Advances in Fasciola hepatica research using ‘omics’ technologies

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Journal Article
International Journal for Parasitology, 2018, 48 (5), pp. 321 - 331
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© 2018 Australian Society for Parasitology The liver fluke Fasciola hepatica is an economically important pathogen of livestock worldwide, as well as being an important neglected zoonosis. Parasite control is reliant on the use of drugs, particularly triclabendazole, which is effective against multiple parasite stages. However, the spread of parasites resistant to triclabendazole has intensified the pursuit for novel control strategies. Emerging ‘omics’ technologies are helping advance our understanding of liver fluke biology, specifically the molecules that act at the host-parasite interface and are central to infection, virulence and long-term survival within the definitive host. This review discusses the technological sequencing advances that have facilitated the unbiased analysis of liver fluke biology, resulting in an extensive range of ‘omics’ datasets. In addition, we highlight the ‘omics’ studies of host responses to F. hepatica infection that, when combined with the parasite datasets, provide the opportunity for integrated analyses of host-parasite interactions. These extensive datasets will form the foundation for future in-depth analysis of F. hepatica biology and development, and the search for new drug or vaccine interventions.
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