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Sample records for human parasite schistosoma

  1. Adult somatic stem cells in the human parasite, Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Collins, James J.; Wang, Bo; Lambrus, Bramwell G.; Tharp, Marla; Iyer, Harini; Newmark, Phillip A.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Schistosomiasis is among the most prevalent human parasitic diseases, affecting more than 200 million people worldwide1. The etiological agents of this disease are trematode flatworms (Schistosoma) that live and lay eggs within the vasculature of the host. These eggs lodge in host tissues, causing inflammatory responses that are the primary cause of morbidity. Because these parasites can live and reproduce within human hosts for decades2, elucidating the mechanisms that promote their longevity is of fundamental importance. Although adult pluripotent stem cells, called neoblasts, drive long-term homeostatic tissue maintenance in long-lived free-living flatworms3,4 (e.g., planarians), and neoblast-like cells have been described in some parasitic tapeworms5, little is known about whether similar cell types exist in any trematode species. Here, we describe a population of neoblast-like cells in the trematode Schistosoma mansoni. These cells resemble planarian neoblasts morphologically and share their ability to proliferate and differentiate into derivatives of multiple germ layers. Capitalizing on available genomic resources6,7 and RNAseq-based gene expression profiling, we find that these schistosome neoblast-like cells express a fibroblast growth factor receptor ortholog. Using RNA interference we demonstrate that this gene is required for the maintenance of these neoblast-like cells. Our observations suggest that adaptation of developmental strategies shared by free-living ancestors to modern-day schistosomes likely contributed to the success of these animals as long-lived obligate parasites. We expect that future studies deciphering the function of these neoblast-like cells will have important implications for understanding the biology of these devastating parasites. PMID:23426263

  2. Whole genome resequencing of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni reveals population history and effects of selection

    PubMed Central

    Crellen, Thomas; Allan, Fiona; David, Sophia; Durrant, Caroline; Huckvale, Thomas; Holroyd, Nancy; Emery, Aidan M.; Rollinson, David; Aanensen, David M.; Berriman, Matthew; Webster, Joanne P.; Cotton, James A.

    2016-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni is a parasitic fluke that infects millions of people in the developing world. This study presents the first application of population genomics to S. mansoni based on high-coverage resequencing data from 10 global isolates and an isolate of the closely-related Schistosoma rodhaini, which infects rodents. Using population genetic tests, we document genes under directional and balancing selection in S. mansoni that may facilitate adaptation to the human host. Coalescence modeling reveals the speciation of S. mansoni and S. rodhaini as 107.5–147.6KYA, a period which overlaps with the earliest archaeological evidence for fishing in Africa. Our results indicate that S. mansoni originated in East Africa and experienced a decline in effective population size 20–90KYA, before dispersing across the continent during the Holocene. In addition, we find strong evidence that S. mansoni migrated to the New World with the 16–19th Century Atlantic Slave Trade. PMID:26879532

  3. A catecholamine transporter from the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni with low affinity for psychostimulants

    PubMed Central

    Larsen, Mads B.; Fontana, Andréia C. K.; Magalhães, Lizandra G.; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Mortensen, Ole V.

    2011-01-01

    The trematode Schistosoma mansoni is the primary cause of schistosomiasis, a devastating neglected tropical disease that affects 200 million individuals. Identifying novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of schistosomiasis is therefore of great public interest. The catecholamines norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine (DA) are essential for the survival of the parasite as they cause muscular relaxation and a lengthening in the parasite and thereby control movement. Here we characterize a novel dopamine/norepinephrine transporter (SmDAT) gene transcript, from Schistosoma mansoni. The SmDAT is expressed in the adult form and in the sporocyst form (infected snails) of the parasite, and also in the egg and miracidium stage. It is absent in the cercaria stage but curiously a transcript missing the exon encoding transmembrane domain 8 was identified in this stage. Heterologous expression of the cDNA in mammalian cells resulted in saturable, dopamine transport activity with an apparent affinity for dopamine comparable to that of the human dopamine transporter. Efflux experiments reveal notably higher substrate selectivity compared with its mammalian counterparts as amphetamine is a much less potent efflux elicitor against SmDAT compared to the human DAT. Pharmacological characterization of the SmDAT revealed that most human DAT inhibitors including psychostimulants such as cocaine were significantly less potent in inhibiting SmDAT. Like DATs from other simpler organisms the pharmacology for SmDAT was more similar to the human norepinephrine transporter. We were not able to identify other dopamine transporting carriers within the completed parasite genome and we hypothesize that the SmDAT is the only catecholamine transporter in the parasite and could be responsible for not only clearing DA but also NE. PMID:21251927

  4. A catecholamine transporter from the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni with low affinity for psychostimulants.

    PubMed

    Larsen, Mads B; Fontana, Andréia C K; Magalhães, Lizandra G; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Mortensen, Ole V

    2011-05-01

    The trematode Schistosoma mansoni is the primary cause of schistosomiasis, a devastating neglected tropical disease that affects 200 million individuals. Identifying novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of schistosomiasis is therefore of great public interest. The catecholamines norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine (DA) are essential for the survival of the parasite as they cause muscular relaxation and a lengthening in the parasite and thereby control movement. Here we characterize a novel dopamine/norepinephrine transporter (SmDAT) gene transcript, from S. mansoni. The SmDAT is expressed in the adult form and in the sporocyst form (infected snails) of the parasite, and also in the egg and miracidium stage. It is absent in the cercariae stage but curiously a transcript missing the exon encoding transmembrane domain 8 was identified in this stage. Heterologous expression of the cDNA in mammalian cells resulted in saturable, dopamine transport activity with an apparent affinity for dopamine comparable to that of the human dopamine transporter. Efflux experiments reveal notably higher substrate selectivity compared with its mammalian counterparts as amphetamine is a much less potent efflux elicitor against SmDAT compared to the human DAT. Pharmacological characterization of the SmDAT revealed that most human DAT inhibitors including psychostimulants such as cocaine were significantly less potent in inhibiting SmDAT. Like DATs from other simpler organisms the pharmacology for SmDAT was more similar to the human norepinephrine transporter. We were not able to identify other dopamine transporting carriers within the completed parasite genome and we hypothesize that the SmDAT is the only catecholamine transporter in the parasite and could be responsible for not only clearing DA but also NE. PMID:21251927

  5. Continuous in vitro propagation and differentiation of cultures of the intramolluscan stages of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Ivanchenko, M G; Lerner, J P; McCormick, R S; Toumadje, A; Allen, B; Fischer, K; Hedstrom, O; Helmrich, A; Barnes, D W; Bayne, C J

    1999-04-27

    The metazoan parasitic blood flukes, Schistosoma spp., infect over 200 million people worldwide and cause extensive human morbidity and mortality. Research strategies for development of anti-schistosomal agents are impeded by the organism's complex molluscan-mammalian life cycle, which limits experimental approaches and availability of material. We derived long-term continuously proliferative cultures of Schistosoma mansoni sporocysts capable of generating cercariae in vitro. Cultured organisms retained the ability to parasitize the host, and they exhibited developmental regulation of candidate stage-specific genes in the host-free culture system. Evidence for expression of a reverse transcriptase also was found in the cultured organisms, pointing to this activity as a possible mechanistic contributor to the dynamic relationship between the parasite and its hosts. Continuous in vitro propagation of the asexual sporocyst stage allows isolation of clonally derived parasite populations and provides a means to study schistosomal molecular genetics, metabolism, and evasion of host defenses.

  6. Reconstructing Colonization Dynamics of the Human Parasite Schistosoma mansoni following Anthropogenic Environmental Changes in Northwest Senegal

    PubMed Central

    Van den Broeck, Frederik; Maes, Gregory E.; Larmuseau, Maarten H. D.; Rollinson, David; Sy, Ibrahima; Faye, Djibril; Volckaert, Filip A. M.; Polman, Katja; Huyse, Tine

    2015-01-01

    Background Anthropogenic environmental changes may lead to ecosystem destabilization and the unintentional colonization of new habitats by parasite populations. A remarkable example is the outbreak of intestinal schistosomiasis in Northwest Senegal following the construction of two dams in the ‘80s. While many studies have investigated the epidemiological, immunological and geographical patterns of Schistosoma mansoni infections in this region, little is known about its colonization history. Methodology/Principal Findings Parasites were collected at several time points after the disease outbreak and genotyped using a 420 bp fragment of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 gene (cox1) and nine nuclear DNA microsatellite markers. Phylogeographic and population genetic analyses revealed the presence of (i) many genetically different haplotypes at the non-recombining mitochondrial marker and (ii) one homogenous S. mansoni genetic group at the recombining microsatellite markers. These results suggest that the S. mansoni population in Northwest Senegal was triggered by intraspecific hybridization (i.e. admixture) between parasites that were introduced from different regions. This would comply with the extensive immigration of infected seasonal agricultural workers from neighboring regions in Senegal, Mauritania and Mali. The spatial and temporal stability of the established S. mansoni population suggests a swift local adaptation of the parasite to the local intermediate snail host Biomphalaria pfeifferi at the onset of the epidemic. Conclusions/Significance Our results show that S. mansoni parasites are very successful in colonizing new areas without significant loss of genetic diversity. Maintaining high levels of diversity guarantees the adaptive potential of these parasites to cope with selective pressures such as drug treatment, which might complicate efforts to control the disease. PMID:26275049

  7. The role of tegumental aquaporin from the human parasitic worm, Schistosoma mansoni, in osmoregulation and drug uptake

    PubMed Central

    Faghiri, Zahra; Skelly, Patrick J.

    2009-01-01

    Schistosomes are parasitic platyhelminths that constitute an important public health problem globally. Infection is characterized by the presence of adult worms within the vasculature of their hosts, where they can reside for many years. The worms are covered by an unusual dual lipid bilayer through which they import nutrients. How the parasites import other vital molecules, such as water, is not known. Recent proteomic analysis of the schistosome tegumental membranes revealed the presence of an aquaporin homologue at the host-interactive surface whose cDNA we have cloned and characterized. The cDNA encodes a predicted 304-aa protein (SmAQP) that is found largely in the parasite tegument by immunolocalization and is most highly expressed in the intravascular life stages. Treatment of parasites with short interfering RNAs targeting the SmAQP gene results in potent (>90%) suppression. These suppressed parasites resist swelling when placed in hypotonic medium, unlike their control counterparts, which rapidly double in volume. In addition, SmAQP-suppressed parasites, unlike controls, resist shrinkage when incubated in hyperosmotic solution. While suppressed parasites exhibit lower viability in culture relative to controls and exhibit a stunted appearance following prolonged suppression, they are nonetheless more resistant to killing by the drug potassium antimonyl tartrate (PAT). This is likely because SmAQP acts as a conduit for this drug, as is the case for aquaporins in other systems. These experiments reveal a heretofore unrecognized role of the schistosome tegument in controlling water and drug movement into the parasites and highlight the importance of the tegument in parasite osmoregulation and drug uptake.—Faghiri, Z., Skelly, P. J. The role of tegumental aquaporin from the human parasitic worm, Schistosoma mansoni, in osmoregulation and drug uptake. PMID:19364765

  8. Saci-1, -2, and -3 and Perere, Four Novel Retrotransposons with High Transcriptional Activities from the Human Parasite Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    DeMarco, Ricardo; Kowaltowski, Andre T.; Machado, Abimael A.; Soares, M. Bento; Gargioni, Cybele; Kawano, Toshie; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Madeira, Alda M. B. N.; Wilson, R. Alan; Menck, Carlos F. M.; Setubal, João C.; Dias-Neto, Emmanuel; Leite, Luciana C. C.; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio

    2004-01-01

    Using the data set of 180,000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) of the blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni generated recently by our group, we identified three novel long-terminal-repeat (LTR)- and one novel non-LTR-expressed retrotransposon, named Saci-1, -2, and -3 and Perere, respectively. Full-length sequences were reconstructed from ESTs and have deduced open reading frames (ORFs) with several uncorrupted features, characterizing them as possible active retrotransposons of different known transposon families. Alignment of reconstructed sequences to available preliminary genome sequence data confirmed the overall structure of the transposons. The frequency of sequenced transposon transcripts in cercariae was 14% of all transcripts from that stage, twofold higher than that in schistosomula and three- to fourfold higher than that in adults, eggs, miracidia, and germ balls. We show by Southern blot analysis, by EST annotation and tallying, and by counting transposon tags from a Social Analysis of Gene Expression library, that the four novel retrotransposons exhibit a 10- to 30-fold lower copy number in the genome and a 4- to 200-fold-higher transcriptional rate per copy than the four previously described S. mansoni retrotransposons. Such differences lead us to hypothesize that there are two different populations of retrotransposons in S. mansoni genome, occupying different niches in its ecology. Examples of retrotransposon fragment inserts were found into the 5′ and 3′ untranslated regions of four different S. mansoni target gene transcripts. The data presented here suggest a role for these elements in the dynamics of this complex human parasite genome. PMID:14990715

  9. Small gene family encoding an eggshell (chorion) protein of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni

    SciTech Connect

    Bobek, L.A.; Rekosh, D.M.; Lo Verde, P.T.

    1988-08-01

    The authors isolated six independent genomic clones encoding schistosome chorion or eggshell proteins from a Schistosoma mansoni genomic library. A linkage map of five of the clones spanning 35 kilobase pairs (kbp) of the S. mansoni genome was constructed. The region contained two eggshell protein genes closely linked, separated by 7.5 kbp of intergenic DNA. The two genes of the cluster were arranged in the same orientation, that is, they were transcribed from the same strand. The sixth clone probably represents a third copy of the eggshell gene that is not contained within the 35-kbp region. The 5- end of the mRNA transcribed from these genes was defined by primer extension directly off the RNA. The ATCAT cap site sequence was homologous to a silkmoth chorion PuTCATT cap site sequence, where Pu indicates any purine. DNA sequence analysis showed that there were no introns in these genes. The DNA sequences of the three genes were very homologous to each other and to a cDNA clone, pSMf61-46, differing only in three or four nucleotices. A multiple TATA box was located at positions -23 to -31, and a CAAAT sequence was located at -52 upstream of the eggshell transcription unit. Comparison of sequences in regions further upstream with silkmoth and Drosophila sequences revealed very short elements that were shared. One such element, TCACGT, recently shown to be an essential cis-regulatory element for silkmoth chorion gene promoter function, was found at a similar position in all three organisms.

  10. Optimal sample storage and extraction procotols for reliable multilocus genotyping of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Van den Broeck, F; Geldof, S; Polman, K; Volckaert, F A M; Huyse, T

    2011-08-01

    Genotyping individual larval stages and eggs of natural parasite populations is complicated by the difficulty of obtaining reliable genotypes from low quantity DNA template. A suitable storage and extraction protocol, together with a thorough quantification of genotyping errors are therefore crucial for molecular epidemiological studies. Here we test the robustness, handling time, ease of use, cost effectiveness and success rate of various fixation (Whatman FTA(®) Classic and Elute Cards, 70% EtOH and RNAlater(®)) and subsequent DNA extraction methods (commercial kits and proteinase K protocol). None of these methods require a cooling chain and are therefore suitable for field collection. Based on a multiplex microsatellite PCR with nine loci the success and reliability of each technique is evaluated by the proportion of samples with at least eight scored loci and the proportion of genotyping errors. If only the former is taken into account, FTA(®) Elute is recommended (83% success; 44% genotyping error; 0.2 €/sample; 1h 20 m handling time). However, when also considering the genotyping errors, handling time and ease of use, we opt for 70% EtOH with the 96-well plate technology followed by a simple proteinase K extraction (73% success; 0% genotyping error; 0.2 €/sample; 15m handling time). For eggs we suggest (1) to pool all eggs per person in 1.5 ml tubes filled with 70% EtOH for transport and (2) to identify each egg to species level prior to genotyping. To this end we extended the Rapid diagnostic PCR developed by Webster et al. (2010) with a S. mansoni-specific primer to discriminate between S. mansoni, S. haematobium and S. bovis in a single PCR reaction. The success rate of genotyping eggs was 75% (0% genotyping error). This is the first study to incorporate genotyping errors through re-amplification for the evaluation of schistosome sampling protocols and the identification of error-prone loci.

  11. Specific binding of human low-density lipoprotein to the surface of schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni and ingestion by the parasite.

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, M. W.; Caulfield, J. P.

    1991-01-01

    Low-density lipoproteins (LDL) may be important in human schistosomiasis because LDL bound to the surface of the parasite inhibits the binding of anti-schistosomal antibodies. Low-density lipoproteins also may serve as a source of lipids for the parasite membrane synthesis. Here LDL fluorescently labeled with carbocyanine dye (DiI-LDL) was used to measure the specificity of binding of LDL to the surface of schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni and to examine the distribution of the LDL particles over time. DiI-LDL binding was saturable and specific, with strong inhibition by unlabeled LDL and apoB but not by apoA1, bovine serum albumin, or IgG, and only weak inhibition by high-density lipoproteins. Half of the bound DiI-LDL was displaced by unlabeled LDL. DiI-LDL remained bound on the surface of schistosomula for up to 36 hours in culture. However parasites also ingested both DiI-LDL and a second fluorescent LDL, Bodipy-LDL. Over time, both fluorophores appeared throughout the worm tissues, suggesting the LDL particles were breaking down and that the fluorophores and lipids originally contained within the LDL particle were partitioning throughout the worm. Thus human LDL appears to bind to the surface of schistosomula specifically. Ingested LDL appears to be broken down and may serve as a source of host lipids for the parasite. Images Figure 1 Figure 9 PMID:2024706

  12. The sex lives of parasites: Investigating the mating system and mechanisms of sexual selection of the human pathogen Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Steinauer, Michelle L.

    2009-01-01

    The mating systems of internal parasites are inherently difficult to investigate although they have important implications for the evolutionary biology of the species, disease epidemiology, and are important considerations for control measures. Using parentage analyses, three topics concerning the mating biology of Schistosoma mansoni were investigated: the number of mates per adult male and female, variance in reproductive success among individuals, and the potential role for sexual selection on male body size and also mate choice for genetically dissimilar individuals. Results indicated that schistosomes were mostly monogamous, and evidence of only one mate change occurred over a period of 5–6 weeks. One male was polygynous and contained 2 females in its gynecophoral canal although offspring were only detected for one of the females. Even though they were primarily monogamous and the sex ratio near even, reproductive success was highly variable, indicating a potential role for sexual selection. Male body size was positively related to reproductive success, consistent with sexual selection via male-male competition and female choice for large males. However, relatedness of pairs was not associated with their reproductive success. Finally, genetically identical individuals differed significantly in their reproductive output and identical males in their body size, indicating important partner and environmental effects on these traits. PMID:19298820

  13. Genome-wide identification of novel microRNAs and their target genes in the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    de Souza Gomes, Matheus; Muniyappa, Mohan Kumar; Carvalho, Sávio Gonçalves; Guerra-Sá, Renata; Spillane, Charles

    2011-08-01

    Mature microRNAs (miRNAs) are small, non-coding regulatory RNAs which can elicit post-transcriptional repression of mRNA levels of target genes. Here, we report the identification of 67 mature and 42 precursor miRNAs in the Schistosoma mansoni parasite. The evolutionarily conserved S. mansoni miRNAs consisted of 26 precursor miRNAs and 35 mature miRNAs, while we identified 16 precursor miRNAs and 32 mature miRNAs that displayed no conservation. These S. mansoni miRNAs are located on seven autosomal chromosomes and a sex (W) chromosome. miRNA expansion through gene duplication was suggested for at least two miRNA families miR-71 and mir-2. miRNA target finding analysis identified 389 predicted mRNA targets for the identified miRNAs and suggests that the sma-mir-71 may be involved in female sexual maturation. Given the important roles of miRNAs in animals, the identification and characterization of miRNAs in S. mansoni will facilitate novel approaches towards prevention and treatment of Schistosomiasis.

  14. The Substrate-free and -bound Crystal Structures of the Duplicated Taurocyamine Kinase from the Human Parasite Schistosoma mansoni*

    PubMed Central

    Merceron, Romain; Awama, Ayman M.; Montserret, Roland; Marcillat, Olivier; Gouet, Patrice

    2015-01-01

    The taurocyamine kinase from the blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni (SmTK) belongs to the phosphagen kinase (PK) family and catalyzes the reversible Mg2+-dependent transfer of a phosphoryl group between ATP and taurocyamine. SmTK is derived from gene duplication, as are all known trematode TKs. Our crystallographic study of SmTK reveals the first atomic structure of both a TK and a PK with a bilobal structure. The two unliganded lobes present a canonical open conformation and interact via their respective C- and N-terminal domains at a helix-mediated interface. This spatial arrangement differs from that observed in true dimeric PKs, in which both N-terminal domains make contact. Our structures of SmTK complexed with taurocyamine or l-arginine compounds explain the mechanism by which an arginine residue of the phosphagen specificity loop is crucial for substrate specificity. An SmTK crystal was soaked with the dead end transition state analog (TSA) components taurocyamine-NO32−-MgADP. One SmTK monomer was observed with two bound TSAs and an asymmetric conformation, with the first lobe semiclosed and the second closed. However, isothermal titration calorimetry and enzyme kinetics experiments showed that the two lobes function independently. A small angle x-ray scattering model of SmTK-TSA in solution with two closed active sites was generated. PMID:25837252

  15. Does multiple hosts mean multiple parasites? Population genetic structure of Schistosoma japonicum between definitive host species.

    PubMed

    Wang, T P; Shrivastava, J; Johansen, M V; Zhang, S Q; Wang, F F; Webster, J P

    2006-10-01

    Multi-host parasites, those capable of infecting more than one species of host, are responsible for the majority of all zoonotic, emerging or persistent human and animal diseases and are considered one of the major challenges for the biomedical sciences in the 21st century. We characterized the population structure of the multi-host parasite Schistosoma japonicum in relation to its definitive host species by genotyping miracidia collected from humans and domestic animals across five villages around the Yangtze River in Anhui Province, mainland China, using microsatellite markers. High levels of polymorphisms were observed and two main genetic clusters were identified which separated water buffalo, cattle and humans from goats, pigs, dogs and cats. We thereby believe that we present the first evidence of definitive host-based genetic variation in Schistosoma japonicum which has important epidemiological, evolutionary, medical and veterinary implications.

  16. Glycomic Analysis of Life Stages of the Human Parasite Schistosoma mansoni Reveals Developmental Expression Profiles of Functional and Antigenic Glycan Motifs*

    PubMed Central

    Smit, Cornelis H.; van Diepen, Angela; Nguyen, D. Linh; Wuhrer, Manfred; Hoffmann, Karl F.; Deelder, André M.; Hokke, Cornelis H.

    2015-01-01

    Glycans present on glycoproteins and glycolipids of the major human parasite Schistosoma mansoni induce innate as well as adaptive immune responses in the host. To be able to study the molecular characteristics of schistosome infections it is therefore required to determine the expression profiles of glycans and antigenic glycan-motifs during a range of critical stages of the complex schistosome lifecycle. We performed a longitudinal profiling study covering schistosome glycosylation throughout worm- and egg-development using a mass spectrometry-based glycomics approach. Our study revealed that during worm development N-glycans with Galβ1–4(Fucα1–3)GlcNAc (LeX) and core-xylose motifs were rapidly lost after cercariae to schistosomula transformation, whereas GalNAcβ1–4GlcNAc (LDN)-motifs gradually became abundant and predominated in adult worms. LeX-motifs were present on glycolipids up to 2 weeks of schistosomula development, whereas glycolipids with mono- and multifucosylated LDN-motifs remained present up to the adult worm stage. In contrast, expression of complex O-glycans diminished to undetectable levels within days after transformation. During egg development, a rich diversity of N-glycans with fucosylated motifs was expressed, but with α3-core fucose and a high degree of multifucosylated antennae only in mature eggs and miracidia. N-glycan antennae were exclusively LDN-based in miracidia. O-glycans in the mature eggs were also diverse and contained LeX- and multifucosylated LDN, but none of these were associated with miracidia in which we detected only the Galβ1–3(Galβ1–6)GalNAc core glycan. Immature eggs also exhibited short O-glycan core structures only, suggesting that complex fucosylated O-glycans of schistosome eggs are derived primarily from glycoproteins produced by the subshell envelope in the developed egg. Lipid glycans with multifucosylated GlcNAc repeats were present throughout egg development, but with the longer highly

  17. Glycomic Analysis of Life Stages of the Human Parasite Schistosoma mansoni Reveals Developmental Expression Profiles of Functional and Antigenic Glycan Motifs.

    PubMed

    Smit, Cornelis H; van Diepen, Angela; Nguyen, D Linh; Wuhrer, Manfred; Hoffmann, Karl F; Deelder, André M; Hokke, Cornelis H

    2015-07-01

    Glycans present on glycoproteins and glycolipids of the major human parasite Schistosoma mansoni induce innate as well as adaptive immune responses in the host. To be able to study the molecular characteristics of schistosome infections it is therefore required to determine the expression profiles of glycans and antigenic glycan-motifs during a range of critical stages of the complex schistosome lifecycle. We performed a longitudinal profiling study covering schistosome glycosylation throughout worm- and egg-development using a mass spectrometry-based glycomics approach. Our study revealed that during worm development N-glycans with Galβ1-4(Fucα1-3)GlcNAc (LeX) and core-xylose motifs were rapidly lost after cercariae to schistosomula transformation, whereas GalNAcβ1-4GlcNAc (LDN)-motifs gradually became abundant and predominated in adult worms. LeX-motifs were present on glycolipids up to 2 weeks of schistosomula development, whereas glycolipids with mono- and multifucosylated LDN-motifs remained present up to the adult worm stage. In contrast, expression of complex O-glycans diminished to undetectable levels within days after transformation. During egg development, a rich diversity of N-glycans with fucosylated motifs was expressed, but with α3-core fucose and a high degree of multifucosylated antennae only in mature eggs and miracidia. N-glycan antennae were exclusively LDN-based in miracidia. O-glycans in the mature eggs were also diverse and contained LeX- and multifucosylated LDN, but none of these were associated with miracidia in which we detected only the Galβ1-3(Galβ1-6)GalNAc core glycan. Immature eggs also exhibited short O-glycan core structures only, suggesting that complex fucosylated O-glycans of schistosome eggs are derived primarily from glycoproteins produced by the subshell envelope in the developed egg. Lipid glycans with multifucosylated GlcNAc repeats were present throughout egg development, but with the longer highly fucosylated

  18. Anti-Schistosoma IgG responses in Schistosoma haematobium single and concomitant infection with malaria parasites.

    PubMed

    Morenikeji, Olajumoke A; Adeleye, Olumide; Omoruyi, Ewean C; Oyeyemi, Oyetunde T

    2016-03-01

    Areas prone to schistosomiasis are also at risk of malaria transmission. The interaction between the causal agents of the two diseases could modulate immune responses tailored toward protecting or aggravating morbidity dynamics and impair Schistosoma diagnostic precision. This study aimed at assessing the effect of Plasmodium spp. in concomitant infection with Schistosoma haematobium in modulation of anti-Schistosoma IgG antibodies. The school-based cross-sectional study recruited a total of 322 children screened for S. haematobium and Plasmodium spp. Levels of IgG against S. haematobium-soluble egg antigen (SEA) in single S. haematobium/malaria parasites infection and co-infection of the two parasites in schoolchildren were determined. Data were analyzed using χ(2), Fisher's exact test, and Tukey's multiple comparison test analyses. The prevalence of single infection by S. haematobium, Plasmodium spp., and concurrent infection due to the two pathogens was 27.7, 41.0, and 9.3%, respectively (p < 0.0001). Anti-Schistosoma IgG production during co-infection of the two pathogens (1.950 ± 0.742 AU) was significantly higher than the value recorded for single malaria parasites' infection (1.402 ± 0.670 AU) (p < 0.01) but not in S. haematobium infection (1.591 ± 0.604 AU) (p > 0.05). The anti-Schistosoma IgG production in co-infection status was however dependent on the intensity of Plasmodium spp. with individuals having high intensity of malaria parasites recording lower anti-Schistosoma IgG. This study has implication for diagnosis of schistosomiasis where anti-Schistosoma IgG is used as an indicator of infection. Efforts should be made to control the two infections simultaneously in order not to undermine the efforts targeted toward the control of one.

  19. Uncovering Notch pathway in the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Magalhães, Lizandra G; Morais, Enyara R; Machado, Carla B; Gomes, Matheus S; Cabral, Fernanda J; Souza, Julia M; Soares, Cláudia S; Sá, Renata G; Castro-Borges, William; Rodrigues, Vanderlei

    2016-10-01

    Several signaling molecules that govern development in higher animals have been identified in the parasite Schistosoma mansoni, including the transforming growth factor β, protein tyrosine kinases, nuclear hormone receptors, among others. The Notch pathway is a highly conserved signaling mechanism which is involved in a wide variety of developmental processes including embryogenesis and oogenesis in worms and flies. Here we aimed to provide the molecular reconstitution of the Notch pathway in S. mansoni using the available transcriptome and genome databases. Our results also revealed the presence of the transcripts coded for SmNotch, SmSu(H), SmHes, and the gamma-secretase complex (SmNicastrin, SmAph-1, and SmPen-2), throughout all the life stages analyzed. Besides, it was observed that the viability and separation of adult worm pairs were not affected by treatment with N-[N(3,5)-difluorophenacetyl)-L-Alanyl]-S-phenylglycine t-butyl ester (DAPT), a Notch pathway inhibitor. Moreover, DAPT treatment decreased the production of phenotypically normal eggs and arrested their development in culture. Our results also showed a significant decrease in SmHes transcript levels in both adult worms and eggs treated with DAPT. These results provide, for the first time, functional validation of the Notch pathway in S. mansoni and suggest its involvement in parasite oogenesis and embryogenesis. Given the complexity of the Notch pathway, further experiments shall highlight the full repertoire of Notch-mediated cellular processes throughout the S. mansoni life cycle.

  20. Disentangling the effects of exposure and susceptibility on transmission of the zoonotic parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Civitello, David J; Rohr, Jason R

    2014-11-01

    For all parasites, transmission is composed of two processes: host contact with parasites ('exposure') and risk of infection given such contact ('susceptibility'). Classic models, such as mass action (density-dependent) transmission, lump these processes together. However, separating these processes could enhance predictions for disease dynamics, especially for free-living parasites. Here, we outline three transmission models that partition exposure and susceptibility. Using data from a study of Schistosoma mansoni (trematode) infections in Biomphalaria glabrata snails, we competed these three models against four alternative models, including the mass action model (which lumps exposure and susceptibility). The models that separately accounted for exposure and susceptibility best predicted prevalence across the density gradients of hosts and parasites, outperforming all other models based on Akaike information criterion. When embedded into a dynamic epidemiological model, the exposure-explicit models all predicted lower equilibrium densities of infected snails and human-infectious cercariae. Thus, population-level epidemiological models that utilize the classic mass action transmission model might overestimate human risk of schistosomiasis. More generally, the presented approach for disentangling exposure and susceptibility can distinguish between behavioural and immunological resistance, identify mechanisms of 'disease dilution' and provide a more complete dissection of drivers of parasite transmission.

  1. Characterisation of the COP9 signalosome in Schistosoma mansoni parasites.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Roberta V; de Gomes, Matheus S; Jannotti-Passos, Liana K; Borges, William C; Guerra-Sá, Renata

    2013-06-01

    The COP9 signalosome (CSN) is an eight-subunit complex found in all eukaryotes and shares structural features with both the 26S proteasome 'lid' and translation factor eIF3. Recent data have demonstrated that the CSN is a regulator of the ubiquitin (Ub) proteasome system (UPS). CSN controls substrate ubiquitination by cullin-RING Ub ligases, a step which determines substrate specificity of the UPS. Here, we reconstructed the CSN complex in Schistosoma mansoni and identified eight homologous components. Among these homologues, five subunits were predicted with their full-length sequences. Phylogenetic analysis confirmed the evolutionary conservation and the architecture of CSN, as well as the 26S proteasome 'lid'. We performed quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction to detect the expression of the SmCSN transcripts. The Smcsn1, Smcsn2, Smcsn3, Smcsn4, Smcsn5, Smcsn6, Smcsn7 and Smcsn8 genes were up-regulated in adult worms compared to cercariae, and the expression levels were similar to that of in vitro cultivated schistosomula. Taken together, these results suggest that the CSN complex may be important during cercariae, schistosome and adult worm development and might explain, at least in part, the differences among UPSs during the parasite life cycle. PMID:23519425

  2. The Schistosoma japonicum genome reveals features of host-parasite interplay

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yan; Zheng, Huajun; Chen, Xiangyi; Zhang, Lei; Wang, Kai; Guo, Jing; Huang, Zhen; Zhang, Bo; Huang, Wei; Jin, Ke; Tonghai, Dou; Hasegawa, Masami; Wang, Li; Zhang, Yuan; Zhou, Jie; Tao, Lin; Cao, Zhiwei; Li, Yixue; Vinar, Tomas; Brejova, Brona; Brown, Dan; Li, Ming; Miller, David J.; Blair, David; Zhong, Yang; Chen, Zhu; Liu, Feng; Hu, Wei; Wang, Zhi-Qin; Zhang, Qin-Hua; Song, Huai-Dong; Chen, Saijuan; Xu, Xuenian; Xu, Bing; Ju, Zhuan; Cheng, Yu; Brindley, Paul J.; McManus, Donald P.; Feng, Zheng; Han, Ze-Guang; Lu, Gang; Ren, Shuangxi; Wang, Yuezhu; Gu, Wenyi; Kang, Hui; Chen, Jie; Chen, Xiaoyun; Chen, Shuting; Wang, Lijun; Yan, Jie; Wang, Biyun; Lv, Xinyan; Jin, Lei; Wang, Bofei; Pu, Shiyin; Zhang, Xianglin; Zhang, Wei; Hu, Qiuping; Zhu, Genfeng; Wang, Jun; Yu, Jun; Wang, Jian; Yang, Huanmin; Ning, Zemin; Beriman, Matthew; Wei, Chia-Lin; Ruan, Yijun; Zhao, Guoping; Wang, Shengyue

    2013-01-01

    Schistosoma japonicum is a parasitic flatworm that causes human schistosomiasis, a significant cause of morbidity in China and the Philippines. Here we present a draft genomic sequence for the worm, which is the first reported for any flatworm, indeed for the superphylum Lophotrochozoa. The genome provides a global insight into the molecular architecture and host interaction of this complex metazoan pathogen, revealing that it can exploit host nutrients, neuroendocrine hormones and signaling pathways for growth, development and maturation. Having a complex nervous system and a well developed sensory system, S. japonicum can accept stimulation of the corresponding ligands as a physiological response to different environments, such as fresh water or the tissues of its intermediate and mammalian hosts. Numerous proteinases, including cercarial elastase, are implicated in mammalian skin penetration and haemoglobin degradation. The genomic information will serve as a valuable platform to facilitate development of new interventions for schistosomiasis control. PMID:19606140

  3. The Schistosoma japonicum genome reveals features of host-parasite interplay.

    PubMed

    2009-07-16

    Schistosoma japonicum is a parasitic flatworm that causes human schistosomiasis, which is a significant cause of morbidity in China and the Philippines. Here we present a draft genomic sequence for the worm. The genome provides a global insight into the molecular architecture and host interaction of this complex metazoan pathogen, revealing that it can exploit host nutrients, neuroendocrine hormones and signalling pathways for growth, development and maturation. Having a complex nervous system and a well-developed sensory system, S. japonicum can accept stimulation of the corresponding ligands as a physiological response to different environments, such as fresh water or the tissues of its intermediate and mammalian hosts. Numerous proteases, including cercarial elastase, are implicated in mammalian skin penetration and haemoglobin degradation. The genomic information will serve as a valuable platform to facilitate development of new interventions for schistosomiasis control. PMID:19606140

  4. Immunocapture assay for quantification of human IgA antibodies to parasite antigenic enzymes. Application with the alkaline phosphatase of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Lien, D N; Cesari, I M; Bouty, I; Bout, D; Hoebeke, J

    1992-01-01

    Conditions are described for using solid phase adsorbed jacalins in an immunocapture assay for IgA antibodies to the alkaline phosphatase of Schistosoma mansoni. Microtiter plates were activated with polylysine and jacalins were covalently adsorbed by means of glutaraldehyde. From three different jacalins, the one purified from seeds of Artocarpus tonkinensis showed the lowest non-specific adsorption and was used for further studies. Comparing solutions of bovine serum albumin, ovalbumin and Tween 20, it was shown that the latter was most successful in blocking non-specific adsorption. Low serum dilutions resulted in a less efficient IgA capture by the adsorbed jacalin than higher dilutions. Under optimal working conditions, a high correlation could be shown between the presence of specific anti-alkaline phosphatase antibodies of IgA isotype and IgG isotype.

  5. Schistosoma mansoni: migration potential of normal and radiation attenuated parasites in naive guinea pigs

    SciTech Connect

    Kamiya, H.; McLaren, D.J.

    1987-02-01

    Compressed tissue autoradiography using (75Se)selenomethionine labelled parasites has been used to investigate the migration potential of normal and radiation attenuated cercariae of Schistosoma mansoni in naive guinea pigs. By Day 14 after infection. 44% of normal parasites were detected as reduced silver foci in the liver; this value corresponded well with the number of liver parasites recovered by retrograde perfusion of the hepatic portal system on Day 42 (42% of the challenge). In contrast, cercariae subjected to 50 krad of gamma irradiation failed to migrate out of the skin. The migration capacity of 20 krad irradiated parasites was less severely affected in that about half of the challenge parasites reached the lungs, but virtually none moved to the liver. These data are discussed in relation to the kinetics of immunity induced in guinea pigs by infection or vaccination with normal or radiation attenuated parasites.

  6. Parasites and human evolution.

    PubMed

    Perry, George H

    2014-01-01

    Our understanding of human evolutionary and population history can be advanced by ecological and evolutionary studies of our parasites. Many parasites flourish only in the presence of very specific human behaviors and in specific habitats, are wholly dependent on us, and have evolved with us for thousands or millions of years. Therefore, by asking when and how we first acquired those parasites, under which environmental and cultural conditions we are the most susceptible, and how the parasites have evolved and adapted to us and we in response to them, we can gain considerable insight into our own evolutionary history. As examples, the tapeworm life cycle is dependent on our consumption of meat, the divergence of body and head lice may have been subsequent to the development of clothing, and malaria hyperendemicity may be associated with agriculture. Thus, the evolutionary and population histories of these parasites are likely intertwined with critical aspects of human biology and culture. Here I review the mechanics of these and multiple other parasite proxies for human evolutionary history and discuss how they currently complement our fossil, archeological, molecular, linguistic, historical, and ethnographic records. I also highlight potential future applications of this promising model for the field of evolutionary anthropology.

  7. Protein kinase C signalling during miracidium to mother sporocyst development in the helminth parasite, Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Ludtmann, Marthe H R; Rollinson, David; Emery, Aidan M; Walker, Anthony J

    2009-09-01

    For schistosomes, development of the miracidium to mother sporocyst within a compatible molluscan host requires considerable physiological and morphological changes by the parasite. The molecular mechanisms controlling such development have not been explored extensively. To begin to elucidate the importance of kinase-mediated signal transduction to this process, the phosphorylation (activation) of protein kinase C (PKC) in larval stages of Schistosoma mansoni undergoing in vitro transformation was explored. Mining of the S. mansoni genomic database revealed two S. mansoni PKC proteins with high homology to human PKCbeta and containing the conserved autophosphorylation (activation) site represented by serine 660 of human PKCbeta(II). Western blotting with anti-phosphospecific antibodies directed to this site demonstrated that miracidia freshly-hatched from eggs possessed PKC (78kDa) which was phosphorylated (activated) when miracidia were exposed to phorbol ester, and dephosphorylated (inhibited) following exposure to the PKC inhibitor GF109203X. Miracidia treated with the phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitor U73122 also displayed decreased PKC phosphorylation. S. mansoni PKC was phosphorylated during the initial 24h development of miracidia into mother sporocysts; after 31h and 48h development, phosphorylation was reduced by 72% and 86%, respectively. Confocal microscopy of miracidia revealed phosphorylated PKC associated with the neural mass, excretory vesicle, tegument, ciliated plates, terebratorium and germinal cells; in larvae undergoing transformation for 31h, phosphorylated PKC was only occasionally detected, being present in regions likely corresponding to the ridge cyton. Inhibition of PKC in miracidia by GF109230X resulted in accelerated transformation, particularly to the postmiracidium stage; ciliated plates were also shed from developing larvae more rapidly. These results highlight the dynamic nature of PKC signalling during S. mansoni postembryonic

  8. Reductions in genetic diversity of Schistosoma mansoni populations under chemotherapeutic pressure: the effect of sampling approach and parasite population definition.

    PubMed

    French, Michael D; Churcher, Thomas S; Basáñez, María-Gloria; Norton, Alice J; Lwambo, Nicholas J S; Webster, Joanne P

    2013-11-01

    Detecting potential changes in genetic diversity in schistosome populations following chemotherapy with praziquantel (PZQ) is crucial if we are to fully understand the impact of such chemotherapy with respect to the potential emergence of resistance and/or other evolutionary outcomes of interventions. Doing so by implementing effective, and cost-efficient sampling protocols will help to optimise time and financial resources, particularly relevant to a disease such as schistosomiasis currently reliant on a single available drug. Here we explore the effect on measures of parasite genetic diversity of applying various field sampling approaches, both in terms of the number of (human) hosts sampled and the number of transmission stages (miracidia) sampled per host for a Schistosoma mansoni population in Tanzania pre- and post-treatment with PZQ. In addition, we explore population structuring within and between hosts by comparing the estimates of genetic diversity obtained assuming a 'component population' approach with those using an 'infrapopulation' approach. We found that increasing the number of hosts sampled, rather than the number of miracidia per host, gives more robust estimates of genetic diversity. We also found statistically significant population structuring (using Wright's F-statistics) and significant differences in the measures of genetic diversity depending on the parasite population definition. The relative advantages, disadvantages and, hence, subsequent reliability of these metrics for parasites with complex life-cycles are discussed, both for the specific epidemiological and ecological scenario under study here and for their future application to other areas and schistosome species.

  9. Do intestinal parasites interfere with the seroepidemiologic surveillance of Schistosoma mansoni infection?

    PubMed Central

    Alarcón de Noya, B.; Colmenares, C.; Losada, S.; Fermin, Z.; Masroua, G.; Ruiz, L.; Soto, L.; Noya, O.

