T-cell mediated immune responses in calves primary-infected or re-infected with Cooperia oncophora: similar effector cells but different timing

K Kanobana, A Koets, N Bakker, HW Ploeger, L Vervelde*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Cooperia oncophora is the most prevalent intestinal nematode of cattle occurring in Western Europe. Primary infection with 100,000 third stage infective larvae (L3) induces acquired immunity in a high proportion of the animals but there is little information on immunity against re-infection. In the current experiment, the contribution of the T-cell mediated immunity in protection against re-infection with C. oncophora was investigated in detail. Priming elicited long-lasting protective immunity that was evidenced by a significantly decreased worm burden and ego excretion in primed animals compared to challenge control animals. Lymphocyte proliferation tests with excretory/secretory products (ESP) of C. oncophora and with three distinct ESP fractions indicated an enhanced reactivity in primed animals and suggested that by fractionating of ESP we selected for proteins involved in protective immunity against re-infection with C. oncophora. Phenotypic analysis of T cell subsets at diverse anatomical locations revealed that the enhanced reactivity of lymphocytes from peripheral blood and lymph nodes of the infected animals coincided with a significantly increased frequency of CD4(+) cells at these locations but a deceased frequency of CD4(+) cells in the lamina propria. These findings were independent of the immune status of the animals but more pronounced in the primed animals than in the challenge control animals. In addition we demonstrated that primary and secondary infections with C. oncophora were associated with two waves of eosinophils and that the kinetics of this cell population differed as a result of priming. Based on the observed correlations we propose that the early increase of eosinophils is T cell independent and merely a consequence of inflammation in the parasitised gut. In contrast, the second wave of eosinophils depends upon CD4(+) cells and correlations with parasitological parameters at this time point support a role of eosinophils as effector cells against adult stages of C. oncophora. (C) 2003 Australian Society for Parasitology Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1503-1514
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal For Parasitology
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2003

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • excretory/secretory products
  • CD4(+) cells
  • cell mediated immunity
  • Cooperia
  • GI nematode
  • eosinophils


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