Dictyocaulus viviparus genome, variome and transcriptome elucidate lungworm biology and support future intervention

Sci Rep. 2016 Feb 9;6:20316. doi: 10.1038/srep20316.


The bovine lungworm, Dictyocaulus viviparus (order Strongylida), is an important parasite of livestock that causes substantial economic and production losses worldwide. Here we report the draft genome, variome, and developmental transcriptome of D. viviparus. The genome (161 Mb) is smaller than those of related bursate nematodes and encodes fewer proteins (14,171 total). In the first genome-wide assessment of genomic variation in any parasitic nematode, we found a high degree of sequence variability in proteins predicted to be involved host-parasite interactions. Next, we used extensive RNA sequence data to track gene transcription across the life cycle of D. viviparus, and identified genes that might be important in nematode development and parasitism. Finally, we predicted genes that could be vital in host-parasite interactions, genes that could serve as drug targets, and putative RNAi effectors with a view to developing functional genomic tools. This extensive, well-curated dataset should provide a basis for developing new anthelmintics, vaccines, and improved diagnostic tests and serve as a platform for future investigations of drug resistance and epidemiology of the bovine lungworm and related nematodes.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers / metabolism*
  • Cattle
  • Cattle Diseases / genetics
  • Cattle Diseases / parasitology*
  • Computational Biology
  • Dictyocaulus / genetics*
  • Dictyocaulus / growth & development
  • Dictyocaulus Infections / genetics
  • Dictyocaulus Infections / parasitology*
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Genetic Variation / genetics*
  • Genome*
  • Genomics / methods
  • Host-Parasite Interactions / genetics
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Lung / parasitology
  • Phylogeny
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA


  • Biomarkers