    1996-01-01

    In view of the known cross-reactivity of sera from patients with intestinal parasites to some Schistosoma mansoni antigens, field work was conducted in an area of Venezuela non-endemic for schistosomiasis using the routine immunoenzymatic assay (ELISA) with soluble egg antigen (SEA). False positive reactions represented 15.3% of the total population as determined by SEA-ELISA. SEA-immunoblotting of the false positive sera indicated that protein fractions of 91 and 80 kDa appear to be responsible for cross-reactivity. Sera from hookworm infected individuals produced a higher frequency and intensity of cross-reaction than other sera. SEA-fractions of 105, 54, 46, 42, 32, 25 and 15 kDa were the most specific. Images Fig. 2 PMID:8666077

  10. Characterization of export receptor exportins (XPOs) in the parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Abreu, Fabiano C P; Pereira, Roberta V; Oliveira, Victor F; Gomes, Matheus de S; Jannotti-Passos, Liana K; Borges, William C; Guerra-Sá, Renata

    2013-12-01

    Several proteins and different species of RNA that are produced in the nucleus are exported through the nuclear pore complexes, which require a family of conserved nuclear export receptors called exportins (XPOs). It has been reported that the XPOs (XPO1, XPO5, and XPOT) are directly involved in the transport processes of noncoding RNAs from the nucleus to the cytoplasm and/or from cytoplasm to the nucleus. All three genes are present in fungi, plants, and deuterostome metazoans. However, protostome metazoan species lack one of the three genes across evolution. In this report, we have demonstrated that all three XPO proteins are present in the parasite protostome Schistosoma mansoni. As this parasite has a complex life cycle presenting several stages in different hosts and environments, implying a differential gene regulation, we proposed a genomic analysis of XPOs to validate their annotation. The results showed the conservation of exportin family members and gene duplication events in S. mansoni. We performed quantitative RT-PCR, which revealed an upregulation of SmXPO1 in 24 h schistosomula (sixfold when compared with cercariae), and similar transcription levels were observed for SmXPO5 and SmXPOT in all the analyzed stages. These three XPO proteins have been identified for the first time in the protostome clade, which suggests a higher complexity in RNA transport in the parasite S. mansoni. Taken together, these results suggest that RNA transport by exportins might control cellular processes during cercariae, schistosomula, and adult worm development. PMID:24013345

  11. Isoforms of Hsp70-binding human LDL in adult Schistosoma mansoni worms.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Adriana S A; Cavalcanti, Marília G S; Zingali, Russolina B; Lima-Filho, José L; Chaves, Maria E C

    2015-03-01

    Schistosoma mansoni is one of the most common parasites infecting humans. They are well adapted to the host, and this parasite's longevity is a consequence of effective escape from the host immune system. In the blood circulation, lipoproteins not only help to conceal the worm from attack by host antibodies but also act as a source of lipids for S. mansoni. Previous SEM studies showed that the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) particles present on the surface of adult S. mansoni worms decreased in size when the incubation time increased. In this study, immunocytochemical and proteomic analyses were used to locate and identify S. mansoni binding proteins to human plasma LDL. Ultrathin sections of adult worms were cut transversely from the anterior, medial and posterior regions of the parasite. Immunocytochemical experiments revealed particles of gold in the tegument, muscle region and spine in male worms and around vitelline cells in females. Immunoblotting and 2D-electrophoresis using incubations with human serum, anti-LDL antibodies and anti-chicken IgG peroxidase conjugate were performed to identify LDL-binding proteins in S. mansoni. Analysis of the binding proteins using LC-MS identified two isoforms of the Hsp70 chaperone in S. mansoni. Hsp70 is involved in the interaction with apoB in the cytoplasm and its transport to the endoplasmic reticulum. However, further studies are needed to clarify the functional role of Hsp70 in S. mansoni, mainly related to the interaction with human LDL.

  12. Sexual Preferences in Nutrient Utilization Regulate Oxygen Consumption and Reactive Oxygen Species Generation in Schistosoma mansoni: Potential Implications for Parasite Redox Biology.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Matheus P; Correa Soares, Juliana B R; Oliveira, Marcus F

    2016-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni, one of the causative agents of human schistosomiasis, has a unique antioxidant network that is key to parasite survival and a valuable chemotherapeutic target. The ability to detoxify and tolerate reactive oxygen species increases along S. mansoni development in the vertebrate host, suggesting that adult parasites are more exposed to redox challenges than young stages. Indeed, adult parasites are exposed to multiple redox insults generated from blood digestion, activated immune cells, and, potentially, from their own parasitic aerobic metabolism. However, it remains unknown how reactive oxygen species are produced by S. mansoni metabolism, as well as their biological effects on adult worms. Here, we assessed the contribution of nutrients and parasite gender to oxygen utilization pathways, and reactive oxygen species generation in whole unpaired adult S. mansoni worms. We also determined the susceptibilities of both parasite sexes to a pro-oxidant challenge. We observed that glutamine and serum importantly contribute to both respiratory and non-respiratory oxygen utilization in adult worms, but with different proportions among parasite sexes. Analyses of oxygen utilization pathways revealed that respiratory rates were high in male worms, which contrast with high non-respiratory rates in females, regardless nutritional sources. Interestingly, mitochondrial complex I-III activity was higher than complex IV specifically in females. We also observed sexual preferences in substrate utilization to sustain hydrogen peroxide production towards glucose in females, and glutamine in male worms. Despite strikingly high oxidant levels and hydrogen peroxide production rates, female worms were more resistant to a pro-oxidant challenge than male parasites. The data presented here indicate that sexual preferences in nutrient metabolism in adult S. mansoni worms regulate oxygen utilization and reactive oxygen species production, which may differently contribute

  13. Sexual Preferences in Nutrient Utilization Regulate Oxygen Consumption and Reactive Oxygen Species Generation in Schistosoma mansoni: Potential Implications for Parasite Redox Biology

    PubMed Central

    Oliveira, Matheus P.; Correa Soares, Juliana B. R.; Oliveira, Marcus F.

    2016-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni, one of the causative agents of human schistosomiasis, has a unique antioxidant network that is key to parasite survival and a valuable chemotherapeutic target. The ability to detoxify and tolerate reactive oxygen species increases along S. mansoni development in the vertebrate host, suggesting that adult parasites are more exposed to redox challenges than young stages. Indeed, adult parasites are exposed to multiple redox insults generated from blood digestion, activated immune cells, and, potentially, from their own parasitic aerobic metabolism. However, it remains unknown how reactive oxygen species are produced by S. mansoni metabolism, as well as their biological effects on adult worms. Here, we assessed the contribution of nutrients and parasite gender to oxygen utilization pathways, and reactive oxygen species generation in whole unpaired adult S. mansoni worms. We also determined the susceptibilities of both parasite sexes to a pro-oxidant challenge. We observed that glutamine and serum importantly contribute to both respiratory and non-respiratory oxygen utilization in adult worms, but with different proportions among parasite sexes. Analyses of oxygen utilization pathways revealed that respiratory rates were high in male worms, which contrast with high non-respiratory rates in females, regardless nutritional sources. Interestingly, mitochondrial complex I-III activity was higher than complex IV specifically in females. We also observed sexual preferences in substrate utilization to sustain hydrogen peroxide production towards glucose in females, and glutamine in male worms. Despite strikingly high oxidant levels and hydrogen peroxide production rates, female worms were more resistant to a pro-oxidant challenge than male parasites. The data presented here indicate that sexual preferences in nutrient metabolism in adult S. mansoni worms regulate oxygen utilization and reactive oxygen species production, which may differently contribute

  14. Plastids in parasites of humans.

    PubMed

    McFadden, G I; Waller, R F

    1997-11-01

    It has recently emerged that malarial, toxoplasmodial and related parasites contain a vestigial plastid (the organelle in which photosynthesis occurs in plants and algae). The function of the plastid in these obligate intracellular parasites has not been established. It seems likely that modern apicomplexans derive from photosynthetic predecessors, which perhaps formed associations with protists and invertebrates and abandoned autotrophy in favour of parasitism. Recognition of a third genetic compartment in these parasites proffers alternative strategies for combating a host of important human and animal diseases. It also poses some fascinating questions about the evolutionary biology of this important group of pathogens.

  15. Venus kinase receptors control reproduction in the platyhelminth parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Vanderstraete, Mathieu; Gouignard, Nadège; Cailliau, Katia; Morel, Marion; Hahnel, Steffen; Leutner, Silke; Beckmann, Svenja; Grevelding, Christoph G; Dissous, Colette

    2014-05-01

    The Venus kinase receptor (VKR) is a single transmembrane molecule composed of an intracellular tyrosine kinase domain close to that of insulin receptor and an extracellular Venus Flytrap (VFT) structure similar to the ligand binding domain of many class C G protein coupled receptors. This receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) was first discovered in the platyhelminth parasite Schistosoma mansoni, then in a large variety of invertebrates. A single vkr gene is found in most genomes, except in S. mansoni in which two genes Smvkr1 and Smvkr2 exist. VKRs form a unique family of RTKs present only in invertebrates and their biological functions are still to be discovered. In this work, we show that SmVKRs are expressed in the reproductive organs of S. mansoni, particularly in the ovaries of female worms. By transcriptional analyses evidence was obtained that both SmVKRs fulfill different roles during oocyte maturation. Suppression of Smvkr expression by RNA interference induced spectacular morphological changes in female worms with a strong disorganization of the ovary, which was dominated by the presence of primary oocytes, and a defect of egg formation. Following expression in Xenopus oocytes, SmVKR1 and SmVKR2 receptors were shown to be activated by distinct ligands which are L-Arginine and calcium ions, respectively. Signalling analysis in Xenopus oocytes revealed the capacity of SmVKRs to activate the PI3K/Akt/p70S6K and Erk MAPK pathways involved in cellular growth and proliferation. Additionally, SmVKR1 induced phosphorylation of JNK (c-Jun N-terminal kinase). Activation of JNK by SmVKR1 was supported by the results of yeast two-hybrid experiments identifying several components of the JNK pathway as specific interacting partners of SmVKR1. In conclusion, these results demonstrate the functions of SmVKR in gametogenesis, and particularly in oogenesis and egg formation. By eliciting signalling pathways potentially involved in oocyte proliferation, growth and migration

  16. A Systematically Improved High Quality Genome and Transcriptome of the Human Blood Fluke Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Babbage, Anne; Nichol, Sarah; Hunt, Martin; Aslett, Martin A.; De Silva, Nishadi; Velarde, Giles S.; Anderson, Tim J. C.; Clark, Richard C.; Davidson, Claire; Dillon, Gary P.; Holroyd, Nancy E.; LoVerde, Philip T.; Lloyd, Christine; McQuillan, Jacquelline; Oliveira, Guilherme; Otto, Thomas D.; Parker-Manuel, Sophia J.; Quail, Michael A.; Wilson, R. Alan; Zerlotini, Adhemar; Dunne, David W.; Berriman, Matthew

    2012-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is one of the most prevalent parasitic diseases, affecting millions of people in developing countries. Amongst the human-infective species, Schistosoma mansoni is also the most commonly used in the laboratory and here we present the systematic improvement of its draft genome. We used Sanger capillary and deep-coverage Illumina sequencing from clonal worms to upgrade the highly fragmented draft 380 Mb genome to one with only 885 scaffolds and more than 81% of the bases organised into chromosomes. We have also used transcriptome sequencing (RNA-seq) from four time points in the parasite's life cycle to refine gene predictions and profile their expression. More than 45% of predicted genes have been extensively modified and the total number has been reduced from 11,807 to 10,852. Using the new version of the genome, we identified trans-splicing events occurring in at least 11% of genes and identified clear cases where it is used to resolve polycistronic transcripts. We have produced a high-resolution map of temporal changes in expression for 9,535 genes, covering an unprecedented dynamic range for this organism. All of these data have been consolidated into a searchable format within the GeneDB (www.genedb.org) and SchistoDB (www.schistodb.net) databases. With further transcriptional profiling and genome sequencing increasingly accessible, the upgraded genome will form a fundamental dataset to underpin further advances in schistosome research. PMID:22253936

  17. Molecular characterization of host-parasite cell signalling in Schistosoma mansoni during early development

    PubMed Central

    Ressurreição, Margarida; Elbeyioglu, Firat; Kirk, Ruth S.; Rollinson, David; Emery, Aidan M.; Page, Nigel M.; Walker, Anthony J.

    2016-01-01

    During infection of their human definitive host, schistosomes transform rapidly from free-swimming infective cercariae in freshwater to endoparasitic schistosomules. The ‘somules’ next migrate within the skin to access the vasculature and are surrounded by host molecules that might activate intracellular pathways that influence somule survival, development and/or behaviour. However, such ‘transactivation’ by host factors in schistosomes is not well defined. In the present study, we have characterized and functionally localized the dynamics of protein kinase C (PKC) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation during early somule development in vitro and demonstrate activation of these protein kinases by human epidermal growth factor, insulin, and insulin-like growth factor I, particularly at the parasite surface. Further, we provide evidence that support the existence of specialized signalling domains called lipid rafts in schistosomes and propose that correct signalling to ERK requires proper raft organization. Finally, we show that modulation of PKC and ERK activities in somules affects motility and reduces somule survival. Thus, PKC and ERK are important mediators of host-ligand regulated transactivation events in schistosomes, and represent potential targets for anti-schistosome therapy aimed at reducing parasite survival in the human host. PMID:27762399

  18. Paleoparasitology: the origin of human parasites.

    PubMed

    Araújo, Adauto; Reinhard, Karl; Ferreira, Luiz Fernando; Pucu, Elisa; Chieffi, Pedro Paulo

    2013-09-01

    Parasitism is composed by three subsystems: the parasite, the host, and the environment. There are no organisms that cannot be parasitized. The relationship between a parasite and its host species most of the time do not result in damage or disease to the host. However, in a parasitic disease the presence of a given parasite is always necessary, at least in a given moment of the infection. Some parasite species that infect humans were inherited from pre-hominids, and were shared with other phylogenetically close host species, but other parasite species were acquired from the environment as humans evolved. Human migration spread inherited parasites throughout the globe. To recover and trace the origin and evolution of infectious diseases, paleoparasitology was created. Paleoparasitology is the study of parasites in ancient material, which provided new information on the evolution, paleoepidemiology, ecology and phylogenetics of infectious diseases.

  19. Hox genes in the parasitic platyhelminthes Mesocestoides corti, Echinococcus multilocularis, and Schistosoma mansoni: evidence for a reduced Hox complement.

    PubMed

    Koziol, Uriel; Lalanne, Ana I; Castillo, Estela

    2009-02-01

    Little is known about the Hox gene complement in parasitic platyhelminthes (Neodermata). With the aim of identifying Hox genes in this group we performed two independent strategies: we performed a PCR survey with degenerate primers directed to the Hox homeobox in the cestode Mesocestoides corti, and we searched genomic assemblies of Echinococcus multilocularis and Schistosoma mansoni. We identified two Hox genes in M. corti, seven in E. multilocularis, and nine in S. mansoni (including five previously reported). The affinities of these sequences, and other previously reported Hox sequences from flatworms, were determined according to phylogenetic analysis, presence of characteristic parapeptide sequences, and unusual intron positions. Our results suggest that the last common ancestor of triclads and neodermatans had a Hox gene complement of at least seven genes, and that this was probably derived by gene loss from a larger ancestral Hox complement in lophotrochozoans.

  20. Population Genetics of Schistosoma japonicum within the Philippines Suggest High Levels of Transmission between Humans and Dogs

    PubMed Central

    Rudge, James W.; Carabin, Hélène; Balolong, Ernesto; Tallo, Veronica; Shrivastava, Jaya; Lu, Da-Bing; Basáñez, María-Gloria; Olveda, Remigio; McGarvey, Stephen T.; Webster, Joanne P.

    2008-01-01

    Background Schistosoma japonicum, which remains a major public health problem in the Philippines and mainland China, is the only schistosome species for which zoonotic transmission is considered important. While bovines are suspected as the main zoonotic reservoir in parts of China, the relative contributions of various non-human mammals to S. japonicum transmission in the Philippines remain to be determined. We examined the population genetics of S. japonicum in the Philippines in order to elucidate transmission patterns across host species and geographic areas. Methodology/Principal Findings S. japonicum miracidia (hatched from eggs within fecal samples) from humans, dogs, pigs and rats, and cercariae shed from snail-intermediate hosts, were collected across two geographic areas of Samar Province. Individual isolates were then genotyped using seven multiplexed microsatellite loci. Wright's FST values and phylogenetic trees calculated for parasite populations suggest a high frequency of parasite gene-flow across definitive host species, particularly between dogs and humans. Parasite genetic differentiation between areas was not evident at the definitive host level, possibly suggesting frequent import and export of infections between villages, although there was some evidence of geographic structuring at the snail–intermediate host level. Conclusions/Significance These results suggest very high levels of transmission across host species, and indicate that the role of dogs should be considered when planning control programs. Furthermore, a regional approach to treatment programs is recommended where human migration is extensive. PMID:19030225

  1. HIV-1 vaccine-specific responses induced by Listeria vector vaccines are maintained in mice subsequently infected with a model helminth parasite, Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Shollenberger, Lisa M; Bui, Cac T; Paterson, Yvonne; Nyhoff, Lindsay; Harn, Donald A

    2013-11-19

    In areas co-endemic for helminth parasites and HIV/AIDS, infants are often administered vaccines prior to infection with immune modulatory helminth parasites. Systemic Th2 biasing and immune suppression caused by helminth infection reduces cell-mediated responses to vaccines such as tetanus toxoid and BCG. Therefore, we asked if infection with helminthes post-vaccination, alters already established vaccine induced immune responses. In our model, mice are vaccinated against HIV-1 Gag using a Listeria vaccine vector (Lm-Gag) in a prime-boost manner, then infected with the human helminth parasite Schistosoma mansoni. This allows us to determine if established vaccine responses are maintained or altered after helminth infection. Our second objective asked if helminth infection post-vaccination alters the recipient's ability to respond to a second boost. Here we compared responses between uninfected mice, schistosome infected mice, and infected mice that were given an anthelminthic, which occurred coincident with the boost or four weeks prior, as well as comparing to un-boosted mice. We report that HIV-1 vaccine-specific responses generated by Listeria vector HIV-1 vaccines are maintained following subsequent chronic schistosome infection, providing further evidence that Listeria vector vaccines induce potent vaccine-specific responses that can withstand helminth infection. We also were able to demonstrate that administration of a second Listeria boost, which markedly enhanced the immune response, was minimally impacted by schistosome infection, or anthelminthic therapy. Surprisingly, we also observed enhanced antibody responses to HIV Gag in vaccinated mice subsequently infected with schistosomes.

  2. Bayesian risk maps for Schistosoma mansoni and hookworm mono-infections in a setting where both parasites co-exist.

    PubMed

    Raso, Giovanna; Vounatsou, Penelope; McManus, Donald P; Utzinger, Jürg

    2007-11-01

    There is growing interest in the use of Bayesian geostatistical models for predicting the spatial distribution of parasitic infections, including hookworm, Schistosoma mansoni and co-infections with both parasites. The aim of this study was to predict the spatial distribution of mono-infections with either hookworm or S. mansoni in a setting where both parasites co-exist. School-based cross-sectional parasitological and questionnaire surveys were carried out in 57 rural schools in the Man region, western Côte d'Ivoire. A single stool specimen was obtained from each schoolchild attending grades 3-5. Stool specimens were processed by the Kato-Katz technique and an ether concentration method and examined for the presence of hookworm and S. mansoni eggs. The combined results from the two diagnostic approaches were considered for the infection status of each child. Demographic data (i.e. age and sex) were obtained from readily available school registries. Each child's socio-economic status was estimated, using the questionnaire data following a household-based asset approach. Environmental data were extracted from satellite imagery. The different data sources were incorporated into a geographical information system. Finally, a Bayesian spatial multinomial regression model was constructed and the spatial patterns of S. mansoni and hookworm mono-infections were investigated using Bayesian kriging. Our approach facilitated the production of smooth risk maps for hookworm and S. mansoni mono-infections that can be utilized for targeting control interventions. We argue that in settings where S. mansoni and hookworm co-exist and control efforts are under way, there is a need for both mono- and co-infection risk maps to enhance the cost-effectiveness of control programmes.

  3. Serotonin Signaling in Schistosoma mansoni: A Serotonin–Activated G Protein-Coupled Receptor Controls Parasite Movement

    PubMed Central

    Rashid, Mohammed; Ribeiro, Paula

    2014-01-01

    Serotonin is an important neuroactive substance in all the parasitic helminths. In Schistosoma mansoni, serotonin is strongly myoexcitatory; it potentiates contraction of the body wall muscles and stimulates motor activity. This is considered to be a critical mechanism of motor control in the parasite, but the mode of action of serotonin is poorly understood. Here we provide the first molecular evidence of a functional serotonin receptor (Sm5HTR) in S. mansoni. The schistosome receptor belongs to the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) superfamily and is distantly related to serotonergic type 7 (5HT7) receptors from other species. Functional expression studies in transfected HEK 293 cells showed that Sm5HTR is a specific serotonin receptor and it signals through an increase in intracellular cAMP, consistent with a 5HT7 signaling mechanism. Immunolocalization studies with a specific anti-Sm5HTR antibody revealed that the receptor is abundantly distributed in the worm's nervous system, including the cerebral ganglia and main nerve cords of the central nervous system and the peripheral innervation of the body wall muscles and tegument. RNA interference (RNAi) was performed both in schistosomulae and adult worms to test whether the receptor is required for parasite motility. The RNAi-suppressed adults and larvae were markedly hypoactive compared to the corresponding controls and they were also resistant to exogenous serotonin treatment. These results show that Sm5HTR is at least one of the receptors responsible for the motor effects of serotonin in S. mansoni. The fact that Sm5HTR is expressed in nerve tissue further suggests that serotonin stimulates movement via this receptor by modulating neuronal output to the musculature. Together, the evidence identifies Sm5HTR as an important neuronal protein and a key component of the motor control apparatus in S. mansoni. PMID:24453972

  4. Zoonotic Parasites of Bobcats around Human Landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Scorza, Andrea V.; Bevins, Sarah N.; Riley, Seth P. D.; Crooks, Kevin R.; VandeWoude, Sue; Lappin, Michael R.

    2012-01-01

    We analyzed Lynx rufus fecal parasites from California and Colorado, hypothesizing that bobcats shed zoonotic parasites around human landscapes. Giardia duodenalis, Cryptosporidium, Ancylostoma, Uncinaria, and Toxocara cati were shed. Toxoplasma gondii serology demonstrated exposure. Giardia and Cryptosporidium shedding increased near large human populations. Genotyped Giardia may indicate indirect transmission with humans. PMID:22718941

  5. Sex-Biased Transcriptome of Schistosoma mansoni: Host-Parasite Interaction, Genetic Determinants and Epigenetic Regulators Are Associated with Sexual Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Picard, Marion A. L.; Boissier, Jérôme; Roquis, David; Grunau, Christoph; Allienne, Jean-François; Duval, David; Toulza, Eve; Arancibia, Nathalie; Caffrey, Conor R.; Long, Thavy; Nidelet, Sabine; Rohmer, Marine; Cosseau, Céline

    2016-01-01

    Background Among more than 20,000 species of hermaphroditic trematodes, Schistosomatidae are unusual since they have evolved gonochorism. In schistosomes, sex is determined by a female heterogametic system, but phenotypic sexual dimorphism appears only after infection of the vertebrate definitive host. The completion of gonad maturation occurs even later, after pairing. To date, the molecular mechanisms that trigger the sexual differentiation in these species remain unknown, and in vivo studies on the developing schistosomulum stages are lacking. To study the molecular basis of sex determination and sexual differentiation in schistosomes, we investigated the whole transcriptome of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni in a stage- and sex-comparative manner. Methodology/ Principal Findings We performed a RNA-seq on males and females for five developmental stages: cercariae larvae, three in vivo schistosomulum stages and adults. We detected 7,168 genes differentially expressed between sexes in at least one of the developmental stages, and 4,065 of them were functionally annotated. Transcriptome data were completed with H3K27me3 histone modification analysis using ChIP-Seq before (in cercariae) and after (in adults) the phenotypic sexual dimorphism appearance. In this paper we present (i) candidate determinants of the sexual differentiation, (ii) sex-biased players of the interaction with the vertebrate host, and (iii) different dynamic of the H3K27me3 histone mark between sexes as an illustration of sex-biased epigenetic landscapes. Conclusions/ Significance Our work presents evidence that sexual differentiation in S. mansoni is accompanied by distinct male and female transcriptional landscapes of known players of the host-parasite crosstalk, genetic determinants and epigenetic regulators. Our results suggest that such combination could lead to the optimized sexual dimorphism of this parasitic species. As S. mansoni is pathogenic for humans, this study represents a

  6. A newly-identified lineage of Schistosoma.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Jess A T; DeJong, Randall J; Kazibwe, Francis; Mkoji, Gerald M; Loker, Eric S

    2003-08-01

    Because of their role in causing schistosomiasis, flukes of the genus Schistosoma are the best known of all digeneans. The genus has traditionally been divided into four familiar species groups. Here we report on three poorly known species of Schistosoma, one of which, Schistosoma hippopotami, is known from the hippopotamus, one of which is provisionally identified as Schistosoma edwardiense, another hippo parasite, and a third that has not previously been described. All were collected from freshwater snails obtained from Lake Edward, western Uganda, the type locality for both known hippo schistosomes. The three different kinds of schistosome cercariae differ from one another in size, and all are readily differentiated by their long tail stems from the cercariae of human-infecting species. Furthermore, each was recovered from a different genus of snail host, Biomphalaria sudanica, Bulinus truncatus or Ceratophallus natalensis. Molecular analysis, based on 8350 bases of combined nuclear and mitochondrial DNA, groups these three long tail-stem cercariae into a well supported clade that does not associate with any of the recognised species groups. The placement of this clade, basal to all African species plus several Asian species, suggests that there has been an ancient association between Schistosoma and hippos. This new African Schistosoma clade advocates the need for further modification of the traditional species group-based classification. Two of the four species groups are paraphyletic. It also suggests that Schistosoma has been remarkably plastic with respect to adapting to snail hosts-three distantly related genera of planorbid snails have been exploited by worms within a single clade. Finally, it adds a new layer of complexity to deciphering the origins of Schistosoma, often considered to be African but recently challenged as being Asian. In the late Cenozoic the distribution of hippo species straddled both Africa and Asia and they may have provided a means

  7. Quantum mechanics-based scoring rationalizes the irreversible inactivation of parasitic Schistosoma mansoni cysteine peptidase by vinyl sulfone inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Fanfrlík, Jindřich; Brahmkshatriya, Pathik S; Řezáč, Jan; Jílková, Adéla; Horn, Martin; Mareš, Michael; Hobza, Pavel; Lepšík, Martin

    2013-12-01

    The quantum mechanics (QM)-based scoring function that we previously developed for the description of noncovalent binding in protein-ligand complexes has been modified and extended to treat covalent binding of inhibitory ligands. The enhancements are (i) the description of the covalent bond breakage and formation using hybrid QM/semiempirical QM (QM/SQM) restrained optimizations and (ii) the addition of the new ΔG(cov)' term to the noncovalent score, describing the "free" energy difference between the covalent and noncovalent complexes. This enhanced QM-based scoring function is applied to a series of 20 vinyl sulfone-based inhibitory compounds inactivating the cysteine peptidase cathepsin B1 of the Schistosoma mansoni parasite (SmCB1). The available X-ray structure of the SmCB1 in complex with a potent vinyl sulfone inhibitor K11017 is used as a template to build the other covalently bound complexes and to model the derived noncovalent complexes. We present the correlation of the covalent score and its constituents with the experimental binding data. Four outliers are identified. They contain bulky R1' substituents structurally divergent from the template, which might induce larger protein rearrangements than could be accurately modeled. In summary, we propose a new computational approach and an optimal protocol for the rapid evaluation and prospective design of covalent inhibitors with a conserved binding mode. PMID:24195769

  8. Characterization of [3H]palmitate- and [3H]ethanolamine-labelled proteins in the multicellular parasitic trematode Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed Central

    Wiest, P M; Tisdale, E J; Roberts, W L; Rosenberry, T L; Mahmoud, A A; Tartakoff, A M

    1988-01-01

    Biosynthetic labelling experiments with cercariae and schistosomula of the multicellular parasitic trematode Schistosoma mansoni were performed to determine whether [3H]palmitate or [3H]ethanolamine was incorporated into proteins. Parasites incorporated [3H]palmitate into numerous proteins, as judged by SDS/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis and fluorography. The radiolabel was resistant to extraction with chloroform, but sensitive to alkaline hydrolysis, indicating the presence of an ester bond. Further investigation of the major 22 kDa [3H]palmitate-labelled species showed that the label could be recovered in a Pronase fragment which bound detergent and had an apparent molecular mass of 1200 Da as determined by gel filtration on Sephadex LH-20. Schistosomula incubated with [3H]ethanolamine for up to 24 h incorporated this precursor into several proteins; labelled Pronase fragments recovered from the three most intensely labelled proteins were hydrophilic and had a molecular mass of approx. 200 Da. Furthermore, reductive methylation of such fragments showed that the [3H]ethanolamine bears a free amino group, indicating the lack of an amide linkage. We also evaluated the effect of phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C from Staphylococcus aureus: [3H]palmitate-labelled proteins of schistosomula and surface-iodinated proteins were resistant to hydrolysis with this enzyme. In conclusion, [3H]palmitate and [3H]ethanolamine are incorporated into distinct proteins of cercariae and schistosomula which do not bear glycophospholipid anchors. The [3H]ethanolamine-labelled proteins represent a novel variety of protein modification. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 3. Fig. 5. PMID:3178767

  9. The role played by alternative splicing in antigenic variability in human endo-parasites

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Endo-parasites that affect humans include Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria, which remains one of the leading causes of death in human beings. Despite decades of research, vaccines to this and other endo-parasites remain elusive. This is in part due to the hyper-variability of the parasites surface proteins. Generally these surface proteins are encoded by a large family of genes, with only one being dominantly expressed at certain life stages. Another layer of complexity can be introduced through the alternative splicing of these surface proteins. The resulting isoforms may differ from each other with regard to cell localisation, substrate affinities and functions. They may even differ in structure to the extent that they are no longer recognised by the host’s immune system. In many cases this leads to changes in the N terminus of these proteins. The geographical localisation of endo-parasitic infections around the tropics and the highest incidences of HIV-1 infection in the same areas, adds a further layer of complexity as parasitic infections affect the host immune system resulting in higher HIV infection rates, faster disease progression, and an increase in the severity of infections and complications in HIV diagnosis. This review discusses some examples of parasite surface proteins that are alternatively spliced in trypanosomes, Plasmodium and the parasitic worm Schistosoma as well as what role alternate splicing may play in the interaction between HIV and these endo-parasites. PMID:24472559

  10. Schistosoma mansoni: interactive effects of irradiation and cryopreservation on parasite maturation and immunization of mice

    SciTech Connect

    James, E.R.; Dobinson, A.R.

    1984-06-01

    Mechanically transformed schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni were irradiated with levels of 60Co irradiation between 2.5 and 54 krad, cryopreserved by the two-step addition of ethanediol and rapid cooling technique, and were injected intramuscularly into groups of mice which were perfused 40 days later. The schistosomula were either irradiated and then cryopreserved (IC) or cryopreserved and then irradiated in the frozen state (CI). Development into adult worms was prevented with 4 krad for IC schistosomula, but for CI schistosomula a small number of worms (1.6%) was recovered using 8.8 krad. A dose of 4 krad was sufficient to prevent development of unfrozen controls (I), but for schistosomula irradiated while exposed to ethanediol (EI), a dose of 7 krad was required. Using the different protocols, the peak levels of protection against a challenge infection were achieved with 9 (IC) and 16 krad (CI), compared to 20 krad for unfrozen schistosomula (I) reported previously. The highest level of protection (65%) was achieved with CI schistosomula. Possible interactions between the radioprotective and damaging effects of cryopreservation are discussed.

  11. Large-Scale Overproduction and Purification of Recombinant Histone Deacetylase 8 (HDAC8) from the Human-Pathogenic Flatworm Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Marek, Martin; Shaik, Tajith B; Duclaud, Sylvie; Pierce, Raymond J; Romier, Christophe

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms underlie the morphological transformations and shifts in virulence of eukaryotic pathogens. The targeting of epigenetics-driven cellular programs thus represents an Achilles' heel of human parasites. Today, zinc-dependent histone deacetylases (HDACs) belong to the most explored epigenetic drug targets in eukaryotic parasites. Here, we describe an optimized protocol for the large-scale overproduction and purification of recombinant smHDAC8, an emerging epigenetic drug target in the multicellular human-pathogenic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni. The strategy employs the robustness of recombinant expression in Escherichia coli together with initial purification through a poly-histidine affinity tag that can be removed by the thrombin protease. This protocol is divided into two steps: (1) large-scale production of smHDAC8 in E. coli, and (2) purification of the target smHDAC8 protein through multiple purification steps. PMID:27246211

  12. Large-Scale Overproduction and Purification of Recombinant Histone Deacetylase 8 (HDAC8) from the Human-Pathogenic Flatworm Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Marek, Martin; Shaik, Tajith B; Duclaud, Sylvie; Pierce, Raymond J; Romier, Christophe

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms underlie the morphological transformations and shifts in virulence of eukaryotic pathogens. The targeting of epigenetics-driven cellular programs thus represents an Achilles' heel of human parasites. Today, zinc-dependent histone deacetylases (HDACs) belong to the most explored epigenetic drug targets in eukaryotic parasites. Here, we describe an optimized protocol for the large-scale overproduction and purification of recombinant smHDAC8, an emerging epigenetic drug target in the multicellular human-pathogenic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni. The strategy employs the robustness of recombinant expression in Escherichia coli together with initial purification through a poly-histidine affinity tag that can be removed by the thrombin protease. This protocol is divided into two steps: (1) large-scale production of smHDAC8 in E. coli, and (2) purification of the target smHDAC8 protein through multiple purification steps.

  13. Suppression of the Insulin Receptors in Adult Schistosoma japonicum Impacts on Parasite Growth and Development: Further Evidence of Vaccine Potential

    PubMed Central

    You, Hong; Gobert, Geoffrey N.; Cai, Pengfei; Mou, Rong; Nawaratna, Sujeevi; Fang, Guofu; Villinger, Francois; McManus, Donald P.

    2015-01-01

    To further investigate the importance of insulin signaling in the growth, development, sexual maturation and egg production of adult schistosomes, we have focused attention on the insulin receptors (SjIRs) of Schistosoma japonicum, which we have previously cloned and partially characterised. We now show, by Biolayer Interferometry, that human insulin can bind the L1 subdomain (insulin binding domain) of recombinant (r)SjIR1 and rSjIR2 (designated SjLD1 and SjLD2) produced using the Drosophila S2 protein expression system. We have then used RNA interference (RNAi) to knock down the expression of the SjIRs in adult S. japonicum in vitro and show that, in addition to their reduced transcription, the transcript levels of other important downstream genes within the insulin pathway, associated with glucose metabolism and schistosome fecundity, were also impacted substantially. Further, a significant decrease in glucose uptake was observed in the SjIR-knockdown worms compared with luciferase controls. In vaccine/challenge experiments, we found that rSjLD1 and rSjLD2 depressed female growth, intestinal granuloma density and faecal egg production in S. japonicum in mice presented with a low dose challenge infection. These data re-emphasize the potential of the SjIRs as veterinary transmission blocking vaccine candidates against zoonotic schistosomiasis japonica in China and the Philippines. PMID:25961574

  14. Palaeoparasitology - Human Parasites in Ancient Material.

    PubMed

    Araújo, Adauto; Reinhard, Karl; Ferreira, Luiz Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Parasite finds in ancient material launched a new field of science: palaeoparasitology. Ever since the pioneering studies, parasites were identified in archaeological and palaeontological remains, some preserved for millions of years by fossilization. However, the palaeoparasitological record consists mainly of parasites found specifically in human archaeological material, preserved in ancient occupation sites, from prehistory until closer to 2015. The results include some helminth intestinal parasites still commonly found in 2015, such as Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura and hookworms, besides others such as Amoebidae and Giardia intestinalis, as well as viruses, bacteria, fungi and arthropods. These parasites as a whole provide important data on health, diet, climate and living conditions among ancient populations. This chapter describes the principal findings and their importance for knowledge on the origin and dispersal of infectious diseases.

  15. Palaeoparasitology - Human Parasites in Ancient Material.

    PubMed

    Araújo, Adauto; Reinhard, Karl; Ferreira, Luiz Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Parasite finds in ancient material launched a new field of science: palaeoparasitology. Ever since the pioneering studies, parasites were identified in archaeological and palaeontological remains, some preserved for millions of years by fossilization. However, the palaeoparasitological record consists mainly of parasites found specifically in human archaeological material, preserved in ancient occupation sites, from prehistory until closer to 2015. The results include some helminth intestinal parasites still commonly found in 2015, such as Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura and hookworms, besides others such as Amoebidae and Giardia intestinalis, as well as viruses, bacteria, fungi and arthropods. These parasites as a whole provide important data on health, diet, climate and living conditions among ancient populations. This chapter describes the principal findings and their importance for knowledge on the origin and dispersal of infectious diseases. PMID:26597072

  16. Characteristics of the Human Host Have Little Influence on Which Local Schistosoma mansoni Populations Are Acquired

    PubMed Central

    Barbosa, Lúcio M.; Silva, Luciano K.; Reis, Eliana A.; Azevedo, Theomira M.; Costa, Jackson M.; Blank, Walter A.; Reis, Mitermayer G.; Blanton, Ronald E.

    2013-01-01

    Background Brazil remains the country in the Americas with the highest prevalence of schistosomiasis. A combination of control efforts and development, however, has sharply reduced its intensity and distribution. The acquisition of specific schistosome populations may be dependent on host characteristics such as sex, age, geography, work, habits and culture. How these and other host characteristics align with parasite subpopulations may guide approaches to improve control. Methodology A cohort of more than 90% of the residents in two rural communities in Brazil participated in an epidemiologic survey of demographic, socio-economic and behavioral characteristics. The variables sex, age, intensity of infection, socio-economic index, % lifetime spent on site, previous infection, and trips outside the district were used to group parasites infecting individuals. Schistosoma mansoni infection status was determined by examination of stools submitted on 3 different days. The aggregate of eggs collected from the whole stool was used to determine degree of population differentiation from allele frequencies for 15 microsatellites. Conclusions/Significance Infection prevalence was 41% for these communities, and the epidemiologic characteristics were similar to many of the endemic areas of Brazil and the world. Parasite population structuring was observed between the two communities (Jost's D 0.046, CI95% 0.042–0.051), although separated by only 8 km and connected by a highway. No structuring was observed when infected individuals were stratified by host's biologic, demographic or epidemiologic characteristics. Those most heavily infected best reflected the communities' overall parasite diversity. The lack of differentiation within villages suggests that individuals are likely to get infected at the same sites or that the same parasite multilocus genotypes can be found at most sites. The geographic structuring between villages and the lack of structuring by age of the host

  17. Drug repurposing and human parasitic protozoan diseases

    PubMed Central

    Andrews, Katherine T.; Fisher, Gillian; Skinner-Adams, Tina S.

    2014-01-01

    Parasitic diseases have an enormous health, social and economic impact and are a particular problem in tropical regions of the world. Diseases caused by protozoa and helminths, such as malaria and schistosomiasis, are the cause of most parasite related morbidity and mortality, with an estimated 1.1 million combined deaths annually. The global burden of these diseases is exacerbated by the lack of licensed vaccines, making safe and effective drugs vital to their prevention and treatment. Unfortunately, where drugs are available, their usefulness is being increasingly threatened by parasite drug resistance. The need for new drugs drives antiparasitic drug discovery research globally and requires a range of innovative strategies to ensure a sustainable pipeline of lead compounds. In this review we discuss one of these approaches, drug repurposing or repositioning, with a focus on major human parasitic protozoan diseases such as malaria, trypanosomiasis, toxoplasmosis, cryptosporidiosis and leishmaniasis. PMID:25057459

  18. Flagellar motility in eukaryotic human parasites.

    PubMed

    Krüger, Timothy; Engstler, Markus

    2015-10-01

    A huge variety of protists rely on one or more motile flagella to either move themselves or move fluids and substances around them. Many of these flagellates have evolved a symbiotic or parasitic lifestyle. Several of the parasites have adapted to human hosts, and include agents of prevalent and serious diseases. These unicellular parasites have become specialised in colonising a wide range of biological niches within humans. They usually have diverse transmission cycles, and frequently manifest a variety of distinct morphological stages. The motility of the single or multiple flagella plays important but understudied roles in parasite transmission, host invasion, dispersal, survival, proliferation and pathology. In this review we provide an overview of the important human pathogens that possess a motile flagellum for at least part of their life cycle. We highlight recently published studies that aim to elucidate motility mechanisms, and their relevance for human disease. We then bring the physics of swimming at the microscale into context, emphasising the importance of interdisciplinary approaches for a full understanding of flagellate motility - especially in light of the parasites' microenvironments and population dynamics. Finally, we summarise some important technological aspects, describing challenges for the field and possibilities for motility analyses in the future.

  19. Flagellar motility in eukaryotic human parasites.

    PubMed

    Krüger, Timothy; Engstler, Markus

    2015-10-01

    A huge variety of protists rely on one or more motile flagella to either move themselves or move fluids and substances around them. Many of these flagellates have evolved a symbiotic or parasitic lifestyle. Several of the parasites have adapted to human hosts, and include agents of prevalent and serious diseases. These unicellular parasites have become specialised in colonising a wide range of biological niches within humans. They usually have diverse transmission cycles, and frequently manifest a variety of distinct morphological stages. The motility of the single or multiple flagella plays important but understudied roles in parasite transmission, host invasion, dispersal, survival, proliferation and pathology. In this review we provide an overview of the important human pathogens that possess a motile flagellum for at least part of their life cycle. We highlight recently published studies that aim to elucidate motility mechanisms, and their relevance for human disease. We then bring the physics of swimming at the microscale into context, emphasising the importance of interdisciplinary approaches for a full understanding of flagellate motility - especially in light of the parasites' microenvironments and population dynamics. Finally, we summarise some important technological aspects, describing challenges for the field and possibilities for motility analyses in the future. PMID:26523344

  20. Parasitic diseases in humans transmitted by vectors.

    PubMed

    Cholewiński, Marcin; Derda, Monika; Hadaś, Edward

    2015-01-01

    Despite the considerable progress of medicine, parasitic diseases still pose a great threat to human health and life. Among parasitic diseases, those transmitted by vectors, mainly arthropods, play a particular role. These diseases occur most frequently in the poorest countries and affect a vast part of the human population. They include malaria, babesiosis, trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis and filariasis. This study presents those vector-transmitted diseases that are responsible for the greatest incidence and mortality of people on a global scale. Attention is focused primarily on diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, flies, Hemiptera and ticks.

  1. SmCL3, a Gastrodermal Cysteine Protease of the Human Blood Fluke Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Dvořák, Jan; Mashiyama, Susan T.; Sajid, Mohammed; Braschi, Simon; Delcroix, Melaine; Schneider, Eric L.; McKerrow, Wilson H.; Bahgat, Mahmoud; Hansell, Elizabeth; Babbitt, Patricia C.; Craik, Charles S.; McKerrow, James H.; Caffrey, Conor R.

