The Genetics of the Immune Response to Trichinella spiralis Antigens in the Mouse
The production and successful utilization of a defined vaccine against a parasitic infection requires an understanding of the complex processes which occur during the development of most parasites, including the stage of the life cycle which can be effectively combatted by the host’s immune system. For the activation of the host’s immune system against any antigen there are many genetically controlled physical parameters involved, of which probably the most crucial are the interactions of the T cell receptor and the antigen/Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) molecules. In the case of many parasites, these particular molecular interactions have only recently been investigated. Although for several years it had been appreciated that there is a significant genetic element controlling the host’s immune response to parasites, the actual nature of these controlling elements had not been elucidated (Wassom, 1985; Behnke and Robinson, 1985; Wakelin, 1985). However, recent appraisals of trends and patterns in the genetic make-up of hosts which can be categorized as good or bad responders to particular parasites has led us to realize that the known genotype of animals which respond to parasitic infections are not just epiphenomena but actually are an indication of controlling molecular properties. This is particularly true of the immune response to Trichinella spiralis in the mouse, the host/parasite system which has revealed the most data concerning the significance of the host genotype (Wassom et al., 1984).
KeywordsCarbohydrate Electrophoresis Polypeptide Oligosaccharide Conglomerate
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