Molecular communication between the monogenea and fish immune system

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Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Fish and Shellfish Immunology
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Science

Keywords Monogenea; Fish immune response; Stefin; Cystatin; Kunitz-type protein; Serpin; Excretory–secretory products
Description Monogeneans parasitise mainly the outer structures of fish, such as the gills, fins, and skin, that is, tissues covered with a mucous layer. While attached by sclerotised structures to host's surface, monogeneans feed on its blood or epidermal cells and mucus. Besides being a rich source of nutrients, these tissues also contain humoral immune factors and immune cells, which are ready to launch defence mechanisms against the tegument or gastrointestinal tract of these invaders. The exploitation of hosts' resources by the Monogenea must, therefore, be accompanied by suppressive and immunomodulatory mechanisms which protect the parasites against attacks by host immune system. Elimination of hosts' cytotoxic molecules and evasion of host immune response is often mediated by proteins secreted by the parasites. The aim of this review is to summarise existing knowledge on fish immune responses against monogeneans. Results gleaned from experimental infections illustrate the various interactions between parasites and the innate and adaptive immune system of the fish. The involvement of monogenean molecules (mainly inhibitors of peptidases) in molecular communication with host immune system is discussed.
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