    2009-01-01

    Background Blood flukes of the genus Schistosoma are platyhelminth parasites that infect 200 million people worldwide. Digestion of nutrients from the host bloodstream is essential for parasite development and reproduction. A network of proteolytic enzymes (proteases) facilitates hydrolysis of host hemoglobin and serum proteins. Methodology/Principal Findings We identified a new cathepsin L termed SmCL3 using PCR strategies based on S. mansoni EST sequence data. An ortholog is present in Schistosoma japonicum. SmCL3 was heterologously expressed as an active enzyme in the yeast, Pichia pastoris. Recombinant SmCL3 has a broad pH activity range against peptidyl substrates and is inhibited by Clan CA protease inhibitors. Consistent with a function in degrading host proteins, SmCL3 hydrolyzes serum albumin and hemoglobin, is localized to the adult gastrodermis, and is expressed mainly in those life stages infecting the mammalian host. The predominant form of SmCL3 in the parasite exists as a zymogen, which is unusual for proteases. This zymogen includes an unusually long prodomain with alpha helical secondary structure motifs. The striking specificity of SmCL3 for amino acids with large aromatic side chains (Trp and Tyr) at the P2 substrate position, as determined with positional scanning-synthetic combinatorial library, is consistent with a molecular model that shows a large and deep S2 pocket. A sequence similarity network (SSN) view clusters SmCL3 and other cathepsins L in accordance with previous large-scale phylogenetic analyses that identify six super kingdoms. Conclusions/Significance SmCL3 is a gut-associated cathepsin L that may contribute to the network of proteases involved in degrading host blood proteins as nutrients. Furthermore, this enzyme exhibits some unusual sequence and biophysical features that may result in additional functions. The visualization of network inter-relationships among cathepsins L suggests that these enzymes are suitable

  2. Experimental chemotherapy of Schistosoma mansoni with praziquantel and oxamniquine: differential effect of single or combined formulations of drugs on various strains and on both sexes of the parasite.

    PubMed

    Delgado, V S; Suárez, D P; Cesari, I M; Incani, R N

    1992-01-01

    The susceptibility of two Venezuelan (YT and SM) and one Brazilian (BH) strain of Schistosoma mansoni to single oral doses of praziquantel (Pz; 250 or 500 mg/kg), oxamniquine (Ox; 40, 60, or 100 mg/kg) or to low-dose combinations of both drugs (33 mg/kg Pz and 25 mg/kg Ox; 66 mg/kg Pz and 12.5 mg/kg Ox; 250 mg/kg Pz and 40 mg/kg Ox) was experimentally evaluated in mice. At lower doses of either drug, adult worms of the SM isolate were less susceptible than those of the BH and YT isolates. However, no difference in liver or intestinal egg counts (IECs) could be detected among the isolates after this treatment. At such doses, Pz was better than Ox at reducing IECs. In spite of lowered IECs, eggs continued to accumulate in the liver after Ox treatment. At higher individual doses or following treatment with low-dose combinations of both drugs, no difference in susceptibility could be detected among the parasite isolates. Under such conditions, oviposition was drastically reduced in all three isolates. We confirm that Ox preferentially kills male parasites and present for the first time evidence for the preferential killing of female worms by Pz. We propose that the synergistic effect obtained in the present study and in other investigations using low-dose combinations of both drugs may be due to the preferential cytotoxicity of each drug against a different parasite sex. PMID:1480600

  3. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... serum. The identification aids in the diagnosis of schistosomiasis caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma. Schistosomiasis is characterized by a variety of acute and chronic infections....

  4. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... serum. The identification aids in the diagnosis of schistosomiasis caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma. Schistosomiasis is characterized by a variety of acute and chronic infections....

  5. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... serum. The identification aids in the diagnosis of schistosomiasis caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma. Schistosomiasis is characterized by a variety of acute and chronic infections....

  6. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... serum. The identification aids in the diagnosis of schistosomiasis caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma. Schistosomiasis is characterized by a variety of acute and chronic infections....

  7. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... serum. The identification aids in the diagnosis of schistosomiasis caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma. Schistosomiasis is characterized by a variety of acute and chronic infections....

  8. Synthesis of a Sugar-Based Thiosemicarbazone Series and Structure-Activity Relationship versus the Parasite Cysteine Proteases Rhodesain, Cruzain, and Schistosoma mansoni Cathepsin B1

    PubMed Central

    Fonseca, Nayara Cristina; da Cruz, Luana Faria; da Silva Villela, Filipe; do Nascimento Pereira, Glaécia Aparecida; de Siqueira-Neto, Jair Lage; Kellar, Danielle; Suzuki, Brian M.; Ray, Debalina; de Souza, Thiago Belarmino; Alves, Ricardo José; Júnior, Policarpo Ademar Sales; Romanha, Alvaro José; Murta, Silvane Maria Fonseca; McKerrow, James H.; Caffrey, Conor R.; de Oliveira, Renata Barbosa

    2015-01-01

    The pressing need for better drugs against Chagas disease, African sleeping sickness, and schistosomiasis motivates the search for inhibitors of cruzain, rhodesain, and Schistosoma mansoni CB1 (SmCB1), the major cysteine proteases from Trypanosoma cruzi, Trypanosoma brucei, and S. mansoni, respectively. Thiosemicarbazones and heterocyclic analogues have been shown to be both antitrypanocidal and inhibitory against parasite cysteine proteases. A series of compounds was synthesized and evaluated against cruzain, rhodesain, and SmCB1 through biochemical assays to determine their potency and structure-activity relationships (SAR). This approach led to the discovery of 6 rhodesain, 4 cruzain, and 5 SmCB1 inhibitors with 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC50s) of ≤10 μM. Among the compounds tested, the thiosemicarbazone derivative of peracetylated galactoside (compound 4i) was discovered to be a potent rhodesain inhibitor (IC50 = 1.2 ± 1.0 μM). The impact of a range of modifications was determined; removal of thiosemicarbazone or its replacement by semicarbazone resulted in virtually inactive compounds, and modifications in the sugar also diminished potency. Compounds were also evaluated in vitro against the parasites T. cruzi, T. brucei, and S. mansoni, revealing active compounds among this series. PMID:25712353

  9. Effects of garlic on Schistosoma mansoni harbored in albino mice: molecular characterization of the host and parasite.

    PubMed

    Riad, Nahed H A; Taha, Hoda A; Mahmoud, Yomna I

    2013-04-15

    Garlic has been used for its health benefits for thousands of years. Modern research confirmed many of the healing properties of garlic, including its antiparasitic activity. This study was designed to evaluate the antischistosomal action of garlic through detecting the changes in DNA profile of Schistosoma mansoni worms and the infected mouse. Forty mice were subcutaneously infected with ~200 Schistosoma mansoni cercariae/mouse. Infected mice were divided into four equal groups: non-treated, prophylactic, therapeutic, and continuously-treated. Non-infected control and garlic-treated groups were assigned for the sake of comparison. Garlic extract (50mg/kg bw/mouse) was given orally, day after day, at a fixed daytime. Seven weeks post-infection, adult schistosomes were recovered by perfusion and the livers of the mice were excised out and were processed for DNA extraction and Random Amplification of Polymorphic DNA-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RAPD-PCR). The results showed that garlic exerted no major changes in the genome of schistosomes. Nevertheless, that schistosomal infection induced genetic alterations in the DNA of mice, and garlic was able to ameliorate such alterations to a great extent.

  10. Schistosoma mansoni Soluble Egg Antigens Induce Expression of the Negative Regulators SOCS1 and SHP1 in Human Dendritic Cells via Interaction with the Mannose Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Klaver, Elsenoor J.; Kuijk, Loes M.; Lindhorst, Thisbe K.; Cummings, Richard D.; van Die, Irma

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a common debilitating human parasitic disease in (sub)tropical areas, however, schistosome infections can also protect against a variety of inflammatory diseases. This has raised broad interest in the mechanisms by which Schistosoma modulate the immune system into an anti-inflammatory and regulatory state. Human dendritic cells (DCs) show many phenotypic changes upon contact with Schistosoma mansoni soluble egg antigens (SEA). We here show that oxidation of SEA glycans, but not heat-denaturation, abrogates the capacity of SEA to suppress both LPS-induced cytokine secretion and DC proliferation, indicating an important role of SEA glycans in these processes. Remarkably, interaction of SEA glycans with DCs results in a strongly increased expression of Suppressor Of Cytokine Signalling1 (SOCS1) and SH2-containing protein tyrosine Phosphatase-1 (SHP1), important negative regulators of TLR4 signalling. In addition, SEA induces the secretion of transforming growth factor β (TGF-β), and the surface expression of the costimulatory molecules Programmed Death Ligand-1 (PD-L1) and OX40 ligand (OX40L), which are known phenotypic markers for the capacity of DCs to polarize naïve T cells into Th2/Treg cell subsets. Inhibition of mannose receptor (MR)-mediated internalization of SEA into DCs by blocking with allyl α-D-mannoside or anti-MR antibodies, significantly reduced SOCS1 and SHP1 expression. In conclusion, we demonstrate that SEA glycans are essential for induction of enhanced SOCS1 and SHP1 levels in DCs via the MR. Our data provide novel mechanistic evidence for the potential of S. mansoni SEA glycans to modulate human DCs, which may contribute to the capacity of SEA to down-regulate inflammatory responses. PMID:25897665

  11. Schistosoma mansoni Soluble Egg Antigens Induce Expression of the Negative Regulators SOCS1 and SHP1 in Human Dendritic Cells via Interaction with the Mannose Receptor.

    PubMed

    Klaver, Elsenoor J; Kuijk, Loes M; Lindhorst, Thisbe K; Cummings, Richard D; van Die, Irma

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a common debilitating human parasitic disease in (sub)tropical areas, however, schistosome infections can also protect against a variety of inflammatory diseases. This has raised broad interest in the mechanisms by which Schistosoma modulate the immune system into an anti-inflammatory and regulatory state. Human dendritic cells (DCs) show many phenotypic changes upon contact with Schistosoma mansoni soluble egg antigens (SEA). We here show that oxidation of SEA glycans, but not heat-denaturation, abrogates the capacity of SEA to suppress both LPS-induced cytokine secretion and DC proliferation, indicating an important role of SEA glycans in these processes. Remarkably, interaction of SEA glycans with DCs results in a strongly increased expression of Suppressor Of Cytokine Signalling1 (SOCS1) and SH2-containing protein tyrosine Phosphatase-1 (SHP1), important negative regulators of TLR4 signalling. In addition, SEA induces the secretion of transforming growth factor β (TGF-β), and the surface expression of the costimulatory molecules Programmed Death Ligand-1 (PD-L1) and OX40 ligand (OX40L), which are known phenotypic markers for the capacity of DCs to polarize naïve T cells into Th2/Treg cell subsets. Inhibition of mannose receptor (MR)-mediated internalization of SEA into DCs by blocking with allyl α-D-mannoside or anti-MR antibodies, significantly reduced SOCS1 and SHP1 expression. In conclusion, we demonstrate that SEA glycans are essential for induction of enhanced SOCS1 and SHP1 levels in DCs via the MR. Our data provide novel mechanistic evidence for the potential of S. mansoni SEA glycans to modulate human DCs, which may contribute to the capacity of SEA to down-regulate inflammatory responses. PMID:25897665

  12. [Parasitic zoonotic disease agents in human and animal drinking water].

    PubMed

    Karanis, P

    2000-08-01

    Human- and veterinary important parasites of the subkingdom of protozoans and helminths infect humans and animals by ingestion of parasites in contaminated water. The parasites are excreted from the body of infected humans, livestock, zoo animals, companion animals or wild animals in the feces. Recreational waters, agricultural practices and wild animals serve as vehicles of transmission of the parasites in the water supplies. The following topics are addressed: a) the life cycles of parasitic diseases-causing agents with proven or potential transmission via water b) the development and the current research status of the analytical techniques for the detection of parasitic diseases-causing agents from water c) the occurrence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in surface water supplies and in treated water d) the possible water sources and transmission ways of the parasites into the water supplies e) the behaviour and the possibilities for the removal or elimination of the parasites by water treatment.

  13. [Reinfection with Schistosoma haematobium and mansoni despite repeated praziquantel office treatment in Niger, Mali].

    PubMed

    Dabo, A; Doucoure, B; Koita, O; Diallo, M; Kouriba, B; Klinkert, M Q; Doumbia, S; Doumbo, O

    2000-01-01

    The dynamics of reinfection by Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni after repeated treatment with praziquantel (40 mg/kg body weight, single dose) was studied in a cohort of schoolchildren living in an endemic area. A total of 214 urine and 220 stool samples were collected and examined at three different times, i.e., February 1989, July 1989 and February 1990. Mass chemotherapy was administered at the beginning of study (February 89). Treatment was repeated in children with positive tests at each subsequent sampling. Prevalence rates were 55.1 p. 100, 3.7 p. 100, and 35.0 p. 100 for Schistosoma haematobium and 62.7 p. 100, 46.3 p. 100 and 73.1 p. 100 for Schistosoma mansoni in February 1989, July 1989 and February 1990 respectively (p < 0.001). From July 1989 to February 1990, reinfection was observed in 84.5 p. 100 of children by Schistosoma haematobium versus 57.8 p. 100 by Schistosoma mansoni. The risk of reinfection by Schistosoma haematobium was higher in children between the ages of 7 and 10 years than in children between the ages of 11 and 15 years (p < 0.001), The incidence of intense Schistosoma haematobium egg excretion rose from 0 p. 100 in July 1989 to 6.0 p. 100 in February 1990. The incidence of intense Schistosoma mansoni excretion in February 1990 was 4.5 p. 100. The reinfection rate at 7 months was over 50 p. 100 for both parasite species despite repeated treatment. This finding demonstrates that additional measures such as proper sanitation and vector control are needed to control human schistosomiasis in irrigated rice paddies.

  14. Helminth and protozoan gastrointestinal tract parasites in captive and wild-trapped African non-human primates.

    PubMed

    Munene, E; Otsyula, M; Mbaabu, D A; Mutahi, W T; Muriuki, S M; Muchemi, G M

    1998-08-14

    The objective of this study was to investigate the gastro-intestinal (GIT) parasites commonly occurring in captive and wild-trapped (WT) non-human primates (baboons, vervets and Sykes) in Kenya and compare their prevalence. Three hundred and fifteen faecal samples were subjected to a battery of diagnostic tests, namely, direct smear, modified formal ether sedimentation, Kato thick smear, Harada-Mori techniques for parasite detection and culture to facilitate nematode larvae identification. Of these, 203 (64.4%) harboured helminths and 54 (17.1%) had protozoa. The helminth parasites comprised Strongyloides fulleborni 141 (44.8%), Trichuris trichuira 200 (63.5,%), Oesophagostomum sp. 48 (15.2%), Trichostrongylus sp. 73 (23.2%), Enterobius vermicularis 44 (14.0%), Schistosoma mansoni 4/92 (4.3%) and Streptopharagus sp. 68 (21.6%). Protozoan parasites consisted of Entamoeba coli 204 (64.8%), Balantidium coli 127 (40.3%) and Entamoeba histolytica 78 (24.8%). Both WT and colony-borne (CB) primates had similar species of parasites, but higher prevalences of protozoan infection were observed in CB baboons while helminth infections were relatively more common in WT primates. Some of the parasites observed in this study are reported to be zoonotic in various parasitological literatures. Chemoprophylaxis and other managerial practices were believed to be responsible for the lower worm prevalence in CB primates. Similar intervention against protozoa and other agents will not only improve primate health, but also increase safety to animal handlers and colony workers. PMID:9760061

  15. Enzyme analysis of Schistosoma haematobium*

    PubMed Central

    Wright, C. A.; Ross, G. C.

    1983-01-01

    Results are reported of enzyme analyses, by isoelectric focusing in polyacrylamide gels, of adult Schistosoma haematobium worms derived from 22 isolates originating from 13 countries. Polymorphisms have been identified in the glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) and phosphoglucomutase (PGM) systems. Certain forms appear to be restricted in their geographical distribution and their occurrence outside their usual areas suggests human population movements resulting in mixing of parasite strains. The possible implications of minor variations in some PGM patterns and the apparent absence of heteropolymer fractions in presumed G6PD heterozygotes are discussed. The use of the technique to detect natural multiple miracidial infections in snails is reported and discussed. ImagesFig. 1 PMID:6222843

  16. Larval excretory-secretory products from the parasite Schistosoma mansoni modulate HSP70 protein expression in defence cells of its snail host, Biomphalaria glabrata

    PubMed Central

    Zahoor, Zahida; Davies, Angela J.; Kirk, Ruth S.; Rollinson, David

    2010-01-01

    Synthesis of heat shock proteins (HSPs) following cellular stress is a response shared by many organisms. Amongst the HSP family, the ∼70 kDa HSPs are the most evolutionarily conserved with intracellular chaperone and extracellular immunoregulatory functions. This study focused on the effects of larval excretory-secretory products (ESPs) from the parasite Schistosoma mansoni on HSP70 protein expression levels in haemocytes (defence cells) from its snail intermediate host Biomphalaria glabrata. S. mansoni larval stage ESPs are known to interfere with haemocyte physiology and behaviour. Haemocytes from two different B. glabrata strains, one which is susceptible to S. mansoni infection and one which is resistant, both showed reduced HSP70 protein levels following 1 h challenge with S. mansoni ESPs when compared to unchallenged controls; however, the reduction observed in the resistant strain was less marked. The decline in intracellular HSP70 protein persisted for at least 5 h in resistant snail haemocytes only. Furthermore, in schistosome-susceptible snails infected by S. mansoni for 35 days, haemocytes possessed approximately 70% less HSP70. The proteasome inhibitor, MG132, partially restored HSP70 protein levels in ESP-challenged haemocytes, demonstrating that the decrease in HSP70 was in part due to intracellular degradation. The extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signalling pathway appears to regulate HSP70 protein expression in these cells, as the mitogen-activated protein-ERK kinase 1/2 (MEK1/2) inhibitor, U0126, significantly reduced HSP70 protein levels. Disruption of intracellular HSP70 protein expression in B. glabrata haemocytes by S. mansoni ESPs may be a strategy employed by the parasite to manipulate the immune response of the intermediate snail host. PMID:20182834

  17. New insights into the reaction of Schistosoma mansoni cercaria to the human complement system

    PubMed Central

    Da'dara, Akram A.; Krautz-Peterson, Greice

    2014-01-01

    Schistosomes are parasitic worms that have a complex life cycle. The larval stage cercaria, infectious to mammals, is described as highly susceptible to the complement system, largely due to the glycocalyx that covers the cercarial membrane. In an attempt to have a more complete understanding of cercaria reaction to the complement system, three different approaches were used. Live cercariae exposed to normal human serum (NHS) as source of complement factors were assessed for: i) Membrane Attack Complex (MAC) deposition on the parasite surface; ii) cercaria survival rate by Hoechst staining of parasite DNA; and iii) transformation into schistosomula by detection of the glucose transporter protein 4 (SGTP4), a marker for new tegument formation. We found that 82–95% of cercariae directly exposed to NHS for 18 h were viable and retained their ability to shed the glycocalyx, suggesting minimal tegument damage. In contrast, inhibition of glycocalyx shedding using eserine caused significant MAC binding and parasite death. Culturing complement-exposed cercariae to measure long term survival showed that more parasites died over time, reaching a survival rate of 18–31% by day 6 in culture. The reason for this slow death is unknown, but the surviving parasites were able to form a new tegument as shown by detection of SGTP4 on the parasite surface. Furthermore, we found that complement activation significantly damaged the acetabular gland ducts and lysed secretory vesicles released by transforming cercariae. These findings should contribute for future in vivo studies of the effects of the complement system in skin migrating cercariae. PMID:25030119

  18. New insights into the reaction of Schistosoma mansoni cercaria to the human complement system.

    PubMed

    Da'dara, Akram A; Krautz-Peterson, Greice

    2014-10-01

    Schistosomes are parasitic worms that have a complex life cycle. The larval stage cercaria, infectious to mammals, is described as highly susceptible to the complement system, largely due to the glycocalyx that covers the cercarial membrane. In an attempt to have a more complete understanding of cercaria reaction to the complement system, three different approaches were used. Live cercariae exposed to normal human serum (NHS) as source of complement factors were assessed for (i) membrane attack complex (MAC) deposition on the parasite surface, (ii) cercaria survival rate by Hoechst staining of parasite DNA, and (iii) transformation into schistosomula by detection of the glucose transporter protein 4 (SGTP4), a marker for new tegument formation. We found that 82-95% of cercariae directly exposed to NHS for 18 h were viable and retained their ability to shed the glycocalyx, suggesting minimal tegument damage. In contrast, inhibition of glycocalyx shedding using eserine caused significant MAC binding and parasite death. Culturing complement-exposed cercariae to measure long-term survival showed that more parasites died over time, reaching a survival rate of 18-31% by day 6 in culture. The reason for this slow death is unknown, but the surviving parasites were able to form a new tegument as shown by detection of SGTP4 on the parasite surface. Furthermore, we found that complement activation significantly damaged the acetabular gland ducts and lysed secretory vesicles released by transforming cercariae. These findings should contribute for future in vivo studies of the effects of the complement system in skin migrating cercariae.

  19. A cyclohexanecarboxamide derivative with inhibitory effects on Schistosoma mansoni cercarial serine protease and penetration of mice skin by the parasite.

    PubMed

    Bahgat, Mahmoud; Aboul-Enein, Mohamed N; El Azzouny, Aida A; Maghraby, Amany; Ruppel, Andreas; Soliman, Wael M

    2009-01-01

    A cyclohexanecarboxamide derivative, N-phenyl-N-[1-(piperidine-1-carbonyl)cyclohexyl] benzamide (MNRC-5), was evaluated for its inhibitory effects on Schistosoma mansoni cercarial serine protease activity and cercarial penetration. MNRC-5 exerted an inhibitory effect on S. mansoni cercarial serine protease at serial concentrations of the specific chromogenic substrate Boc-Val-Leu-Gly-Arg-PNA for such enzyme family and the inhibitory coefficient (Ki) value was deduced. Moreover, topical treatment of mice tails with the most potent inhibitory concentration of MNRC-5 formulated in jojoba oil successfully blocked cercarial penetration as demonstrated by a significant reduction (75%; p < 0.05) in the recovered S. mansoni worms from treated mice in comparison to control ones whose tails were painted with jojoba oil base containing no MNRC-5. In addition, the IgM and IgG reactivities to crude S. mansoni cercarial, worm and egg antigens were generally lower in sera from treated infected mice than untreated infected mice. In conclusion, we report on a new serine protease inhibitor capable for blocking penetration of host skin by S. mansoni cercariae as measured by lowering worm burden and decrease in the levels of both IgM and IgG towards different bilharzial antigens upon topical treatment.

  20. Schistosoma japonicum soluble egg antigens activate naive B cells to produce antibodies: definition of parasite mechanisms of immune deviation.

    PubMed Central

    Yamashita, T; Watanabe, T; Saito, S; Araki, Y; Sendo, F

    1993-01-01

    This study analysed the effect of Schistosoma japonicum egg antigens (SEA) on the activation of lymphocytes from naive mice. T cells were found to be unaffected by SEA. B cells, however, were activated by SEA without participation of adherent cells such as macrophages. B-cell activating factor(s) in SEA were distributed into a fraction of M(r) 120,000 and a fraction of M(r) 650,000 by gel filtration. However, a fraction of M(r) 120,000 demonstrated the presence of a limited number of components by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE) under non-denaturing conditions. These activating factor(s) were destroyed by peroxidase oxidation, heat treatment, chymotrypsin and trypsin digestion. These results indicate that the B-cell activating factor(s) in SEA contain both carbohydrate and protein. IgM antibodies were detected in the culture supernatant of SEA-activated B cells after 48 hr in culture, but IgG antibodies were undetected in culture. These antibodies did not react with SEA but reacted with sheep, horse, mouse red blood cells, carbonic anhydrase and autoantigens in myelinated nerve fibres of cerebrum as well as luminal surface and parietal cells of the stomach of naive mice. Thus our data demonstrated that SEA directly stimulates naive B cells to produce antibodies against heterophile and autologous antigens. Images Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 PMID:8344698

  1. Invertebrate host-parasite relationships: convergent evolution of a tropomyosin epitope between Schistosoma sp., Fasciola hepatica, and certain pulmonate snails.

    PubMed

    Weston, D; Allen, B; Thakur, A; LoVerde, P T; Kemp, W M

    1994-05-01

    Monoclonal antibodies (mAb) directed against Schistosoma mansoni tropomyosin isoform, SMTM (Xu et al. Experimental Parasitology 69, 373-392, 1989), were used to test for cross-reactivity with Biomphalaria glabrata antigens. One mAb (1F10) recognized antigens of 39, 41, and 80 kDa in a snail head/foot antigen preparation but not a hepatopancreas antigen preparation. Another mAb (1C1) cross-reacted with a 39-kDa antigen in the head/foot extract but not in the hepatopancreas extract. Epitope mapping revealed the 1F10 epitope to be between amino acids 135 and 188 of both Bg39 (Dissous et al. Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology 43, 245-256, 1990) and BgTMII (Weston and Kemp, Experimental Parasitology 76, 358-370, 1993), while the 1C1 epitope was located between amino acids 189 and 213 of BgTMII. Various invertebrate species, including members from Trematoda, Pulmonata, Annelida, and Arthropoda, were tested for cross-reactivity with the monoclonal antibodies. While the 1F10 mAb displayed broad invertebrate cross-reactivity, the 1C1 mAb cross-reactivity was restricted to schistosomes, F. hepatica, and the pulmonate snails B. glabrata and Physa sp. PMID:7512930

  2. HIV-1 Integrates Widely throughout the Genome of the Human Blood Fluke Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Mann, Victoria H.; Dubrovsky, Larisa; Yan, Hong-bin; Huckvale, Thomas; Protasio, Anna V.; Pushkarsky, Tatiana; Iordanskiy, Sergey; Bukrinsky, Michael I.

    2016-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is the most important helminthic disease of humanity in terms of morbidity and mortality. Facile manipulation of schistosomes using lentiviruses would enable advances in functional genomics in these and related neglected tropical diseases pathogens including tapeworms, and including their non-dividing cells. Such approaches have hitherto been unavailable. Blood stream forms of the human blood fluke, Schistosoma mansoni, the causative agent of the hepatointestinal schistosomiasis, were infected with the human HIV-1 isolate NL4-3 pseudotyped with vesicular stomatitis virus glycoprotein. The appearance of strong stop and positive strand cDNAs indicated that virions fused to schistosome cells, the nucleocapsid internalized and the RNA genome reverse transcribed. Anchored PCR analysis, sequencing HIV-1-specific anchored Illumina libraries and Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) of schistosomes confirmed chromosomal integration; >8,000 integrations were mapped, distributed throughout the eight pairs of chromosomes including the sex chromosomes. The rate of integrations in the genome exceeded five per 1,000 kb and HIV-1 integrated into protein-encoding loci and elsewhere with integration bias dissimilar to that of human T cells. We estimated ~ 2,100 integrations per schistosomulum based on WGS, i.e. about two or three events per cell, comparable to integration rates in human cells. Accomplishment in schistosomes of post-entry processes essential for HIV-1replication, including integrase-catalyzed integration, was remarkable given the phylogenetic distance between schistosomes and primates, the natural hosts of the genus Lentivirus. These enigmatic findings revealed that HIV-1 was active within cells of S. mansoni, and provided the first demonstration that HIV-1 can integrate into the genome of an invertebrate. PMID:27764257

  3. Biology Today: Parasites and Human Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flannery, Maura C.

    1984-01-01

    Offers various reasons why the study of parasites and the diseases they cause should be incorporated into classroom biology discussions. Examples of several parasitic diseases and their ecological significance are provided. (JN)

  4. Schistosoma mansoni Sambon, 1907: morphometric differences between adult worms from sympatric rodent and human isolates.

    PubMed

    Neves, R H; Pereira, M J; de Oliveira, R M; Gomes, D C; Machado-Silva, J R

    1998-01-01

    A computer software for image analysis (IMAGE PRO PLUS, MEDIA CYBERNETICS) was utilized in male and females adult worms, aiming the morphological characterization of Schistosoma mansoni samples isolated from a slyvatic rodent, Nectomys squamipes, and humans in Sumidouro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and recovered from Mus musculus C3H/He. The following characters for males's testicular lobes were analyzed: number, area, density, larger and smaller diameter, longer and shorter axis and perimeter and extension; for females: area, longer and shorter axis, larger and smaller diameter and perimeter of the eggs and spine; oral and ventral suckers area and distance between them in both sex were determined. By the analysis of variance (one way ANOVA) significant differences (p < 0.05) were observed in all studied characters, except for the density of testicular lobes. Significant differences (p < 0.05) were detected for all characters in the female worms. Data ratify that sympatric isolates present phenotypic differences and the adult female characters are useful for the proper identification of S. mansoni isolates.

  5. Diagnostic significance of Schistosoma mansoni proteins Sm31 and Sm32 in human schistosomiasis in an endemic area in Egypt.

    PubMed

    El-Sayed, L H; Ghoneim, H; Demian, S R; El-Sayed, M H; Tawfik, N M; Sakr, I; Abou-Basha, L M; Renganathan, E; Klinkert, M Q; Abou-Rawash, N

    1998-09-01

    We performed a series of ELISAs to evaluate the diagnostic significance of two Schistosoma mansoni proteins, Sm31 (cysteine proteinase, cathepsin B) and Sm32 (asparaginyl endopeptidase). Our study populations were chosen from two villages in an endemic area close to Alexandria. Using fusion proteins MS2-Sm31 and MS2-Sm32 as antigens, 70% and 78.9%, respectively, of patient sera from 134 parasitologically confirmed cases reacted positively. The percentage of seropositivity increased to 84.5% when parasite-derived proteins Sm31 and Sm32 were used. The serum levels of antibodies to these two proteins in recombinant or native forms do not correlate with intensity of infection and hence are detected even when egg counts are low, which makes proteins Sm31 and Sm32 useful antigens in the identification of S. mansoni infected cases, particularly in endemic areas in Egypt. PMID:9754667

  6. Serodiagnosis of Schistosoma mansoni infections in an endemic area of Burkina Faso: performance of several immunological tests with different parasite antigens.

    PubMed

    Sorgho, Hermann; Bahgat, Mahmoud; Poda, Jean-Noel; Song, Wenjian; Kirsten, Christa; Doenhoff, Michael J; Zongo, Issaka; Ouédraogo, Jean-Bosco; Ruppel, Andreas

    2005-02-01

    The performance of indirect haemagglutination assays (IHA), enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) and indirect immunofluorescent antibody tests (IFAT) were compared with 450 sera from a Schistosoma mansoni-endemic area in Burkina Faso. All participants in this survey provided at least one sample each of stool, urine and serum. From those with an egg-negative Kato-Katz thick smear, a second stool sample was examined. IHA was based on either extracts of adult S. mansoni worms (SmIHA) or S. japonicum egg antigen (SjIHA). For ELISA, three antigen preparations were used, namely: (i) soluble S. mansoni adult worm antigens (SWAP); (ii) soluble S. mansoni egg antigens (SEA); and (iii) a cationic exchange fraction of S. mansoni eggs (CEF6). IFAT was performed with S. mansoni male worm sections. Among the egg-excretors, the sensitivity of ELISA was high and egg antigens performed slightly better (SEA, 96%; CEF6, 97%) than worm antigen (94%). Sensitivity of IHA was satisfactory with homologous (Sm, >85%), but not heterologous (Sj, 56%) parasite antigen. In IFAT, the parenchyma-associated fluorescence showed high sensitivity (95%), but gut-associated fluorescence, which is known to be a sensitive diagnostic marker for schistosome-infected European travelers, was observed only in 76% of a sub-sample of 100 of the endemic sera. Among sera from egg-negative individuals, many gave positive reactions in several or all of the tests employed. These reactions (formally "false positive") are considered to represent true infections, since chemotherapy had not yet been delivered to this population. For the purpose of further surveys in Burkina Faso or other resource-poor settings, we suggest IHA as an accurate diagnostic test and propose to further improve its performance by including egg rather than worm antigens.

  7. Human IgG1 Responses to Surface Localised Schistosoma mansoni Ly6 Family Members Drop following Praziquantel Treatment

    PubMed Central

    Chalmers, Iain W.; Fitzsimmons, Colin M.; Brown, Martha; Pierrot, Christine; Jones, Frances M.; Wawrzyniak, Jakub M.; Fernandez-Fuentes, Narcis; Tukahebwa, Edridah M.; Dunne, David W.; Khalife, Jamal; Hoffmann, Karl F.

    2015-01-01

    Background The heptalaminate-covered, syncytial tegument is an important anatomical adaptation that enables schistosome parasites to maintain long-term, intravascular residence in definitive hosts. Investigation of the proteins present in this surface layer and the immune responses elicited by them during infection is crucial to our understanding of host/parasite interactions. Recent studies have revealed a number of novel tegumental surface proteins including three (SmCD59a, SmCD59b and Sm29) containing uPAR/Ly6 domains (renamed SmLy6A SmLy6B and SmLy6D in this study). While vaccination with SmLy6A (SmCD59a) and SmLy6D (Sm29) induces protective immunity in experimental models, human immunoglobulin responses to representative SmLy6 family members have yet to be thoroughly explored. Methodology/Principal Findings Using a PSI-BLAST-based search, we present a comprehensive reanalysis of the Schistosoma mansoni Ly6 family (SmLy6A-K). Our examination extends the number of members to eleven (including three novel proteins) and provides strong evidence that the previously identified vaccine candidate Sm29 (renamed SmLy6D) is a unique double uPAR/Ly6 domain-containing representative. Presence of canonical cysteine residues, signal peptides and GPI-anchor sites strongly suggest that all SmLy6 proteins are cell surface-bound. To provide evidence that SmLy6 members are immunogenic in human populations, we report IgG1 (as well as IgG4 and IgE) responses against two surface-bound representatives (SmLy6A and SmLy6B) within a cohort of S. mansoni-infected Ugandan males before and after praziquantel treatment. While pre-treatment IgG1 prevalence for SmLy6A and SmLy6B differs amongst the studied population (7.4% and 25.3% of the cohort, respectively), these values are both higher than IgG1 prevalence (2.7%) for a sub-surface tegumental antigen, SmTAL1. Further, post-treatment IgG1 levels against surface-associated SmLy6A and SmLy6B significantly drop (p = 0.020 and p < 0

  8. Monoclonal antibody-based dipstick assay: a reliable field applicable technique for diagnosis of Schistosoma mansoni infection using human serum and urine samples.

    PubMed

    Demerdash, Zeinab; Mohamed, Salwa; Hendawy, Mohamed; Rabia, Ibrahim; Attia, Mohy; Shaker, Zeinab; Diab, Tarek M

    2013-02-01

    A field applicable diagnostic technique, the dipstick assay, was evaluated for its sensitivity and specificity in diagnosing human Schistosoma mansoni infection. A monoclonal antibody (mAb) against S. mansoni adult worm tegumental antigen (AWTA) was employed in dipstick and sandwich ELISA for detection of circulating schistosome antigen (CSA) in both serum and urine samples. Based on clinical and parasitological examinations, 60 S. mansoni-infected patients, 30 patients infected with parasites other than schistosomiasis, and 30 uninfected healthy individuals were selected. The sensitivity and specificity of dipstick assay in urine samples were 86.7% and 90.0%, respectively, compared to 90.0% sensitivity and 91.7% specificity of sandwich ELISA. In serum samples, the sensitivity and specificity were 88.3% and 91.7% for dipstick assay vs. 91.7% and 95.0% for sandwich ELISA, respectively. The diagnostic efficacy of dipstick assay in urine and serum samples was 88.3% and 90.0%, while it was 90.8% and 93.3% for sandwich ELISA, respectively. The diagnostic indices of dipstick assay and ELISA either in serum or in urine were statistically comparable (P>0.05). In conclusion, the dipstick assay offers an alternative simple, rapid, non-invasive technique in detecting CSA or complement to stool examinations especially in field studies. PMID:23467705

  9. Bioactivity of miltefosine against aquatic stages of Schistosoma mansoni, Schistosoma haematobium and their snail hosts, supported by scanning electron microscopy

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Miltefosine, which is the first oral drug licensed for the treatment of leishmaniasis, was recently reported to be a promising lead compound for the synthesis of novel antischistosomal derivatives with potent activity in vivo against different developmental stages of Schistosoma mansoni. In this paper an in vitro study was carried out to investigate whether it has a biocidal activity against the aquatic stages of Schistosoma mansoni and its snail intermediate host, Biomphalaria alexandrina , thus being also a molluscicide. Additionally, to see whether miltefosine can have a broad spectrum antischistosomal activity, a similar in vitro study was carried out on the adult stage of Schistosoma haematobium, the second major human species, its larval stages and snail intermediate host, Bulinus truncutes. This was checked by scanning electron microscopy. Results Miltefosine proved to have in vitro ovicidal, schistolarvicidal and lethal activity on adult worms of both Schistosoma species and has considerable molluscicidal activity on their snail hosts. Scanning electron microscopy revealed several morphological changes on the different stages of the parasite and on the soft body of the snail, which further strengthens the current evidence of miltefosine's activity. This is the first report of mollusicidal activity of miltefosine and its in vitro schistosomicidal activity against S.haematobium. Conclusions This study highlights miltefosine not only as a potential promising lead compound for the synthesis of novel broad spectrum schistosomicidal derivatives, but also for molluscicidals. PMID:21569375

  10. Host-Parasite Interaction: Parasite-Derived and -Induced Proteases That Degrade Human Extracellular Matrix

    PubMed Central

    Piña-Vázquez, Carolina; Reyes-López, Magda; Ortíz-Estrada, Guillermo; de la Garza, Mireya; Serrano-Luna, Jesús

    2012-01-01

    Parasitic protozoa are among the most important pathogens worldwide. Diseases such as malaria, leishmaniasis, amoebiasis, giardiasis, trichomoniasis, and trypanosomiasis affect millions of people. Humans are constantly threatened by infections caused by these pathogens. Parasites engage a plethora of surface and secreted molecules to attach to and enter mammalian cells. The secretion of lytic enzymes by parasites into host organs mediates critical interactions because of the invasion and destruction of interstitial tissues, enabling parasite migration to other sites within the hosts. Extracellular matrix is a complex, cross-linked structure that holds cells together in an organized assembly and that forms the basement membrane lining (basal lamina). The extracellular matrix represents a major barrier to parasites. Therefore, the evolution of mechanisms for connective-tissue degradation may be of great importance for parasite survival. Recent advances have been achieved in our understanding of the biochemistry and molecular biology of proteases from parasitic protozoa. The focus of this paper is to discuss the role of protozoan parasitic proteases in the degradation of host ECM proteins and the participation of these molecules as virulence factors. We divide the paper into two sections, extracellular and intracellular protozoa. PMID:22792442

  11. Geographical distribution of human Schistosoma japonicum infection in The Philippines: tools to support disease control and further elimination.

    PubMed

    Soares Magalhães, Ricardo J; Salamat, Maria Sonia; Leonardo, Lydia; Gray, Darren J; Carabin, Hélène; Halton, Kate; McManus, Donald P; Williams, Gail M; Rivera, Pilarita; Saniel, Ofelia; Hernandez, Leda; Yakob, Laith; McGarvey, Stephen; Clements, Archie

    2014-11-01

    Schistosoma japonicum infection is believed to be endemic in 28 of the 80 provinces of The Philippines and the most recent data on schistosomiasis prevalence have shown considerable variability between provinces. In order to increase the efficient allocation of parasitic disease control resources in the country, we aimed to describe the small-scale spatial variation in S. japonicum prevalence across The Philippines, quantify the role of the physical environment in driving the spatial variation of S. japonicum, and develop a predictive risk map of S. japonicum infection. Data on S. japonicum infection from 35,754 individuals across the country were geo-located at the barangay level and included in the analysis. The analysis was then stratified geographically for the regions of Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao. Zero-inflated binomial Bayesian geostatistical models of S. japonicum prevalence were developed and diagnostic uncertainty was incorporated. Results of the analysis show that in the three regions, males and individuals aged ⩾20years had significantly higher prevalence of S. japonicum compared with females and children <5years. The role of the environmental variables differed between regions of The Philippines. Schistosoma japonicum infection was widespread in the Visayas whereas it was much more focal in Luzon and Mindanao. This analysis revealed significant spatial variation in the prevalence of S. japonicum infection in The Philippines. This suggests that a spatially targeted approach to schistosomiasis interventions, including mass drug administration, is warranted. When financially possible, additional schistosomiasis surveys should be prioritised for areas identified to be at high risk but which were under-represented in our dataset.

  12. Geographical distribution of human Schistosoma japonicum infection in The Philippines: tools to support disease control and further elimination

    PubMed Central

    Magalhães, Ricardo J Soares; Salamat, Maria Sonia; Leonardo, Lydia; Gray, Darren J; Carabin, Hélène; Halton, Kate; McManus, Donald P; Williams, Gail M; Rivera, Pilarita; Saniel, Ofelia; Hernandez, Leda; Yakob, Laith; McGarvey, Stephen; Clements, Archie

    2015-01-01

    Schistosoma japonicum infection is believed to be endemic in 28 of the 80 provinces of The Philippines and the most recent data on schistosomiasis prevalence have shown considerable variability between provinces. In order to increase the efficient allocation of parasitic disease control resources in the country, we aimed to describe the small-scale spatial variation in S. japonicum prevalence across The Philippines, quantify the role of the physical environment in driving the spatial variation of S. japonicum, and develop a predictive risk map of S. japonicum infection. Data on S. japonicum infection from 35,754 individuals across the country were geolocated at the barangay level and included in the analysis. The analysis was then stratified geographically for the regions of Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao. Zero-inflated binomial Bayesian geostatistical models of S. japonicum prevalence were developed and diagnostic uncertainty was incorporated. Results of the analysis show that in the three regions, males and individuals aged ≥ 20 years had significantly higher prevalence of S. japonicum compared with females and children < 5 years. The role of the environmental variables differed between regions of The Philippines. Schistosoma japonicum infection was widespread in the Visayas whereas it was much more focal in Luzon and Mindanao. This analysis revealed significant spatial variation in the prevalence of S. japonicum infection in The Philippines. This suggests that a spatially targeted approach to schistosomiasis interventions, including mass drug administration, is warranted. When financially possible, additional schistosomiasis surveys should be prioritized for areas identified to be at high risk but which were under-represented in our dataset. PMID:25128879

  13. Epidemiology and interactions of Human Immunodeficiency Virus – 1 and Schistosoma mansoni in sub-Saharan Africa

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Human Immunodeficiency Virus-1/AIDS and Schistosoma mansoni are widespread in sub-Saharan Africa and co-infection occurs commonly. Since the early 1990s, it has been suggested that the two infections may interact and potentiate the effects of each other within co-infected human hosts. Indeed, S. mansoni infection has been suggested to be a risk factor for HIV transmission and progression in Africa. If so, it would follow that mass deworming could have beneficial effects on HIV-1 transmission dynamics. The epidemiology of HIV in African countries is changing, shifting from urban to rural areas where the prevalence of Schistosoma mansoni is high and public health services are deficient. On the other side, the consequent pathogenesis of HIV-1/S. mansoni co-infection remains unknown. Here we give an account of the epidemiology of HIV-1 and S. mansoni, discuss co-infection and possible biological causal relationships between the two infections, and the potential impact of praziquantel treatment on HIV-1 viral loads, CD4+ counts and CD4+/CD8+ ratio. Our review of the available literature indicates that there is evidence to support the hypothesis that S. mansoni infections can influence the replication of the HIV-1, cell-to-cell transmission, as well as increase HIV progression as measured by reduced CD4+ T lymphocytes counts. If so, then deworming of HIV positive individuals living in endemic areas may impact on HIV-1 viral loads and CD4+ T lymphocyte counts. PMID:23849678

  14. Mobile phones and malaria: modeling human and parasite travel

    PubMed Central

    Buckee, Caroline O.; Wesolowski, Amy; Eagle, Nathan; Hansen, Elsa; Snow, Robert W.

