Serum Antibody Response Following Parenteral Immunization with Hydatid Cyst Fluid in Sheep Infected with Echinococcus Granulosus

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  • University of Melbourne, Veterinary Clinical Centre, Princes Highway, Werribee Victoria 3030, Australia
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Production of specific serum antibodies following immunization with hydatid cyst fluid antigens was investigated in sheep with Echinococcus granulosus infection and in noninfected controls. Six of 10 infected animals responded to intramuscular injection of antigen by rapid production of antibodies detected in indirect hemagglutination assays. Similar responses did not occur in any of 10 noninfected controls. It is suggested that differences in the rate of response to immunization with cyst fluid antigens between groups of sheep could be exploited in serodiagnosis of E. granulosus infection in sheep. The results also suggest that low levels of antibody found in the serum of sheep infected with E. granulosus are not the result of immunosuppression or immunological tolerance, but are due to sequestration of antigen from the immune system of the host.