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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Low-dose oral administration of human interferon alpha can control the development of Theileria parva infection in cattle.

Two natural human interferon alpha preparations, (nHuIFN-alpha [Cantell]) and (nHuIFN-alpha [ISI]), were used for the oral treatment of cattle experimentally infected with Theileria parva parva. In the first experiment, 8 Friesian bulls were inoculated with a 1 in 10 dilution of a sporozoite stabilate of T.p. parva (Marikebuni) stock. Four of the cattle were treated daily with 1 international unit/kg body weight (i.u./kg bwt) of nHuIFN-alpha (Cantell) from day -2 to day 8 p.i. None of the 4 calves given IFN developed clinical theileriosis, but 3 of the 4 control calves died of theileriosis while the fourth had a mild infection. Three of 4 treated calves and the 1 surviving control calf developed a detectable antibody response to T.p. parva schizont antigen but, on challenged with a 10-fold higher dose of stabilate, the surviving control animal and only 1 of the 4 treated calves proved to be immune. In a second experiment, 4 groups of 4 calves were inoculated with the same stabilate dilution. Three treatment groups were given either 1 i.u. nHuIFN-alpha (Cantell), 1 i.u. nHuIFN-alpha (ISI), or 10 i.u. nHuIFN-alpha (ISI)/kg bwt from day -2 to day 8 p.i. once daily and the fourth group were controls. Clinical theileriosis occurred in 2 controls, 2 calves given 10 i.u. nHuINF-alpha (ISI), 1 calf given 1 i.u. nHuIFN-alpha (ISI) and no calves given 1 i.u. nHuIFN-alpha (Cantell)/kg bwt. Of these, 2, 1, 0 and 0 cattle died in the respective groups.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)[1]


  1. Low-dose oral administration of human interferon alpha can control the development of Theileria parva infection in cattle. Young, A.S., Maritim, A.C., Kariuki, D.P., Stagg, D.A., Wafula, J.M., Mutugi, J.J., Cummins, J.M., Richards, A.B., Burns, C. Parasitology (1990) [Pubmed]
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