    2013-01-01

    Human mobility plays an important role in the dissemination of malaria parasites between regions of variable transmission intensity. Asymptomatic individuals can unknowingly carry parasites to regions where mosquito vectors are available, for example, undermining control programs and contributing to transmission when they travel. Understanding how parasites are imported between regions in this way is therefore an important goal for elimination planning and the control of transmission, and would enable control programs to target the principal sources of malaria. Measuring human mobility has traditionally been difficult to do on a population scale, but the widespread adoption of mobile phones in low-income settings presents a unique opportunity to directly measure human movements that are relevant to the spread of malaria. Here, we discuss the opportunities for measuring human mobility using data from mobile phones, as well as some of the issues associated with combining mobility estimates with malaria infection risk maps to meaningfully estimate routes of parasite importation. PMID:23478045

  15. Human Parasites in Medieval Europe: Lifestyle, Sanitation and Medical Treatment.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Piers D

    2015-01-01

    Parasites have been infecting humans throughout our evolution. However, not all people suffered with the same species or to the same intensity throughout this time. Our changing way of life has altered the suitability of humans to infection by each type of parasite. This analysis focuses upon the evidence for parasites from archaeological excavations at medieval sites across Europe. Comparison between the patterns of infection in the medieval period allows us to see how changes in sanitation, herding animals, growing and fertilizing crops, the fishing industry, food preparation and migration all affected human susceptibility to different parasites. We go on to explore how ectoparasites may have spread infectious bacterial diseases, and also consider what medieval medical practitioners thought of parasites and how they tried to treat them. While modern research has shown the use of a toilet decreases the risk of contracting certain intestinal parasites, the evidence for past societies presented here suggests that the invention of latrines had no observable beneficial effects upon intestinal health. This may be because toilets were not sufficiently ubiquitous until the last century, or that the use of fresh human faeces for manuring crops still ensured those parasite species were easily able to reinfect the population.

  16. Human Parasites in Medieval Europe: Lifestyle, Sanitation and Medical Treatment.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Piers D

    2015-01-01

    Parasites have been infecting humans throughout our evolution. However, not all people suffered with the same species or to the same intensity throughout this time. Our changing way of life has altered the suitability of humans to infection by each type of parasite. This analysis focuses upon the evidence for parasites from archaeological excavations at medieval sites across Europe. Comparison between the patterns of infection in the medieval period allows us to see how changes in sanitation, herding animals, growing and fertilizing crops, the fishing industry, food preparation and migration all affected human susceptibility to different parasites. We go on to explore how ectoparasites may have spread infectious bacterial diseases, and also consider what medieval medical practitioners thought of parasites and how they tried to treat them. While modern research has shown the use of a toilet decreases the risk of contracting certain intestinal parasites, the evidence for past societies presented here suggests that the invention of latrines had no observable beneficial effects upon intestinal health. This may be because toilets were not sufficiently ubiquitous until the last century, or that the use of fresh human faeces for manuring crops still ensured those parasite species were easily able to reinfect the population. PMID:26597073

  17. The machinery underlying malaria parasite virulence is conserved between rodent and human malaria parasites.

    PubMed

    De Niz, Mariana; Ullrich, Ann-Katrin; Heiber, Arlett; Blancke Soares, Alexandra; Pick, Christian; Lyck, Ruth; Keller, Derya; Kaiser, Gesine; Prado, Monica; Flemming, Sven; Del Portillo, Hernando; Janse, Chris J; Heussler, Volker; Spielmann, Tobias

    2016-05-26

    Sequestration of red blood cells infected with the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in organs such as the brain is considered important for pathogenicity. A similar phenomenon has been observed in mouse models of malaria, using the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei, but it is unclear whether the P. falciparum proteins known to be involved in this process are conserved in the rodent parasite. Here we identify the P. berghei orthologues of two such key factors of P. falciparum, SBP1 and MAHRP1. Red blood cells infected with P. berghei parasites lacking SBP1 or MAHRP1a fail to bind the endothelial receptor CD36 and show reduced sequestration and virulence in mice. Complementation of the mutant P. berghei parasites with the respective P. falciparum SBP1 and MAHRP1 orthologues restores sequestration and virulence. These findings reveal evolutionary conservation of the machinery underlying sequestration of divergent malaria parasites and support the notion that the P. berghei rodent model is an adequate tool for research on malaria virulence.

  18. The machinery underlying malaria parasite virulence is conserved between rodent and human malaria parasites

    PubMed Central

    De Niz, Mariana; Ullrich, Ann-Katrin; Heiber, Arlett; Blancke Soares, Alexandra; Pick, Christian; Lyck, Ruth; Keller, Derya; Kaiser, Gesine; Prado, Monica; Flemming, Sven; del Portillo, Hernando; Janse, Chris J.; Heussler, Volker; Spielmann, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    Sequestration of red blood cells infected with the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in organs such as the brain is considered important for pathogenicity. A similar phenomenon has been observed in mouse models of malaria, using the rodent parasite Plasmodium berghei, but it is unclear whether the P. falciparum proteins known to be involved in this process are conserved in the rodent parasite. Here we identify the P. berghei orthologues of two such key factors of P. falciparum, SBP1 and MAHRP1. Red blood cells infected with P. berghei parasites lacking SBP1 or MAHRP1a fail to bind the endothelial receptor CD36 and show reduced sequestration and virulence in mice. Complementation of the mutant P. berghei parasites with the respective P. falciparum SBP1 and MAHRP1 orthologues restores sequestration and virulence. These findings reveal evolutionary conservation of the machinery underlying sequestration of divergent malaria parasites and support the notion that the P. berghei rodent model is an adequate tool for research on malaria virulence. PMID:27225796

  19. A Miniaturized Screen of a Schistosoma mansoni Serotonergic G Protein-Coupled Receptor Identifies Novel Classes of Parasite-Selective Inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Chan, John D; McCorvy, John D; Acharya, Sreemoyee; Johns, Malcolm E; Day, Timothy A; Roth, Bryan L; Marchant, Jonathan S

    2016-05-01

    Schistosomiasis is a tropical parasitic disease afflicting ~200 million people worldwide and current therapy depends on a single drug (praziquantel) which exhibits several non-optimal features. These shortcomings underpin the need for next generation anthelmintics, but the process of validating physiologically relevant targets ('target selection') and pharmacologically profiling them is challenging. Remarkably, even though over a quarter of current human therapeutics target rhodopsin-like G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), no library screen of a flatworm GPCR has yet been reported. Here, we have pharmacologically profiled a schistosome serotonergic GPCR (Sm.5HTR) implicated as a downstream modulator of PZQ efficacy, in a miniaturized screening assay compatible with high content screening. This approach employs a split luciferase based biosensor sensitive to cellular cAMP levels that resolves the proximal kinetics of GPCR modulation in intact cells. Data evidence a divergent pharmacological signature between the parasitic serotonergic receptor and the closest human GPCR homolog (Hs.5HTR7), supporting the feasibility of optimizing parasitic selective pharmacophores. New ligands, and chemical series, with potency and selectivity for Sm.5HTR over Hs.5HTR7 are identified in vitro and validated for in vivo efficacy against schistosomules and adult worms. Sm.5HTR also displayed a property resembling irreversible inactivation, a phenomenon discovered at Hs.5HTR7, which enhances the appeal of this abundantly expressed parasite GPCR as a target for anthelmintic ligand design. Overall, these data underscore the feasibility of profiling flatworm GPCRs in a high throughput screening format competent to resolve different classes of GPCR modulators. Further, these data underscore the promise of Sm.5HTR as a chemotherapeutically vulnerable node for development of next generation anthelmintics. PMID:27187180

  20. A Miniaturized Screen of a Schistosoma mansoni Serotonergic G Protein-Coupled Receptor Identifies Novel Classes of Parasite-Selective Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Chan, John D.; McCorvy, John D.; Acharya, Sreemoyee; Day, Timothy A.; Roth, Bryan L.; Marchant, Jonathan S.

    2016-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a tropical parasitic disease afflicting ~200 million people worldwide and current therapy depends on a single drug (praziquantel) which exhibits several non-optimal features. These shortcomings underpin the need for next generation anthelmintics, but the process of validating physiologically relevant targets (‘target selection’) and pharmacologically profiling them is challenging. Remarkably, even though over a quarter of current human therapeutics target rhodopsin-like G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), no library screen of a flatworm GPCR has yet been reported. Here, we have pharmacologically profiled a schistosome serotonergic GPCR (Sm.5HTR) implicated as a downstream modulator of PZQ efficacy, in a miniaturized screening assay compatible with high content screening. This approach employs a split luciferase based biosensor sensitive to cellular cAMP levels that resolves the proximal kinetics of GPCR modulation in intact cells. Data evidence a divergent pharmacological signature between the parasitic serotonergic receptor and the closest human GPCR homolog (Hs.5HTR7), supporting the feasibility of optimizing parasitic selective pharmacophores. New ligands, and chemical series, with potency and selectivity for Sm.5HTR over Hs.5HTR7 are identified in vitro and validated for in vivo efficacy against schistosomules and adult worms. Sm.5HTR also displayed a property resembling irreversible inactivation, a phenomenon discovered at Hs.5HTR7, which enhances the appeal of this abundantly expressed parasite GPCR as a target for anthelmintic ligand design. Overall, these data underscore the feasibility of profiling flatworm GPCRs in a high throughput screening format competent to resolve different classes of GPCR modulators. Further, these data underscore the promise of Sm.5HTR as a chemotherapeutically vulnerable node for development of next generation anthelmintics. PMID:27187180

  1. Evaluation of the treatment of human Schistosoma mansoni infection by the quantitative oogram technique*

    PubMed Central

    Cançado, J. Romeu; da Cunha, A. Sales; de Carvalho, D. Garcia; Cambraia, J. N. Santos

    1965-01-01

    Egg output is the only measure available for quantitative assessment of the activity of chemotherapeutic agents in Schistosoma mansoni infection. In the light of eight years' experience in the preparations of oograms, the authors suggest a simplified classification of S. mansoni eggs and certain improvements in the oogram technique by which quantitative data are obtained for comparison before and after treatment. Ten cases, taken from clinical trials on a variety of schistosomicidal compounds, are presented to illustrate the use of the quantitative oogram and the types of result obtained with active, partially active and inactive drugs. ImagesFIG. 3FIG. 2FIG. 1 PMID:5323117

  2. Immunological aspects of some parasitic infections.

    PubMed

    Ruitenberg, E J; Buys, J

    1980-07-01

    Summary In this review article, some recent developments in the immunology of parasitic infections are presented. After an introduction in which the major human parasitic infectious diseases, including malaria, african and american trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis, filariasis an schistosomiasis are mentioned, a description of the host / parasite relationship in malaria presented. The possibility for the development of vaccins against malaria are described. The close relation between the immunological responses and the inflammatory reactions present both in Schistosoma mansoni and Trichinella spiralis infections is stressed. Particularly the recently recognized direct anti-parasitic activity of eosinophils was emphasized. Next, ways of escape of parasites from the host defence were described, with special emphasis on the immunomodulating properties of parasitic infections. Finally, the development and improvement of new immunodiagnostic methods, including the detection of circulating antigens were discussed.

  3. Immunological aspects of some parasitic infections.

    PubMed

    Ruitenberg, E J; Buys, J

    1980-07-15

    In this review article, some recent developments in the immunology of parasitic infections are presented. After an introduction in which the major human parasitic infectious diseases, including malaria, african and american trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis, filariasis an schistosomiasis are mentioned, a description of the host/parasite relationship in malaria presented. The possibility for the development of vaccins against malaria are described. The close relation between the immunological responses and the inflammatory reactions present both in Schistosoma mansoni and Trichinella spiralis infections is stressed. Particularly the recently recognized direct anti-parasitic activity of eosinophils was emphasized. Next, ways of escape of parasites from the host defence were described, with special emphasis on the immunomodulating properties of parasitic infections. Finally, the development and improvement of new immunodiagnostic methods, including the detection of circulating antigens were discussed.

  4. Discovery of Potent Inhibitors of Schistosoma mansoni NAD⁺ Catabolizing Enzyme.

    PubMed

    Jacques, Sylvain A; Kuhn, Isabelle; Koniev, Oleksandr; Schuber, Francis; Lund, Frances E; Wagner, Alain; Muller-Steffner, Hélène; Kellenberger, Esther

    2015-04-23

    The blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni is the causative agent of the intestinal form of schistosomiasis (or bilharzia). Emergence of Schistosoma mansoni with reduced sensitivity to praziquantel, the drug currently used to treat this neglected disease, has underlined the need for development of new strategies to control schistosomiasis. Our ability to screen drug libraries for antischistosomal compounds has been hampered by the lack of validated S. mansoni targets. In the present work, we describe a virtual screening approach to identify inhibitors of S. mansoni NAD(+) catabolizing enzyme (SmNACE), a receptor enzyme suspected to be involved in immune evasion by the parasite at the adult stage. Docking of commercial libraries into a homology model of the enzyme has led to the discovery of two in vitro micromolar inhibitors. Further structure-activity relationship studies have allowed a 3-log gain in potency, accompanied by a largely enhanced selectivity for the parasitic enzyme over the human homologue CD38.

  5. Non-equilibrium plasma prevention of Schistosoma japonicum transmission

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xing-Quan; Wang, Feng-Peng; Chen, Wei; Huang, Jun; Bazaka, Kateryna; Ostrikov, Kostya (Ken)

    2016-01-01

    Schistosoma japonicum is a widespread human and animal parasite that causes intestinal and hepatosplenic schistosomiasis linked to colon, liver and bladder cancers, and anemia. Estimated 230 million people are currently infected with Schistosoma spp, with 779 million people at risk of contracting the parasite. Infection occurs when a host comes into contact with cercariae, a planktonic larval stage of the parasite, and can be prevented by inactivating the larvae, commonly by chemical treatment. We investigated the use of physical non-equilibrium plasma generated at atmospheric pressure using custom-made dielectric barrier discharge reactor to kill S. japonicum cercariae. Survival rate decreased with treatment time and applied power. Plasmas generated in O2 and air gas discharges were more effective in killing S. japonicum cercariae than that generated in He, which is directly related to the mechanism by which cercariae are inactivated. Reactive oxygen species, such as O atoms, abundant in O2 plasma and NO in air plasma play a major role in killing of S. japonicum cercariae via oxidation mechanisms. Similar level of efficacy is also shown for a gliding arc discharge plasma jet generated in ambient air, a system that may be more appropriate for scale-up and integration into existing water treatment processes. PMID:27739459

  6. Non-equilibrium plasma prevention of Schistosoma japonicum transmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xing-Quan; Wang, Feng-Peng; Chen, Wei; Huang, Jun; Bazaka, Kateryna; Ostrikov, Kostya (Ken)

    2016-10-01

    Schistosoma japonicum is a widespread human and animal parasite that causes intestinal and hepatosplenic schistosomiasis linked to colon, liver and bladder cancers, and anemia. Estimated 230 million people are currently infected with Schistosoma spp, with 779 million people at risk of contracting the parasite. Infection occurs when a host comes into contact with cercariae, a planktonic larval stage of the parasite, and can be prevented by inactivating the larvae, commonly by chemical treatment. We investigated the use of physical non-equilibrium plasma generated at atmospheric pressure using custom-made dielectric barrier discharge reactor to kill S. japonicum cercariae. Survival rate decreased with treatment time and applied power. Plasmas generated in O2 and air gas discharges were more effective in killing S. japonicum cercariae than that generated in He, which is directly related to the mechanism by which cercariae are inactivated. Reactive oxygen species, such as O atoms, abundant in O2 plasma and NO in air plasma play a major role in killing of S. japonicum cercariae via oxidation mechanisms. Similar level of efficacy is also shown for a gliding arc discharge plasma jet generated in ambient air, a system that may be more appropriate for scale-up and integration into existing water treatment processes.

  7. Interaction of Schistosoma mansoni Sporocysts and Hemocytes of Biomphalaria

    PubMed Central

    Negrão-Corrêa, D.; Mattos, A. C. A.; Pereira, C. A. J.; Martins-Souza, R. L.; Coelho, P. M. Z.

    2012-01-01

    Human infection by Schistosoma mansoni affects more than 100 million people worldwide, most often in populations of developing countries of Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The transmission of S. mansoni in human populations depends on the presence of some species of Biomphalaria that act as an intermediate host. The compatibility between S. mansoni and its intermediate host is influenced by behavioral, physiological, and genetical factors of the mollusc and the parasite. The susceptibility level of the mollusc has been attributed to the capacity of internal defense system (IDS)—hemocytes and soluble components of the hemolymph—to recognize and destroy the parasite, and this will be the center of interest of this paper. The schistosome-resistant Biomphalaria can be an alternative strategy for the control of schistosomiasis. PMID:22811885

  8. Non-immune immunoglobulins shield Schistosoma japonicum from host immunorecognition

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Chuang; Hou, Nan; Piao, Xianyu; Liu, Shuai; Cai, Pengfei; Xiao, Yan; Chen, Qijun

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a major human parasitic disease with a global impact. Schistosoma japonicum, the most difficult to control, can survive within host veins for decades. Mechanisms of immune evasion by the parasite, including antigenic variation and surface masking, have been implicated but not well defined. In this study, we defined the immunoglobulin-binding proteomes of S. japonicum using human IgG, IgM, and IgE as the molecular bait for affinity purification, followed by protein identification by liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Several proteins situated at the tegument of S. japonicum were able to nonselectively bind to the Fc domain of host immunoglobulins, indicating a mechanism for the avoidance of host immune attachment and recognition. The profile of the immunoglobulin-binding proteomes provides further clues for immune evasion mechanisms adopted by S. japonicum. PMID:26299686

  9. Control of human parasitic diseases: Context and overview.

    PubMed

    Molyneux, David H

    2006-01-01

    The control of parasitic diseases of humans has been undertaken since the aetiology and natural history of the infections was recognized and the deleterious effects on human health and well-being appreciated by policy makers, medical practitioners and public health specialists. However, while some parasitic infections such as malaria have proved difficult to control, as defined by a sustained reduction in incidence, others, particularly helminth infections can be effectively controlled. The different approaches to control from diagnosis, to treatment and cure of the clinically sick patient, to control the transmission within the community by preventative chemotherapy and vector control are outlined. The concepts of eradication, elimination and control are defined and examples of success summarized. Overviews of the health policy and financing environment in which programmes to control or eliminate parasitic diseases are positioned and the development of public-private partnerships as vehicles for product development or access to drugs for parasite disease control are discussed. Failure to sustain control of parasites may be due to development of drug resistance or the failure to implement proven strategies as a result of decreased resources within the health system, decentralization of health management through health-sector reform and the lack of financial and human resources in settings where per capita government expenditure on health may be less than $US 5 per year. However, success has been achieved in several large-scale programmes through sustained national government investment and/or committed donor support. It is also widely accepted that the level of investment in drug development for the parasitic diseases of poor populations is an unattractive option for pharmaceutical companies. The development of partnerships to specifically address this need provides some hope that the intractable problems of the treatment regimens for the trypanosomiases and

  10. The complete mitochondrial genome of human parasitic roundworm, Ascaris lumbricoides.

    PubMed

    Park, Yung Chul; Kim, Won; Park, Joong-Ki

    2011-08-01

    The genome length of the Ascaris lumbricoides, human parasitic roundworm, is 14,281 bp with a nucleotide composition of 22.1% A, 49.8% T, 7.8% C, and 20.3% G. The genome consists of 12 protein-coding genes, 2 rRNA genes, 22 tRNA genes, and 1 control region.

  11. In Vitro and In Vivo Activities of Arachidonic Acid against Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma haematobium▿

    PubMed Central

    El Ridi, Rashika; Aboueldahab, Marwa; Tallima, Hatem; Salah, Mohamed; Mahana, Noha; Fawzi, Samia; Mohamed, Shadia H.; Fahmy, Omar M.

    2010-01-01

    The development of arachidonic acid (ARA) for treatment of schistosomiasis is an entirely novel approach based on a breakthrough discovery in schistosome biology revealing that activation of parasite tegument-bound neutral sphingomyelinase (nSMase) by unsaturated fatty acids, such as ARA, induces exposure of parasite surface membrane antigens to antibody binding and eventual attrition of developing schistosomula and adult worms. Here, we demonstrate that 5 mM ARA leads to irreversible killing of ex vivo 1-, 3-, 4-, 5-, and 6-week-old Schistosoma mansoni and 9-, 10-, and 12-week-old Schistosoma haematobium worms within 3 to 4 h, depending on the parasite age, even when the worms were maintained in up to 50% fetal calf serum. ARA-mediated worm attrition was prevented by nSMase inhibitors, such as CaCl2 and GW4869. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy revealed that ARA-mediated worm killing was associated with spine destruction, membrane blebbing, and disorganization of the apical membrane structure. ARA-mediated S. mansoni and S. haematobium worm attrition was reproduced in vivo in a series of 6 independent experiments using BALB/c or C57BL/6 mice, indicating that ARA in a pure form (Sigma) or included in infant formula (Nestle) consistently led to 40 to 80% decrease in the total worm burden. Arachidonic acid is already marketed for human use in the United States and Canada for proper development of newborns and muscle growth of athletes; thus, ARA has potential as a safe and cost-effective addition to antischistosomal therapy. PMID:20479203

  12. In vitro and in vivo activities of arachidonic acid against Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma haematobium.

    PubMed

    El Ridi, Rashika; Aboueldahab, Marwa; Tallima, Hatem; Salah, Mohamed; Mahana, Noha; Fawzi, Samia; Mohamed, Shadia H; Fahmy, Omar M

    2010-08-01

    The development of arachidonic acid (ARA) for treatment of schistosomiasis is an entirely novel approach based on a breakthrough discovery in schistosome biology revealing that activation of parasite tegument-bound neutral sphingomyelinase (nSMase) by unsaturated fatty acids, such as ARA, induces exposure of parasite surface membrane antigens to antibody binding and eventual attrition of developing schistosomula and adult worms. Here, we demonstrate that 5 mM ARA leads to irreversible killing of ex vivo 1-, 3-, 4-, 5-, and 6-week-old Schistosoma mansoni and 9-, 10-, and 12-week-old Schistosoma haematobium worms within 3 to 4 h, depending on the parasite age, even when the worms were maintained in up to 50% fetal calf serum. ARA-mediated worm attrition was prevented by nSMase inhibitors, such as CaCl(2) and GW4869. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy revealed that ARA-mediated worm killing was associated with spine destruction, membrane blebbing, and disorganization of the apical membrane structure. ARA-mediated S. mansoni and S. haematobium worm attrition was reproduced in vivo in a series of 6 independent experiments using BALB/c or C57BL/6 mice, indicating that ARA in a pure form (Sigma) or included in infant formula (Nestle) consistently led to 40 to 80% decrease in the total worm burden. Arachidonic acid is already marketed for human use in the United States and Canada for proper development of newborns and muscle growth of athletes; thus, ARA has potential as a safe and cost-effective addition to antischistosomal therapy. PMID:20479203

  13. Myeloradiculitis: a rare event in schistosoma infection.

    PubMed

    Wichmann, D; Hofmann, C; Sudeck, H; Burchard, G-D; Moser, A

    2006-12-01

    Schistosomiasis a parasitic disease caused by trematodes is widely distributed in (sub-)tropical countries. Depending on the species the infection manifests clinically as gastrointestinal (preferentially Schistosoma mansoni and S. japonicum) or urinary (preferentially S. haematobium) disorders. Here we present an uncommon case of myeloradiculitis leading to bladder palsy and sensory loss at the lower limbs. PMID:17180592

  14. Mechanical Transmission of Human Protozoan Parasites by Insects

    PubMed Central

    Graczyk, Thaddeus K.; Knight, Ronald; Tamang, Leena

    2005-01-01

    The filthy breeding habits, feeding mechanisms, and indiscriminate travel between filth and food make some groups of synanthropic insects such as nonbiting flies and cockroaches efficient vectors of human enteric protozoan parasites. Twenty-one species of filth flies have been listed by regulatory agencies concerned with sanitation and public health as causative agents of gastrointestinal diseases based on synanthropy, endophily, communicative behavior, and strong attraction to filth and human food. Outbreaks and cases of food-borne diarrheal diseases in urban and rural areas are closely related to the seasonal increase in abundance of filth flies, and enforced fly control is closely related to reductions in the occurrence of such diseases. Mechanical transmission of human parasites by nonbiting flies and epidemiological involvement of other synanthropic insects in human food-borne diseases have not received adequate scientific attention. PMID:15653822

  15. Schistosoma hematobium-associated glomerulopathy

    PubMed Central

    Seck, S. M.; Sarr, M. L.; Dial, M. C.; Ka, E. F.

    2011-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is the second most devastating tropical parasitic disease worldwide and is responsible for many urological complications. However, glomerular injury is a rare complication mainly described with Schistosoma mansoni. We report a case of membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN) associated with Schistosoma hematobium infection in a young Senegalese boy living in a rural area. Clinical presentation was with steroid-resistant with nephrotic syndrome. Renal biopsy showed type 1 MPGN with the presence of S. hematobium eggs surrounded by a gigantocellular granuloma. Despite therapy with antihelminthic and immunosuppressive drugs, evolution was characterized by progression to end-stage renal disease over 1 year. More efforts should be made on the prevention and early detection of schistosomiasis among at-risk populations. PMID:21886983

  16. Schistosoma japonicum in Samar, the Philippines: infection in dogs and rats as a possible risk factor for human infection.

    PubMed

    Carabin, H; McGARVEY, S T; Sahlu, I; Tarafder, M R; Joseph, L; DE Andrade, B B; Balolong, E; Olveda, R

    2015-06-01

    The role that animals play in the transmission of Schistosoma japonicum to humans in the Philippines remains uncertain and prior studies have not included several species, adjustment for misclassification error and clustering, or used a cohort design. A cohort study of 2468 people providing stool samples at 12 months following praziquantel treatment in 50 villages of Western Samar, the Philippines, was conducted. Stool samples from dogs, cats, rats, and water buffaloes were collected at baseline (2003-2004) and follow-up (2005). Latent-class hierarchical Bayesian log-binomial models adjusting for misclassification errors in diagnostic tests were used. The village-level baseline and follow-up prevalences of cat, dog, and rat S. japonicum infection were associated with the 12-month cumulative incidence of human S. japonicum infection, with similar magnitude and precision of effect, but correlation between infection levels made it difficult to divide their respective effects. The cumulative incidence ratios associated with a 1% increase in the prevalence of infection in dogs at baseline and in rats at follow-up were 1·04 [95% Bayesian credible interval (BCI) 1·02-1·07] and 1·02 (95% BCI 1·01-1·04), respectively, when both species were entered in the model. Dogs appear to play a role in human schistosomiasis infection while rats could be used as schistosomiasis sentinels.

  17. Schistosoma japonicum in Samar, the Philippines: infection in dogs and rats as a possible risk factor for human infection.

    PubMed

    Carabin, H; McGARVEY, S T; Sahlu, I; Tarafder, M R; Joseph, L; DE Andrade, B B; Balolong, E; Olveda, R

    2015-06-01

    The role that animals play in the transmission of Schistosoma japonicum to humans in the Philippines remains uncertain and prior studies have not included several species, adjustment for misclassification error and clustering, or used a cohort design. A cohort study of 2468 people providing stool samples at 12 months following praziquantel treatment in 50 villages of Western Samar, the Philippines, was conducted. Stool samples from dogs, cats, rats, and water buffaloes were collected at baseline (2003-2004) and follow-up (2005). Latent-class hierarchical Bayesian log-binomial models adjusting for misclassification errors in diagnostic tests were used. The village-level baseline and follow-up prevalences of cat, dog, and rat S. japonicum infection were associated with the 12-month cumulative incidence of human S. japonicum infection, with similar magnitude and precision of effect, but correlation between infection levels made it difficult to divide their respective effects. The cumulative incidence ratios associated with a 1% increase in the prevalence of infection in dogs at baseline and in rats at follow-up were 1·04 [95% Bayesian credible interval (BCI) 1·02-1·07] and 1·02 (95% BCI 1·01-1·04), respectively, when both species were entered in the model. Dogs appear to play a role in human schistosomiasis infection while rats could be used as schistosomiasis sentinels. PMID:25274409

  18. Transmission of Schistosoma japonicum by humans and domestic animals in the Yangtze River valley, Anhui province, China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tian-Ping; Vang Johansen, Maria; Zhang, Shi-Qing; Wang, Feng-Feng; Wu, Wei-Duo; Zhang, Gong-Hua; Pan, Xin-Ping; Ju, Yang; Ørnbjerg, Niels

    2005-01-01

    The aim of the present work was to assess the relative contribution to transmission of Schistosoma japonicum by humans and domestic animals in two villages in the Yangtze River valley in Anhui province, China. A cross-sectional survey was conducted to determine the prevalence and intensity of S. japonicum in humans, cattle, water buffaloes, horses, pigs, goats, dogs and cats. Additionally, for each host species the number of individuals and the mean faecal excretion per day was determined. Results showed that both prevalence and intensity of infection varied significantly between species and between the two villages and neither of the variables gave an adequate picture of the potential transmission. Total daily egg excretion was significantly higher in Chenqiao village compared with Guanghui village. Whereas humans were the main contributors to transmission of schistosomiasis in Guanghui village (80.4%), water buffaloes accounted for nearly 90% and goats for more than 5% of the transmission in Chenqiao village. Hence, the present study suggests that schistosomiasis transmission might vary significantly within Chinese farm districts and successful control should rely on prior transmission index determinations on major potential contributors rather than routine data of prevalence and intensity of infection. Further studies should determine the value of adding other transmission variables like egg hatchability and faecal deposition habits.

  19. Phylogeography of human lymphatic filarial parasite, Wuchereria bancrofti in India.

    PubMed

    Thangadurai, R; Hoti, S L; Kumar, N Pradeep; Das, P K

    2006-07-01

    Wuchereria bancrofti, a nematode parasite causing human lymphatic filariasis is widely distributed in India. The phylogeography of this parasite was studied by constructing RAPD profiles of parasite populations collected from 71 microfilaria carriers residing in different geoclimatic regions of India. The analysis showed that the phylogeography of W. bancrofti populations is complex, with a high genetic divergence and gene flow among populations. The total genetic diversity (H(T)) and genetic differentiation (G(ST)) estimated for all the parasite populations were 0.0926 and 0.5859, respectively. The gene flow (Nm) between different regions indicated that two strains of W. bancrofti were prevalent in the country, one in the eastern side and the other on the western side of the Western Ghats. A highly significant genetic differentiation (F(ST) [theta] = 0.7978) was estimated between these two strains (chi 2 = 308.2789; P < 0.001). The gene flow between these strains was very low (0.2338). These two strains appear to have drifted genetically because of their geographic isolation by this thickly forested mountain range. The strain in the eastern side was found to be monophyletic in origin and is undergoing genetic divergence as the major parasite population in the country, spanning from eastern peninsular region to the northern plains. The variable geoclimatic factors and the antifilarial chemotherapeutical pressure on the parasite, which is in place for the past half a century, might have contributed for the high genetic heterogeneity its strains/populations in the country. The route of entry of the parasite into Indian sub-continent possibly appeared to be from an ancient origin from the countries of the Southeast Asian archipelago, through the eastern coastal line of the southern peninsula.

  20. Origin of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in gorillas.

    PubMed

    Liu, Weimin; Li, Yingying; Learn, Gerald H; Rudicell, Rebecca S; Robertson, Joel D; Keele, Brandon F; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N; Sanz, Crickette M; Morgan, David B; Locatelli, Sabrina; Gonder, Mary K; Kranzusch, Philip J; Walsh, Peter D; Delaporte, Eric; Mpoudi-Ngole, Eitel; Georgiev, Alexander V; Muller, Martin N; Shaw, George M; Peeters, Martine; Sharp, Paul M; Rayner, Julian C; Hahn, Beatrice H

    2010-09-23

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most prevalent and lethal of the malaria parasites infecting humans, yet the origin and evolutionary history of this important pathogen remain controversial. Here we develop a single-genome amplification strategy to identify and characterize Plasmodium spp. DNA sequences in faecal samples from wild-living apes. Among nearly 3,000 specimens collected from field sites throughout central Africa, we found Plasmodium infection in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and western gorillas (Gorilla gorilla), but not in eastern gorillas (Gorilla beringei) or bonobos (Pan paniscus). Ape plasmodial infections were highly prevalent, widely distributed and almost always made up of mixed parasite species. Analysis of more than 1,100 mitochondrial, apicoplast and nuclear gene sequences from chimpanzees and gorillas revealed that 99% grouped within one of six host-specific lineages representing distinct Plasmodium species within the subgenus Laverania. One of these from western gorillas comprised parasites that were nearly identical to P. falciparum. In phylogenetic analyses of full-length mitochondrial sequences, human P. falciparum formed a monophyletic lineage within the gorilla parasite radiation. These findings indicate that P. falciparum is of gorilla origin and not of chimpanzee, bonobo or ancient human origin.

  1. Comparative genomics of the neglected human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax.

    PubMed

    Carlton, Jane M; Adams, John H; Silva, Joana C; Bidwell, Shelby L; Lorenzi, Hernan; Caler, Elisabet; Crabtree, Jonathan; Angiuoli, Samuel V; Merino, Emilio F; Amedeo, Paolo; Cheng, Qin; Coulson, Richard M R; Crabb, Brendan S; Del Portillo, Hernando A; Essien, Kobby; Feldblyum, Tamara V; Fernandez-Becerra, Carmen; Gilson, Paul R; Gueye, Amy H; Guo, Xiang; Kang'a, Simon; Kooij, Taco W A; Korsinczky, Michael; Meyer, Esmeralda V-S; Nene, Vish; Paulsen, Ian; White, Owen; Ralph, Stuart A; Ren, Qinghu; Sargeant, Tobias J; Salzberg, Steven L; Stoeckert, Christian J; Sullivan, Steven A; Yamamoto, Marcio M; Hoffman, Stephen L; Wortman, Jennifer R; Gardner, Malcolm J; Galinski, Mary R; Barnwell, John W; Fraser-Liggett, Claire M

    2008-10-01

    The human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax is responsible for 25-40% of the approximately 515 million annual cases of malaria worldwide. Although seldom fatal, the parasite elicits severe and incapacitating clinical symptoms and often causes relapses months after a primary infection has cleared. Despite its importance as a major human pathogen, P. vivax is little studied because it cannot be propagated continuously in the laboratory except in non-human primates. We sequenced the genome of P. vivax to shed light on its distinctive biological features, and as a means to drive development of new drugs and vaccines. Here we describe the synteny and isochore structure of P. vivax chromosomes, and show that the parasite resembles other malaria parasites in gene content and metabolic potential, but possesses novel gene families and potential alternative invasion pathways not recognized previously. Completion of the P. vivax genome provides the scientific community with a valuable resource that can be used to advance investigation into this neglected species.

  2. Origin of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in gorillas

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Weimin; Li, Yingying; Learn, Gerald H.; Rudicell, Rebecca S.; Robertson, Joel D.; Keele, Brandon F.; Ndjango, Jean-Bosco N.; Sanz, Crickette M.; Morgan, David B.; Locatelli, Sabrina; Gonder, Mary K.; Kranzusch, Philip J.; Walsh, Peter D.; Delaporte, Eric; Mpoudi-Ngole, Eitel; Georgiev, Alexander V.; Muller, Martin N.; Shaw, George M.; Peeters, Martine; Sharp, Paul M.; Rayner, Julian C.; Hahn, Beatrice H.

    2010-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the most prevalent and lethal of the malaria parasites infecting humans, yet the origin and evolutionary history of this important pathogen remain controversial. Here, we developed a novel polymerase chain reaction based single genome amplification strategy to identify and characterize Plasmodium spp. DNA sequences in fecal samples of wild-living apes. Among nearly 3,000 specimens collected from field sites throughout central Africa, we found Plasmodium infection in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and western gorillas (Gorilla gorilla), but not in eastern gorillas (Gorilla beringei) or bonobos (Pan paniscus). Ape plasmodial infections were highly prevalent, widely distributed, and almost always comprised of mixed parasite species. Analysis of more than 1,100 mitochondrial, apicoplast and nuclear gene sequences from chimpanzees and gorillas revealed that 99% grouped within one of six host-specific lineages representing distinct Plasmodium species within the subgenus Laverania. One of these from western gorillas was comprised of parasites that were nearly identical to P. falciparum. In phylogenetic analyses of full-length mitochondrial sequences, human P. falciparum formed a monophyletic lineage within the gorilla parasite radiation. These findings indicate that P. falciparum is of gorilla and not of chimpanzee, bonobo or ancient human origin. PMID:20864995

  3. Generation of Transgenic Rodent Malaria Parasites Expressing Human Malaria Parasite Proteins.

    PubMed

    Salman, Ahmed M; Mogollon, Catherin Marin; Lin, Jing-Wen; van Pul, Fiona J A; Janse, Chris J; Khan, Shahid M

    2015-01-01

    We describe methods for the rapid generation of transgenic rodent Plasmodium berghei (Pb) parasites that express human malaria parasite (HMP) proteins, using the recently developed GIMO-based transfection methodology. Three different genetic modifications are described resulting in three types of transgenic parasites. (1) Additional Gene (AG) mutants. In these mutants the HMP gene is introduced as an "additional gene" into a silent/neutral locus of the Pb genome under the control of either a constitutive or stage-specific Pb promoter. This method uses the GIMO-transfection protocol and AG mutants are generated by replacing the positive-negative selection marker (SM) hdhfr::yfcu cassette in a neutral locus of a standard GIMO mother line with the HMP gene expression cassette, resulting in SM free transgenic parasites. (2) Double-step Replacement (DsR) mutants. In these mutants the coding sequence (CDS) of the Pb gene is replaced with the CDS of the HMP ortholog in a two-step GIMO-transfection procedure. This process involves first the replacement of the Pb CDS with the hdhfr::yfcu SM, followed by insertion of the HMP ortholog at the same locus thereby replacing hdhfr::yfcu with the HMP CDS. These steps use the GIMO-transfection protocol, which exploits both positive selection for Pb orthologous gene-deletion and negative selection for HMP gene-insertion, resulting in SM free transgenic parasites. (3) Double-step Insertion (DsI) mutants. When a Pb gene is essential for blood stage development the DsR strategy is not possible. In these mutants the HMP expression cassette is first introduced into the neutral locus in a standard GIMO mother line as described for AG mutants but under the control elements of the Pb orthologous gene; subsequently, the Pb ortholog CDS is targeted for deletion through replacement of the Pb CDS with the hdhfr::yfcu SM, resulting in transgenic parasites with a new GIMO locus permissive for additional gene-insertion modifications.The different

  4. The origin and dispersion of human parasitic diseases in the old world (Africa, Europe and Madagascar).

    PubMed

    Nozais, Jean-Pierre

    2003-01-01

    The ancestors of present-day man (Homo sapiens sapiens) appeared in East Africa some three and a half million years ago (Australopithecs), and then migrated to Europe, Asia, and later to the Americas, thus beginning the differentiation process. The passage from nomadic to sedentary life took place in the Middle East in around 8000 BC. Wars, spontaneous migrations and forced migrations (slave trade) led to enormous mixtures of populations in Europe and Africa and favoured the spread of numerous parasitic diseases with specific strains according to geographic area. The three human plasmodia (Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, and P. malariae) were imported from Africa into the Mediterranean region with the first human migrations, but it was the Neolithic revolution (sedentarisation, irrigation, population increase) which brought about actual foci for malaria. The reservoir for Leishmania infantum and L. donovani--the dog--has been domesticated for thousands of years. Wild rodents as reservoirs of L. major have also long been in contact with man and probably were imported from tropical Africa across the Sahara. L. tropica, by contrast, followed the migrations of man, its only reservoir. L. infantum and L. donovani spread with man and his dogs from West Africa. Likewise, for thousands of years, the dog has played an important role in the spread and the endemic character of hydatidosis through sheep (in Europe and North Africa) and dromadary (in the Sahara and North Africa). Schistosoma haematobium and S. mansoni have existed since prehistoric times in populations living in or passing through the Sahara. These populations then transported them to countries of Northern Africa where the specific, intermediary hosts were already present. Madagascar was inhabited by populations of Indonesian origin who imported lymphatic filariosis across the Indian Ocean (possibly of African origin since the Indonesian sailors had spent time on the African coast before reaching Madagascar

  5. Human parasitic protozoan infection to infertility: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Shiadeh, Malihe Nourollahpour; Niyyati, Maryam; Fallahi, Shirzad; Rostami, Ali

    2016-02-01

    Protozoan parasitic diseases are endemic in many countries worldwide, especially in developing countries, where infertility is a major burden. It has been reported that such infections may cause infertility through impairment in male and female reproductive systems. We searched Medline, PubMed, and Scopus databases and Google scholar to identify the potentially relevant studies on protozoan parasitic infections and their implications in human and animal model infertility. Literature described that some of the protozoan parasites such as Trichomonas vaginalis may cause deformities of the genital tract, cervical neoplasia, and tubal and atypical pelvic inflammations in women and also non-gonoccocal urethritis, asthenozoospermia, and teratozoospermia in men. Toxopalasma gondii could cause endometritis, impaired folliculogenesis, ovarian and uterine atrophy, adrenal hypertrophy, vasculitis, and cessation of estrus cycling in female and also decrease in semen quality, concentration, and motility in male. Trypanosoma cruzi inhibits cell division in embryos and impairs normal implantation and development of placenta. Decrease in gestation rate, infection of hormone-producing glands, parasite invasion of the placenta, and overproduction of inflammatory cytokines in the oviducts and uterine horns are other possible mechanisms induced by Trypanosoma cruzi to infertility. Plasmodium spp. and Trypanosoma brucei spp. cause damage in pituitary gland, hormonal disorders, and decreased semen quality. Entamoeba histolytica infection leads to pelvic pain, salpingitis, tubo-ovarian abscess, and genital ulcers. Cutaneous and visceral leishmaniasis can induce genital lesion, testicular amyloidosis, inflammation of epididymis, prostatitis, and sperm abnormality in human and animals. In addition, some epidemiological studies have reported that rates of protozoan infections in infertile patients are higher than healthy controls. The current review indicates that protozoan parasitic

  6. Human parasitic protozoan infection to infertility: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Shiadeh, Malihe Nourollahpour; Niyyati, Maryam; Fallahi, Shirzad; Rostami, Ali

    2016-02-01

    Protozoan parasitic diseases are endemic in many countries worldwide, especially in developing countries, where infertility is a major burden. It has been reported that such infections may cause infertility through impairment in male and female reproductive systems. We searched Medline, PubMed, and Scopus databases and Google scholar to identify the potentially relevant studies on protozoan parasitic infections and their implications in human and animal model infertility. Literature described that some of the protozoan parasites such as Trichomonas vaginalis may cause deformities of the genital tract, cervical neoplasia, and tubal and atypical pelvic inflammations in women and also non-gonoccocal urethritis, asthenozoospermia, and teratozoospermia in men. Toxopalasma gondii could cause endometritis, impaired folliculogenesis, ovarian and uterine atrophy, adrenal hypertrophy, vasculitis, and cessation of estrus cycling in female and also decrease in semen quality, concentration, and motility in male. Trypanosoma cruzi inhibits cell division in embryos and impairs normal implantation and development of placenta. Decrease in gestation rate, infection of hormone-producing glands, parasite invasion of the placenta, and overproduction of inflammatory cytokines in the oviducts and uterine horns are other possible mechanisms induced by Trypanosoma cruzi to infertility. Plasmodium spp. and Trypanosoma brucei spp. cause damage in pituitary gland, hormonal disorders, and decreased semen quality. Entamoeba histolytica infection leads to pelvic pain, salpingitis, tubo-ovarian abscess, and genital ulcers. Cutaneous and visceral leishmaniasis can induce genital lesion, testicular amyloidosis, inflammation of epididymis, prostatitis, and sperm abnormality in human and animals. In addition, some epidemiological studies have reported that rates of protozoan infections in infertile patients are higher than healthy controls. The current review indicates that protozoan parasitic

  7. Some gastro-intestinal parasites of zoonotic (public health) importance commonly observed in old world non-human primates in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Muriuki, S M; Murugu, R K; Munene, E; Karere, G M; Chai, D C

    1998-08-15

    A study was undertaken to categorise some gastro-intestinal (GIT) parasites commonly observed in Kenyan non-human primates (NHPs) on the basis of their health implications for humans. Six species of locally available non-human primates, namely olive baboons (Papio cyanocephalus anubis), Vervet monkey (Cercopithecus aethiops), Sykes monkey (Cercopithecus mitis), Black and white colobus (Colobus abyssinicus), Debrazzas monkey (Cercopithecus neglectus) and Grey and Black mangabeys (Cercocebus torquatus and Cercocebus albigena) which were imported from Zaire (Democratic Republic of Congo) were sampled. Simple laboratory methods involving microscopic examination of stained faecal smears were used. Wet faecal smears stained with iodine and unstained controls were used for conventional parasites while acid fast staining was employed to detect Cryptosporidium oocysts. Both helminths and protozoan parasites were detected in varying rates in all primate species. Trichuris sp. was the most frequent helminth followed by Strongyloides fulleborni, Strongyles sp. and Schistosoma mansoni in that order. Entamoeba coli was the most common protozoan followed, respectively, by Balantidiun coli and Entamoeba histolytica. All primate species examined were infected with all the parasites listed except the black and white colobus. Cryptosporidium was found in both clinically normal and diarrhoeic baboons and vervets. Most taxa of parasites observed could prejudice human welfare directly through infection and causation of illness and indirectly through increased cost of livestock production and decreased availability of animal proteins. The potential of some of the agents to cause opportunistic infections in immuno-compromised persons was suggested as a likely threat to man's well-being. This would warrant such person's exemption from high risk operations at primate and other animal facilities in developing countries. Further, specific studies are needed to provide data on the epidemiology

  8. Parasites

    MedlinePlus

    ... CME and CNE for clinicians... Parasitic Disease and Malaria Strategic Priorities: 2015—2020... Cyclosporiasis: Most U.S. cases ... R S T U V W X Y Z Malaria An ancient disease that affects millions of people ...

