Jump to Main Content
All For One and One For All on the Tick–Host Battlefield
- Chmelař, Jindřich, Kotál, Jan, Kopecký, Jan, Pedra, Joao H.F., Kotsyfakis, Michail
- Trends in parasitology 2016 v.32 no.5 pp. 368-377
- bioactive compounds, defense mechanisms, immune response, immunomodulators, physiological response, proteins, saliva, ticks, vertebrates
- The saliva of ixodid ticks contains a mixture of bioactive molecules that target a wide spectrum of host defense mechanisms to allow ticks to feed on the vertebrate host for several days. Tick salivary proteins cluster in multigenic protein families, and individual family members display redundancy and pluripotency in their action to ameliorate or evade host immune responses. It is now clear that members of different protein families can target the same cellular or molecular pathway of the host physiological response to tick feeding. We present and discuss our hypothesis that redundancy and pluripotency evolved in tick salivary immunomodulators to evade immune recognition by the host while retaining the immunomodulatory potential of their saliva.