. These data indicate that IL-13 expression may be useful as a biomarker for resistance to Haemonchus contortus infection in goats, allowing IL-13 based anthelmintic drug development and goat producers the ability to select parasite resistant animals.

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