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The genome of the heartworm, Dirofilaria immitis, reveals drug and vaccine targets

Godel, C. and Kumar, S. and Koutsovoulos, G. and Ludin, P. and Nilsson, D. and Comandatore, F. and Wrobel, N. and Thompson, M. and Schmid, C. D. and Goto, S. and Bringaud, F. and Wolstenholme, A. and Bandi, C. and Epe, C. and Kaminsky, R. and Blaxter, M. and Mäser, P.. (2012) The genome of the heartworm, Dirofilaria immitis, reveals drug and vaccine targets. The FASEB Journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, Vol. 26, H. 11. pp. 4650-4661.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A6094417

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Abstract

The heartworm Dirofilaria immitis is an important parasite of dogs. Transmitted by mosquitoes in warmer climatic zones, it is spreading across southern Europe and the Americas at an alarming pace. There is no vaccine, and chemotherapy is prone to complications. To learn more about this parasite, we have sequenced the genomes of D. immitis and its endosymbiont Wolbachia. We predict 10,179 protein coding genes in the 84.2 Mb of the nuclear genome, and 823 genes in the 0.9-Mb Wolbachia genome. The D. immitis genome harbors neither DNA transposons nor active retrotransposons, and there is very little genetic variation between two sequenced isolates from Europe and the United States. The differential presence of anabolic pathways such as heme and nucleotide biosynthesis hints at the intricate metabolic interrelationship between the heartworm and Wolbachia. Comparing the proteome of D. immitis with other nematodes and with mammalian hosts, we identify families of potential drug targets, immune modulators, and vaccine candidates. This genome sequence will support the development of new tools against dirofilariasis and aid efforts to combat related human pathogens, the causative agents of lymphatic filariasis and river blindness.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Medical Parasitology and Infection Biology > Parasite Chemotherapy (Mäser)
UniBasel Contributors:Mäser, Pascal and Schmid, Christoph
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Bibsysno:Link to catalogue
Publisher:FASEB
ISSN:0892-6638
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:19 Jul 2013 07:44
Deposited On:19 Jul 2013 07:42

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