Experimental and Applied Acarology

, Volume 75, Issue 3, pp 269–280 | Cite as

The multiple roles of peroxiredoxins in tick blood feeding

  • Kodai Kusakisako
  • Kozo Fujisaki
  • Tetsuya Tanaka
Review Paper


Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and hydroxyl radicals (HO·) are generated through partial reduction of oxygen. The HO· are the most reactive and have a shorter half-life than H2O2, they are produced from comparatively stable H2O2 through Fenton reaction. Although controlling HO· is important and biologically advantageous for organisms, it may be difficult. Ticks are obligate hematophagous arthropods that need blood feeding for development. Ticks feed on vertebrate blood containing high levels of iron. Ticks also concentrate iron-containing host blood, leading to high levels of iron in ticks. Host-derived iron may react with oxygen in the tick body, resulting in high concentrations of H2O2. On the other hand, ticks have antioxidant enzymes, such as peroxiredoxins (Prxs), to scavenge H2O2. Gene silencing of Prxs in ticks affects their blood feeding, oviposition, and H2O2 concentration. Therefore, Prxs could play important roles in ticks’ blood feeding and oviposition through the regulation of the H2O2 concentration. This review discusses the current knowledge of Prxs in hard ticks. Tick Prxs are also multifunctional molecules related to antioxidants and immunity like other organisms. In addition, tick Prxs play a role in regulating the host immune response for ticks’ survival in the host body. Tick Prx also can induce Th2 immune response in the host. Thus, this review would contribute to the further understanding of the tick’s antioxidant responses during blood feeding and the search for a candidate target for tick control.


Peroxiredoxin Hydrogen peroxide Tick immunity Host immune response Vaccine candidate 



We are grateful to M.R. Talactac and E.P. Hernandez of the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, Joint Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Kagoshima University, for their helpful comments and suggestions regarding this manuscript. These studies were funded by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) KAKENHI Grant Numbers 25252050, 25292173, 26460511, 26660229, 15H05264, 16H05028, and 16J08221; and Cooperative Research Grant (27-joint-11 and 29-joint-8) of the National Research Center for Protozoan Diseases, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine. K. Kusakisako is supported by a Grant-in-Aid for JSPS fellows.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kodai Kusakisako
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kozo Fujisaki
    • 3
  • Tetsuya Tanaka
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, Joint Faculty of Veterinary MedicineKagoshima UniversityKagoshimaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Pathological and Preventive Veterinary Science, The United Graduate School of Veterinary ScienceYamaguchi UniversityYamaguchiJapan
  3. 3.National Agricultural and Food Research OrganizationTsukubaJapan

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