Efficacy of the Bm86 antigen against immature instars and adults of the dog tick Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Latreille, 1806) (Acari: Ixodidae)
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The Bm86 antigen has been used to control ticks of the Boophilus genera in integrated programs that also include the use of acaricides. Because of recent phylogenetic studies have lead to the inclusion of all Boophilus species within the Rhipicephalus genera, we aimed to investigate the efficacy of the Bm86 antigen on the biotic potential of Rhipicephalus sanguineus. Domestic dogs were vaccinated with Bm86 and challenged with the three instars; of R. sanguineus. Male and female mongrel dogs were divided into two groups of four animals each, comprising non-vaccinated and vaccinated animals. Immunized dogs were given two doses of an experimental formulation containing 50 mu g of recombinant Bm86, at 21 days interval while the other group was given placebo, consisting of the same preparation without Bm86. Each dog was challenged 21 days after the last dose with 250 larvae, 100 nymphs and 55 adults (25 females and 30 males) released inside feeding chambers (one per instar) glued to their shaved flank. The effect of the vaccination was evaluated by determining biological parameters of ticks including the yield rates of larvae, nymphs and adult females. Adult females engorged weight, egg mass weight, efficiency rate of conversion to eggs (ERCE) and hatchability. In addition, sera were collected from dogs at 0, 21, 36,45 and 75 days after the vaccination and used for the detection of specific antibodies by ELISA. Collection rates of larvae, nymphs and adult females fed on vaccinated dogs were significantly (p < 0.05) reduced by 38%, 29% and 31%, respectively. as compared with non-vaccinated controls. Significant reductions were also observed in weight of engorged females and egg mass, in ERCE, but not in the hatch rate of ticks fed on immunized dogs. ELISA data revealed a marked and significant increase in optical densities of sera from vaccinated animals after the second dose of Bm86. We concluded that the Bm86 antigen used as a vaccine for dogs reduced the viability and biotic potential of the R. sanguineus. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.