The relationship between IgA activity against 4th-stage larvae and density-dependent effects on the number of 4th-stage larvae of Teladorsagia circumcincta in naturally infected sheep
The number of Teladorsagia circumcincta 4th-stage larvae in naturally infected lambs from a single farm varied among lambs and among different years. Within each year the distribution of 4th-stage larvae among lambs was similar to that expected from a negative binomial distribution. The ratio of 4th-stage larvae to adult T. circumcincta was low in two years with a low mean intensity of infection but high in two years with a higher mean intensity of infection. The negative binomial distribution is defined by the mean and by k, a parameter that measures dispersion; k was low when mean infection intensity was low but higher when mean infection intensity was high. As k is an inverse index of overdispersion this indicated that the distribution of 4th-stage larvae was more overdispersed at low levels of infection. In a combined analysis, the number of adult T. circumcincta and the plasma IgA activity against 4th-stage larvae were both associated with increased numbers of 4th-stage larvae. There was a statistical interaction between the number of adults and IgA activity that moderated their combined effect.(Received October 28 2003)
(Revised February 18 2004)
(Accepted February 19 2004)
Key Words: Teladorsagia circumcincta; density dependence; inhibition; IgA; sheep.
c1 Department of Veterinary Clinical Studies, Institute of Comparative Medicine, University of Glasgow Veterinary School, Bearsden Road, Glasgow G61 1QH, Scotland. Tel: +44 141 330 5762. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org