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Title: Comparative pathogenesis and immunochemical analysis of Fasciola gigantica infections in cattle and sheep
Author: Wamae, Leonard Wachira
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1996
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Accurate economic quantification of the effects of Fasciola gigantica infections in cattle and sheep is essential to justify allocation of resources for control programmes. The present studies considered the comparative pathogenesis and economic loss caused by F. gigantica infection in young cattle and sheep of different breeds. Young cattle (Friesian and Boran) and sheep (Dorper and Red Maasai) were infected with single doses of F. gigantica metacercariae to produce chronic infections in cattle and acute, subacute and chronic infections in sheep. The animals were monitored parasitologically, biochemically and serologically. Immunochemical analysis of F. gigantica excretions/secretions using Western blotting and 35S-methionine biosynthetic radio-labelling were carried out with a view to identifying polypeptides of potential use in early prepatent diagnosis and protection and also to determine if there were any apparent species or breed differences in humoral antibody response to the parasite which may correlate with the differences in susceptibility/resistance to infection noted in the two species. When examined by routine meat inspection procedures, all the livers of infected cattle and sheep were condemned as unfit for human consumption. Based on the prepatent periods, weight loss and degrees of liver damage, production losses were found to be less severe in the Friesians than the Borans. Friesians, infected with 0.95 flukes/kg live weight lost an equivalent of 63g/fluke/year while the Borans, which had 1 fluke/kg live weight lost 157g/fluke/year. The Borans had higher haematological values (RBC counts, PCVs and haemoglobin concentrations) suggesting that they were less liable to develop anaemia as a result of infection than the Friesians. Interbreed differences were also seen in live weights and carcass weights of sheep. Mortalities were encountered at all levels of infection in sheep but were heaviest in acute infections where animals died at 12 weeks p.i. Subacute infections caused heavier live weight losses than chronic infection (4.2 and 4.5 g/fluke/week) in the infected Dorpers and Red Maasai respectively and there was a lower recovery from the latter, while chronic infections resulted in a loss of 2.4 and 3.1g/fluke/week respectively.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available