Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Dr. Mulumebet Worku

Abstract

Gastrointestinal parasites such as the nematode Haemonchus contortus and protozoa Coccidia pose a serious threat to the global goat industry due to resistance of parasites to anthelmintic drugs. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of extracts of CorPet biomass, a mushroom (Coriolus versicolor) on gastrointestinal parasite infection and innate immunity in goats. Fifteen female SpanishXBoer goats were drenched with 10 ml of either a hot extract of CorPet (N=5), a cold extract (N=5), or with sterile water (control N=5) for eight weeks. Treatment groups were reversed after four weeks. Body weight, body condition and FAMACHA scores, fecal and blood samples were collected weekly. Blood was used for white blood cell differential counts, packed cell volume and isolation of total RNA. Fecal samples were used for microbial DNA isolation and enumeration of parasite eggs. The Nanodrop spectrophotometer was used to determine the concentration and purity of DNA and RNA. Neutrophils were isolated using differential centrifugation and hypotonic lysis of red cells from blood. RNA was isolated from neutrophils using Trizol and then converted to cDNA. The human Toll-like receptor signaling pathway array was used to profile the expression of 84 genes. Total plasma protein concentration was determined using the BCA assay and migration patterns on silver stained gels. Pro-inflammatory cytokine and Prostaglandin E2α secretion was determined by ELISA. Data were analyzed using SAS statistical analysis software (P<0.05). Mushrooms did not affect health indicators including fecal egg counts (p>0.05) and increased plasma proteins (p<0.001). Treatment decreased GMCSF and increased GCSF, and IFNr, secretion. Treatment modulated expression of goat neutrophil Toll-like receptor pathway genes. Eight TLR’s were expressed on goat neutrophils. The highest fold change was observed for TLR6 and TIRAP. Modulation of these genes using CV mushroom probiotics as an oral has implication for health.

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