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Open Access Highly Accessed Review

The immunopathology of canine vector-borne diseases

Michael J Day

Author Affiliations

School of Veterinary Sciences, University of Bristol, Langford BS40 5DU, UK

Parasites & Vectors 2011, 4:48  doi:10.1186/1756-3305-4-48

Published: 13 April 2011

Abstract

The canine vector-borne infectious diseases (CVBDs) are an emerging problem in veterinary medicine and the zoonotic potential of many of these agents is a significant consideration for human health. The successful diagnosis, treatment and prevention of these infections is dependent upon firm understanding of the underlying immunopathology of the diseases in which there are unique tripartite interactions between the microorganism, the vector and the host immune system. Although significant advances have been made in the areas of molecular speciation and the epidemiology of these infections and their vectors, basic knowledge of the pathology and immunology of the diseases has lagged behind. This review summarizes recent studies of the pathology and host immune response in the major CVBDs (leishmaniosis, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, hepatozoonosis, anaplasmosis, bartonellosis and borreliosis). The ultimate application of such immunological investigation is the development of effective vaccines. The current commercially available vaccines for canine leishmaniosis, babesiosis and borreliosis are reviewed.