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The effects of protease inhibitors and sugars on the survival and development of the parasite Onchocerca ochengi in its natural intermediate host Simulium damnosum s.l.

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A range of protease inhibitors and carbohydrates were administered to the haemolymph of the vector Simulium damnosum s.l. to test for their effects on the success of an Onchocerca ochengi infection in vivo. We found that serine protease inhibitors led to a significant increase of parasite survival. Two sugars,d(+)‐galactose and methyl‐α‐d‐mannopyranoside, had the same effect. These effects are possibly due to the successful in vivo blocking of the two respective types of inducible immune molecules, the serine proteases and the carbohydrate binding lectins, both of which have been identified in simuliids.

Keywords: O. ochengi; S. damnosum; insect immunity; lectins; onchocerciasis; proteases

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: Department of Biological Sciences, Keele University, Staffordshire, UK

Publication date: March 1, 1997


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