DIFFERENTIAL EXPRESSION LEVELS OF GLUTATHIONE-S-TRANSFERASE (OvGST1) GENE IN THE HOST (HUMAN) AND VECTOR Simulium damnosum

DIFFERENTIAL EXPRESSION LEVELS OF GLUTATHIONE-S-TRANSFERASE (OvGST1) GENE IN THE HOST (HUMAN) AND VECTOR Simulium damnosum

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Abstract

Onchocerciasis, a neglected tropical disease (NTD), also known as river blindness, the

world‟s second leading cause of preventable blindness is caused by helminths worm

Onchocerca volvulus. This parasite lives and multiplies extracellularly in the blood and tissue

fluids of their human hosts and is transmitted by the bite of infected blackfly(Simulium

damnosum)of the family Simuliidae. O. volvulus GST1 (OvGST1) modulates immune

responses through the synthesis of parasite-derived prostanoids and xenobiotic detoxification,

thus preventing effector responses. The OvGST1differential expression profile in specific

stages of O. volvulus quantified using qPCR relative gene expression technique. The results

reveal that OvGST1 is well expressed in the L3 insect developmental stage and microfilaria

stage in the human host but poorly expressed in the adult worms of O. volvulus in the human

host. Differential expression from skin microfilaria revealed 2.55-fold up-regulation relative

to the L3 insect stage of the parasite which in turn revealed a higher OvGST1differential

expression compared to adult worms. Reduced glutathione was higher in the human tissues

compared to the Simulium proboscis and did not positively correlate with OvGST1 expression

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