  9. The affinity of magnetic microspheres for Schistosoma eggs.

    PubMed

    Candido, Renata R F; Favero, Vivian; Duke, Mary; Karl, Stephan; Gutiérrez, Lucía; Woodward, Robert C; Graeff-Teixeira, Carlos; Jones, Malcolm K; St Pierre, Timothy G

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a chronic parasitic disease of humans, with two species primarily causing the intestinal infection: Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma japonicum. Traditionally, diagnosis of schistosomiasis is achieved through direct visualisation of eggs in faeces using techniques that lack the sensitivity required to detect all infections, especially in areas of low endemicity. A recently developed method termed Helmintex™ is a very sensitive technique for detection of Schistosoma eggs and exhibits 100% sensitivity at 1.3 eggs per gram of faeces, enough to detect even low-level infections. The Helminthex™ method is based on the interaction of magnetic microspheres and schistosome eggs. Further understanding the underlying egg-microsphere interactions would enable a targeted optimisation of egg-particle binding and may thus enable a significant improvement of the Helmintex™ method and diagnostic sensitivity in areas with low infection rates. We investigated the magnetic properties of S. mansoni and S. japonicum eggs and their interactions with microspheres with different magnetic properties and surface functionalization. Eggs of both species exhibited higher binding affinity to the magnetic microspheres than the non-magnetic microspheres. Binding efficiency was further enhanced if the particles were coated with streptavidin. Schistosoma japonicum eggs bound more microspheres compared with S. mansoni. However, distinct differences within eggs of each species were also observed when the distribution of the number of microspheres bound per egg was modelled with double Poisson distributions. Using this approach, both S. japonicum and S. mansoni eggs fell into two groups, one having greater affinity for magnetic microspheres than the other, indicating that not all eggs of a species exhibit the same binding affinity. Our observations suggest that interaction between the microspheres and eggs is more likely to be related to surface charge-based electrostatic

  10. The affinity of magnetic microspheres for Schistosoma eggs.

    PubMed

    Candido, Renata R F; Favero, Vivian; Duke, Mary; Karl, Stephan; Gutiérrez, Lucía; Woodward, Robert C; Graeff-Teixeira, Carlos; Jones, Malcolm K; St Pierre, Timothy G

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a chronic parasitic disease of humans, with two species primarily causing the intestinal infection: Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma japonicum. Traditionally, diagnosis of schistosomiasis is achieved through direct visualisation of eggs in faeces using techniques that lack the sensitivity required to detect all infections, especially in areas of low endemicity. A recently developed method termed Helmintex™ is a very sensitive technique for detection of Schistosoma eggs and exhibits 100% sensitivity at 1.3 eggs per gram of faeces, enough to detect even low-level infections. The Helminthex™ method is based on the interaction of magnetic microspheres and schistosome eggs. Further understanding the underlying egg-microsphere interactions would enable a targeted optimisation of egg-particle binding and may thus enable a significant improvement of the Helmintex™ method and diagnostic sensitivity in areas with low infection rates. We investigated the magnetic properties of S. mansoni and S. japonicum eggs and their interactions with microspheres with different magnetic properties and surface functionalization. Eggs of both species exhibited higher binding affinity to the magnetic microspheres than the non-magnetic microspheres. Binding efficiency was further enhanced if the particles were coated with streptavidin. Schistosoma japonicum eggs bound more microspheres compared with S. mansoni. However, distinct differences within eggs of each species were also observed when the distribution of the number of microspheres bound per egg was modelled with double Poisson distributions. Using this approach, both S. japonicum and S. mansoni eggs fell into two groups, one having greater affinity for magnetic microspheres than the other, indicating that not all eggs of a species exhibit the same binding affinity. Our observations suggest that interaction between the microspheres and eggs is more likely to be related to surface charge-based electrostatic

  11. The development of an age structured model for schistosomiasis transmission dynamics and control and its validation for Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed Central

    Chan, M. S.; Guyatt, H. L.; Bundy, D. A.; Booth, M.; Fulford, A. J.; Medley, G. F.

    1995-01-01

    Mathematical models are potentially useful tools to aid in the design of control programmes for parasitic diseases. In this paper, a fully age structured epidemiological model of human schistosomiasis is developed and parameterized, and used to predict trends in infection prevalence, intensity and prevalence of heavy infections over age and time during several rounds of mass and age targeted treatment. The model is validated against data from a Schistosoma mansoni control programme in Kenya. Images Fig. 3 (a)-(c) PMID:7589272

  12. Preliminary trials with praziquantel in human infections due to Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Katz, N.; Rocha, R.S.; Chaves, A.

    1979-01-01

    As part of a programme of multicentre trials of the tolerance and therapeutic effect of praziquantel, clinical trials were carried out in Brazil in patients with active Schistosoma mansoni infections, each of whom had a minimum geometric mean egg output of 100 eggs per gram of faeces calculated from multiple pretreatment stool examinations. The first stage was a double-blind assessment of tolerance and efficacy of oral doses of 1 × 20, 2 × 20, or 3 × 20 mg of praziquantel per kg of body weight. Subsequently, single-blind trials explored the effects of 3 × 20 mg/kg at 4-hourly intervals, and a single dose of 50 mg/kg. Side effects increased in frequency as dosage increased. Nausea, epigastric pain, headache, dizziness, and drowsiness were all noted but their severity was mild or moderate and they disappeared in 48 hours. In general, monitoring laboratory tests showed little change. Following a stringent parasitological follow-up, 96% of 28 patients followed at 1 year after treatment with either 3 × 20 mg/kg or 1 × 50 mg/kg were cured. Praziquantel seems to be a very promising drug against S. mansoni and further clinical trials should be strongly encouraged. PMID:396054

  13. Development and behavior of cultured Schistosoma mansoni fed on human erythrocyte ghosts.

    PubMed

    Basch, P F

    1984-09-01

    Schistosomula and adults of Schistosoma mansoni were grown from cercariae in cultures differing only in the treatment of the red blood cells fed to the organisms. "Pink ghosts," containing about 5% of the original hemoglobin, were produced by hemolysis in water; "white ghosts" with no detectable hemoglobin were made in 5 mM phosphate buffer, pH 8. Early growth and development were more rapid and vigorous, and pairs formed more readily when pink ghosts, rather than intact erythrocytes were fed. Schistosomula remained stunted and undeveloped when fed with white ghosts. Attempts at reconstitution of the latter by addition of hemoglobin, concentrated erythrocyte lysate, or pressure-liquefied pink ghosts did not restore growth-promoting activity. Pink ghost-fed worms, particularly paired males, attached to the dish bottom by their acetabulum and oral sucker and travelled by an active looping motion. Substrates of collagen or fibrin or a mammalian cell monolayer did not affect this behavior. Such attachment and locomotion are interpreted as instinctive migratory behavior of schistosomes. PMID:6486300

  14. Human Schistosoma haematobium Antifecundity Immunity Is Dependent on Transmission Intensity and Associated With Immunoglobulin G1 to Worm-Derived Antigens

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Shona; Jones, Frances M.; van Dam, Govert J.; Corstjens, Paul L. A. M.; Riveau, Gilles; Fitzsimmons, Colin M.; Sacko, Moussa; Vennervald, Birgitte J.; Dunne, David W.

    2014-01-01

    Background Immunity that reduces worm fecundity and, in turn, reduces morbidity is proposed for Schistosoma haematobium, a parasite of major public health importance. Mathematical models of epidemiological trends suggest that antifecundity immunity is dependent on antibody responses to adult-worm-derived antigen. Methods For a Malian cohort (age, 5–29 years) residing in high-transmission fishing villages or a moderate-transmission village, worm fecundity was assessed using the ratio of urinary egg excretion to levels of circulating anodic antigen, a Schistosoma-specific antigen that is steadily secreted by adult worms. Fecundity was modeled against host age, infection transmission intensity, and antibody responses specific to soluble worm antigen (SWA), tegument allergen-like 1, and 28-kDa glutathione-S-transferase. Results Worm fecundity declined steadily until a host age of 11 years. Among children, host age and transmission were negatively associated with worm fecundity. A significant interaction term between host age and transmission indicates that antifecundity immunity develops earlier in high-transmission areas. SWA immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) levels explained the effect of transmission on antifecundity immunity. Conclusion Antifecundity immunity, which is likely to be protective against severe morbidity, develops rapidly during childhood. Antifecundity immunity is associated with SWA-IgG1, with higher infection transmission increasing this response at an earlier age, leading to earlier development of antifecundity immunity. PMID:25001462

  15. Tissue Inhibitor of Matrix-Metalloprotease–1 Predicts Risk of Hepatic Fibrosis in Human Schistosoma japonicum Infection

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Haiwei; PondTor, Sunthorn; Coutinho, Hannah; Acosta, Luz; Jiz, Mario; Olveda, Remigio; Cheng, Ling; White, Eric S.; Jarilla, Blanca; McGarvey, Stephen T.; Friedman, Jennifer F.; Kurtis, Jonathan D.

    2011-01-01

    Background. Schistosomes infect 200 million individuals annually and cause significant hepatic fibrosis in up to 20%. Little is known regarding the mechanisms of schistosome-associated hepatic fibrosis in humans, and few biomarkers for risk of fibrosis have been identified. Methods. We treated 611 Schistosoma japonicum–infected Filipinos with praziquantel (PZQ) and performed ultrasound to quantify hepatic fibrosis at baseline and 12 months after PZQ treatment. We developed a multiplexed assay (FibroPlex) that quantifies predictors and effect modifiers of fibrosis. We measured FibroPlex analytes produced by peripheral blood mononuclear cells stimulated with schistosome egg antigen 4 weeks after PZQ treatment and related these levels to risk of fibrosis 1 year after PZQ treatment. Results. After adjusting for potential confounders, including baseline grade of fibrosis, individuals with detectable tissue inhibitor of matrix-metalloprotease–1 (TIMP-1) had a 3.5-fold greater risk of fibrosis 1 year after PZQ treatment, compared with individuals with undetectable levels (odds ratio, 3.48; 95% confidence interval, 1.41–8.43; P = .007). Discussion Because TIMP-1 inhibits most matrix metalloproteases, which are responsible for collagen degradation, these data suggest that schistosome-associated hepatic fibrosis results, in part, from excessive inhibition of collagen remodeling. These data further suggest that TIMP-1 is a promising biomarker for assessing risk of hepatic fibrosis in schistosomiasis and, potentially, other infectious and noninfectious causes of liver disease. PMID:21199883

  16. Human behaviour and the epidemiology of parasitic zoonoses.

    PubMed

    Macpherson, Calum N L

    2005-10-01

    The behaviour of Homo sapiens has a pivotal role to play in the macro and microepidemiology of emerging or re-emerging parasitic zoonoses. Changing demographics and the concomitant alterations to the environment, climate, technology, land use and changes in human behavior, converge to favour the emergence and spread of parasitic zoonoses. The recent unprecedented movements of people, their animals and their parasites around the world, introduce and mix genes, cultural preferences, customs, and behavioral patterns. The increasing proclivity for eating meat, fish, crabs, shrimp, molluscs raw, undercooked, smoked, pickled or dried facilitates a number of protozoan (Toxoplasma), trematode (Fasciola sp., Paragonimus spp., Clonorchis sp., Opisthorchis spp., Heterophyes sp., Metagonimus sp., Echinostoma spp., Nanophyetus sp.) cestode (Taenia spp, Diphyllobothrum sp.) and nematode (Trichinella spp., Capillaria spp., Gnathostoma spp., Anisakis sp., Parastrongylus spp.) caused zoonoses. The increasing world population and the inability to keep pace with the provision of adequate sanitation and clean, safe drinking water, has led to an increased importance of waterborne zoonoses, such as those caused by Giardia, Cryptosporidium and Toxoplasma. Our close relationship with and the numerous uses to which we put companion animals and their ubiquitous distribution has resulted in dogs and cats unwitting participation in sharing over 60 parasite species including: Giardia, Cryptosporidium, Toxoplasma, most foodborne trematode species, Diphyllobothrum, Echinococcus spp., Ancylostoma and Toxocara. Changing human behaviour through education, to encourage the proper cooking of food, which may have cultural and social significance, will remain as challenging as controlling stray and feral pet populations, improving hygiene levels and the provision of safe drinking water and the proper use of sanctuary facilities. Long pre-patent periods and the normally insidious sub-clinical nature of

  17. Folate metabolism in human malaria parasites--75 years on.

    PubMed

    Müller, Ingrid B; Hyde, John E

    2013-03-01

    Malaria still poses one of the most serious threats to human health worldwide and the prevailing lack of effective, clinically licensed, vaccines means that prophylaxis and treatment depend heavily on a small number of compounds whose efficacies are progressively compromised at varying rates by the inevitable emergence of drug-resistant parasite populations. Of these antimalarials, those inhibiting steps in folate metabolism, along with chloroquine, are the oldest synthetic compounds, with origins dating back three-quarters of a century. Despite widespread parasite resistance, the antifolates still play an important role in malaria control, and our understanding of the underlying mechanisms of folate metabolism and genesis of drug resistance has increased considerably over the last twenty years. Folate de novo synthesis in the parasite, interconversion of active folate derivatives and their utilisation as multifunctional cofactors involve numerous enzymes, although only two of these have ever served as targets of clinical antimalarial inhibitors. The current application of antifolates, resistance to this class of drugs, new insights into folate metabolism in the parasite, its potential for providing novel targets of inhibition and some of the questions that are still outstanding are reviewed here.

  18. Epidemiology and history of human parasitic diseases in Romania.

    PubMed

    Neghina, Raul; Neghina, Adriana M; Marincu, Iosif; Iacobiciu, Ioan

    2011-06-01

    Intestinal parasitic diseases such as enterobiasis, giardiasis, and ascariasis are detected most frequently in Romania, but their importance is definitely surpassed by trichinellosis, cystic echinococcosis, and toxoplasmosis. Malaria was common until its eradication in 1963, and only imported cases are reported nowadays. The aim of this review was to bring together essential data on the epidemiology and history of human parasitoses in Romania. Information on 43 parasitic diseases was collected from numerous sources, most of them unavailable abroad or inaccessible to the international scientific community. Over time, Romanian people of all ages have paid a significant tribute to the pathogenic influences exerted by the parasites. Sanitary and socio-economical consequences of the parasites diseases have great negative impact on the quality of life of affected individuals and the overall well-being of the population. Implementation of efficient public health measures and informative campaigns for the masses as well as changing the inadequate habits that are deeply rooted in the population are mandatory for cutting successfully this Gordian knot.

  19. Can the common brain parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, influence human culture?

    PubMed Central

    Lafferty, Kevin D

    2006-01-01

    The latent prevalence of a long-lived and common brain parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, explains a statistically significant portion of the variance in aggregate neuroticism among populations, as well as in the ‘neurotic’ cultural dimensions of sex roles and uncertainty avoidance. Spurious or non-causal correlations between aggregate personality and aspects of climate and culture that influence T. gondii transmission could also drive these patterns. A link between culture and T. gondii hypothetically results from a behavioural manipulation that the parasite uses to increase its transmission to the next host in the life cycle: a cat. While latent toxoplasmosis is usually benign, the parasite's subtle effect on individual personality appears to alter the aggregate personality at the population level. Drivers of the geographical variation in the prevalence of this parasite include the effects of climate on the persistence of infectious stages in soil, the cultural practices of food preparation and cats as pets. Some variation in culture, therefore, may ultimately be related to how climate affects the distribution of T. gondii, though the results only explain a fraction of the variation in two of the four cultural dimensions, suggesting that if T. gondii does influence human culture, it is only one among many factors. PMID:17015323

  20. Photosensitized inactivation of infectious blood-borne human parasites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Judy, Millard M.; Sogandares-Bernal, Franklin M.; Matthews, James Lester

    1995-05-01

    Blood-borne viruses and protozoan parasites that are infectious to humans pose risk world-wide of infection transmission through blood and blood product transfusion. Blood-borne infectious viruses include human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-I), which causes AIDS; hepatitis C virus, which can cause chronic hepatitis; and cytomegalovirus, which can be dangerous to immunocompromised patients, e.g., the newborn, transplant recipients, and AIDS patients. Infectious blood-borne protozoan parasites include Trypanosoma cruzi, which causes Chagas' disease, endemic throughout Central and South America; the Trypanosoma species causing African sleeping sickness endemic in Central Africa; and Plasmodium falciparum, which causes malignant and increasingly drug- resistant human malaria prevalent throughout the tropics. Some researchers have focused on using photosensitizers to inactivate HIV-I and other viruses in whole blood, packed red cells, and platelet concentrates without compromising blood product function. Our group previously has reported photosensitized in vitro inactivation of P. falciparum and the mouse malaria organism Plasmodium berghei in whole blood using hematoporphyrin derivative (HPD) and of T. cruzi using benzoporphyrin derivatives BPDMA and BPDDA, dihematoporphyrin ether (DHE), and hydroxyethylvinyldeuteroporphyrin (HEVD). These results suggest that continued investigation is warranted to evaluate the potential for photosensitized inactivation of blood-borne parasites in blood banking.

  1. Release of leukotriene C4 (LTC4) from human eosinophils following adherence to IgE- and IgG-coated schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed Central

    Moqbel, R; Macdonald, A J; Cromwell, O; Kay, A B

    1990-01-01

    The release of leukotriene C4 (LTC4) from human low-density eosinophils following adherence to live or formalin-fixed schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni coated with parasite-specific IgE or IgG obtained from pooled human anti-S. mansoni serum has been studied. IgE-rich fractions were obtained after fractionation of pooled immune sera on fast-protein liquid chromatography (FPLC; polyanion SI-17 column) and were identified by parasite-specific RAST. Contaminating IgG was removed by adsorption on a Staphylococcus aureus-protein A affinity column. IgG-rich FPLC fractions were identified by a specific ELISA assay. IgG-dependent activities were confirmed by protein A adsorption. Low-density eosinophils adhered to live and formalin-fixed schistosomula coated with specific antisera and released 11.7 +/- 2.7 and 16.5 +/- 3.5 pmoles of LTC4/10(6) cells, respectively. LTC4 release induced by A23187 (5 x 10(-6) M) from the same cells was 80 +/- 24 pmoles/10(6) cells and 9.9 +/- 1 pmoles/10(6) cells in the presence of Sepharose particles (CNBr-activated 4B beads) covalently coated with normal human IgG. Fixed schistosomula coated with FPLC-purified IgE and IgG gave 7.6 +/- 0.4 and 6.0 +/- 0.1 pmoles of LTC4 per 10(6) low-density eosinophils, respectively. The same IgE- and IgG-rich fractions induced eosinophil-mediated cytotoxicity of live schistosomula in vitro. Removal of IgE by an anti-IgE affinity column abolished both the IgE-dependent release of LTC4 and the in vitro killing of larvae. Conversely, IgG-dependent activities were abolished by protein A, but not anti-IgE, adsorption. Normal density eosinophils generated undetectable amounts of LTC4 when incubated with IgE-coated schistosomula, whereas with IgG-coated larvae 4.6 pmoles/10(6) cells were obtained. Following preincubation with platelet-activating factor (PAF) (10(-7) M) and leukotriene B4 (LTB4) (10(-7) M), normal density eosinophils released LTC4 when in contact with larvae coated with antigen-specific Ig

  2. Proteomic Analysis of the Schistosoma mansoni Miracidium.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tianfang; Zhao, Min; Rotgans, Bronwyn A; Strong, April; Liang, Di; Ni, Guoying; Limpanont, Yanin; Ramasoota, Pongrama; McManus, Donald P; Cummins, Scott F

    2016-01-01

    Despite extensive control efforts, schistosomiasis continues to be a major public health problem in developing nations in the tropics and sub-tropics. The miracidium, along with the cercaria, both of which are water-borne and free-living, are the only two stages in the life-cycle of Schistosoma mansoni which are involved in host invasion. Miracidia penetrate intermediate host snails and develop into sporocysts, which lead to cercariae that can infect humans. Infection of the snail host by the miracidium represents an ideal point at which to interrupt the parasite's life-cycle. This research focuses on an analysis of the miracidium proteome, including those proteins that are secreted. We have identified a repertoire of proteins in the S. mansoni miracidium at 2 hours post-hatch, including proteases, venom allergen-like proteins, receptors and HSP70, which might play roles in snail-parasite interplay. Proteins involved in energy production and conservation were prevalent, as were proteins predicted to be associated with defence. This study also provides a strong foundation for further understanding the roles that neurohormones play in host-seeking by schistosomes, with the potential for development of novel anthelmintics that interfere with its various life-cycle stages. PMID:26799066

  3. [Human intestinal parasites in Subsaharan Africa. II. Sao Tomé and Principe].

    PubMed

    Pampiglione, S; Visconti, S; Pezzino, G

    1987-04-01

    In 1983 the authors carried out a survey in the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Principe, analysing 1050 specimens of stools collected among the population from apparently healthy subjects chosen at random and in a number proportional to the distribution of the population in the regions of the country (about 1% of the population was examined). The examined subjects were divided into 3 age groups (0-3, 4-12, more than 12 years old), to have homogeneous groups in relation principally to modalities of life and nutritional patterns. There were 488 male subjects and 562 females. The survey was preceded by a sensitization of the people to the problem of intestinal parasites and by two preliminary surveys about the number of existing latrines and about people's believes and attitudes in relation to helmintiasis. The tests were made according to the modified Ritchie technique on fecal specimens preserved with 10% formol solution. The following results were found: a) Protozoa: Entamoeba coli, 43.0%; Iodamoeba buetschlii, 9.0%; Giardia intestinalis, 8.8%; Endolimax nana, 7.0%; E. histolytica, 5.5%; E. hartmanni, 2.5%; Chilomastix mesnili, 2.3%; Trichomonas intestinalis, 0.2%; Balantidium coli, 0.1%. b) Helminths: Trichuris trichiura, 87.7%; Ascaris lumbricoides, 64.3%; Ancylostomatidae, 40.5%; Strongyloides stercoralis, 6.8%; Hymenolepis diminuta, 0.3%; H. nana, 0.2%; Schistosoma haematobium, 0.2%. In 28.2% of the specimens (with more than 50% of subjects in some villages) eggs of Heterophyidae were found, very similar to Metagonimus yokogawai, but not yet identified by us, with the following characteristics: elliptical shape, average size 25 mu (22.2-27.7) X 18.5 mu (17-21), thick wall, operculum difficult to see, not sticking out from the outline but visible by focusing being in a different refractiveness, presence of a small polar knob, colour slightly brownish, asymmetric miracidium. Further investigations are necessary to identify the species of this trematode and

  4. Ape parasite origins of human malaria virulence genes.

    PubMed

    Larremore, Daniel B; Sundararaman, Sesh A; Liu, Weimin; Proto, William R; Clauset, Aaron; Loy, Dorothy E; Speede, Sheri; Plenderleith, Lindsey J; Sharp, Paul M; Hahn, Beatrice H; Rayner, Julian C; Buckee, Caroline O

    2015-01-01

    Antigens encoded by the var gene family are major virulence factors of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, exhibiting enormous intra- and interstrain diversity. Here we use network analysis to show that var architecture and mosaicism are conserved at multiple levels across the Laverania subgenus, based on var-like sequences from eight single-species and three multi-species Plasmodium infections of wild-living or sanctuary African apes. Using select whole-genome amplification, we also find evidence of multi-domain var structure and synteny in Plasmodium gaboni, one of the ape Laverania species most distantly related to P. falciparum, as well as a new class of Duffy-binding-like domains. These findings indicate that the modular genetic architecture and sequence diversity underlying var-mediated host-parasite interactions evolved before the radiation of the Laverania subgenus, long before the emergence of P. falciparum. PMID:26456841

  5. Omega-1 knockdown in Schistosoma mansoni eggs by lentivirus transduction reduces granuloma size in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Hagen, Jana; Young, Neil D.; Every, Alison L.; Pagel, Charles N.; Schnoeller, Corinna; Scheerlinck, Jean-Pierre Y.; Gasser, Robin B.

    2014-01-01

    Schistosomiasis, one of the most important neglected tropical diseases worldwide, is caused by flatworms (blood flukes or schistosomes) that live in the bloodstream of humans. The hepatointestinal form of this debilitating disease results from a chronic infection with Schistosoma mansoni or Schistosoma japonicum. No vaccine is available to prevent schistosomiasis, and treatment relies predominantly on the use of a single drug, praziquantel. In spite of considerable research effort over the years, very little is known about the complex in vivo events that lead to granuloma formation and other pathological changes during infection. Here we use, for the first time, a lentivirus-based transduction system to deliver microRNA-adapted short hairpin RNAs (shRNAmirs) into the parasite to silence and explore selected protein-encoding genes of S. mansoni implicated in the disease process. This gene-silencing system has potential to be used for functional genomic–phenomic studies of a range of socioeconomically important pathogens. PMID:25400038

  6. Recovery of Schistosoma haematobium ovum from Labeo rohita: first report from Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Ayaz, M M; Nazir, M M; Lashari, M H; Akhtar, S; Khosa, M A; Aziz, M; Zahid, H; Ali, S; Muneeb, M; Malik, A; Haider, S; Zafar, Z

    2015-09-01

    Schistosomiasis, also known as bilharzia, is a parasitic disease caused by trematodes from the genus Schistosoma that can infect humans and animals. S. mansoni, S. japonicum, and S. mekongi all causes intestinal schistosomiasis except S. haematobium that causes urinary schistosomiasis. It is only specie which effects urinary system, it can affect liver, heart, lungs also but very rarely. Schistosoma haematobium is endemic to over 50 countries in Africa and the Middle East and Western Asia and may be fatal in HIV positive people. A number of reports from the African countries like Nigeria have been reported. A few cases are reported but in Pakistan it has never been reported before in native people. It is first time reported in Pakistan in the intestine of Rahu (Labeo rohita). The purpose of this study is to elaborate the approach of zoonotic agent by various other routes including the commonly available fish.

  7. Development of humanized mouse models to study human malaria parasite infection

    PubMed Central

    Vaughan, Ashley M; Kappe, Stefan HI; Ploss, Alexander; Mikolajczak, Sebastian A

    2013-01-01

    Malaria is a disease caused by infection with Plasmodium parasites that are transmitted by mosquito bite. Five different species of Plasmodium infect humans with severe disease, but human malaria is primarily caused by Plasmodium falciparum. The burden of malaria on the developing world is enormous, and a fully protective vaccine is still elusive. One of the biggest challenges in the quest for the development of new antimalarial drugs and vaccines is the lack of accessible animal models to study P. falciparum infection because the parasite is restricted to the great apes and human hosts. Here, we review the current state of research in this field and provide an outlook of the development of humanized small animal models to study P. falciparum infection that will accelerate fundamental research into human parasite biology and could accelerate drug and vaccine design in the future. PMID:22568719

  8. Degradation of extracellular matrix by larvae of Schistosoma mansoni. I. Degradation by cercariae as a model for initial parasite invasion of host

    SciTech Connect

    McKerrow, J.H.; Keene, W.E.; Jeong, K.H.; Werb, Z.

    1983-01-01

    The ability of cercariae of Schistosoma mansoni to degrade a model extracellular connective tissue matrix produced by rat vascular smooth muscle cells in culture was investigated. In this model, connective tissue macromolecules are present in the interactive framework that characterizes their structure in vivo. Cercariae were stimulated to degrade the matrix by skin lipid or linoleic acid. At the maximally stimulating concentration of linoleic acid (25 ..mu..g/cm/sup 2/), 68% of the total matrix was degraded, including 57% of the glycoprotein, 79% of the elastin, and 8% of the collagen. Degradation of matrix was inhibited by ..cap alpha../sub 1/-proteinase inhibitor and soybean trypsin inhibitor. Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid inhibited degradation by unstimulated but not linoleic acid-stimulated cercariae. Preacetabular gland secretions collected from cercariae also degraded the matrix with an activity 86% of that of live cercariae. Preacetabular gland proteolytic activity was also inhibited by ..cap alpha../sub 1/-proteinase inhibitor, soybean trypsin inhibitor, and ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid. The similar characteristics of matrix degradation by both live cercariae and cercarial preacetabular gland secretions support the idea that a proteinase secreted from cercarial preacetabular glands facilitates invasion of skin and connective tissue by these larvae. Degradation of elastin and glycoprotein constituentes of extracellular matrix is probably essential for skin penetration.

  9. Cross-sectional associations between intensity of animal and human infection with Schistosoma japonicum in Western Samar province, Philippines.

    PubMed Central

    McGarvey, Stephen T.; Carabin, Hélène; Balolong, Ernesto; Bélisle, Patrick; Fernandez, Tomas; Joseph, Lawrence; Tallo, Veronica; Gonzales, Ryan; Tarafder, Mushfiqur R.; Alday, Portia; Willingham, Arve Lee; Olveda, Remigio

    2006-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To estimate the association between the intensity of animal infection with Schistosoma japonicum and human infection in Western Samar province, the Philippines. METHODS: We conducted an observational cross-sectional study of 1425 households in 50 villages. Stool samples were collected on each of 1-3 days from 5623 humans, 1275 cats, 1189 dogs, 1899 pigs, 663 rats and 873 water buffalo. Intensity of infection with S. japonicum was measured by the number of eggs per gram (EPG). Egg counts were done using the Kato-Katz method. We used a Bayesian hierarchical cumulative logit model, with adjustments for age, sex, occupation and measurement error. FINDINGS: The adjusted proportions of humans lightly infected (classified as 1-100 EPG) was 17.7% (95% Bayesian credible interval = 15.3-20.2%); the proportion classified as at least moderately infected (>100 EPG) was 3.2% (2.2-4.6%). The crude parasitological results for animals indicated that 37 cats (2.9%), 228 dogs (19.2%), 39 pigs (2.1%), 199 rats (30.0%) and 28 water buffalo (3.2%) were infected. In univariate analyses the odds ratios corresponding to a unit increase in the mean number of EPG at the village-level in dogs was 1.05 (1.01-1.09), in cats 1.35 (1.02-1.78), in pigs 1.16 (0.24- 5.18) and in rats 1.00 (1.00-1.01). Mean EPG values in cats, dogs, pigs and rats were correlated with one another. This confounding made interpreting the odds ratios difficult, but the odds ratios for dogs and cats were more consistent. CONCLUSION: S. japonicum is endemic in areas of the Philippines despite implementation of control programmes. This may be due to the association of infections in dogs and cats with human infections. Infection control in dogs and cats is challenging, and there is a need to develop new methods to control transmission across all species. PMID:16799728

  10. Hyperdiverse Gene Cluster in Snail Host Conveys Resistance to Human Schistosome Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Tennessen, Jacob A.; Théron, André; Marine, Melanie; Yeh, Jan-Ying; Rognon, Anne; Blouin, Michael S.

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis, a neglected global pandemic, may be curtailed by blocking transmission of the parasite via its intermediate hosts, aquatic snails. Elucidating the genetic basis of snail-schistosome interaction is a key to this strategy. Here we map a natural parasite-resistance polymorphism from a Caribbean population of the snail Biomphalaria glabrata. In independent experimental evolution lines, RAD genotyping shows that the same genomic region responds to selection for resistance to the parasite Schistosoma mansoni. A dominant allele in this region conveys an 8-fold decrease in the odds of infection. Fine-mapping and RNA-Seq characterization reveal a <1Mb region, the Guadeloupe Resistance Complex (GRC), with 15 coding genes. Seven genes are single-pass transmembrane proteins with putative immunological roles, most of which show strikingly high nonsynonymous divergence (5-10%) among alleles. High linkage disequilibrium among three intermediate-frequency (>25%) haplotypes across the GRC, a significantly non-neutral pattern, suggests that balancing selection maintains diversity at the GRC. Thus, the GRC resembles immune gene complexes seen in other taxa and is likely involved in parasite recognition. The GRC is a potential target for controlling transmission of schistosomiasis, including via genetic manipulation of snails. PMID:25775214

  11. Normocyte-binding protein required for human erythrocyte invasion by the zoonotic malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi.

    PubMed

    Moon, Robert W; Sharaf, Hazem; Hastings, Claire H; Ho, Yung Shwen; Nair, Mridul B; Rchiad, Zineb; Knuepfer, Ellen; Ramaprasad, Abhinay; Mohring, Franziska; Amir, Amirah; Yusuf, Noor A; Hall, Joanna; Almond, Neil; Lau, Yee Ling; Pain, Arnab; Blackman, Michael J; Holder, Anthony A

    2016-06-28

    The dominant cause of malaria in Malaysia is now Plasmodium knowlesi, a zoonotic parasite of cynomolgus macaque monkeys found throughout South East Asia. Comparative genomic analysis of parasites adapted to in vitro growth in either cynomolgus or human RBCs identified a genomic deletion that includes the gene encoding normocyte-binding protein Xa (NBPXa) in parasites growing in cynomolgus RBCs but not in human RBCs. Experimental deletion of the NBPXa gene in parasites adapted to growth in human RBCs (which retain the ability to grow in cynomolgus RBCs) restricted them to cynomolgus RBCs, demonstrating that this gene is selectively required for parasite multiplication and growth in human RBCs. NBPXa-null parasites could bind to human RBCs, but invasion of these cells was severely impaired. Therefore, NBPXa is identified as a key mediator of P. knowlesi human infection and may be a target for vaccine development against this emerging pathogen. PMID:27303038

  12. Schistosoma Weinland, 1858 from Hippopotamus amphibius Linnaeus, 1758 in the Kruger National Park.

    PubMed

    Pitchford, R J; Visser, P S

    1981-12-01

    Adults of Schistosoma edwardiense Thurston, 1964, were recovered from Hippopotamus amphibius in the Kruger National Park. Small round to oval Schistosoma margrebowiei-like eggs, presumed to be those of S. edwardiense, were found fairly frequently in the faeces of infected hippopotami together with a few Schistosoma haematobium-like eggs the identity of which remains uncertain. Biomphalaria sp., exposed to the droppings of infected hippopotami, shed cercariae thought to be those of S. edwardiense. No evidence of schistosoma adults was found at necropsy in rodents exposed to these cercariae. The parasite appears to be host specific to the hippopotamus. Arguments, based on biological and anatomical characteristics are put forward regarding Schistosoma hippopotami Thurston, 1963 as synonymous with Schistosoma mansoni.

  13. Measuring exposure to Schistosoma japonicum in China. III. Activity diaries, snail and human infection, transmission ecology and options for control.

    PubMed

    Li, Y; Sleigh, A C; Williams, G M; Ross, A G; Forsyth, S J; Tanner, M; McManus, D P

    2000-05-31

    We used activity diaries and snail detection to relate water contact and Schistosoma japonicum infection among a cohort of 178 residents on two islands in the Dongting Lake, China. Water exposure to each of 12 mapped water zones around the islands was calculated (m(2) min/day) for each subject. Infected Oncomelania hupensis hupensis snails in this area are focal and were found in only five of the 12 zones, with the highest rate being 5.7%. Thirty-one subjects (17%) were re-infected with a mean intensity of 63.2 epg. Mean water contact was 7.9 m(2) min/day; 98% of water exposure was due to economic activity and only 2% due to swimming or bathing, washing and other necessities of daily life. Males had more exposure and infection than females (P<0.05). Infected subjects had more exposure (10.2 m(2) min/day) than those not infected (7.44 m(2) min/day) (P<0.05). Compared with uninfected subjects, those infected had 2.9 times more exposure in infected-snail zones (P<0.01). Also, human infection intensity (epg) correlated well with exposure to infected snail zones (r=0.552, P<0.01). People <20 years old had the highest re-infection (21.4%) and intensity (3.77 epg). Median exposure for 20-49-year-olds (9.00 m(2) min/day) was nearly double that of those aged <20 or >50 years old (5.5 m(2) min/day). We conclude that map-referenced water contact and snail evaluation boosts accuracy of activity-diary measurements in large transmission foci for the Asian schistosome. Protecting against faecal contamination of snail inhabited sites, and against occupational exposure for island residents, should be a priority of future research. Potential strategies for migrating buffaloes and families living on visiting fishing boats are explored.

  14. MJD and OTU deubiquitinating enzymes in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Roberta Verciano; Gomes, Matheus de Souza; Costa, Marcela Pereira; Passos, Liana Konovaloff Jannotti; Borges, William de Castro; Guerra-Sá, Renata

    2015-08-01

    The ubiquitination and deubiquitination of proteins can alter diverse cellular processes, such as proteolysis, trafficking, subcellular localisation, DNA repair, apoptosis and signal transduction. Deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs) are responsible for removing ubiquitin from their target proteins. Previous reports have shown the presence of two subfamilies of DUBs in Schistosoma mansoni: Ub carboxyl-terminal hydrolase (UCH) and Ub-specific protease (USP). In this study, we analysed the ovarian tumour (OTU) and Machado-Joseph disease protein domain (MJD) proteases found in the Schistosoma mansoni genome database. An in silico analysis identified two different MJD subfamily members, SmAtaxin-3 and SmJosephin, and five distinct OTU proteases, SmOTU1, SmOTU3, SmOTU5a, SmOTU6b and SmOtubain. The phylogenetic analysis showed the evolutionary conservation of these proteins. Furthermore, the 3D structures confirmed the similarity of these proteins with human proteins. In addition, we performed quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) and observed distinct expression profiles for all of the investigated transcripts between the cercariae, schistosomula and adult worm stages. Taken together, our data suggest that MJD and OTU subfamily members contribute to regulating the activity of the Ub-proteasome system during the life cycle of this parasite. PMID:25924794

  15. High Genetic Variability of Schistosoma haematobium in Mali and Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    Ezeh, Charles; Yin, Mingbo; Li, Hongyan; Zhang, Ting; Xu, Bin; Sacko, Moussa; Feng, Zheng; Hu, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Schistosoma haematobium is one of the most prevalent parasitic flatworms, infecting over 112 million people in Africa. However, little is known about the genetic diversity of natural S. haematobium populations from the human host because of the inaccessible location of adult worms in the host. We used 4 microsatellite loci to genotype individually pooled S. haematobium eggs directly from each patient sampled at 4 endemic locations in Africa. We found that the average allele number of individuals from Mali was significantly higher than that from Nigeria. In addition, no significant difference in allelic composition was detected among the populations within Nigeria; however, the allelic composition was significantly different between Mali and Nigeria populations. This study demonstrated a high level of genetic variability of S. haematobium in the populations from Mali and Nigeria, the 2 major African endemic countries, suggesting that geographical population differentiation may occur in the regions. PMID:25748721

  16. Synthesis and activity of substituted anthraquinones against a human filarial parasite, Brugia malayi.

    PubMed

    Dhananjeyan, Mugunthu R; Milev, Youli P; Kron, Michael A; Nair, Muraleedharan G

    2005-04-21

    Lymphatic filariasis (elephantiasis) is a global public health problem caused by the parasitic nematodes Wuchereria bancrofti and Brugia malayi. We have previously reported anthraquinones from daylily roots with potent activity against pathogenic trematode Schistosoma mansoni. Here we report the synthesis of novel anthraquinones A-S and their antifilrarial activity. Anthraquinones A-S were synthesized by a single-step Friedel-Crafts acylation reaction between phthalic anhydrides and substituted benzenes. The antifilarial properties of these synthetic anthraquinones were tested against microfilaria as well as adult male and female worms of B. malayi. The most active anthraquinone was K, which showed 100% mortality within 1, 5, and 3 days, respectively, against microfilaria and adult male and female worms at 5 ppm concentration. Albendazole, an oral drug currently used to treat parasitic infections, was used as a positive control. Methylated products of anthraquinones did not affect the microfilaria. Histological examination of treated adult female parasites showed most of the anthraquinones caused marked effects on intrauterine embryos. PMID:15828820

  17. How does human-induced environmental change influence host-parasite interactions?

    PubMed

    Budria, Alexandre; Candolin, Ulrika

    2014-04-01

    Host-parasite interactions are an integral part of ecosystems that influence both ecological and evolutionary processes. Humans are currently altering environments the world over, often with drastic consequences for host-parasite interactions and the prevalence of parasites. The mechanisms behind the changes are, however, poorly known. Here, we explain how host-parasite interactions depend on two crucial steps--encounter rate and host-parasite compatibility--and how human activities are altering them and thereby host-parasite interactions. By drawing on examples from the literature, we show that changes in the two steps depend on the influence of human activities on a range of factors, such as the density and diversity of hosts and parasites, the search strategy of the parasite, and the avoidance strategy of the host. Thus, to unravel the mechanisms behind human-induced changes in host-parasite interactions, we have to consider the characteristics of all three parts of the interaction: the host, the parasite and the environment. More attention should now be directed to unfold these mechanisms, focusing on effects of environmental change on the factors that determine encounter rate and compatibility. We end with identifying several areas in urgent need of more investigations.

