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To compare the proteins in salivary glands, saliva and haemolymph of Rhipicephalus appendiculatus female ticks, antisera were prepared from guinea-pigs immunized with soluble denatured salivary gland extracts (SGE). The extracts were derived from R. appendiculatus female ticks that were either unfed (day 0) or partly fed (day 6). The sera were used in immunoblotting, following SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, to examine the antigen profiles during the course of tick feeding on guinea-pigs. Day 0 and day 6 SGE antisera appeared to detect common proteins in the different tick samples. For example, haemolymph apparently shared some of the small protein bands (31.5-34 kDa) detected in SGEs. These small proteins appeared in both samples at the same stage of feeding, suggesting that haemolymph and salivary glands not only have common antigens but may also share some functions. Furthermore, a number of protein bands were detected in haemolymph before they were apparent in the salivary glands or saliva. Thus some antigens detected in the salivary glands and saliva may be derived from the haemolymph. The results indicate that the host may be exposed to tick saliva antigens that are also present in the haemolymph. We discuss the significance of these observations with regard to the induction of host immunity to ticks and the development of tick vaccines.


Journal article



Publication Date



109 ( Pt 4)


517 - 523


Animals, Antibodies, Antigens, Eating, Female, Guinea Pigs, Hemolymph, Immunoblotting, Molecular Weight, Proteins, Saliva, Salivary Glands, Tick Infestations, Ticks, Vaccines