Anthelminthic resistance in equine helminth parasites is becoming an increasing problem. Despite focus on preventive measures, such as pasture management and targeted drug administration, alternative sustainable methods that do not lead to development of anthelminthic resistance are still needed. My PhD project aims to study vaccination against gastro-intestinal parasites as another prophylactic measure. The long-term objective of the project is to formulate a vaccine that protects horses against the large blood worm, Strongylus vulgaris.
In order to develop an effective vaccine, we need to study what type of immune response is necessary to induce immunological memory and how this can be achieved. A large part of the project is therefore to map how the immune response reacts to various vaccine components by measuring specific signalling molecules, so-called cytokines that are produced and secreted by the immune cells. So far in the project, the applicability of a novel adjuvant, “G3”, in combination with blood worm larvae inactivated by UV-irradiation, has been evaluated to provide basis for future vaccine trials in horses.
2017-2020: Vaccination – an alternative to anthelminthic treatment in the horse?
Founding: The Swedish-Norwegian Foundation for Equine Research (H-16-47-173)
2016: Cytokine production to map adjuvant effects in the horse
Founding: The Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry (GFS2015-0140)
International master degree in Infection Biology (MMSc), Uppsala University 2015
Professional degree in Agronomy – Major in Animal Science, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences 2017
Supervisor: Caroline Fossum
Co-supervisors: Bernt Hjertner, Eva Tydén och Marianne Jensen Waern
Hellman, S. Hjertner, B. Morein, B. Fossum, C. 2018. The adjuvant G3 promotes a Th1 polarizing innate immune response in equine PBMC. Vet Res. 22:49. doi: 10.1186/s13567-018-0602-2
Ahlberg, V. Hjertner, B. Wallgren, P. Hellman, S. Lövgren Bengtsson, K. Fossum, C. 2017. Innate immune responses induced by the saponin adjuvant Matrix-M in specific pathogen free pigs.Vet Res 48:30. doi: 10.1186/s13567-017-0437-2