In the current study, the increased secretion of IFN-γ and IL-12

In the current study, the increased secretion of IFN-γ and IL-12 and undetectable IL-4 level indicate that Th1 cytokines play a part in protection from cryptosporidiosis,

which correlates with other previous studies (36,38–41). Harp et al. reported that the proliferation of spleen cells from mice previously infected with C. parvum involved mainly CD4+ T cells, but little proliferation of CD8+ T cells was obtained (24). A more recent study shows that CD8+ T cells can clear human intestinal Cryptosporidium infection through cytotoxic granule release (42). In our study, we found that the proliferation of C. parvum-specific CD8+ splenic T cells was increased, although it was weaker than that of CD4+ T cells. Pirfenidone datasheet Leav et al. demonstrated that CD8+ T cell receptor αβ intestinal intraepithelial lymphocytes expressed and secreted IFN-γ shortly after C. parvum infection (43). Our findings of both C. parvum-specific CD8+ cell proliferation and expression of IFN-γ indicate that recombinant Cp15-23, rCp23 vaccine formulation may, to some degree, induce a cytotoxic response in a naïve population,

although the cytotoxic functionality of the CD8+ cells was not measured. In this study, we found that the prepatent period was prolonged and oocyst shedding was decreased in the mice vaccinated with divalent peptide vaccine candidate compared with the single valent peptide of C. parvum, suggesting that new multivalent vaccine was clearly important for enhancement of the protection of the parasite infection. However, the level of protection obtained by vaccination

was not very high. One explanation for this phenomenon may be that adult mice were used in the protection experiment. It is documented that livestock are most susceptible to infection of C. parvum when they are very young (44). Although adult mice can be protected by vaccination (45), successful vaccination of neonatal animals would be required for the vaccine to be of any practical use (44). As C. parvum is a coccidian parasite that infects microvillous membrane of entrocytes of newborn and young calves, causing severe disease, mucosal immune responses may be more important for protection than systemic immune responses (46). Therefore, continued studies on characterization of subsets of CD4+ and CD8+ cells (e.g. effectors and memory cells), induction of cytokines and source of cytokines (such as IFN-γ) and further preclinical evaluation of the candidates are needed to provide insights into new therapeutic strategies for prevention of cryptosporidiosis caused by C. parvum infection. This work was supported by grants from National Natural Science Foundation of China (30471508). The authors thank Professor Kehuo Huang, Nanjing Agricultural University, Animal Medical College for providing the strain of C. parvum and Dr.

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