  18. Cross-species protection: Schistosoma mansoni Sm-p80 vaccine confers protection against Schistosoma haematobium in hamsters and baboons.

    PubMed

    Karmakar, Souvik; Zhang, Weidong; Ahmad, Gul; Torben, Workineh; Alam, Mayeen U; Le, Loc; Damian, Raymond T; Wolf, Roman F; White, Gary L; Carey, David W; Carter, Darrick; Reed, Steven G; Siddiqui, Afzal A

    2014-03-01

    The ability of the Schistosoma mansoni antigen, Sm-p80, to provide cross-species protection against Schistosoma haematobium challenge was evaluated in hamster and baboon models. Pronounced reduction in worm burden (48%) and in tissue egg load (64%) was observed in hamsters vaccinated with recombinant Sm-p80 admixed with glucopyranosyl lipid adjuvant-stable emulsion (GLA-SE). Similarly, in baboons, the Sm-p80/GLA-SE vaccine produced a 25% reduction in S. haematobium adult worms and decreased the egg load in the urinary bladder by 64%. A 40% and 53% reduction in fecal and urine egg output, respectively, was observed in vaccinated baboons. A balanced pro-inflammatory (Th17 and Th1) and Th2 type of response was generated after vaccination and appears indicative of augmented prophylactic efficacy. These data on cross-species protection coupled with the prophylactic, therapeutic and antifecundity efficacy against the homologous parasite, S. mansoni, reinforces Sm-p80 as a promising vaccine candidate. It is currently being prepared for GMP-compliant manufacture and for further pre-clinical development leading to human clinical trials. These results solidify the expectation that the Sm-p80 vaccine will provide relief for both the intestinal and the urinary schistosomiasis and thus will be greatly beneficial in reducing the overall burden of schistosomiasis.

  19. A furoxan–amodiaquine hybrid as a potential therapeutic for three parasitic diseases†

    PubMed Central

    Mott, Bryan T.; Cheng, Ken Chih-Chien; Guha, Rajarshi; Kommer, Valerie P.; Williams, David L.; Vermeire, Jon J.; Cappello, Michael; Maloney, David J.; Rai, Ganesha; Jadhav, Ajit; Simeonov, Anton; Inglese, James; Posner, Gary H.

    2012-01-01

    Parasitic diseases continue to have a devastating impact on human populations worldwide. Lack of effective treatments, the high cost of existing ones, and frequent emergence of resistance to these agents provide a strong argument for the development of novel therapies. Here we report the results of a hybrid approach designed to obtain a dual acting molecule that would demonstrate activity against a variety of parasitic targets. The antimalarial drug amodiaquine has been covalently joined with a nitric oxide-releasing furoxan to achieve multiple mechanisms of action. Using in vitro and ex vivo assays, the hybrid molecule shows activity against three parasites – Plasmodium falciparum, Schistosoma mansoni, and Ancylostoma ceylanicum. PMID:23205265

  20. Anthropogenics: Human influence on global and genetic homogenization of parasite populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The distribution, abundance, and diversity of life on Earth have been greatly shaped by human activities. This is no truer than in the geographic expansion of parasites; however, measuring the extent to which humans have influenced the dissemination and population structure of parasites has been cha...

  1. [New drugs for the treatment of human parasitic protozoa].

    PubMed

    Dupouy-Camet, J

    2004-06-01

    Whereas parasitic diseases are always a heavy burden for humanity, few are the new antiparasitic molecules marketed during the last 25 years. Thus on the 1393 new molecules marketed between 1975 and 1999, only 7 have antiprotozoan properties. This talk will detail the progress made in the treatment of the intestinal protozoa, malaria, visceral leishmaniasis and toxoplasmosis, problems with which are especially confronted the European parasitologists. The treatment of Giardia and intestinal amoebas is based on 5-nitro-imidazoles derivatives. Single-dose treatments can be used with tinidazole or secnidazole. Resistance to these compounds of Giardia were described and in these cases, treatment by quinacrine or nitazoxanide are possible alternatives. Nitazoxanide is marketed in the United States and in Australia. It seems to be a well tolerated antiparasitic agent with a broad spectrum because it is active on a lot of intestinal protozoa and helminths. It acts on the same metabolic way as the 5-nitro-imidazoles (inhibition of the ferredoxine reductase) but without synthesis of free radicals and DNA deterioration of the target cell. It is thus neither teratogenic nor mutagenic. Artemisinin derivatives allowed considerable progress in the treatment of malaria. They have short half-lifes, allowing a fast parasitic clearance and these derivatives do no provoke resistance. They are first line drugs for the treatment of malaria in areas of drug resistance. The arthemeter-lumefantrine association (Riamet, Coartem) ensures a rapid disappearance of the circulating parasites and is well tolerated. Atovaquone-proguanil (Malarone) is usable in the treatment of acute malaria but also in disease prevention with the advantage of continuing drug intake for only 7 days after having left the infected area. The treatment of leishmaniasis is always delicate and is characterized by the worrying development of antimony resistances, probably related in the European zones to the treatment of

  2. Proteomic Analysis of the Schistosoma mansoni Miracidium

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Tianfang; Zhao, Min; Rotgans, Bronwyn A.; Strong, April; Liang, Di; Ni, Guoying; Limpanont, Yanin; Ramasoota, Pongrama; McManus, Donald P.; Cummins, Scott F.

    2016-01-01

    Despite extensive control efforts, schistosomiasis continues to be a major public health problem in developing nations in the tropics and sub-tropics. The miracidium, along with the cercaria, both of which are water-borne and free-living, are the only two stages in the life-cycle of Schistosoma mansoni which are involved in host invasion. Miracidia penetrate intermediate host snails and develop into sporocysts, which lead to cercariae that can infect humans. Infection of the snail host by the miracidium represents an ideal point at which to interrupt the parasite’s life-cycle. This research focuses on an analysis of the miracidium proteome, including those proteins that are secreted. We have identified a repertoire of proteins in the S. mansoni miracidium at 2 hours post-hatch, including proteases, venom allergen-like proteins, receptors and HSP70, which might play roles in snail-parasite interplay. Proteins involved in energy production and conservation were prevalent, as were proteins predicted to be associated with defence. This study also provides a strong foundation for further understanding the roles that neurohormones play in host-seeking by schistosomes, with the potential for development of novel anthelmintics that interfere with its various life-cycle stages. PMID:26799066

  3. Epidemiology and control of human gastrointestinal parasites in children

    PubMed Central

    Harhay, Michael O; Horton, John; Olliaro, Piero L

    2010-01-01

    Parasites found in the human gastrointestinal tract can be largely categorized into two groups, protozoa and helminths. The soil-transmitted helminths (Ascaris lumbricoides, hookworm and Trichuris trichiura) are the most prevalent, infecting an estimated one-sixth of the global population. Infection rates are highest in children living in sub-Saharan Africa, followed by Asia and then Latin America and the Caribbean. The current momentum towards global drug delivery for their control is at a historical high through the efforts of numerous initiatives increasingly acting in coordination with donors, governments and local communities. Together, they have delivered enormous quantities of drugs, especially anthelmintics to children through nationwide annual or biannual mass drug administration largely coordinated through schools. However, a much larger and rapidly growing childhood population in these regions remains untreated and suffering from more than one parasite. Mass drug administration has profound potential for control but is not without considerable challenges and concerns. A principal barrier is funding. Stimulating a research and development pipeline, supporting the necessary clinical trials to refine treatment, in addition to procuring and deploying drugs (and sustaining these supply chains), requires substantial funding and resources that do not presently exist. Limited options for chemotherapy raise concerns about drug resistance developing through overuse, however, satisfactory pharmacoepidemiology and monitoring for drug resistance requires more developed health infrastructures than are generally available. Further, the limited pharmacopeia does not include any effective second-line options if resistance emerges, and the research and development pipeline is severely depressed. Herein, we discuss the major gastrointestinal protozoa and helminths reviewing their impact on child health, changing epidemiology and how this relates to their control. PMID

  4. Accumulation of human waterborne parasites by zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) and Asian freshwater clams (Corbicula fluminea).

    PubMed

    Graczyk, T K; Conn, D B; Marcogliese, D J; Graczyk, H; De Lafontaine, Y

    2003-01-01

    Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) and Asian freshwater clams (Corbicula fluminea) are nonindigenous invasive bivalves present in North American fresh waters that are frequently contaminated with human enteric parasites, Cryptosporidium parvum and Giardia lamblia. Six-week laboratory exposure of D. polymorpha and Corbicula fluminea to both parasites seeded daily at concentrations reported from surface waters demonstrated efficient removal of Cryptosporidium parvum oocysts and G. lamblia cysts by both bivalve species. The number of parasites in mollusk tissue progressively increased in relation to the concentration of waterborne contamination, and decreased after cessation of the contamination. Oocysts outnumbered cysts in the tissue of both bivalves, and more parasites were identified in D. polymorpha than in Corbicula fluminea; overall 35.0% and 16.3% of the parasites seeded, respectively. Because C. fluminea and D. polymorpha can accumulate human waterborne parasites in proportion to ambient concentrations, these species of bivalves can be effective bioindicators of contamination of freshwater habitats with Cryptosporidium and Giardia.

  5. Redox balance mechanisms in Schistosoma mansoni rely on peroxiredoxins and albumin and implicate peroxiredoxins as novel drug targets.

    PubMed

    Sayed, Ahmed A; Cook, Shawna K; Williams, David L

    2006-06-23

    Schistosoma mansoni, a causative agent of schistosomiasis, resides in the hepatic portal circulation of their human host up to 30 years without being eliminated by the host immune attack. Production of an antioxidant "firewall," which would neutralize the oxidative assault generated by host immune defenses, is one proposed survival mechanism of the parasite. Schistosomes lack catalase, the main H2O2-neutralizing enzyme of many organisms, and their glutathione peroxidases are in the phospholipid class with poor reactivity toward H2O2. Evidence implicates peroxiredoxins (Prx) as providing the main enzymatic activity to reduce H2O2 in the parasite. Quantitative monitoring of Prx mRNAs during parasite life cycle indicated that Prx proteins are differentially expressed, with highest expression occurring in adult stages (oxidative resistant stages). Incubation of schistosomula with Prx1 double-stranded RNA knocked down total Prx enzymatic activity and resulted in lowered survival of cultured parasites compared with controls demonstrating that Prx are essential parasite proteins. These results represent the first report of lethal gene silencing in Schistosoma. Investigation of downstream effects of Prx silencing revealed an abrupt increase of lipid peroxides and the generation of several oxidized proteins. Using mass spectrometry, parasite albumin and actin were identified as the main oxidized proteins. Gene expression analysis showed that schistosome albumin was induced by oxidative stress. This study highlights Prx proteins as essential parasite proteins and potential new targets for anti-schistosome drug development and albumin as a novel, sacrificial oxidant scavenging protein in parasite redox regulation. PMID:16606626

  6. Parasites of wild animals as a potential source of hazard to humans.

    PubMed

    Gałęcki, Remigiusz; Sokół, Rajmund; Koziatek, Sylwia

    2015-01-01

    The decline in wild animal habitats and the uncontrolled growth of their population make these animals come closer to human settlements. The aim of the study was to identify parasitic infections in wild animals in the selected area, and to specify the hazards they create for humans. In more than 66% of the analysed faecal samples from wild boar, hares, roe deer, deer and fallow deer various developmental forms of parasites were found. These included parasites dangerous for humans: Toxocara canis, Capillaria hepatica, Capillaria bovis, Trichuris suis, Trichuris ovis, Trichuris globulosus, Eimeria spp., and Trichostongylus spp. It is necessary to monitor parasitic diseases in wild animals as they can lead to the spread of parasites creating a hazard to humans, pets and livestock. PMID:26342506

  7. Parasites of wild animals as a potential source of hazard to humans.

    PubMed

    Gałęcki, Remigiusz; Sokół, Rajmund; Koziatek, Sylwia

    2015-01-01

    The decline in wild animal habitats and the uncontrolled growth of their population make these animals come closer to human settlements. The aim of the study was to identify parasitic infections in wild animals in the selected area, and to specify the hazards they create for humans. In more than 66% of the analysed faecal samples from wild boar, hares, roe deer, deer and fallow deer various developmental forms of parasites were found. These included parasites dangerous for humans: Toxocara canis, Capillaria hepatica, Capillaria bovis, Trichuris suis, Trichuris ovis, Trichuris globulosus, Eimeria spp., and Trichostongylus spp. It is necessary to monitor parasitic diseases in wild animals as they can lead to the spread of parasites creating a hazard to humans, pets and livestock.

  8. Expression at a 20L scale and purification of the extracellular domain of the Schistosoma mansoni TSP-2 recombinant protein: a vaccine candidate for human intestinal schistosomiasis.

    PubMed

    Curti, Elena; Kwityn, Clifford; Zhan, Bin; Gillespie, Portia; Brelsford, Jill; Deumic, Vehid; Plieskatt, Jordan; Rezende, Wanderson C; Tsao, Eric; Kalampanayil, Bose; Hotez, Peter J; Bottazzi, Maria Elena

    2013-11-01

    A novel recombinant protein vaccine for human schistosomiasis caused by Schistosoma mansoni is under development. The Sm-TSP-2 schistosomiasis vaccine is comprised of a 9 kDa recombinant protein corresponding to the extracellular domain of a unique S. mansoni tetraspanin. Here, we describe the cloning and the expression of the external loop of Sm-TSP-2 recombinant protein secreted by Pichia Pink the process development at 20L scale fermentation, and the two-steps purification, which resulted in a protein recovery yield of 31% and a protein purity of 97%. The developed processes are suitable for the production of purified protein for subsequent formulation and Phase 1 clinical studies. PMID:23899507

  9. Parasites of urological importance.

    PubMed

    Kehinde, Elijah O; Anim, Jehoram T; Hira, Parsotam R

    2008-01-01

    With the world increasingly becoming a global village, transnational and transcontinental migration has become the order of the day. It is expected that migrants will take with them some diseases (including parasites) which are normally endemic in their countries of origin, to their host countries. Similarly, environmental changes that result from development of water resources, global warming, growth and migration of population can facilitate the spread of parasites. In this review we describe the epidemiology, presentation, diagnosis and treatment options of parasites that urologists may encounter. Notably among these parasites are Schistosoma haematobium, Echinococcus granulosus, Wuchereria bancrofti and Onchocerca volvulus.

  10. The Genome of Haemoproteus tartakovskyi and Its Relationship to Human Malaria Parasites.

    PubMed

    Bensch, Staffan; Canbäck, Björn; DeBarry, Jeremy D; Johansson, Tomas; Hellgren, Olof; Kissinger, Jessica C; Palinauskas, Vaidas; Videvall, Elin; Valkiūnas, Gediminas

    2016-01-01

    The phylogenetic relationships among hemosporidian parasites, including the origin of Plasmodium falciparum, the most virulent malaria parasite of humans, have been heavily debated for decades. Studies based on multiple-gene sequences have helped settle many of these controversial phylogenetic issues. However, denser taxon sampling and genome-wide analyses are needed to confidently resolve the evolutionay relationships among hemosporidian parasites. Genome sequences of several Plasmodium parasites are available but only for species infecting primates and rodents. To root the phylogenetic tree of Plasmodium, genomic data from related parasites of birds or reptiles are required. Here, we use a novel approach to isolate parasite DNA from microgametes and describe the first genome of a bird parasite in the sister genus to Plasmodium, Haemoproteus tartakovskyi Similar to Plasmodium parasites, H. tartakovskyi has a small genome (23.2 Mb, 5,990 genes) and a GC content (25.4%) closer to P. falciparum (19.3%) than to Plasmodium vivax (42.3%). Combined with novel transcriptome sequences of the bird parasite Plasmodium ashfordi, our phylogenomic analyses of 1,302 orthologous genes demonstrate that mammalian-infecting malaria parasites are monophyletic, thus rejecting the repeatedly proposed hypothesis that the ancestor of Laverania parasites originated from a secondary host shift from birds to humans. Genes and genomic features previously found to be shared between P. falciparum and bird malaria parasites, but absent in other mammal malaria parasites, are therefore signatures of maintained ancestral states. We foresee that the genome of H. tartakovskyi will open new directions for comparative evolutionary analyses of malarial adaptive traits. PMID:27190205

  11. The Genome of Haemoproteus tartakovskyi and Its Relationship to Human Malaria Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Bensch, Staffan; Canbäck, Björn; DeBarry, Jeremy D.; Johansson, Tomas; Hellgren, Olof; Kissinger, Jessica C.; Palinauskas, Vaidas; Videvall, Elin; Valkiūnas, Gediminas

    2016-01-01

    The phylogenetic relationships among hemosporidian parasites, including the origin of Plasmodium falciparum, the most virulent malaria parasite of humans, have been heavily debated for decades. Studies based on multiple-gene sequences have helped settle many of these controversial phylogenetic issues. However, denser taxon sampling and genome-wide analyses are needed to confidently resolve the evolutionay relationships among hemosporidian parasites. Genome sequences of several Plasmodium parasites are available but only for species infecting primates and rodents. To root the phylogenetic tree of Plasmodium, genomic data from related parasites of birds or reptiles are required. Here, we use a novel approach to isolate parasite DNA from microgametes and describe the first genome of a bird parasite in the sister genus to Plasmodium, Haemoproteus tartakovskyi. Similar to Plasmodium parasites, H. tartakovskyi has a small genome (23.2 Mb, 5,990 genes) and a GC content (25.4%) closer to P. falciparum (19.3%) than to Plasmodium vivax (42.3%). Combined with novel transcriptome sequences of the bird parasite Plasmodium ashfordi, our phylogenomic analyses of 1,302 orthologous genes demonstrate that mammalian-infecting malaria parasites are monophyletic, thus rejecting the repeatedly proposed hypothesis that the ancestor of Laverania parasites originated from a secondary host shift from birds to humans. Genes and genomic features previously found to be shared between P. falciparum and bird malaria parasites, but absent in other mammal malaria parasites, are therefore signatures of maintained ancestral states. We foresee that the genome of H. tartakovskyi will open new directions for comparative evolutionary analyses of malarial adaptive traits. PMID:27190205

  12. Age-Stratified Profiles of Serum IL-6, IL-10, and TNF-α Cytokines among Kenyan Children with Schistosoma haematobium, Plasmodium falciparum, and Other Chronic Parasitic Co-infections

    PubMed Central

    Bustinduy, Amaya L.; Sutherland, Laura J.; Chang-Cojulun, Alicia; Malhotra, Indu; DuVall, Adam S.; Fairley, Jessica K.; Mungai, Peter L.; Muchiri, Eric M.; Mutuku, Francis M.; Kitron, Uriel; King, Charles H.

    2015-01-01

    In a study of children having polyparasitic infections in a Schistosoma haematobium–endemic area, we examined the hypothesis that S. haematobium–positive children, compared with S. haematobium–negative children (anti-soluble worm antigen preparation [SWAP] negative and egg negative) have increased systemic production of pro-inflammatory cytokines (interleukin [IL]-6, tumor necrosis factor [TNF]-α) and decreased down-regulatory IL-10. A total of 804 children, 2–19 years of age, were surveyed between July and December 2009 and tested for S. haematobium, Plasmodium falciparum, filariasis, and soil-transmitted helminth infections. Plasma levels of IL-6, TNF-α, and IL-10 were compared for S. haematobium–positive and S. haematobium–negative children, adjusting for malaria, filaria, and hookworm co-infections, and for nutritional status, age group, sex, and geographic location. IL-10 was significantly elevated among children infected with S. haematobium, showing bimodal peaks in 7–8 and 13–14 years age groups. IL-10 was also higher among children who were acutely malnourished, whereas IL-10 levels were lower in the presence of S. haematobium–filaria co-infection. After adjustment for co-factors, IL-6 was significantly elevated among children of 5–6 years and among those with P. falciparum infection. Lower levels of IL-6 were found in malaria–hookworm co-infection. High levels of TNF-α were found in children aged 11–12 years regardless of infection status. In addition, village of residence was a strong predictor of IL-6 and IL-10 plasma levels. In adolescent children infected with S. haematobium, there is an associated elevation in circulating IL-10 that may reduce the risk of later morbidity. Although we did not find a direct link between S. haematobium infection and circulating pro-inflammatory IL-6 and TNF-α levels, future T-cell stimulation studies may provide more conclusive linkages between infection and cytokine responses in settings that

  13. Co-dispersal of the blood fluke Schistosoma japonicum and Homo sapiens in the Neolithic Age

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Mingbo; Zheng, Hong-Xiang; Su, Jing; Feng, Zheng; McManus, Donald P.; Zhou, Xiao-Nong; Jin, Li; Hu, Wei

    2015-01-01

    The global spread of human infectious diseases is of considerable public health and biomedical interest. Little is known about the relationship between the distribution of ancient parasites and that of their human hosts. Schistosoma japonicum is one of the three major species of schistosome blood flukes causing the disease of schistosomiasis in humans. The parasite is prevalent in East and Southeast Asia, including the People’s Republic of China, the Philippines and Indonesia. We studied the co-expansion of S. japonicum and its human definitive host. Phylogenetic reconstruction based on complete mitochondrial genome sequences showed that S. japonicum radiated from the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River to the mountainous areas of China, Japan and Southeast Asia. In addition, the parasite experienced two population expansions during the Neolithic agriculture era, coinciding with human migration and population growth. The data indicate that the advent of rice planting likely played a key role in the spread of schistosomiasis in Asia. Moreover, the presence of different subspecies of Oncomelania hupensis intermediate host snails in different localities in Asia allowed S. japonicum to survive in new rice-planting areas, and concurrently drove the intraspecies divergence of the parasite. PMID:26686813

  14. Co-dispersal of the blood fluke Schistosoma japonicum and Homo sapiens in the Neolithic Age.

    PubMed

    Yin, Mingbo; Zheng, Hong-Xiang; Su, Jing; Feng, Zheng; McManus, Donald P; Zhou, Xiao-Nong; Jin, Li; Hu, Wei

    2015-01-01

    The global spread of human infectious diseases is of considerable public health and biomedical interest. Little is known about the relationship between the distribution of ancient parasites and that of their human hosts. Schistosoma japonicum is one of the three major species of schistosome blood flukes causing the disease of schistosomiasis in humans. The parasite is prevalent in East and Southeast Asia, including the People's Republic of China, the Philippines and Indonesia. We studied the co-expansion of S. japonicum and its human definitive host. Phylogenetic reconstruction based on complete mitochondrial genome sequences showed that S. japonicum radiated from the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River to the mountainous areas of China, Japan and Southeast Asia. In addition, the parasite experienced two population expansions during the Neolithic agriculture era, coinciding with human migration and population growth. The data indicate that the advent of rice planting likely played a key role in the spread of schistosomiasis in Asia. Moreover, the presence of different subspecies of Oncomelania hupensis intermediate host snails in different localities in Asia allowed S. japonicum to survive in new rice-planting areas, and concurrently drove the intraspecies divergence of the parasite. PMID:26686813

  15. Parasites and malignancies, a review, with emphasis on digestive cancer induced by Cryptosporidium parvum (Alveolata: Apicomplexa)

    PubMed Central

    Benamrouz, S.; Conseil, V.; Creusy, C.; Calderon, E.; Dei-Cas, E.; Certad, G.

    2012-01-01

    The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) identifies ten infectious agents (viruses, bacteria, parasites) able to induce cancer disease in humans. Among parasites, a carcinogenic role is currently recognized to the digenetic trematodes Schistosoma haematobium, leading to bladder cancer, and to Clonorchis sinensis or Opisthorchis viverrini, which cause cholangiocarcinoma. Furthermore, several reports suspected the potential association of other parasitic infections (due to Protozoan or Metazoan parasites) with the development of neoplastic changes in the host tissues. The present work shortly reviewed available data on the involvement of parasites in neoplastic processes in humans or animals, and especially focused on the carcinogenic power of Cryptosporidium parvum infection. On the whole, infection seems to play a crucial role in the etiology of cancer. PMID:22348213

  16. Anthropogenics: human influence on global and genetic homogenization of parasite populations.

    PubMed

    Zarlenga, Dante S; Hoberg, Eric; Rosenthal, Benjamin; Mattiucci, Simonetta; Nascetti, Giuseppe

    2014-12-01

    The distribution, abundance, and diversity of life on Earth have been greatly shaped by human activities. This includes the geographic expansion of parasites; however, measuring the extent to which humans have influenced the dissemination and population structure of parasites has been challenging. In-depth comparisons among parasite populations extending to landscape-level processes affecting disease emergence have remained elusive. New research methods have enhanced our capacity to discern human impact, where the tools of population genetics and molecular epidemiology have begun to shed light on our historical and ongoing influence. Only since the 1990s have parasitologists coupled morphological diagnosis, long considered the basis of surveillance and biodiversity studies, with state-of-the-art tools enabling variation to be examined among, and within, parasite populations. Prior to this time, populations were characterized only by phenotypic attributes such as virulence, infectivity, host range, and geographical location. The advent of genetic/molecular methodologies (multilocus allozyme electrophoresis, polymerase chain reaction-DNA [PCR-DNA] fragments analysis, DNA sequencing, DNA microsatellites, single nucleotide polymorphisms, etc.) have transformed our abilities to reveal variation among, and within, populations at local, regional, landscape, and global scales, and thereby enhanced our understanding of the biosphere. Numerous factors can affect population structure among parasites, e.g., evolutionary and ecological history, mode of reproduction and transmission, host dispersal, and life-cycle complexity. Although such influences can vary considerably among parasite taxa, anthropogenic factors are demonstrably perturbing parasite fauna. Minimal genetic structure among many geographically distinct (isolated) populations is a hallmark of human activity, hastened by geographic introductions, environmental perturbation, and global warming. Accelerating

  17. Schistosoma mansoni secretes a chemokine binding protein with antiinflammatory activity.

    PubMed

    Smith, Philip; Fallon, Rosie E; Mangan, Niamh E; Walsh, Caitriona M; Saraiva, Margarida; Sayers, Jon R; McKenzie, Andrew N J; Alcami, Antonio; Fallon, Padraic G

    2005-11-21

    The coevolution of humans and infectious agents has exerted selective pressure on the immune system to control potentially lethal infections. Correspondingly, pathogens have evolved with various strategies to modulate and circumvent the host's innate and adaptive immune response. Schistosoma species are helminth parasites with genes that have been selected to modulate the host to tolerate chronic worm infections, often for decades, without overt morbidity. The modulation of immunity by schistosomes has been shown to prevent a range of immune-mediated diseases, including allergies and autoimmunity. Individual immune-modulating schistosome molecules have, therefore, therapeutic potential as selective manipulators of the immune system to prevent unrelated diseases. Here we show that S. mansoni eggs secrete a protein into host tissues that binds certain chemokines and inhibits their interaction with host chemokine receptors and their biological activity. The purified recombinant S. mansoni chemokine binding protein (smCKBP) suppressed inflammation in several disease models. smCKBP is unrelated to host proteins and is the first described chemokine binding protein encoded by a pathogenic human parasite and may have potential as an antiinflammatory agent.

  18. The vulnerability of animal and human health to parasites under global change.

    PubMed

    Sutherst, R W

    2001-07-01

    The term 'global change' is used to encompass all of the significant drivers of environmental change as experienced by hosts, parasites and parasite managers. The term includes changes in climate and climate variability, atmospheric composition, land use and land cover including deforestation and urbanisation, bio-geochemistry, globalisation of trade and transport, the spread of alien species, human health and technology. A subset of land use issues relates to the management of protective technologies in relation to residues in food and the environment and the emergence of resistance. Another is the question of changing biodiversity of both parasites and their associated natural enemies, and the effects on the host--parasite relationship and on parasite management. A framework for studying impacts of global change is proposed and illustrated with field data, and CLIMEX and simulation modelling of the cattle tick Boophilus microplus in Australia. Parasitology suffers from the perception that the key impacts of global change will be driven by changes at lower trophic levels, with parasitic interactions being treated as secondary effects. This is incorrect because the environment mediates host-parasite interactions as much as it affects parasites directly. Parasitologists need to strive for holistic solutions to the management of animal and human health, within a wider context of overall management of those systems, if they are to make a meaningful contribution to global efforts aimed at coping with global change.

  19. Structure–function analysis of apical membrane–associated molecules of the tegument of schistosome parasites of humans: prospects for identification of novel targets for parasite control

    PubMed Central

    Leow, Chiuan Yee; Willis, Charlene; Hofmann, Andreas; Jones, Malcolm K

    2015-01-01

    Neglected tropical diseases are a group of some 17 diseases that afflict poor and predominantly rural people in developing nations. One significant disease that contributes to substantial morbidity in endemic areas is schistosomiasis, caused by infection with one of five species of blood fluke belonging to the trematode genus Schistosoma. Although there is one drug available for treatment of affected individuals in clinics, or for mass administration in endemic regions, there is a need for new therapies. A prominent target organ of schistosomes, either for drug or vaccine development, is the peculiar epithelial syncytium that forms the body wall (tegument) of this parasite. This dynamic layer is maintained and organized by concerted activity of a range of proteins, among which are the abundant tegumentary annexins. In this review, we will outline advances in structure–function analyses of these annexins, as a means to understanding tegument cell biology in host–parasite interaction and their potential exploitation as targets for anti-schistosomiasis therapies. PMID:25176442

  20. In Silico Analysis of the Fucosylation-Associated Genome of the Human Blood Fluke Schistosoma mansoni: Cloning and Characterization of the Fucosyltransferase Multigene Family

    PubMed Central

    Peterson, Nathan A.; Anderson, Tavis K.; Yoshino, Timothy P.

    2013-01-01

    Fucosylated glycans of the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni play key roles in its development and immunobiology. In the present study we used a genome-wide homology-based bioinformatics approach to search for genes that contribute to fucosylated glycan expression in S. mansoni, specifically the α2-, α3-, and α6-fucosyltransferases (FucTs), which transfer L-fucose from a GDP-L-fucose donor to an oligosaccharide acceptor. We identified and in silico characterized several novel schistosome FucT homologs, including six α3-FucTs and six α6-FucTs, as well as two protein O-FucTs that catalyze the unrelated transfer of L-fucose to serine and threonine residues of epidermal growth factor- and thrombospondin-type repeats. No α2-FucTs were observed. Primary sequence analyses identified key conserved FucT motifs as well as characteristic transmembrane domains, consistent with their putative roles as fucosyltransferases. Most genes exhibit alternative splicing, with multiple transcript variants generated. A phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that schistosome α3- and α6-FucTs form monophyletic clades within their respective gene families, suggesting multiple gene duplications following the separation of the schistosome lineage from the main evolutionary tree. Quantitative decreases in steady-state transcript levels of some FucTs during early larval development suggest a possible mechanism for differential expression of fucosylated glycans in schistosomes. This study systematically identifies the complete repertoire of FucT homologs in S. mansoni and provides fundamental information regarding their genomic organization, genetic variation, developmental expression, and evolutionary history. PMID:23696810

  1. In silico analysis of the fucosylation-associated genome of the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni: cloning and characterization of the fucosyltransferase multigene family.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Nathan A; Anderson, Tavis K; Yoshino, Timothy P

    2013-01-01

    Fucosylated glycans of the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni play key roles in its development and immunobiology. In the present study we used a genome-wide homology-based bioinformatics approach to search for genes that contribute to fucosylated glycan expression in S. mansoni, specifically the α2-, α3-, and α6-fucosyltransferases (FucTs), which transfer L-fucose from a GDP-L-fucose donor to an oligosaccharide acceptor. We identified and in silico characterized several novel schistosome FucT homologs, including six α3-FucTs and six α6-FucTs, as well as two protein O-FucTs that catalyze the unrelated transfer of L-fucose to serine and threonine residues of epidermal growth factor- and thrombospondin-type repeats. No α2-FucTs were observed. Primary sequence analyses identified key conserved FucT motifs as well as characteristic transmembrane domains, consistent with their putative roles as fucosyltransferases. Most genes exhibit alternative splicing, with multiple transcript variants generated. A phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that schistosome α3- and α6-FucTs form monophyletic clades within their respective gene families, suggesting multiple gene duplications following the separation of the schistosome lineage from the main evolutionary tree. Quantitative decreases in steady-state transcript levels of some FucTs during early larval development suggest a possible mechanism for differential expression of fucosylated glycans in schistosomes. This study systematically identifies the complete repertoire of FucT homologs in S. mansoni and provides fundamental information regarding their genomic organization, genetic variation, developmental expression, and evolutionary history.

  2. Praziquantel inhibits Schistosoma mansoni attachment in vitro.

    PubMed

    da-Silva, S P; Noel, F

    1990-01-01

    Male adult Schistosoma mansoni worms were placed in a glass dish containing Tyrode solution and observed for 15 min after addition of praziquantel (0.01 to 1 microM). Praziquantel promoted a concentration- and time-dependent inhibition of sucker-mediated attachment of the worm. Attachment inhibition was correlated with shortening of the parasite. We propose that the rapid and total inhibition of worm attachment observed in vitro with 1 microM praziquantel indicates that therapeutic concentrations of this drug should promote a rapid hepatic shift, in vivo, which may facilitate host tissue reaction. PMID:2101049

  3. [Report on the first nationwide survey of the distribution of human parasites in China. 1. Regional distribution of parasite species].

    PubMed

    Yu, S; Xu, L; Jiang, Z; Xu, S; Han, J; Zhu, Y; Chang, J; Lin, J; Xu, F

    1994-01-01

    A nationwide (Taiwan Province not included) survey of the distribution of human parasites in China during 1988-1992 was conducted under the auspices of the Ministry of Public Health, with stratified masses randomly sampling. A total of 2,848 pilot sites in 726 counties with a population of 1,477,742 were surveyed, according to unified standard, unified diagnostic method and control quality. The overall infection rate of parasites was 62. 632%. Among them, the infection rate was over 50% in 17 provinces/autonomous regions/municipalities (P/A/M), over 80% in Hainan, Guangxi, Sichuan, Fujian, Zhejiang and Guizhou, being highest in Hainan (94. 735%). Altogether 56 species were detected. Centrocestus formosanus is reported for the first time at home, Echinochasmus liliputanus and Echinostoma angustitestis are reported for the first time at home and abroad. Echinochasmus fujianensis is a new species. E. histolytica, G. lamblia, A. lumbricoides, whipworm and pinworm were distributed nationwide, while Cysticercus (27 P/A/M), Taenia (27), hookworm (26), Balantidium coli (22), Clonorchis sinensis (22), Paragonimus westermani (21), H. diminuta (21), Echinococcus (18), H. nana (17), Fasciolopsis buski (16), T. spiralis (12) were distributed non-nationwide. A preliminary suggestion on intervention of the common and/or most detrimental parasitic diseases was submitted, including hydatidosis, taeniasis, cysticercosis, clonorchiasis, paragonimiasis, trichinellosis, hookworm disease, ascariasis, trichuriasis and enterobiasis. PMID:7720194

  4. Human, vector and parasite Hsp90 proteins: A comparative bioinformatics analysis

    PubMed Central

    Faya, Ngonidzashe; Penkler, David L.; Tastan Bishop, Özlem

    2015-01-01

    The treatment of protozoan parasitic diseases is challenging, and thus identification and analysis of new drug targets is important. Parasites survive within host organisms, and some need intermediate hosts to complete their life cycle. Changing host environment puts stress on parasites, and often adaptation is accompanied by the expression of large amounts of heat shock proteins (Hsps). Among Hsps, Hsp90 proteins play an important role in stress environments. Yet, there has been little computational research on Hsp90 proteins to analyze them comparatively as potential parasitic drug targets. Here, an attempt was made to gain detailed insights into the differences between host, vector and parasitic Hsp90 proteins by large-scale bioinformatics analysis. A total of 104 Hsp90 sequences were divided into three groups based on their cellular localizations; namely cytosolic, mitochondrial and endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Further, the parasitic proteins were divided according to the type of parasite (protozoa, helminth and ectoparasite). Primary sequence analysis, phylogenetic tree calculations, motif analysis and physicochemical properties of Hsp90 proteins suggested that despite the overall structural conservation of these proteins, parasitic Hsp90 proteins have unique features which differentiate them from human ones, thus encouraging the idea that protozoan Hsp90 proteins should be further analyzed as potential drug targets. PMID:26793431

  5. Comparative Phylogenetic Studies on Schistosoma japonicum and Its Snail Intermediate Host Oncomelania hupensis: Origins, Dispersal and Coevolution

    PubMed Central

    Attwood, Stephen W.; Ibaraki, Motomu; Saitoh, Yasuhide; Nihei, Naoko; Janies, Daniel A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Schistosoma japonicum causes major public health problems in China and the Philippines; this parasite, which is transmitted by freshwater snails of the species Oncomelania hupensis, causes the disease intestinal schistosomiasis in humans and cattle. Researchers working on Schistosoma in Africa have described the relationship between the parasites and their snail intermediate hosts as coevolved or even as an evolutionary arms race. In the present study this hypothesis of coevolution is evaluated for S. japonicum and O. hupensis. The origins and radiation of the snails and the parasite across China, and the taxonomic validity of the sub-species of O. hupensis, are also assessed. Methodology/Principal Findings The findings provide no evidence for coevolution between S. japonicum and O. hupensis, and the phylogeographical analysis suggests a heterochronous radiation of the parasites and snails in response to different palaeogeographical and climatic triggers. The results are consistent with a hypothesis of East to West colonisation of China by Oncomelania with a re-invasion of Japan by O. hupensis from China. The Taiwan population of S. japonicum appears to be recently established in comparison with mainland Chinese populations. Conclusions/Significance The snail and parasite populations of the western mountain region of China (Yunnan and Sichuan) appear to have been isolated from Southeast Asian populations since the Pleistocene; this has implications for road and rail links being constructed in the region, which will breach biogeographical barriers between China and Southeast Asia. The results also have implications for the spread of S. japonicum. In the absence of coevolution, the parasite may more readily colonise new snail populations to which it is not locally adapted, or even new intermediate host species; this can facilitate its dispersal into new areas. Additional work is required to assess further the risk of spread of S. japonicum. PMID:26230619

  6. Human red blood cell-adapted Plasmodium knowlesi parasites: a new model system for malaria research

    PubMed Central

    Grüring, Christof; Moon, Robert W.; Lim, Caeul; Holder, Anthony A.; Blackman, Michael J.; Duraisingh, Manoj T.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Plasmodium knowlesi is a simian malaria parasite primarily infecting macaque species in Southeast Asia. Although its capacity to infect humans has been recognized since the early part of the last century, it has recently become evident that human infections are widespread and potentially life threatening. Historically, P. knowlesi has proven to be a powerful tool in early studies of malaria parasites, providing key breakthroughs in understanding many aspects of Plasmodium biology. However, the necessity to grow the parasite either in macaques or in vitro using macaque blood restricted research to laboratories with access to these resources. The recent adaptation of P. knowlesi to grow and proliferate in vitro in human red blood cells (RBCs) is therefore a substantial step towards revitalizing and expanding research on P. knowlesi. Furthermore, the development of a highly efficient transfection system to genetically modify the parasite makes P. knowlesi an ideal model to study parasite biology. In this review we elaborate on the importance of P. knowlesi in earlier phases of malaria research and highlight the future potential of the newly available human adapted P. knowlesi parasite lines. PMID:24506567

  7. Morphological and Molecular Descriptors of the Developmental Cycle of Babesia divergens Parasites in Human Erythrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Rossouw, Ingrid; Maritz-Olivier, Christine; Niemand, Jandeli; van Biljon, Riette; Smit, Annel; Olivier, Nicholas A.; Birkholtz, Lyn-Marie

    2015-01-01

    Human babesiosis, especially caused by the cattle derived Babesia divergens parasite, is on the increase, resulting in renewed attentiveness to this potentially life threatening emerging zoonotic disease. The molecular mechanisms underlying the pathophysiology and intra-erythrocytic development of these parasites are poorly understood. This impedes concerted efforts aimed at the discovery of novel anti-babesiacidal agents. By applying sensitive cell biological and molecular functional genomics tools, we describe the intra-erythrocytic development cycle of B. divergens parasites from immature, mono-nucleated ring forms to bi-nucleated paired piriforms and ultimately multi-nucleated tetrads that characterizes zoonotic Babesia spp. This is further correlated for the first time to nuclear content increases during intra-erythrocytic development progression, providing insight into the part of the life cycle that occurs during human infection. High-content temporal evaluation elucidated the contribution of the different stages to life cycle progression. Moreover, molecular descriptors indicate that B. divergens parasites employ physiological adaptation to in vitro cultivation. Additionally, differential expression is observed as the parasite equilibrates its developmental stages during its life cycle. Together, this information provides the first temporal evaluation of the functional transcriptome of B. divergens parasites, information that could be useful in identifying biological processes essential to parasite survival for future anti-babesiacidal discoveries. PMID:25955414

  8. Interacting parasites

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2010-01-01

    Parasitism is the most popular life-style on Earth, and many vertebrates host more than one kind of parasite at a time. A common assumption is that parasite species rarely interact, because they often exploit different tissues in a host, and this use of discrete resources limits competition (1). On page 243 of this issue, however, Telfer et al. (2) provide a convincing case of a highly interactive parasite community in voles, and show how infection with one parasite can affect susceptibility to others. If some human parasites are equally interactive, our current, disease-by-disease approach to modeling and treating infectious diseases is inadequate (3).

