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Neuropeptide Systems as Targets for Parasite and Pest Control

Neuropeptide Systems as Targets for Parasite and Pest Control (Hardback)

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The need to continually discover new agents for the control or treatment of invertebrate pests and pathogens is undeniable. Agriculture, both animal and plant, succeeds only to the extent that arthropod and helminth consumers, vectors and pathogens can be kept at bay. Humans and their companion animals are also plagued by invertebrate parasites. The deployment of chemical agents for these purposes inevitably elicits the selection of resistant populations of the targets of control, necessitating a regular introduction of new kinds of molecules. Experience in other areas of chemotherapy has shown that a thorough understanding of the biology of disease is an essential platform upon which to build a discovery program. Unfortunately, investment of research resources into understanding the basic physiology of invertebrates as a strategy to illuminate new molecular targets for pesticide and parasiticide discovery has been scarce, and the pace of introduction of new molecules for these indications has been slowed as a result. An exciting and so far unexploited area to explore in this regard is invertebrate neuropeptide physiology. This book was assembled to focus attention on this promising field by compiling a comprehensive review of recent research on neuropeptides in arthropods and helminths, with contributions from many of the leading laboratories working on these systems.

TIMOTHY G. GEARY is a Tier I Canada Research Chair and is Professor and Director of the Institute of Parasitology at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Geary received a BSc degree from the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN (USA) and a PhD in Pharmacology from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI (USA, 1980). He worked on malaria chemotherapy at Michigan State University in East Lansing, MI (USA) until 1985, when he joined The Upjohn Company in Kalamazoo, MI (USA) as a staff scientist working on discovery of antiparasitic drugs. Geary joined the Faculty at McGill in 2005; research interests include proteomics and genomics analyses of the host-parasite interface, discovery of anthelmintics and the pharmacology of antiparasitic drugs. AARON G. MAULE is a Director of Research for Molecular Biosciences and Professor of Molecular Parasitology at Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland. Maule was awarded a BSc(Hons) in Biology (1986) and a PhD in Experimental Parasitology (1989) at Queen's where he began working on parasite neuromuscular systems. He focused on molecular aspects of parasite neurobiology during postdoctoral positions at Queen's and at The Upjohn Company in Kalamazoo, MI (USA). Maule returned to Queen's as a member of academic staff in 1995 to pursue the basic biology of helminth signaling systems. Research interests include parasite neurobiology and the development and exploitation of gene silencing platforms for target validation and parasite control.

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