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Topical RNAi for Sustainable Animal Health

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Mody, K. T., Zhang, B., Li, X., Jain, R., Li, P., James, P., Mahony, T. J., Xu, Z. and Mitter, N. (2019) Topical RNAi for Sustainable Animal Health. Proceedings, 36 (1). p. 170. ISSN 2504-3900

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Article Link: https://doi.org/10.3390/proceedings2019036170


Animal health measures mainly rely on vaccination or chemical control for major pests and pathogens, causing issues of residue, toxicity and development of resistance. For example, control of Sheep flystrike and lice-infestation affecting the Australia’s sheep/wool industry (>3.5 B) have developed resistance to nearly all control chemicals used in the past. Topicals RNAi provides an innovative clean-green, non-toxic, environmentally sustainable biological control solution. Biodegradable clay particles as carriers can be used to deliver double stranded RNA (dsRNA), the key trigger molecule of RNA interference pathway. As an early proof of concept, we investigated the stability dsRNA loaded on two types of Clay particles: Clay 1 (releases dsRNA under acidic conditions) and Clay 2 (releases dsRNA under alkaline conditions) on cattle hide. Cattle skin was treated with Cy3 labelled dsRNA alone and Cy3 labelled dsRNA loaded on Clay1 or Clay2. The skin samples treated with the Cy3 formulations were imaged using confocal microscopy. Once imaged, the skin samples were washed and stored at room temperature for 5 days, later the samples were re-imaged to detect the fluorescent signal (Figure 1). The dsRNA loaded on clay particles was stable unlike naked Cy3-dsRNA which degraded and was not visible after washing. This increased inherent stability of the dsRNA molecules, combined with the environmental stability afforded by the Clay particles, offers promise to provide a sustainable solution for animal health. Topical RNAi can reduce reliance on trade withholding periods of meat/wool without chemical residues, enhance animal welfare and increase production of premium quality meat/wool, improve export potential, competitiveness and long-term profitability of livestock industry.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Animal Science
Keywords:RNAi clay particles sheep flystrike lice-infestation animal health sustainable solution
Subjects:Animal culture > Cattle
Veterinary medicine > Communicable diseases of animals (General)
Veterinary medicine > Veterinary parasitology
Live Archive:28 Jul 2020 06:01
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:45

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