  9. The multifunctional autophagy pathway in the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Cervantes, Serena; Bunnik, Evelien M; Saraf, Anita; Conner, Christopher M; Escalante, Aster; Sardiu, Mihaela E; Ponts, Nadia; Prudhomme, Jacques; Florens, Laurence; Le Roch, Karine G

    2014-01-01

    Autophagy is a catabolic pathway typically induced by nutrient starvation to recycle amino acids, but can also function in removing damaged organelles. In addition, this pathway plays a key role in eukaryotic development. To date, not much is known about the role of autophagy in apicomplexan parasites and more specifically in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Comparative genomic analysis has uncovered some, but not all, orthologs of autophagy-related (ATG) genes in the malaria parasite genome. Here, using a genome-wide in silico analysis, we confirmed that ATG genes whose products are required for vesicle expansion and completion are present, while genes involved in induction of autophagy and cargo packaging are mostly absent. We subsequently focused on the molecular and cellular function of P. falciparum ATG8 (PfATG8), an autophagosome membrane marker and key component of the autophagy pathway, throughout the parasite asexual and sexual erythrocytic stages. In this context, we showed that PfATG8 has a distinct and atypical role in parasite development. PfATG8 localized in the apicoplast and in vesicles throughout the cytosol during parasite development. Immunofluorescence assays of PfATG8 in apicoplast-minus parasites suggest that PfATG8 is involved in apicoplast biogenesis. Furthermore, treatment of parasite cultures with bafilomycin A 1 and chloroquine, both lysosomotropic agents that inhibit autophagosome and lysosome fusion, resulted in dramatic morphological changes of the apicoplast, and parasite death. Furthermore, deep proteomic analysis of components associated with PfATG8 indicated that it may possibly be involved in ribophagy and piecemeal microautophagy of the nucleus. Collectively, our data revealed the importance and specificity of the autophagy pathway in the malaria parasite and offer potential novel therapeutic strategies.

  10. Evolutionary immune response to conserved domains in parasites and aeroallergens.

    PubMed

    Bielory, Brett Phillip; Mainardi, Timothy; Rottem, Menachem

    2013-01-01

    The immune response based on immunoglobulin E (IgE) evolved as a defense against specific parasitic infections. In the absence of active helminthic infections, the immune system has redirected its IgE epitopes toward innocuous environmental antigens. Helminths and aeroallergens have a similar stereotypical IgE response to unique antigens that can not be explained by chance alone. This study was designed to evaluate potential homology between conserved protein domains embedded in parasitic organisms and aeroallergens. Search and retrieval systems for nucleotide and protein sequences (Entrez, BLAST, and National Center for Biotechnology Information) were searched to identify conserved domains between allergens and certain parasites. A total score was developed that correlated positively with homology between compared sequences. Over 2000 domains were examined. We found matches with a high total score (>100) that signified a strong positive correlation between sequences in allergens (n = 30) and parasites (n = 13). Multiple shared conserved domains were identified between parasites and allergens. Parasite-allergen combinations with the most significant homology (greatest total score) were Plasmodium falciparum enolase and Hev b9 (total score, 612), Schistosoma mansoni albumin and Fel d 2 (total score, 991), Ascaris lumbricoides tropomyosin and Ani s3 (total score, 531), and Wuchereria bancrofti trypsin and Blo t3 (138). Homologous conserved domains exist in specific parasites and allergens, consistent with the theory that the human IgE-eosinophil immune response to common allergens is a direct consequence of stimulation by parasitic organisms. PMID:23406942

  11. Parasitic infections in humans in West Kalimantan (Borneo), Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Cross, J H; Clarke, M D; Cole, W C; Lien, J C; Partono, F; Djakaria; Joesoef, A; Oemijati, S

    1976-06-01

    A survey was carried out among inhabitants of eight villages in West Kalimantan Province (Borneo), whereby blood smears were examined for malaria, stools examined for intestinal parasites and sera tested by the indirect hemagglutination test for antibodies to Entamoeba histolytica and toxoplasma gondii. The prevalence of malaria among 3017 people examined was 5.6% (Plasmodium vivax 2.8%, Plasmodium falciparum 2.8%). Brugia malayi microfilariae were found in 3.6% and Wuchereria bancrofti in 0.3%. Ninety-seven percent of 2101 stool specimens examined contained evidence of intestinal parasites. Trichuris trichiura (90%) was most common followed by Ascaris lumbricoides (76%), hookworm, (60%), Etamoeba coli (23%), Entamoeba histolytica (6%), Endolimax nana (6%), Iodamoeba butschlii (4%), Giardia lamblia (3%), Chilomastix mesnili (1%) and Strongyloides stercoralis (1%). Other parasites found were Entamoeba hartmanni, Trichomonas hominis, Balantidium coli, Enterobius vermicularis, Hymenolepis nana, Echinostoma sp. and Physalopterid, Dicrocoeliid, and Heterophyid type-eggs. The amoeba prevalence rate was 30%. Indirect hemagglutination antibody titers equal to or greater than 1:128 for Entamoeba histolytica and 1:256 for Toxoplasma gondii were detected in 7% and 3%, respectively, of 1511 sera tested. PMID:788263

  12. Proteomic Analysis of Schistosoma mansoni Egg Secretions

    PubMed Central

    Cass, Cynthia L.; Johnson, Jeffrey R.; Califf, Lindsay L.; Xu, Tao; Hernandez, Hector J.; Stadecker, Miguel J.; Yates, John R.; Williams, David L.

    2007-01-01

    Schistosomiasis remains a largely neglected, global health problem. The morbid pathology of the disease stems from the host's inflammatory response to parasite eggs trapped in host tissues. Long term host/parasite survival is dependent upon the successful modulation of the acute pathological response, which is induced by egg antigens. In this study, using Multidimensional Protein Identification Technology, we identified the Schistosoma mansoni egg secretome consisting of 188 proteins. Notably we identified proteins involved in redox balance, molecular chaperoning and protein folding, development and signaling, scavenging and metabolic pathways, immune response modulation, and 32 novel, previously uncharacterized schistosome proteins. We localized a subset of previously-characterized schistosome proteins identified in egg secretions in this study, to the surface of live S. mansoni eggs using the circumoval precipitin reaction. The identification of proteins actively secreted by live schistosome eggs provides important new information for understanding immune modulation and the pathology of schistosomiasis. PMID:17644200

  13. Analysis of Antibodies Directed against Merozoite Surface Protein 1 of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    Woehlbier, Ute; Epp, Christian; Kauth, Christian W.; Lutz, Rolf; Long, Carole A.; Coulibaly, Boubacar; Kouyaté, Bocar; Arevalo-Herrera, Myriam; Herrera, Sócrates; Bujard, Hermann

    2006-01-01

    The 190-kDa merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) of Plasmodium falciparum, an essential component in the parasite's life cycle, is a primary candidate for a malaria vaccine. Rabbit antibodies elicited by the heterologously produced MSP-1 processing products p83, p30, p38, and p42, derived from strain 3D7, were analyzed for the potential to inhibit in vitro erythrocyte invasion by the parasite and parasite growth. Our data show that (i) epitopes recognized by antibodies, which inhibit parasite replication, are distributed throughout the entire MSP-1 molecule; (ii) when combined, antibodies specific for different regions of MSP-1 inhibit in a strictly additive manner; (iii) anti-MSP-1 antibodies interfere with erythrocyte invasion as well as with the intraerythrocytic growth of the parasite; and (iv) antibodies raised against MSP-1 of strain 3D7 strongly cross-inhibit replication of the heterologous strain FCB-1. Accordingly, anti-MSP-1 antibodies appear to be capable of interfering with parasite multiplication at more than one level. Since the overall immunogenicity profile of MSP-1 in rabbits closely resembles that found in sera of Aotus monkeys immunized with parasite-derived MSP-1 and of humans semi-immune to malaria from whom highly inhibiting antigen-specific antibodies were recovered, we consider the findings reported here to be relevant for the development of MSP-1-based vaccines against malaria. PMID:16428781

  14. Membrane-Wrapping Contributions to Malaria Parasite Invasion of the Human Erythrocyte

    PubMed Central

    Dasgupta, Sabyasachi; Auth, Thorsten; Gov, Nir S.; Satchwell, Timothy J.; Hanssen, Eric; Zuccala, Elizabeth S.; Riglar, David T.; Toye, Ashley M.; Betz, Timo; Baum, Jake; Gompper, Gerhard

    2014-01-01

    The blood stage malaria parasite, the merozoite, has a small window of opportunity during which it must successfully target and invade a human erythrocyte. The process of invasion is nonetheless remarkably rapid. To date, mechanistic models of invasion have focused predominantly on the parasite actomyosin motor contribution to the energetics of entry. Here, we have conducted a numerical analysis using dimensions for an archetypal merozoite to predict the respective contributions of the host-parasite interactions to invasion, in particular the role of membrane wrapping. Our theoretical modeling demonstrates that erythrocyte membrane wrapping alone, as a function of merozoite adhesive and shape properties, is sufficient to entirely account for the first key step of the invasion process, that of merozoite reorientation to its apex and tight adhesive linkage between the two cells. Next, parasite-induced reorganization of the erythrocyte cytoskeleton and release of parasite-derived membrane can also account for a considerable energetic portion of actual invasion itself, through membrane wrapping. Thus, contrary to the prevailing dogma, wrapping by the erythrocyte combined with parasite-derived membrane release can markedly reduce the expected contributions of the merozoite actomyosin motor to invasion. We therefore propose that invasion is a balance between parasite and host cell contributions, evolved toward maximal efficient use of biophysical forces between the two cells. PMID:24988340

  15. Analysis of antibodies directed against merozoite surface protein 1 of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Woehlbier, Ute; Epp, Christian; Kauth, Christian W; Lutz, Rolf; Long, Carole A; Coulibaly, Boubacar; Kouyaté, Bocar; Arevalo-Herrera, Myriam; Herrera, Sócrates; Bujard, Hermann

    2006-02-01

    The 190-kDa merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP-1) of Plasmodium falciparum, an essential component in the parasite's life cycle, is a primary candidate for a malaria vaccine. Rabbit antibodies elicited by the heterologously produced MSP-1 processing products p83, p30, p38, and p42, derived from strain 3D7, were analyzed for the potential to inhibit in vitro erythrocyte invasion by the parasite and parasite growth. Our data show that (i) epitopes recognized by antibodies, which inhibit parasite replication, are distributed throughout the entire MSP-1 molecule; (ii) when combined, antibodies specific for different regions of MSP-1 inhibit in a strictly additive manner; (iii) anti-MSP-1 antibodies interfere with erythrocyte invasion as well as with the intraerythrocytic growth of the parasite; and (iv) antibodies raised against MSP-1 of strain 3D7 strongly cross-inhibit replication of the heterologous strain FCB-1. Accordingly, anti-MSP-1 antibodies appear to be capable of interfering with parasite multiplication at more than one level. Since the overall immunogenicity profile of MSP-1 in rabbits closely resembles that found in sera of Aotus monkeys immunized with parasite-derived MSP-1 and of humans semi-immune to malaria from whom highly inhibiting antigen-specific antibodies were recovered, we consider the findings reported here to be relevant for the development of MSP-1-based vaccines against malaria.

  16. Dogs, cats, parasites, and humans in Brazil: opening the black box

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Dogs and cats in Brazil serve as primary hosts for a considerable number of parasites, which may affect their health and wellbeing. These may include endoparasites (e.g., protozoa, cestodes, trematodes, and nematodes) and ectoparasites (i.e., fleas, lice, mites, and ticks). While some dog and cat parasites are highly host-specific (e.g., Aelurostrongylus abstrusus and Felicola subrostratus for cats, and Angiostrongylus vasorum and Trichodectes canis for dogs), others may easily switch to other hosts, including humans. In fact, several dog and cat parasites (e.g., Toxoplasma gondii, Dipylidium caninum, Ancylostoma caninum, Strongyloides stercoralis, and Toxocara canis) are important not only from a veterinary perspective but also from a medical standpoint. In addition, some of them (e.g., Lynxacarus radovskyi on cats and Rangelia vitalii in dogs) are little known to most veterinary practitioners working in Brazil. This article is a compendium on dog and cat parasites in Brazil and a call for a One Health approach towards a better management of some of these parasites, which may potentially affect humans. Practical aspects related to the diagnosis, treatment, and control of parasitic diseases of dogs and cats in Brazil are discussed. PMID:24423244

  17. In silico analysis of the fucosylation-associated genome of the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni: cloning and characterization of the enzymes involved in GDP-L-fucose synthesis and Golgi import

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Carbohydrate structures of surface-expressed and secreted/excreted glycoconjugates of the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni are key determinants that mediate host-parasite interactions in both snail and mammalian hosts. Fucose is a major constituent of these immunologically important glycans, and recent studies have sought to characterize fucosylation-associated enzymes, including the Golgi-localized fucosyltransferases that catalyze the transfer of L-fucose from a GDP-L-fucose donor to an oligosaccharide acceptor. Importantly, GDP-L-fucose is the only nucleotide-sugar donor used by fucosyltransferases and its availability represents a bottleneck in fucosyl-glycotope expression. Methods A homology-based genome-wide bioinformatics approach was used to identify and molecularly characterize the enzymes that contribute to GDP-L-fucose synthesis and Golgi import in S. mansoni. Putative functions were further investigated through molecular phylogenetic and immunocytochemical analyses. Results We identified homologs of GDP-D-mannose-4,6-dehydratase (GMD) and GDP-4-keto-6-deoxy-D-mannose-3,5-epimerase-4-reductase (GMER), which constitute a de novo pathway for GDP-L-fucose synthesis, in addition to a GDP-L-fucose transporter (GFT) that putatively imports cytosolic GDP-L-fucose into the Golgi. In silico primary sequence analyses identified characteristic Rossman loop and short-chain dehydrogenase/reductase motifs in GMD and GMER as well as 10 transmembrane domains in GFT. All genes are alternatively spliced, generating variants of unknown function. Observed quantitative differences in steady-state transcript levels between miracidia and primary sporocysts may contribute to differential glycotope expression in early larval development. Additionally, analyses of protein expression suggest the occurrence of cytosolic GMD and GMER in the ciliated epidermal plates and tegument of miracidia and primary sporocysts, respectively, which is consistent with previous

  18. Protein kinase A signalling in Schistosoma mansoni cercariae and schistosomules.

    PubMed

    Hirst, Natasha L; Lawton, Scott P; Walker, Anthony J

    2016-06-01

    Cyclic AMP (cAMP)-dependent protein kinase/protein kinase A regulates multiple processes in eukaryotes by phosphorylating diverse cellular substrates, including metabolic and signalling enzymes, ion channels and transcription factors. Here we provide insight into protein kinase A signalling in cercariae and 24h in vitro cultured somules of the blood parasite, Schistosoma mansoni, which causes human intestinal schistosomiasis. Functional mapping of activated protein kinase A using anti-phospho protein kinase A antibodies and confocal laser scanning microscopy revealed activated protein kinase A in the central and peripheral nervous system, oral-tip sensory papillae, oesophagus and excretory system of intact cercariae. Cultured 24h somules, which biologically represent the skin-resident stage of the parasite, exhibited similar activation patterns in oesophageal and nerve tissues but also displayed striking activation at the tegument and activation in a region resembling the germinal 'stem' cell cluster. The adenylyl cyclase activator, forskolin, stimulated somule protein kinase A activation and produced a hyperkinesia phenotype. The biogenic amines, serotonin and dopamine known to be present in skin also induced protein kinase A activation in somules, whereas neuropeptide Y or [Leu(31),Pro(34)]-neuropeptide Y attenuated protein kinase A activation. However, neuropeptide Y did not block the forskolin-induced somule hyperkinesia. Bioinformatic investigation of potential protein associations revealed 193 medium confidence and 59 high confidence protein kinase A interacting partners in S. mansoni, many of which possess putative protein kinase A phosphorylation sites. These data provide valuable insight into the intricacies of protein kinase A signalling in S. mansoni and a framework for further physiological investigations into the roles of protein kinase A in schistosomes, particularly in the context of interactions between the parasite and the host. PMID:26777870

  19. Genetic recombination between human and animal parasites creates novel strains of human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-03-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT. PMID:25816228

  20. Genetic recombination between human and animal parasites creates novel strains of human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-03-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT.

  1. Genetic Recombination between Human and Animal Parasites Creates Novel Strains of Human Pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-01-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT. PMID:25816228

  2. SchistoDB: a Schistosoma mansoni genome resource

    PubMed Central

    Zerlotini, Adhemar; Heiges, Mark; Wang, Haiming; Moraes, Romulo L. V.; Dominitini, Anderson J.; Ruiz, Jerônimo C.; Kissinger, Jessica C.; Oliveira, Guilherme

    2009-01-01

    SchistoDB (http://schistoDB.net/) is a genomic database for the parasitic organism Schistosoma mansoni, one of the major causative agents of schistosomiasis worldwide. It currently incorporates sequences and annotation for S. mansoni in a single user-friendly database. Several genomic scale analyses are available as well as ESTs, oligonucleotides, metabolic pathways and drugs. In this article, we describe the data sets and its analyses, how to query the database and tools available in the website. PMID:18842636

  3. Genomics of Loa loa, a Wolbachia-free filarial parasite of humans.

    PubMed

    Desjardins, Christopher A; Cerqueira, Gustavo C; Goldberg, Jonathan M; Dunning Hotopp, Julie C; Haas, Brian J; Zucker, Jeremy; Ribeiro, José M C; Saif, Sakina; Levin, Joshua Z; Fan, Lin; Zeng, Qiandong; Russ, Carsten; Wortman, Jennifer R; Fink, Doran L; Birren, Bruce W; Nutman, Thomas B

    2013-05-01

    Loa loa, the African eyeworm, is a major filarial pathogen of humans. Unlike most filariae, L. loa does not contain the obligate intracellular Wolbachia endosymbiont. We describe the 91.4-Mb genome of L. loa and that of the related filarial parasite Wuchereria bancrofti and predict 14,907 L. loa genes on the basis of microfilarial RNA sequencing. By comparing these genomes to that of another filarial parasite, Brugia malayi, and to those of several other nematodes, we demonstrate synteny among filariae but not with nonparasitic nematodes. The L. loa genome encodes many immunologically relevant genes, as well as protein kinases targeted by drugs currently approved for use in humans. Despite lacking Wolbachia, L. loa shows no new metabolic synthesis or transport capabilities compared to other filariae. These results suggest that the role of Wolbachia in filarial biology is more subtle than previously thought and reveal marked differences between parasitic and nonparasitic nematodes. PMID:23525074

  4. Characterization of class II apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease activities in the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed Central

    Haltiwanger, B M; Karpinich, N O; Taraschi, T F

    2000-01-01

    We have reported that the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, repairs apurinic/apyrimidinic (AP) sites on DNA by a long-patch base excision repair (BER) pathway. This biology is different from that in mammalian cells, which predominantly repair AP sites by a DNA-polymerase-beta-dependent, one-nucleotide patch BER pathway. As a starting point for the identification and biochemical characterization of the enzymes involved in the parasite DNA BER pathway, we chose characterization of the AP endonuclease activity in a P. falciparum cell-free lysate. Evidence is provided for the presence of class II, Mg(2+)-dependent and independent AP endonucleases in the parasite lysate. The investigation of the processing of AP sites in Plasmodium will provide new information about long-patch BER pathways; if they are different from those in the human host they might provide a new target for anti-malarial chemotherapy. PMID:10600642

  5. Characterization of two cysteine proteases secreted by Blastocystis ST7, a human intestinal parasite.

    PubMed

    Wawrzyniak, Ivan; Texier, Catherine; Poirier, Philippe; Viscogliosi, Eric; Tan, Kevin S W; Delbac, Frédéric; El Alaoui, Hicham

    2012-09-01

    Blastocystis spp. are unicellular anaerobic intestinal parasites of both humans and animals and the most prevalent ones found in human stool samples. Their association with various gastrointestinal disorders raises the questions of its pathogenicity and of the molecular mechanisms involved. Since secreted proteases are well-known to be implicated in intestinal parasite virulence, we intended to determine whether Blastocystis spp. possess such pathogenic factors. In silico analysis of the Blastocystis subtype 7 (ST7) genome sequence highlighted 22 genes coding proteases which were predicted to be secreted. We characterized the proteolytic activities in the secretory products of Blastocystis ST7 using specific protease inhibitors. Two cysteine proteases, a cathepsin B and a legumain, were identified in the parasite culture supernatant by gelatin zymographic SDS-PAGE gel and MS/MS analysis. These proteases might act on intestinal cells and disturb gut function. This work provides serious molecular candidates to link Blastocystis spp. and intestinal disorders.

  6. Human waterborne parasites in zebra mussels ( Dreissena polymorpha) from the Shannon River drainage area, Ireland.

    PubMed

    Graczyk, Thaddeus K; Conn, David Bruce; Lucy, Frances; Minchin, Dan; Tamang, Leena; Moura, Lacy N S; DaSilva, Alexandre J

    2004-08-01

    Zebra mussels ( Dreissena polymorpha) from throughout the Shannon River drainage area in Ireland were tested for the anthropozoonotic waterborne parasites Cryptosporidium parvum, Giardia lamblia, Encephalitozoon intestinalis, E. hellem, and Enterocytozoon bieneusi, by the multiplexed combined direct immunofluorescent antibody and fluorescent in situ hybridization method, and PCR. Parasite transmission stages were found at 75% of sites, with the highest mean concentration of 16, nine, and eight C. parvum oocysts, G. lamblia cysts, and Encephalitozoon intestinalis spores/mussel, respectively. On average eight Enterocytozoon bieneusi spores/mussel were recovered at any selected site. Approximately 80% of all parasites were viable and thus capable of initiating human infection. The Shannon River is polluted with serious emerging human waterborne pathogens including C. parvum, against which no therapy exists. Zebra mussels can recover and concentrate environmentally derived pathogens and can be used for the sanitary assessment of water quality.

  7. Developmental Regulation of Genes Encoding Universal Stress Proteins in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Isokpehi, Raphael D; Mahmud, Ousman; Mbah, Andreas N; Simmons, Shaneka S; Avelar, Lívia; Rajnarayanan, Rajendram V; Udensi, Udensi K; Ayensu, Wellington K; Cohly, Hari H; Brown, Shyretha D; Dates, Centdrika R; Hentz, Sonya D; Hughes, Shawntae J; Smith-McInnis, Dominique R; Patterson, Carvey O; Sims, Jennifer N; Turner, Kelisha T; Williams, Baraka S; Johnson, Matilda O; Adubi, Taiwo; Mbuh, Judith V; Anumudu, Chiaka I; Adeoye, Grace O; Thomas, Bolaji N; Nashiru, Oyekanmi; Oliveira, Guilherme

    2011-01-01

    The draft nuclear genome sequence of the snail-transmitted, dimorphic, parasitic, platyhelminth Schistosoma mansoni revealed eight genes encoding proteins that contain the Universal Stress Protein (USP) domain. Schistosoma mansoni is a causative agent of human schistosomiasis, a severe and debilitating Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) of poverty, which is endemic in at least 76 countries. The availability of the genome sequences of Schistosoma species presents opportunities for bioinformatics and genomics analyses of associated gene families that could be targets for understanding schistosomiasis ecology, intervention, prevention and control. Proteins with the USP domain are known to provide bacteria, archaea, fungi, protists and plants with the ability to respond to diverse environmental stresses. In this research investigation, the functional annotations of the USP genes and predicted nucleotide and protein sequences were initially verified. Subsequently, sequence clusters and distinctive features of the sequences were determined. A total of twelve ligand binding sites were predicted based on alignment to the ATP-binding universal stress protein from Methanocaldococcus jannaschii. In addition, six USP sequences showed the presence of ATP-binding motif residues indicating that they may be regulated by ATP. Public domain gene expression data and RT-PCR assays confirmed that all the S. mansoni USP genes were transcribed in at least one of the developmental life cycle stages of the helminth. Six of these genes were up-regulated in the miracidium, a free-swimming stage that is critical for transmission to the snail intermediate host. It is possible that during the intra-snail stages, S. mansoni gene transcripts for universal stress proteins are low abundant and are induced to perform specialized functions triggered by environmental stressors such as oxidative stress due to hydrogen peroxide that is present in the snail hemocytes. This report serves to catalyze the

  8. Developmental Regulation of Genes Encoding Universal Stress Proteins in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Isokpehi, Raphael D; Mahmud, Ousman; Mbah, Andreas N; Simmons, Shaneka S; Avelar, Lívia; Rajnarayanan, Rajendram V; Udensi, Udensi K; Ayensu, Wellington K; Cohly, Hari H; Brown, Shyretha D; Dates, Centdrika R; Hentz, Sonya D; Hughes, Shawntae J; Smith-McInnis, Dominique R; Patterson, Carvey O; Sims, Jennifer N; Turner, Kelisha T; Williams, Baraka S; Johnson, Matilda O; Adubi, Taiwo; Mbuh, Judith V; Anumudu, Chiaka I; Adeoye, Grace O; Thomas, Bolaji N; Nashiru, Oyekanmi; Oliveira, Guilherme

    2011-01-01

    The draft nuclear genome sequence of the snail-transmitted, dimorphic, parasitic, platyhelminth Schistosoma mansoni revealed eight genes encoding proteins that contain the Universal Stress Protein (USP) domain. Schistosoma mansoni is a causative agent of human schistosomiasis, a severe and debilitating Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) of poverty, which is endemic in at least 76 countries. The availability of the genome sequences of Schistosoma species presents opportunities for bioinformatics and genomics analyses of associated gene families that could be targets for understanding schistosomiasis ecology, intervention, prevention and control. Proteins with the USP domain are known to provide bacteria, archaea, fungi, protists and plants with the ability to respond to diverse environmental stresses. In this research investigation, the functional annotations of the USP genes and predicted nucleotide and protein sequences were initially verified. Subsequently, sequence clusters and distinctive features of the sequences were determined. A total of twelve ligand binding sites were predicted based on alignment to the ATP-binding universal stress protein from Methanocaldococcus jannaschii. In addition, six USP sequences showed the presence of ATP-binding motif residues indicating that they may be regulated by ATP. Public domain gene expression data and RT-PCR assays confirmed that all the S. mansoni USP genes were transcribed in at least one of the developmental life cycle stages of the helminth. Six of these genes were up-regulated in the miracidium, a free-swimming stage that is critical for transmission to the snail intermediate host. It is possible that during the intra-snail stages, S. mansoni gene transcripts for universal stress proteins are low abundant and are induced to perform specialized functions triggered by environmental stressors such as oxidative stress due to hydrogen peroxide that is present in the snail hemocytes. This report serves to catalyze the

  9. Development and Application of a Simple Plaque Assay for the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, James A.; Collins, Christine R.; Das, Sujaan; Hackett, Fiona; Graindorge, Arnault; Bell, Donald; Deu, Edgar; Blackman, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Malaria is caused by an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite that replicates within and destroys erythrocytes. Asexual blood stages of the causative agent of the most virulent form of human malaria, Plasmodium falciparum, can be cultivated indefinitely in vitro in human erythrocytes, facilitating experimental analysis of parasite cell biology, biochemistry and genetics. However, efforts to improve understanding of the basic biology of this important pathogen and to develop urgently required new antimalarial drugs and vaccines, suffer from a paucity of basic research tools. This includes a simple means of quantifying the effects of drugs, antibodies and gene modifications on parasite fitness and replication rates. Here we describe the development and validation of an extremely simple, robust plaque assay that can be used to visualise parasite replication and resulting host erythrocyte destruction at the level of clonal parasite populations. We demonstrate applications of the plaque assay by using it for the phenotypic characterisation of two P. falciparum conditional mutants displaying reduced fitness in vitro. PMID:27332706

  10. Exposed proteins of the Schistosoma japonicum tegument.

    PubMed

    Mulvenna, Jason; Moertel, Luke; Jones, Malcolm K; Nawaratna, Sujeevi; Lovas, Erica M; Gobert, Geoffrey N; Colgrave, Michelle; Jones, Alun; Loukas, Alex; McManus, Donald P

    2010-04-01

    The ability of the mammalian blood fluke Schistosoma japonicum to survive in the inhospitable environment of the mammalian bloodstream can be attributed, at least in part, to its host-exposed outer surface, called the tegument. The tegument is a dynamic organ and is involved in nutrition, immune evasion and modulation, excretion, osmoregulation and signal transduction. Given its importance for parasite survival, proteins exposed to the host at the surface of the tegument are ideal targets for the development of vaccines and drugs. By biotinylating live adult worms and using a combination of OFFGEL electrophoresis and tandem mass spectrometry 54 proteins were identified as putatively host-exposed in S. japonicum. These included glucose transport proteins, an amino permease, a leucine aminopeptidase and a range of transporters, heat shock proteins and novel immune-active proteins. Members of the tetraspanin protein family and a homologue of Sm 29, a tegument membrane protein from Schistosoma mansoni, both effective vaccine antigens in S. mansoni, were also identified. The fate of labelled surface proteins was monitored over time using electron microscopy and revealed that biotinylated proteins were rapidly internalised from the surface of the tegument and trafficked into the cytoplasmic bridges that connect the distal cytoplasm of the tegument to the underlying cell bodies. The results reported herein dramatically increase the number of S. japonicum proteins known to be exposed to the host and, hence, those of interest as therapeutic targets. The ability of the parasite to rapidly internalise proteins at its surface has implications for the development of vaccines and may explain how these parasites are able to avoid the host immune system for long periods of time. PMID:19853607

  11. Host mitochondrial association evolved in the human parasite Toxoplasma gondii via neofunctionalization of a gene duplicate

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In Toxoplasma gondii, an intracellular parasite of humans and other warm-blooded animals, the ability to associate with host mitochondria (HMA) is driven by a locally expanded gene family that encodes multiple mitochondrial association factor 1 (MAF1) proteins. The importance of copy number in the e...

  12. A Comparative Chemogenomics Strategy to Predict Potential Drug Targets in the Metazoan Pathogen, Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Caffrey, Conor R.; Rohwer, Andreas; Oellien, Frank; Marhöfer, Richard J.; Braschi, Simon; Oliveira, Guilherme; McKerrow, James H.; Selzer, Paul M.

    2009-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a prevalent and chronic helmintic disease in tropical regions. Treatment and control relies on chemotherapy with just one drug, praziquantel and this reliance is of concern should clinically relevant drug resistance emerge and spread. Therefore, to identify potential target proteins for new avenues of drug discovery we have taken a comparative chemogenomics approach utilizing the putative proteome of Schistosoma mansoni compared to the proteomes of two model organisms, the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans and the fruitfly, Drosophila melanogaster. Using the genome comparison software Genlight, two separate in silico workflows were implemented to derive a set of parasite proteins for which gene disruption of the orthologs in both the model organisms yielded deleterious phenotypes (e.g., lethal, impairment of motility), i.e., are essential genes/proteins. Of the 67 and 68 sequences generated for each workflow, 63 were identical in both sets, leading to a final set of 72 parasite proteins. All but one of these were expressed in the relevant developmental stages of the parasite infecting humans. Subsequent in depth manual curation of the combined workflow output revealed 57 candidate proteins. Scrutiny of these for ‘druggable’ protein homologs in the literature identified 35 S. mansoni sequences, 18 of which were homologous to proteins with 3D structures including co-crystallized ligands that will allow further structure-based drug design studies. The comparative chemogenomics strategy presented generates a tractable set of S. mansoni proteins for experimental validation as drug targets against this insidious human pathogen. PMID:19198654

  13. Tapeworm Diphyllobothrium dendriticum (Cestoda)—Neglected or Emerging Human Parasite?

    PubMed Central

    Kuchta, Roman; Brabec, Jan; Kubáčková, Petra; Scholz, Tomáš

    2013-01-01

    Background A total number of 14 valid species of Diphyllobothrium tapeworms have been described in literature to be capable of causing diphyllobothriosis, with D. latum being the major causative agent of all human infections. However, recent data indicate that some of these infections, especially when diagnosed solely on the basis of morphology, have been identified with this causative agent incorrectly, confusing other Diphyllobothrium species with D. latum. Another widely distributed species, D. dendriticum, has never been considered as a frequent parasite of man, even though it is found commonly throughout arctic and subarctic regions parasitizing piscivorous birds and mammals. Recent cases of Europeans infected with this cestode called into question the actual geographic distribution of this tapeworm, largely ignored by medical parasitologists. Methodology and Results On the basis of revision of more than 900 available references and a description and revision of recent European human cases using morphological and molecular (cox1) data supplemented by newly characterized D. dendriticum sequences, we updated the current knowledge of the life-cycle, geographic distribution, epidemiological status, and molecular diagnostics of this emerging causal agent of zoonotic disease of man. Conclusions The tapeworm D. dendriticum represents an example of a previously neglected, probably underdiagnosed parasite of man with a potential to spread globally. Recent cases of diphyllobothriosis caused by D. dendriticum in Europe (Netherlands, Switzerland and Czech Republic), where the parasite has not been reported previously, point out that causative agents of diphyllobothriosis and other zoonoses can be imported throughout the world. Molecular tools should be used for specific and reliable parasite diagnostics, and also rare or non-native species should be considered. This will considerably help improve our knowledge of the distribution and epidemiology of these human parasites

  14. Ancient human sialic acid variant restricts an emerging zoonotic malaria parasite

    PubMed Central

    Dankwa, Selasi; Lim, Caeul; Bei, Amy K.; Jiang, Rays H. Y.; Abshire, James R.; Patel, Saurabh D.; Goldberg, Jonathan M.; Moreno, Yovany; Kono, Maya; Niles, Jacquin C.; Duraisingh, Manoj T.

    2016-01-01

    Plasmodium knowlesi is a zoonotic parasite transmitted from macaques causing malaria in humans in Southeast Asia. Plasmodium parasites bind to red blood cell (RBC) surface receptors, many of which are sialylated. While macaques synthesize the sialic acid variant N-glycolylneuraminic acid (Neu5Gc), humans cannot because of a mutation in the enzyme CMAH that converts N-acetylneuraminic acid (Neu5Ac) to Neu5Gc. Here we reconstitute CMAH in human RBCs for the reintroduction of Neu5Gc, which results in enhancement of P. knowlesi invasion. We show that two P. knowlesi invasion ligands, PkDBPβ and PkDBPγ, bind specifically to Neu5Gc-containing receptors. A human-adapted P. knowlesi line invades human RBCs independently of Neu5Gc, with duplication of the sialic acid-independent invasion ligand, PkDBPα and loss of PkDBPγ. Our results suggest that absence of Neu5Gc on human RBCs limits P. knowlesi invasion, but that parasites may evolve to invade human RBCs through the use of sialic acid-independent pathways. PMID:27041489

  15. [ASSESSMENT OF POTENTIAL RISK FOR CONTAMINATION OF SURFACE WATER RESERVOIRS BY PATHOGENS OF HUMAN PARASITIC DISEASES].

    PubMed

    Khromenkova, E P; Dimidova, L L; Dumbadze, O S; Aidinov, G T; Shendo, G L; Agirov, A Kh; Batchaev, Kh Kh

    2015-01-01

    Sanitary and parasitological studies of the waste effluents and surface reservoir waters were conducted in the south of Russia. The efficiency of purification of waste effluents from the pathogens of parasitic diseases was investigated in the region's sewage-purification facilities. The water of the surface water reservoirs was found to contain helminthic eggs and larvae and intestinal protozoan cysts because of the poor purification and disinfection of service fecal sewage waters. The poor purification and disinvasion of waste effluents in the region determine the potential risk of contamination of the surface water reservoirs and infection of the population with the pathogens of human parasitic diseases.

  16. [SWOT Analysis of the National Survey on Current Status of Major Human Parasitic Diseases in China].

    PubMed

    ZHU, Hui-hui; ZHOU, Chang-hai; CHEN, Ying-dan; ZANG, Wei; XIAO, Ning; ZHOU, Xiao-nong

    2015-10-01

    The National Survey on Current Status of Major Human Parasitic Diseases in China has been carried out since 2014 under the organization of the National Health and Family Planning Commission of the People's Republic of China. The National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (NIPD, China CDC) provided technical support and was responsible for quality control in this survey. This study used SWOT method to analyze the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that were encountered by he NIPD, China CDC during the completion of the survey. Accordingly, working strategies were proposed to facilitate the future field work. PMID:26931045

  17. [SWOT Analysis of the National Survey on Current Status of Major Human Parasitic Diseases in China].

    PubMed

    ZHU, Hui-hui; ZHOU, Chang-hai; CHEN, Ying-dan; ZANG, Wei; XIAO, Ning; ZHOU, Xiao-nong

    2015-10-01

    The National Survey on Current Status of Major Human Parasitic Diseases in China has been carried out since 2014 under the organization of the National Health and Family Planning Commission of the People's Republic of China. The National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (NIPD, China CDC) provided technical support and was responsible for quality control in this survey. This study used SWOT method to analyze the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that were encountered by he NIPD, China CDC during the completion of the survey. Accordingly, working strategies were proposed to facilitate the future field work.

  18. A transcriptional switch underlies commitment to sexual development in human malaria parasites

    PubMed Central

    Kafsack, Björn F.C.; Rovira-Graells, Núria; Clark, Taane G.; Bancells, Cristina; Crowley, Valerie M.; Campino, Susana G.; Williams, April E.; Drought, Laura G.; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.; Baker, David A.; Cortés, Alfred; Llinás, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    The life cycles of many parasites involve transitions between disparate host species, requiring these parasites to go through multiple developmental stages adapted to each of these specialized niches. Transmission of malaria parasites (Plasmodium spp.) from humans to the mosquito vector requires differentiation from asexual stages replicating within red blood cells into non-dividing male and female gametocytes. Although gametocytes were first described in 1880, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in commitment to gametocyte formation is extremely limited and disrupting this critical developmental transition remains a long-standing goal1. We show here that expression levels of the DNA-binding protein PfAP2-G correlate strongly with levels of gametocyte formation. Using independent forward and reverse genetics approaches, we demonstrate that PfAP2-G function is essential for parasite sexual differentiation. By combining genome-wide PfAP2-G cognate motif occurrence with global transcriptional changes resulting from PfAP2-G ablation, we identify early gametocyte genes as likely targets of PfAP2-G and show that their regulation by PfAP2-G is critical for their wild-type level expression. In the asexual blood-stage parasites pfap2-g appears to be among a set of epigenetically silenced loci2,3 prone to spontaneous activation4. Stochastic activation presents a simple mechanism for a low baseline of gametocyte production. Overall, these findings identify PfAP2-G as a master regulator of sexual-stage development in malaria parasites and mark the first identification of a transcriptional switch controlling a differentiation decision in protozoan parasites. PMID:24572369

  19. Structural Basis for the Inhibition of Histone Deacetylase 8 (HDAC8), a Key Epigenetic Player in the Blood Fluke Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Marek, Martin; Kannan, Srinivasaraghavan; Hauser, Alexander-Thomas; Moraes Mourão, Marina; Caby, Stéphanie; Cura, Vincent; Stolfa, Diana A.; Schmidtkunz, Karin; Lancelot, Julien; Andrade, Luiza; Renaud, Jean-Paul; Oliveira, Guilherme; Sippl, Wolfgang; Jung, Manfred; Cavarelli, Jean; Pierce, Raymond J.; Romier, Christophe

    2013-01-01

    The treatment of schistosomiasis, a disease caused by blood flukes parasites of the Schistosoma genus, depends on the intensive use of a single drug, praziquantel, which increases the likelihood of the development of drug-resistant parasite strains and renders the search for new drugs a strategic priority. Currently, inhibitors of human epigenetic enzymes are actively investigated as novel anti-cancer drugs and have the potential to be used as new anti-parasitic agents. Here, we report that Schistosoma mansoni histone deacetylase 8 (smHDAC8), the most expressed class I HDAC isotype in this organism, is a functional acetyl-L-lysine deacetylase that plays an important role in parasite infectivity. The crystal structure of smHDAC8 shows that this enzyme adopts a canonical α/β HDAC fold, with specific solvent exposed loops corresponding to insertions in the schistosome HDAC8 sequence. Importantly, structures of smHDAC8 in complex with generic HDAC inhibitors revealed specific structural changes in the smHDAC8 active site that cannot be accommodated by human HDACs. Using a structure-based approach, we identified several small-molecule inhibitors that build on these specificities. These molecules exhibit an inhibitory effect on smHDAC8 but show reduced affinity for human HDACs. Crucially, we show that a newly identified smHDAC8 inhibitor has the capacity to induce apoptosis and mortality in schistosomes. Taken together, our biological and structural findings define the framework for the rational design of small-molecule inhibitors specifically interfering with schistosome epigenetic mechanisms, and further support an anti-parasitic epigenome targeting strategy to treat neglected diseases caused by eukaryotic pathogens. PMID:24086136

  20. Targeting of a Transporter to the Outer Apicoplast Membrane in the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    Goodman, Christopher D.; McFadden, Geoffrey I.

