Research Areas

Animal Health - Integrated Control of Animal Diseases 1998-2002

Researcher: Terezinha Padilha

INTEGRATED CONTROL OF ANIMAL DISEASES

Modern control methods developed in the last few decades greatly reduced economic impact of diseases in livestock. However, significant losses related to disease occurrence stil/ persist. More recently livestock disease methods to be applied into livestock production systems has to consider that consumers are becoming increasingly concerned with po ten tial drug residues on animal derived products and in the environment. The constant need for increase in production efficiency and the more recent cal/ for enhancement of sustainability of animal production practices require continuous update on the health management practices to be used by producers as well as the development of diagnostic and integrated preventive procedures to be incorporated into the production systems.

Infection with gastrointestinal nematodes is a major source of loss to the ruminant production in Brazil These losses, commonly associated with the occurrence of the infection in growing animals, are enhanced by subclinical infection and even tual outbreaks in adult animals. Immune responses to protect ruminant against reinfection develop slow and are incomplete, contributing to the constant risks associated with the disease, especially in tropical environment where animals are mainly raised in grazing systems. Con trol programs aimed at the prevention of economic losses associated with infection rely mainly on drug usage to reduce pasture transmission. New methods of control to be developed need to consider alternatives, which can reduce drug usage. Immunity against gastrointestinal nematodes is strongly influenced by host genetics, which significantly influence acquired immunity in primary and challenge infection as well as vaccination. Animal resistance and susceptibility to pathogen are associated with citokines expression by the host T lymphocytes.

OBJECTIVES

  • To study genetic aspects of immune responses of cattle to nematode with emphasis on the assessment of the role of infection on host cytokines expression.
  • To promote technological and scientific cooperation between Brazilian and American public and private sectors in the field of animal production with emphasis on animal health management.