Vector-borne diseases pose an increasing threat to global food security. Vaccines, diagnostic tests, and therapeutics are urgently needed for tick-borne diseases that affect livestock. However, the inability to obtain significant quantities of pathogen stages derived from ticks has hindered research. In vitro methods to isolate pathogens from infected tick vectors are paramount to advance transcriptomic, proteomic, and biochemical characterizations of tick-borne pathogens.
Nymphs of Rhipicephalus appendiculatus were infected with Theileria parva by feeding on a calf during an acute infection. Isolation of sporozoites was accomplished by feeding infected adult ticks on an in vitro tick feeding system. Sporozoite viability was tested using in vitro bovine lymphocytes.