Title

Probing the Functional Role of Tick Metalloproteases

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-2015

Department

Biological Sciences

Abstract

Tick saliva assists feeding through a complex mixture of compounds that disarm the host homeostasis processes, such as platelet aggregation, vasoconstriction and blood clotting, as well as innate and acquired immune responses. Although the various properties of tick salivary glands have sparked great interest as candidate sources for anti‐tick vaccines to prevent tick and tick‐borne diseases, antigens that can be useful to induce an immune response against tick bites or the pathogens transmitted by ticks have not yet been developed. Metalloproteases, which have been found in tick saliva, salivary gland, ovary and midgut, play an important role in inflammation, immunomodulation, fibrinolysis, blood protein digestion, nociception, vitellogenesis, remodelling of extracellular matrix and pathogen transmission. A large proportion of tick metalloproteases belong to the metzincin group, whose members characteristically have a highly conserved zinc‐binding motif integrated into the central α helix at the active site, and a methionine‐containing triad called Met‐turn followed by a cysteine‐rich domain at the C‐terminal site. This review discusses specifically the biological aspects of metalloproteases in tick physiology that have been published to date.

Publication Title

Physiological Entomology

Volume

40

Issue

3

First Page

177

Last Page

188

Share

 
COinS