Sialomes and Mialomes: A Systems-Biology View of Tick Tissues and Tick-Host Interactions

Trends Parasitol. 2016 Mar;32(3):242-254. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2015 Oct 28.


Tick saliva facilitates tick feeding and infection of the host. Gene expression analysis of tick salivary glands and other tissues involved in host-pathogen interactions has revealed a wide range of bioactive tick proteins. Transcriptomic analysis has been a milestone in the field and has recently been enhanced by next-generation sequencing (NGS). Furthermore, the application of quantitative proteomics to ticks with unknown genomes has provided deeper insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying tick hematophagy, pathogen transmission, and tick-host-pathogen interactions. We review current knowledge on the transcriptomics and proteomics of tick tissues from a systems-biology perspective and discuss future challenges in the field.

Keywords: next-generation sequencing; sialomes; systems biology; tick-borne pathogens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Host-Parasite Interactions / genetics
  • Host-Parasite Interactions / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Proteome*
  • Systems Biology*
  • Ticks / genetics*
  • Ticks / metabolism*
  • Transcriptome*


  • Proteome