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Proteomic profile of Bithynia siamensis goniomphalos snails upon infection with the carcinogenic liver fluke Opisthorchis viverrini.


The snail Bithynia siamensis goniomphalos acts as the first intermediate host for the human liver fluke Opisthorchis viverrini, the major cause of cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) in Northeast Thailand. The undisputed link between CCA and O. viverrini infection has precipitated efforts to understand the molecular basis of host-parasite interactions with a view to ultimately developing new control strategies to combat this carcinogenic infection. To date most effort has focused on the interactions between the parasite and its human host, and little is known about the molecular relationships between the liver fluke and its snail intermediate host. In the present study we analyse the protein expression changes in different tissues of B. siamensis goniomphalos induced by infection with larval O. viverrini using iTRAQ labelling technology. We show that O. viverrini infection downregulates the expression of oxidoreductases and catalytic enzymes, while stress-related and motor proteins are upregulated. The present work could serve as a basis for future studies on the proteins implicated in the susceptibility/resistance of B. siamensis goniomphalos to O. viverrini, as well as studies on other pulmonate snail intermediate hosts of various parasitic flukes that infect humans.Despite the importance and high prevalence of opisthorchiasis in some regions of Southeast Asia and the direct relationship between infection by Opisthorchis viverrini and the incidence of cholangiocarcinoma, little is known of the modifications induced by this parasite in its snail intermediate hosts. This time-course study provides the first in-depth quantitative proteomic analysis of experimentally infected Bithynia siamensis goniomphalos. We show how motor and stress-related proteins are upregulated in infected snails, while O. viverrini infection downregulates the expression of oxidoreductases and catalytic enzymes. This work serves as a basis for the development of new strategies, focused on the invertebrate intermediate hosts, to control parasite transmission.