Serine protease inhibitor cvSI-1 potential role in the eastern oyster host defense against the protozoan parasite Perkinsus marinus

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The serine protease inhibitor cvSI-1, purified from plasma of eastern oysters, inhibited the proliferation of the protozoan parasite Perkinsus marinus in vitro. In situ hybridization located cvSI-1 gene expression in basophil cells of the digestive tubules and cvSI-1 expression measured by real-time quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction was several hundred folds greater in digestive glands than in other organs examined or circulating hemocytes. cvSI-1 gene expression was also significantly greater in winter than in summer. Finally, cvSI-1 gene expression and plasma protease inhibitory activity in oysters selected for increased resistance to P. marinus were significantly greater than in unselected oysters. These findings support the hypothesis that cvSI-1 plays a role in eastern oyster host defense against P. marinus possibly through inhibition of parasite proliferation. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Developmental and Comparative Immunology

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