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Biotechnol Adv. 2015 Nov 1;33(6 Pt 1):980-91. doi: 10.1016/j.biotechadv.2015.05.004. Epub 2015 May 27.

Cracking the nodule worm code advances knowledge of parasite biology and biotechnology to tackle major diseases of livestock.

Author information

1
The Genome Institute, Washington University in St. Louis, MO 63108, USA.
2
Institute of Parasitology, Department of Pathobiology, University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, Veterinärplatz 1, A-1210 Vienna, Austria.
3
Department of Chemistry and Biomolecular Sciences, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
4
HHMI, Division of Biology, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA.
5
Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria 3010, Australia. Electronic address: robinbg@unimelb.edu.au.
6
The Genome Institute, Washington University in St. Louis, MO 63108, USA; Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA. Electronic address: mmitreva@genome.wustl.edu.

Abstract

Many infectious diseases caused by eukaryotic pathogens have a devastating, long-term impact on animal health and welfare. Hundreds of millions of animals are affected by parasitic nematodes of the order Strongylida. Unlocking the molecular biology of representatives of this order, and understanding nematode-host interactions, drug resistance and disease using advanced technologies could lead to entirely new ways of controlling the diseases that they cause. Oesophagostomum dentatum (nodule worm; superfamily Strongyloidea) is an economically important strongylid nematode parasite of swine worldwide. The present article reports recent advances made in biology and animal biotechnology through the draft genome and developmental transcriptome of O. dentatum, in order to support biological research of this and related parasitic nematodes as well as the search for new and improved interventions. This first genome of any member of the Strongyloidea is 443 Mb in size and predicted to encode 25,291 protein-coding genes. Here, we review the dynamics of transcription throughout the life cycle of O. dentatum, describe double-stranded RNA interference (RNAi) machinery and infer molecules involved in development and reproduction, and in inducing or modulating immune responses or disease. The secretome predicted for O. dentatum is particularly rich in peptidases linked to interactions with host tissues and/or feeding activity, and a diverse array of molecules likely involved in immune responses. This research progress provides an important resource for future comparative genomic and molecular biological investigations as well as for biotechnological research toward new anthelmintics, vaccines and diagnostic tests.

KEYWORDS:

Bioinformatics; Biotechnology; Genomics; Livestock; Nodule worm disease; Transcriptomics

PMID:
26026709
PMCID:
PMC4746232
DOI:
10.1016/j.biotechadv.2015.05.004
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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