Oncospheral penetration glands and secretory blebs are the sources of Taenia ovis vaccine antigens

Abdul Jabbar, Simon Crawford, Charles G. Gauci, Anna K. Walduck, Garry A. Anderson, Marshall W. Lightowlers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Taenia ovis is a cestode parasite infecting primarily sheep as intermediate hosts and dogs as definitive hosts. The first highly effective, recombinant vaccine against a parasitic organism was developed against T. ovis infection in sheep. Three separate host-protective antigens (To16, To18, and To45W) have been cloned from the oncosphere of the parasite. We localize these antigens in the oncosphere by using quantitative immunogold labeling and transmission electron microscopy. The three antigens were uniquely associated with penetration gland cells. The cytoplasm and secretory granules of both penetration gland type 1 and type 2 cells exhibited statistically significant levels of staining for each of the three antigens. The intensity of labeling of the penetration gland type 1 cell was approximately three to five times greater (P < 0.01) compared to the level of staining intensity seen in the penetration gland type 2 cell. In activated oncospheres, secretory blebs were found to contain granules with a structure similar to those observed in the penetration gland cells. The granules within the secretory blebs were shown to stain specifically for the presence of each of the three host-protective antigens. The absence of surface location of the T. ovis antigens suggests that the parasite may not be susceptible to vaccine-induced antibody- and complement-mediated attack until some postoncospheral development has occurred after infection of the intermediate host.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4363-4373
Number of pages11
JournalInfection and Immunity
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010


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