Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 33314216
Link to DOI – 10.1111/pim.12813
Parasite Immunol 2021 May; 43(5): e12813
The recent development of high-throughput NGS technologies, (ie, next-generation sequencing) has highlighted the complexity of tick microbial communities-which include pathogens, symbionts, and commensals-and also their dynamic variability. Symbionts and commensals can confer crucial and diverse benefits to their hosts, playing nutritional roles or affecting fitness, development, nutrition, reproduction, defence against environmental stress and immunity. Nonpathogenic tick bacteria may also play a role in modifying tick-borne pathogen colonization and transmission, as relationships between microorganisms existing together in one environment can be competitive, exclusive, facilitating or absent, with many potential implications for both human and animal health. Consequently, ticks represent a compelling yet challenging system in which to investigate the composition and both the functional and ecological implications of tick bacterial communities, and thus merits greater attention. Ultimately, deciphering the relationships between microorganisms carried by ticks as well as symbiont-tick interactions will garner invaluable information, which may aid in some future arthropod-pest and vector-borne pathogen transmission control strategies. This review outlines recent research on tick microbiome composition and dynamics, highlights elements favouring the reciprocal influence of the tick microbiome and tick-borne agents and finally discusses how ticks and tick-borne diseases might potentially be controlled through tick microbiome manipulation in the future.