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Global Parasitology Seminars

Parasitology Seminar Series

Meiging Shi, DVM, , Ph.D. "The liver in African trypanosomiasis: parasite clearance and immunopathology"


Title: " The liver in African trypanosomiasis: parasite clearance and immunopathology"

Speaker: Meiging Shi

Meiqing Shi,PhD
Associate Professor,
Immunology Lab,Department of Veterinary Medicine
Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine
Blacksburg, Virginia


African trypanosomiasis is a vector-borne parasitic disease of medical and veterinary importance. The causative agents of this disease are various species of genus of Trypanosoma, which are extracellular protozoan parasites. Approximately 70 million people, mainly living in sub-Saharan Africa, are at risk of contracting the disease. It is estimated that animal infections of African trypanosomes lead to an annual economic loss of more than one billion US dollars. The parasites can multiply in the bloodstream and interstitial fluids of the host, causing a chronic infection associated with a persistent inflammatory response. Clinical studies have shown that natural human African trypanosome infections lead to a significant elevation of plasma levels of ALT and AST, suggesting liver inflammation and damage. With the use of intravital imaging, we demonstrated that the liver is the major place for parasite clearance and that CRIg expressed on liver Kupffer cells plays an essential role for the capture of circulating parasites by interacting with the complement. The clearance of trypanosomes by Kupffer cells is associated with liver immunopathology. Clec4F+ Kupffer cells secrete CXCL16 and attract CXCR6+CD4+ T cells, which mediates liver immunopathology. We further demonstrated that IL-27 negatively regulates differentiation of Ly6Chi monocytes into Tip-DCs in the liver through inhibition of CD4+ T cell activation and their secretions of IFN-γ, and that blocking Tip-DC development diminishes liver immunopathology. 


Dr. Meiqing Shi received his degree in Veterinary Medicine from Hunan Agricultural University in China and his Master’s degree in Veterinary Parasitology from South China Agricultural University. After working on chicken coccidiosis for a couple of years at a parasitology lab in South China Agricultural University, Dr. Shi received a research fellowship from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and did his PhD work on T cell responses to Eimeria parasites with Dr. Horst Zahner at the Institute of Parasitology, Liebig University of Giessen in Germany. He then moved to Canada and did his postdoctoral training in immune responses to African trypanosomes with Dr. Henry Tabel in Saskatoon and fungal immunology with Chris Mody in Calgary. In 2011, he joined the Department of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Maryland College Park as an Assistant Professor and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2017. At College Park, Maryland, Dr. Shi continues to work on host immune responses to African trypanosomes and the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. 

Date: Monday, November 6th, 2023
Time: 12 pm

LocationHill Pavilion Room 132 and available virtually Via Zoom

Questions? Please contact Michael Black if you have questions.

Date and Time


Michael Black