    2016-01-01

    Apicoplasts are vestigial plastids in apicomplexan parasites like Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria. Apicomplexan parasites are dependant on their apicoplasts for synthesis of various molecules that they are unable to scavenge in sufficient quantity from their host, which makes apicoplasts attractive drug targets. Proteins known as plastid phosphate translocators (pPTs) are embedded in the outer apicoplast membrane and are responsible for the import of carbon, energy and reducing power to drive anabolic synthesis in the organelle. We investigated how a pPT is targeted into the outer apicoplast membrane of the human malaria parasite P. falciparum. We showed that a transmembrane domain is likely to act as a recessed signal anchor to direct the protein into the endomembrane system, and that a tyrosine in the cytosolic N-terminus of the protein is essential for targeting, but one or more, as yet unidentified, factors are also essential to direct the protein into the outer apicoplast membrane. PMID:27442138

  1. Targeting of a Transporter to the Outer Apicoplast Membrane in the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Lim, Liting; Sayers, Claire P; Goodman, Christopher D; McFadden, Geoffrey I

    2016-01-01

    Apicoplasts are vestigial plastids in apicomplexan parasites like Plasmodium, the causative agent of malaria. Apicomplexan parasites are dependant on their apicoplasts for synthesis of various molecules that they are unable to scavenge in sufficient quantity from their host, which makes apicoplasts attractive drug targets. Proteins known as plastid phosphate translocators (pPTs) are embedded in the outer apicoplast membrane and are responsible for the import of carbon, energy and reducing power to drive anabolic synthesis in the organelle. We investigated how a pPT is targeted into the outer apicoplast membrane of the human malaria parasite P. falciparum. We showed that a transmembrane domain is likely to act as a recessed signal anchor to direct the protein into the endomembrane system, and that a tyrosine in the cytosolic N-terminus of the protein is essential for targeting, but one or more, as yet unidentified, factors are also essential to direct the protein into the outer apicoplast membrane. PMID:27442138

  2. Multiple Simultaneous Gastrointestinal Parasitic Infections in a Patient with Human Immunodeficiency Virus.

    PubMed

    Del Pilar-Morales, Esteban A; Cardona-Rodríguez, Zaydalee; Bertrán-Pasarell, Jorge; Soto-Malave, Ruth; De León-Borras, Rafeal

    2016-06-01

    Patients with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection are at high risk for gastrointestinal infections causing diarrhea, particularly when those infections are parasitic in nature. This propensity is more pronounced in AIDS, where opportunistic parasitic infections may cause severe diarrhea, marked absorptive dysfunction, and significant risk of mortality. There are scant data regarding parasitic infections among HIV patients in the developed world; most studies and research come from povertystricken areas of South Africa, India, Iran, and the South Pacific. Although multiple infections with the same or different parasites have been reported, simultaneous infections are rare. We present the case of a 35-year-old man who developed a co-infection with Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Strongyloides, simultaneously, the diagnosis being made after the judicious evaluation of a stool sample. Given the associated morbidity, prompt diagnosis and treatment are needed to avoid further complications in patients with HIV. To our knowledge this is the first reported case of triple parasitic infection in a patient with HIV.

  3. Current laboratory diagnosis of opportunistic enteric parasites in human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients.

    PubMed

    De, Anuradha

    2013-01-01

    Diarrhea is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals. Opportunistic enteric parasitic infections are encountered in 30-60% of HIV seropositive patients in developed countries and in 90% of patients in developing countries. Once the CD4(+) cell count drops below 200 cells/μl, patients are considered to have developed acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), with the risk of an AIDS-defining illness or opportunistic infection significantly increasing. Opportunistic enteric parasites encountered in these patients are Cryptosporidium, Isospora, Cyclospora, and microsporidia; as well as those more commonly associated with gastrointestinal disease, for example, Giardia intestinalis, Entamoeba histolytica, Strongyloides stercoralis, and also rarely Balantidium coli. In view of AIDS explosion in India, opportunistic enteric parasites are becoming increasingly important and it has to be identified properly. Apart from wet mounts, concentration methods for stool samples and special staining techniques for identification of these parasites, commercially available fecal immunoassays are widely available for the majority of enteric protozoa. Molecular methods such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism, flow cytometry, and sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), have also come in the pipeline for early diagnosis of these infections. Proper disposal of the feces to prevent contamination of the soil and water, boiling/filtering drinking water along with improved personal hygiene might go a long way in preventing these enteric parasitic infections.

  4. Current laboratory diagnosis of opportunistic enteric parasites in human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients.

    PubMed

    De, Anuradha

    2013-01-01

    Diarrhea is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals. Opportunistic enteric parasitic infections are encountered in 30-60% of HIV seropositive patients in developed countries and in 90% of patients in developing countries. Once the CD4(+) cell count drops below 200 cells/μl, patients are considered to have developed acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), with the risk of an AIDS-defining illness or opportunistic infection significantly increasing. Opportunistic enteric parasites encountered in these patients are Cryptosporidium, Isospora, Cyclospora, and microsporidia; as well as those more commonly associated with gastrointestinal disease, for example, Giardia intestinalis, Entamoeba histolytica, Strongyloides stercoralis, and also rarely Balantidium coli. In view of AIDS explosion in India, opportunistic enteric parasites are becoming increasingly important and it has to be identified properly. Apart from wet mounts, concentration methods for stool samples and special staining techniques for identification of these parasites, commercially available fecal immunoassays are widely available for the majority of enteric protozoa. Molecular methods such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism, flow cytometry, and sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), have also come in the pipeline for early diagnosis of these infections. Proper disposal of the feces to prevent contamination of the soil and water, boiling/filtering drinking water along with improved personal hygiene might go a long way in preventing these enteric parasitic infections. PMID:23961436

  5. Current laboratory diagnosis of opportunistic enteric parasites in human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients

    PubMed Central

    De, Anuradha

    2013-01-01

    Diarrhea is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals. Opportunistic enteric parasitic infections are encountered in 30-60% of HIV seropositive patients in developed countries and in 90% of patients in developing countries. Once the CD4+ cell count drops below 200 cells/μl, patients are considered to have developed acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), with the risk of an AIDS-defining illness or opportunistic infection significantly increasing. Opportunistic enteric parasites encountered in these patients are Cryptosporidium, Isospora, Cyclospora, and microsporidia; as well as those more commonly associated with gastrointestinal disease, for example, Giardia intestinalis, Entamoeba histolytica, Strongyloides stercoralis, and also rarely Balantidium coli. In view of AIDS explosion in India, opportunistic enteric parasites are becoming increasingly important and it has to be identified properly. Apart from wet mounts, concentration methods for stool samples and special staining techniques for identification of these parasites, commercially available fecal immunoassays are widely available for the majority of enteric protozoa. Molecular methods such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism, flow cytometry, and sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), have also come in the pipeline for early diagnosis of these infections. Proper disposal of the feces to prevent contamination of the soil and water, boiling/filtering drinking water along with improved personal hygiene might go a long way in preventing these enteric parasitic infections. PMID:23961436

  6. Two allelic isoforms of the serotonin transporter from Schistosoma mansoni display electrogenic transport and high selectivity for serotonin

    PubMed Central

    Fontana, Andréia C. K.; Sonders, Mark S.; Pereira-Junior, Olavo S.; Knight, Matty; Javitch, Jonathan A.; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Amara, Susan G.; Mortensen, Ole V.

    2009-01-01

    The human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni is the primary cause of schistosomiasis, a debilitating disease that affects 200 million individuals in over 70 countries. The biogenic amine serotonin is essential for the survival of the parasite and serotonergic proteins are potential novel drug targets for treating schistosomiasis. Here we characterize two novel serotonin transporter gene transcripts, SmSERT-A and SmSERT-B, from Schistosoma mansoni. Southern blot analysis shows that the two mRNAs are the products of different alleles of a single SmSERT gene locus. The two SmSERT forms differ in three amino acid positions near the N-terminus of the protein. Both SmSERTs are expressed in the adult form and in the sporocyst form (infected snails) of the parasite, but are absent from all other stages of the parasite’s complex life cycle. Heterologous expression of the two cDNAs in mammalian cells resulted in saturable, sodium-dependent serotonin transport activity with an apparent affinity for serotonin comparable to that of the human serotonin transporter. Although the two SmSERTs are pharmacologically indistinguishable from each other, efflux experiments reveal notably higher substrate selectivity for serotonin compared with their mammalian counterparts. Several well-established substrates for human SERT including (±)MDMA, S-(+)amphetamine, RU 24969, and m-CPP are not transported by SmSERTs, underscoring the higher selectivity of the schistosomal isoforms. Voltage clamp recordings of SmSERT substrate-elicited currents confirm the substrate selectivity observed in efflux experiments and suggest that it may be possible to exploit the electrogenic nature of SmSERT to screen for compounds that target the parasite in vivo. PMID:19549517

  7. IMMUNODIAGNOSIS OF HUMAN STRONGYLOIDIASIS: USE OF SIX DIFFERENT ANTIGENIC FRACTIONS FROM Strongyloides venezuelensis PARASITIC FEMALES

    PubMed Central

    CORRAL, Marcelo Andreetta; de PAULA, Fabiana Martins; GOTTARDI, Maiara; MEISEL, Dirce Mary Correia Lima; CASTILHO, Vera Lucia Pagliusi; GONÇALVES, Elenice Messias do Nascimento; CHIEFFI, Pedro Paulo; GRYSCHEK, Ronaldo Cesar Borges

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY The aim of this study was to evaluate six different antigenic fractions from Strongyloides venezuelensis parasitic females for the immunodiagnosis of human strongyloidiasis. Soluble and membrane fractions from S. venezuelensis parasitic females were prepared in phosphate-buffered saline (SSF and SMF, respectively), Tris-HCl (TSF and TMF, respectively), and an alkaline buffer (ASF and AMF, respectively). Serum samples obtained from patients with strongyloidiasis or, other parasitic diseases, and healthy individuals were analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Soluble fractions SSF, TSF, and ASF showed 85.0%, 75.0%, and 80.0% sensitivity and 93.1%, 93.1%, and 87.5% specificity, respectively. Membrane fractions SMF, TMF, and AMF showed 80.0%, 75.0%, and 85.0% sensitivity, and 95.8%, 90.3%, and 91.7% specificity, respectively. In conclusion, the present results suggest that the fractions obtained from parasitic females, especially the SSF and SMF, could be used as alternative antigen sources in the serodiagnosis of human strongyloidiasis. PMID:26603231

  8. Characterization of the phytochelatin synthase of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Ray, Debalina; Williams, David L

    2011-05-01

    Treatment for schistosomiasis, which is responsible for more than 280,000 deaths annually, depends exclusively on the use of praziquantel. Millions of people are treated annually with praziquantel and drug resistant parasites are likely to evolve. In order to identify novel drug targets the Schistosoma mansoni sequence databases were queried for proteins involved in glutathione metabolism. One potential target identified was phytochelatin synthase (PCS). Phytochelatins are oligopeptides synthesized enzymatically from glutathione by PCS that sequester toxic heavy metals in many organisms. However, humans do not have a PCS gene and do not synthesize phytochelatins. In this study we have characterized the PCS of S. mansoni (SmPCS). The conserved catalytic triad of cysteine-histidine-aspartate found in PCS proteins and cysteine proteases is also found in SmPCS, as are several cysteine residues thought to be involved in heavy metal binding and enzyme activation. The SmPCS open reading frame is considerably extended at both the N- and C-termini compared to PCS from other organisms. Multiple PCS transcripts are produced from the single encoded gene by alternative splicing, resulting in both mitochondrial and cytoplasmic protein variants. Expression of SmPCS in yeast increased cadmium tolerance from less than 50 µM to more than 1,000 µM. We confirmed the function of SmPCS by identifying PCs in yeast cell extracts using HPLC-mass spectrometry. SmPCS was found to be expressed in all mammalian stages of worm development investigated. Increases in SmPCS expression were seen in ex vivo worms cultured in the presence of iron, copper, cadmium, or zinc. Collectively, these results indicate that SmPCS plays an important role in schistosome response to heavy metals and that PCS is a potential drug target for schistosomiasis treatment. This is the first characterization of a PCS from a parasitic organism. PMID:21629724

  9. Cloning and in vitro characterization of a Schistosoma japonicum aquaglyceroporin that functions in osmoregulation

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yuzheng; Li, Wei; Lu, Wuguang; Xiong, Chunrong; Yang, Yang; Yan, Huaijiang; Liu, Kun Connie; Cao, Peng

    2016-01-01

    As one of the three major human pathogens that cause schistosomiasis, Schistosoma japonicum is the only one that is endemic in China. Despite great progress on schistosomiasis control over the past 50 years in China, S. japonicum transmission still occurs in certain endemic regions, which causes significant public health problems and enormous economic losses. During different life stages, parasites are able to survive dramatic osmolality changes between its vector, fresh water, and mammal host. However, the molecular mechanism of parasite osmoregulation remains unknown. To address this challenging question, we report the first cloning of an S. japonicum aquaglyceroporin (SjAQP) from an isolate from Jiangsu province, China. Expressing SjAQP in Xenopus oocytes facilitated the permeation of water, glycerol, and urea. The water permeability of SjAQP was inhibited by 1 mM HgCl2, 3 mM tetraethylammonium, 1 mM ZnCl2, and 1 mM CuSO4. SjAQP was constitutively expressed throughout the S. japonicum life cycle, including in the egg, miracidia, cercaria, and adult stages. The highest expression was detected during the infective cercaria stage. Our results suggest that SjAQP plays a role in osmoregulation throughout the S. japonicum life cycle, especially during cercariae transformation, which enables parasites to survive osmotic challenges. PMID:27733755

  10. Recognition of Human Erythrocyte Receptors by the Tryptophan-Rich Antigens of Monkey Malaria Parasite Plasmodium knowlesi

    PubMed Central

    Tyagi, Kriti; Gupta, Deepali; Saini, Ekta; Choudhary, Shilpa; Jamwal, Abhishek; Alam, Mohd. Shoeb; Zeeshan, Mohammad; Tyagi, Rupesh K.; Sharma, Yagya D.

    2015-01-01

    Background The monkey malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi also infect humans. There is a lack of information on the molecular mechanisms that take place between this simian parasite and its heterologous human host erythrocytes leading to this zoonotic disease. Therefore, we investigated here the binding ability of P. knowlesi tryptophan-rich antigens (PkTRAgs) to the human erythrocytes and sharing of the erythrocyte receptors between them as well as with other commonly occurring human malaria parasites. Methods Six PkTRAgs were cloned and expressed in E.coli as well as in mammalian CHO-K1 cell to determine their human erythrocyte binding activity by cell-ELISA, and in-vitro rosetting assay, respectively. Results Three of six PkTRAgs (PkTRAg38.3, PkTRAg40.1, and PkTRAg67.1) showed binding to human erythrocytes. Two of them (PkTRAg40.1 and PkTRAg38.3) showed cross-competition with each other as well as with the previously described P.vivax tryptophan-rich antigens (PvTRAgs) for human erythrocyte receptors. However, the third protein (PkTRAg67.1) utilized the additional but different human erythrocyte receptor(s) as it did not cross-compete for erythrocyte binding with either of these two PkTRAgs as well as with any of the PvTRAgs. These three PkTRAgs also inhibited the P.falciparum parasite growth in in-vitro culture, further indicating the sharing of human erythrocyte receptors by these parasite species and the biological significance of this receptor-ligand interaction between heterologous host and simian parasite. Conclusions Recognition and sharing of human erythrocyte receptor(s) by PkTRAgs with human parasite ligands could be part of the strategy adopted by the monkey malaria parasite to establish inside the heterologous human host. PMID:26393350

  11. Onchocerca lupi infection in Turkey: a unique case of a rare human parasite.

    PubMed

    Ilhan, Hatice Deniz; Yaman, Aylin; Morishima, Yasuyuki; Sugiyama, Hiromu; Muto, Maki; Yamasaki, Hiroshi; Hasegawa, Hideo; Lebe, Banu; Bajin, Meltem Soylev

    2013-09-01

    Onchocerpa lupi was first isolated from a wolf in Russia. Since then, canine ocular onchocercosis has been increasingly reported, particularly in Europe and the United States. It is thought that blackflies and midges are the vectors of transmission, and it is possible that these vectors could transmit the parasite to humans. The first human case of O. lupi in Turkey was reported in 2011. In this report we present the third human case of O. lupi infection in Turkey. Our patient was a 28-year-old male who displayed a painless, immobile mass under the conjunctiva. The mass measured 10 × 12 mm in size. Pathological examination of the surgically excised tissue was suggestive of infection by a filarial nematode. Subsequently, the parasite was identified as O. lupi through molecular analysis. All of the previously reported cases of O. lupi in both humans and dogs were more symptomatic than in our patient, Onchocerca infection should not be ruled out during the differential diagnosis of the subconjunctival and orbital cystic mass in instances where there is little to no inflammation. It is important to consider biopsy and carry out molecular analysis to identify the parasite. PMID:23990437

  12. Identification of Candidate Serum Biomarkers for Schistosoma mansoni Infected Mice Using Multiple Proteomic Platforms

    PubMed Central

    Kardoush, Manal I.

    2016-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis is an important helminth infection of humans. There are few reliable diagnostic biomarkers for early infection, for recurrent infection or to document successful treatment. In this study, we compared serum protein profiles in uninfected and infected mice to identify disease stage-specific biomarkers. Methods Serum collected from CD1 mice infected with 50–200 Schistosoma mansoni cercariae were analyzed before infection and at 3, 6 and 12 weeks post-infection using three mass spectrometric (MS) platforms. Results Using SELDI-TOF MS, 66 discriminating m/z peaks were detected between S. mansoni infected mice and healthy controls. Used in various combinations, these peaks could 1) reliably diagnose early-stage disease, 2) distinguish between acute and chronic infection and 3) diagnose S. mansoni infection regardless the parasite burden. The most important contributors to these diagnostic algorithms were peaks at 3.7, 13 and 46 kDa. Employing sample fractionation and differential gel electrophoresis, we analyzed gel slices either by MALDI-TOF MS or Velos Orbitrap MS. The former yielded eight differentially-expressed host proteins in the serum at different disease stages including transferrin and alpha 1- antitrypsin. The latter suggested the presence of a surprising number of parasite-origin proteins in the serum during both the acute (n = 200) and chronic (n = 105) stages. The Orbitrap platform also identified many differentially-expressed host-origin serum proteins during the acute and chronic stages (296 and 220 respectively). The presence of one of the schistosome proteins, glutathione S transferase (GST: 25 KDa), was confirmed by Western Blot. This study provides proof-of-principle for an approach that can yield a large number of novel candidate biomarkers for Schistosoma infection. PMID:27138990

  13. Proteomic Profiling of the Planarian Schmidtea mediterranea and Its Mucous Reveals Similarities with Human Secretions and Those Predicted for Parasitic Flatworms*

    PubMed Central

    Bocchinfuso, Donald G.; Taylor, Paul; Ross, Eric; Ignatchenko, Alex; Ignatchenko, Vladimir; Kislinger, Thomas; Pearson, Bret J.; Moran, Michael F.

    2012-01-01

    The freshwater planarian Schmidtea mediterranea has been used in research for over 100 years, and is an emerging stem cell model because of its capability of regenerating large portions of missing body parts. Exteriorly, planarians are covered in mucous secretions of unknown composition, implicated in locomotion, predation, innate immunity, and substrate adhesion. Although the planarian genome has been sequenced, it remains mostly unannotated, challenging both genomic and proteomic analyses. The goal of the current study was to annotate the proteome of the whole planarian and its mucous fraction. The S. mediterranea proteome was analyzed via mass spectrometry by using multidimensional protein identification technology with whole-worm tryptic digests. By using a proteogenomics approach, MS data were searched against an in silico translated planarian transcript database, and by using the Swiss-Prot BLAST algorithm to identify proteins similar to planarian queries. A total of 1604 proteins were identified. The mucous subproteome was defined through analysis of a mucous trail fraction and an extract obtained by treating whole worms with the mucolytic agent N-acetylcysteine. Gene Ontology analysis confirmed that the mucous fractions were enriched with secreted proteins. The S. mediterranea proteome is highly similar to that predicted for the trematode Schistosoma mansoni associated with intestinal schistosomiasis, with the mucous subproteome particularly highly conserved. Remarkably, orthologs of 119 planarian mucous proteins are present in human mucosal secretions and tear fluid. We suggest planarians have potential to be a model system for the characterization of mucous protein function and relevant to parasitic flatworm infections and diseases underlined by mucous aberrancies, such as cystic fibrosis, asthma, and other lung diseases. PMID:22653920

  14. Proteomic profiling of the planarian Schmidtea mediterranea and its mucous reveals similarities with human secretions and those predicted for parasitic flatworms.

    PubMed

    Bocchinfuso, Donald G; Taylor, Paul; Ross, Eric; Ignatchenko, Alex; Ignatchenko, Vladimir; Kislinger, Thomas; Pearson, Bret J; Moran, Michael F

    2012-09-01

    The freshwater planarian Schmidtea mediterranea has been used in research for over 100 years, and is an emerging stem cell model because of its capability of regenerating large portions of missing body parts. Exteriorly, planarians are covered in mucous secretions of unknown composition, implicated in locomotion, predation, innate immunity, and substrate adhesion. Although the planarian genome has been sequenced, it remains mostly unannotated, challenging both genomic and proteomic analyses. The goal of the current study was to annotate the proteome of the whole planarian and its mucous fraction. The S. mediterranea proteome was analyzed via mass spectrometry by using multidimensional protein identification technology with whole-worm tryptic digests. By using a proteogenomics approach, MS data were searched against an in silico translated planarian transcript database, and by using the Swiss-Prot BLAST algorithm to identify proteins similar to planarian queries. A total of 1604 proteins were identified. The mucous subproteome was defined through analysis of a mucous trail fraction and an extract obtained by treating whole worms with the mucolytic agent N-acetylcysteine. Gene Ontology analysis confirmed that the mucous fractions were enriched with secreted proteins. The S. mediterranea proteome is highly similar to that predicted for the trematode Schistosoma mansoni associated with intestinal schistosomiasis, with the mucous subproteome particularly highly conserved. Remarkably, orthologs of 119 planarian mucous proteins are present in human mucosal secretions and tear fluid. We suggest planarians have potential to be a model system for the characterization of mucous protein function and relevant to parasitic flatworm infections and diseases underlined by mucous aberrancies, such as cystic fibrosis, asthma, and other lung diseases. PMID:22653920

  15. DNA Detection of Schistosoma japonicum: Diagnostic Validity of a LAMP Assay for Low-Intensity Infection and Effects of Chemotherapy in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Bo; Wang, Yan-Yan; Cao, Yun; Zhang, Hui-Qin; Zhu, Xing-Quan; He, Yong-Kang; Xia, Chao-Ming

    2015-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis has decreased significantly in prevalence and intensity of infection in China, thus more accurate and sensitive methods are desperately needed for the further control of schistosomiasis. The present work aimed to assess the utility of the loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) for detection of light intensity infection or false-negative patients and patients post-treatment, targeting the highly repetitive retrotransposon SjR2 of Schistosoma japonicum. Methodology/ Principal Findings LAMP was first assessed in rabbits with low intensity infection (EPG<10). Then 110 patient sera from Hunan Province, China, and 47 sera after treatment by praziquantel were used to evaluate the diagnostic validity of LAMP. Meanwhile, 42 sera from healthy individuals in a non-endemic area, and 60 sera from "healthy” residents who were identified as being negative for feces examination and immuno-methods in an endemic area were also examined. The results showed that LAMP could detect S. japonicum DNA in sera from rabbits at 3rd day post-infection. Following administration of praziquantel, the S. japonicum DNA in rabbit sera became negative at 10 weeks post-treatment. Of 110 sera from patients, LAMP showed 95.5% sensitivity, and even for 41 patients with less than 10 EPG, the sensitivity of LAMP still reached to 95.1%. For 47 patients after treatment, the negative conversion rate of S. japonicum DNA in patient sera increased from 23.4%, 61.7% to 83.0% at 3 months, 6 months and 9 months post-treatment, respectively. No false-positive result was obtained for 42 human sera from non-endemic area, while for the 60 “healthy” individuals from endemic area, 10 (16.7%) individuals were positive by LAMP, which suggested that these individuals might be false-negative patients. Conclusions/ Significance The present study demonstrated that the LAMP assay is sensitive, specific, and affordable, which would help reduce schistosomiasis transmission through targeted

  16. Rationale for the coadministration of albendazole and ivermectin to humans for malaria parasite transmission control.

    PubMed

    Kobylinski, Kevin C; Alout, Haoues; Foy, Brian D; Clements, Archie; Adisakwattana, Poom; Swierczewski, Brett E; Richardson, Jason H

    2014-10-01

    Recently there have been calls for the eradication of malaria and the elimination of soil-transmitted helminths (STHs). Malaria and STHs overlap in distribution, and STH infections are associated with increased risk for malaria. Indeed, there is evidence that suggests that STH infection may facilitate malaria transmission. Malaria and STH coinfection may exacerbate anemia, especially in pregnant women, leading to worsened child development and more adverse pregnancy outcomes than these diseases would cause on their own. Ivermectin mass drug administration (MDA) to humans for malaria parasite transmission suppression is being investigated as a potential malaria elimination tool. Adding albendazole to ivermectin MDAs would maximize effects against STHs. A proactive, integrated control platform that targets malaria and STHs would be extremely cost-effective and simultaneously reduce human suffering caused by multiple diseases. This paper outlines the benefits of adding albendazole to ivermectin MDAs for malaria parasite transmission suppression.

  17. Novel Gene Discovery in the Human Malaria Parasite using Nucleosome Positioning Data

    PubMed Central

    Pokhriyal, N.; Ponts, N.; Harris, E. Y.; Le Roch, K. G.; Lonardi, S.

    2013-01-01

    Recent genome-wide studies on nucleosome positioning in model organisms have shown strong evidence that nucleosome landscapes in the proximity of protein-coding genes exhibit regular characteristic patterns. Here, we propose a computational framework to discover novel genes in the human malaria parasite genome P. falciparum using nucleosome positioning inferred from MAINE-seq data. We rely on a classifier trained on the nucleosome landscape profiles of experimentally verified genes, and then used to discover new genes (without considering the primary DNA sequence). Cross-validation experiments show that our classifier is very accurate. About two thirds of the locations reported by the classifier match experimentally determined expressed sequence tags in GenBank, for which no gene has been annotated in the human malaria parasite. PMID:25076982

  18. Human parasitic meningitis caused by Angiostrongylus cantonensis infection in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Hung-Chin; Chen, Yao-Shen; Yen, Chuan-Min

    2013-06-01

    The major cause of eosinophilic meningitis in Taiwan is Angiostrongylus cantonensis. Humans are infected by ingesting terrestrial and freshwater snails and slugs. In 1998 and 1999, two outbreaks of eosinophilic meningitis caused by A. cantonensis infection were reported among 17 adult male immigrant Thai laborers who had eaten raw golden apple snails (Pomacea canaliculata). Another outbreak associated with consuming a health drink consisting of raw vegetable juice was reported in 2001. These adult cases differed from reports in the 1970s and 1980s, in which most of the cases were in children. With improvements in public health and education of foreign laborers, there have since been only sporadic cases in Taiwan. Review of clinical research indicates inconsistent association of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) results with clinical features of eosinophilic meningitis. MRI features were nonspecific but there was an association between the presence of high brain MRI signal intensities and severity of peripheral and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) eosinophilia. Inflammatory markers have been identified in the CSF of patients with eosinophilic meningitis caused by A. cantonensis infection, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), and the matrix metalloproteinase system may be associated with blood-brain barrier disruption. Eosinophilic meningitis caused by A. cantonensis infection is not a reportable disease in Taiwan. It is important that a public advisory and education program be developed to reduce future accidental infection.

  19. Crystal Structure of Schistosoma mansoni Arginase, a Potential Drug Target for the Treatment of Schistosomiasis

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The X-ray crystal structure of arginase from Schistosoma mansoni (SmARG) and the structures of its complexes with several amino acid inhibitors have been determined at atomic resolution. SmARG is a binuclear manganese metalloenzyme that catalyzes the hydrolysis of l-arginine to form l-ornithine and urea, and this enzyme is upregulated in all forms of the parasite that interact with the human host. Current hypotheses suggest that parasitic arginases could play a role in host immune evasion by depleting pools of substrate l-arginine that would otherwise be utilized for NO biosynthesis and NO-dependent processes in the immune response. Although the amino acid sequence of SmARG is only 42% identical with that of human arginase I, residues important for substrate binding and catalysis are strictly conserved. In general, classical amino acid inhibitors such as 2(S)-amino-6-boronohexanoic acid (ABH) tend to bind more weakly to SmARG than to human arginase I despite identical inhibitor binding modes in each enzyme active site. The identification of a patch on the enzyme surface capable of accommodating the additional Cα substitutent of an α,α-disubstituted amino acid inhibitor suggests that such inhibitors could exhibit higher affinity and biological activity. The structures of SmARG complexed with two different α,α-disubstituted derivatives of ABH are presented and provide a proof of concept for this approach in the enhancement of enzyme–inhibitor affinity. PMID:25007099

  20. Unconventional actins and actin-binding proteins in human protozoan parasites.

    PubMed

    Gupta, C M; Thiyagarajan, S; Sahasrabuddhe, A A

    2015-06-01

    Actin and its regulatory proteins play a key role in several essential cellular processes such as cell movement, intracellular trafficking and cytokinesis in most eukaryotes. While these proteins are highly conserved in higher eukaryotes, a number of unicellular eukaryotic organisms contain divergent forms of these proteins which have highly unusual biochemical and structural properties. Here, we review the biochemical and structural properties of these unconventional actins and their core binding proteins which are present in commonly occurring human protozoan parasites.

  1. Genetic Diversity within Schistosoma haematobium: DNA Barcoding Reveals Two Distinct Groups

    PubMed Central

    Webster, Bonnie L.; Emery, Aiden M.; Webster, Joanne P.; Gouvras, Anouk; Garba, Amadou; Diaw, Oumar; Seye, Mohmoudane M.; Tchuente, Louis Albert Tchuem; Simoonga, Christopher; Mwanga, Joseph; Lange, Charles; Kariuki, Curtis; Mohammed, Khalfan A.; Stothard, J. Russell; Rollinson, David

    2012-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis in one of the most prevalent parasitic diseases, affecting millions of people and animals in developing countries. Amongst the human-infective species S. haematobium is one of the most widespread causing urogenital schistosomiasis, a major human health problem across Africa, however in terms of research this human pathogen has been severely neglected. Methodology/Principal Findings To elucidate the genetic diversity of Schistosoma haematobium, a DNA ‘barcoding’ study was performed on parasite material collected from 41 localities representing 18 countries across Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands. Surprisingly low sequence variation was found within the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (cox1) and the NADH-dehydrogenase subunit 1 snad1). The 61 haplotypes found within 1978 individual samples split into two distinct groups; one (Group 1) that is predominately made up of parasites from the African mainland and the other (Group 2) that is made up of samples exclusively from the Indian Ocean Islands and the neighbouring African coastal regions. Within Group 1 there was a dominance of one particular haplotype (H1) representing 1574 (80%) of the samples analyzed. Population genetic diversity increased in samples collected from the East African coastal regions and the data suggest that there has been movement of parasites between these areas and the Indian Ocean Islands. Conclusions/Significance The high occurrence of the haplotype (H1) suggests that at some point in the recent evolutionary history of S. haematobium in Africa the population may have passed through a genetic ‘bottleneck’ followed by a population expansion. This study provides novel and extremely interesting insights into the population genetics of S. haematobium on a large geographic scale, which may have consequence for control and monitoring of urogenital schistosomiasis. PMID:23145200

  2. Co-infection of tuberculosis and parasitic diseases in humans: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Co-infection of tuberculosis and parasitic diseases in humans is an important public problem in co-endemic areas in developing countries. However, there is a paucity of studies on co-infection and even fewer reviews. This review examines 44 appropriate papers by PRISMA from 289 papers searched in PubMed via the NCBI Entrez system (no grey literature) up to December 2012 in order to analyze the factors that influence epidemic and host’s immunity of co-infection. The limited evidence in this review indicates that most common parasite species are concurrent with Mycobacterium tuberculosis in multiple organs; socio-demographics such as gender and age, special populations with susceptibility such as renal transplant recipients, patients on maintenance haemodialysis, HIV positive patients and migrants, and living in or coming from co-endemic areas are all likely to have an impact on co-infection. Pulmonary tuberculosis and parasitic diseases were shown to be risk factors for each other. Co-infection may significantly inhibit the host’s immune system, increase antibacterial therapy intolerance and be detrimental to the prognosis of the disease; in addition, infection with parasitic diseases can alter the protective immune response to Bacillus Calmette-Guerin vaccination against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. PMID:23522098

  3. Analysis of a summary network of co-infection in humans reveals that parasites interact most via shared resources.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Emily C; Pedersen, Amy B; Fenton, Andy; Petchey, Owen L

    2014-05-01

    Simultaneous infection by multiple parasite species (viruses, bacteria, helminths, protozoa or fungi) is commonplace. Most reports show co-infected humans to have worse health than those with single infections. However, we have little understanding of how co-infecting parasites interact within human hosts. We used data from over 300 published studies to construct a network that offers the first broad indications of how groups of co-infecting parasites tend to interact. The network had three levels comprising parasites, the resources they consume and the immune responses they elicit, connected by potential, observed and experimentally proved links. Pairs of parasite species had most potential to interact indirectly through shared resources, rather than through immune responses or other parasites. In addition, the network comprised 10 tightly knit groups, eight of which were associated with particular body parts, and seven of which were dominated by parasite-resource links. Reported co-infection in humans is therefore structured by physical location within the body, with bottom-up, resource-mediated processes most often influencing how, where and which co-infecting parasites interact. The many indirect interactions show how treating an infection could affect other infections in co-infected patients, but the compartmentalized structure of the network will limit how far these indirect effects are likely to spread.

  4. Intestinal parasitic infections and micronutrient deficiency: a review.

    PubMed

    Hesham, M S; Edariah, A B; Norhayati, M

    2004-06-01

    Malnutrition including vitamin A and iron deficiency and parasitic diseases have a strikingly similar geographical distribution with the same people experiencing both insults together for much of their lives. Parasitic infections are thought to contribute to child malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency through subtle reduction in digestion and absorption, chronic inflammation and loss of nutrients. Parasites may affect the intake of food; it's subsequent digestion and absorption, metabolism and the maintenance of nutrient pools. The most important parasites related to nutritional status are intestinal parasites especially soil transmitted helminthes, Giardia duodenalis, Entamoeba histolytica, followed by other parasites such as the coccidia, Schistosoma sp. and malarial parasites.

  5. Disentangling hybridization and host colonization in parasitic roundworms of humans and pigs.

    PubMed

    Criscione, Charles D; Anderson, Joel D; Sudimack, Dan; Peng, Weidong; Jha, Bharat; Williams-Blangero, Sarah; Anderson, Timothy J C

    2007-11-01

    Knowledge of cross-transmission and hybridization between parasites of humans and reservoir hosts is critical for understanding the evolution of the parasite and for implementing control programmes. There is now a consensus that populations of pig and human Ascaris (roundworms) show significant genetic subdivision. However, it is unclear whether this has resulted from a single or multiple host shift(s). Furthermore, previous molecular data have not been sufficient to determine whether sympatric populations of human and pig Ascaris can exchange genes. To disentangle patterns of host colonization and hybridization, we used 23 microsatellite loci to conduct Bayesian clustering analyses of individual worms collected from pigs and humans. We observed strong differentiation between populations which was primarily driven by geography, with secondary differentiation resulting from host affiliation within locations. This pattern is consistent with multiple host colonization events. However, there is low support for the short internal branches of the dendrograms. In part, the relationships among clusters may result from current hybridization among sympatric human and pig roundworms. Indeed, congruence in three Bayesian methods indicated that 4 and 7% of roundworms sampled from Guatemala and China, respectively, were hybrids. These results indicate that there is contemporary cross-transmission between populations of human and pig Ascaris.

  6. Successful Feeding of Amblyomma coelebs (Acari: Ixodidae) Nymphs on Humans in Brazil: Skin Reactions to Parasitism.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Marcos V; Matias, Jaqueline; Aguirre, AndrÉ De A R; Csordas, Barbara G; SzabÓ, Matias P J; Andreotti, Renato

    2015-03-01

    Identifying the tick species that successfully feed on humans would increase knowledge of the epidemiology of several tick-borne diseases. These species salivate into the host, increasing the risk of pathogen transmission. However, there is a lack of data in the literature regarding the ticks that prefer to feed on humans. Herein, we describe the successful feeding of Amblyomma coelebs Neumann nymphs on two of the authors after accidental tick bites occurred during field surveys in two preserved areas of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. One of the host-parasite interactions was closely monitored, and the tick development, gross host skin alterations, and related sensations are presented. PMID:26336294

  7. Successful Feeding of Amblyomma coelebs (Acari: Ixodidae) Nymphs on Humans in Brazil: Skin Reactions to Parasitism.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Marcos V; Matias, Jaqueline; Aguirre, AndrÉ De A R; Csordas, Barbara G; SzabÓ, Matias P J; Andreotti, Renato

    2015-03-01

    Identifying the tick species that successfully feed on humans would increase knowledge of the epidemiology of several tick-borne diseases. These species salivate into the host, increasing the risk of pathogen transmission. However, there is a lack of data in the literature regarding the ticks that prefer to feed on humans. Herein, we describe the successful feeding of Amblyomma coelebs Neumann nymphs on two of the authors after accidental tick bites occurred during field surveys in two preserved areas of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. One of the host-parasite interactions was closely monitored, and the tick development, gross host skin alterations, and related sensations are presented.

  8. Successful Feeding of Amblyomma coelebs (Acari: Ixodidae) Nymphs on Humans in Brazil: Skin Reactions to Parasitism

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Marcos V.; Matias, Jaqueline; Aguirre, André De A. R.; Csordas, Barbara G.; Szabó, Matias P. J.

    2015-01-01

    Identifying the tick species that successfully feed on humans would increase knowledge of the epidemiology of several tick-borne diseases. These species salivate into the host, increasing the risk of pathogen transmission. However, there is a lack of data in the literature regarding the ticks that prefer to feed on humans. Herein, we describe the successful feeding of Amblyomma coelebs Neumann nymphs on two of the authors after accidental tick bites occurred during field surveys in two preserved areas of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. One of the host–parasite interactions was closely monitored, and the tick development, gross host skin alterations, and related sensations are presented. PMID:26336294

  9. Parasite Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases as Drug Discovery Targets to Treat Human Protozoan Pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Brumlik, Michael J.; Pandeswara, Srilakshmi; Ludwig, Sara M.; Murthy, Kruthi; Curiel, Tyler J.

    2011-01-01

    Protozoan pathogens are a highly diverse group of unicellular organisms, several of which are significant human pathogens. One group of protozoan pathogens includes obligate intracellular parasites such as agents of malaria, leishmaniasis, babesiosis, and toxoplasmosis. The other group includes extracellular pathogens such as agents of giardiasis and amebiasis. An unfortunate unifying theme for most human protozoan pathogens is that highly effective treatments for them are generally lacking. We will review targeting protozoan mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) as a novel drug discovery approach towards developing better therapies, focusing on Plasmodia, Leishmania, and Toxoplasma, about which the most is known. PMID:21637385

  10. [Factors responsible for preventing the carrying out of the Schistosoma mansoni cycle in the waters of Grande Terre of Guadeloupe (French Antilles)].

    PubMed

    Theron, A; Pointier, J P

    1985-01-01

    Different surveys which have been conducted in ponds and pools in the Grande Terre of Guadalupe, have demonstrated the absence of Schistosoma mansoni transmission in spite of apparent favourable ecological conditions. Four hypothesises can explain this absence of transmission: 1 - the presence of Biomphalaria glabrata populations non-susceptible to the infestation by S. mansoni. 2 - Ecological conditions unfavourable to the survival of parasitized snails. 3 - Ecological conditions unfavourable to the production, survival and infectivity of the S. mansoni cercariae. 4 - Factors causing the non-contamination of the snails. The results show that the transmission of schistosomiasis mansoni is possible in the ponds and pools of Grande Terre. Only human behaviour is responsible for the absence of actual transmission in the waterbodies of this area. Man breaks the life-cycle of the parasite by avoiding all fecal pollution and therefore all snail contamination.

  11. Cryptic parasite revealed improved prospects for treatment and control of human cryptosporidiosis through advanced technologies.

    PubMed

    Jex, Aaron R; Smith, Huw V; Nolan, Matthew J; Campbell, Bronwyn E; Young, Neil D; Cantacessi, Cinzia; Gasser, Robin B

    2011-01-01

    Cryptosporidium is an important genus of parasitic protozoa of humans and other vertebrates and is a major cause of intestinal disease globally. Unlike many common causes of infectious enteritis, there are no widely available, effective vaccine or drug-based intervention strategies for Cryptosporidium, and control is focused mainly on prevention. This approach is particularly deficient for infections of severely immunocompromised and/or suppressed, the elderly or malnourished people. However, cryptosporidiosis also presents a significant burden on immunocompetent individuals, and can, for example have lasting effects on the physical and mental development of children infected at an early age. In the last few decades, our understanding of Cryptosporidium has expanded significantly in numerous areas, including the parasite life-cycle, the processes of excystation, cellular invasion and reproduction, and the interplay between parasite and host. Nonetheless, despite extensive research, many aspects of the biology of Cryptosporidium remain unknown, and treatment and control are challenging. Here, we review the current state of knowledge of Cryptosporidium, with a focus on major advances arising from the recently completed genome sequences of the two species of greatest relevance in humans, namely Cryptosporidium hominis and Cryptosporidium parvum. In addition, we discuss the potential of next-generation sequencing technologies, new advances in in silico analyses and progress in in vitro culturing systems to bridge these gaps and to lead toward effective treatment and control of cryptosporidiosis.

  12. Parasitic Zoonoses in Humans and Their Dogs from a Rural Community of Tropical Mexico.

    PubMed

    Ortega-Pacheco, Antonio; Torres-Acosta, Juan F J; Alzina-López, Alejandro; Gutiérrez-Blanco, Eduardo; Bolio-González, Manuel E; Aguilar-Caballero, Armando J; Rodríguez-Vivas, Roger I; Gutiérrez-Ruiz, Edwin; Acosta-Viana, Karla Y; Guzmán-Marín, Eugenia; Rosado-Aguilar, Alberto; Jiménez-Coello, Matilde

    2015-01-01

    A cross-sectional study was made on 89 inhabitants and their dogs from a rural community of Yucatan, Mexico, to determine the serological prevalence of some zoonotic parasitic agents. Samples were taken to monitor the presence and intensity of infection with gastrointestinal parasites in dogs. In humans, the serological prevalence of T. canis, T. gondii, and T. spiralis was 29.2%, 91.0%, and 6.7%, respectively. No associations were found between positive cases and studied variables. From the total of blood samples taken from dogs, 87 (97.6%) were seropositive to T. gondii; only 52 viable fecal samples were collected from dogs of which 46.2% had the presence of gastrointestinal parasites with low to moderate intensity; from those, 12% had the presence of T. canis. This study demonstrates the presence of the studied zoonotic agents in the area particularly T. gondii which suggest a common source of infection in dogs and humans and a high number of oocyts present in the environment. Preventive measures must be designed towards good prophylactic practices in domestic and backyard animals (T. canis and T. spiralis). Contaminated sources with T. gondii (food and water) should be further investigated in order to design effective control measures. PMID:26770216

  13. Parasitic Zoonoses in Humans and Their Dogs from a Rural Community of Tropical Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Ortega-Pacheco, Antonio; Torres-Acosta, Juan F. J.; Alzina-López, Alejandro; Gutiérrez-Blanco, Eduardo; Bolio-González, Manuel E.; Aguilar-Caballero, Armando J.; Rodríguez-Vivas, Roger I.; Gutiérrez-Ruiz, Edwin; Guzmán-Marín, Eugenia; Rosado-Aguilar, Alberto; Jiménez-Coello, Matilde

    2015-01-01

    A cross-sectional study was made on 89 inhabitants and their dogs from a rural community of Yucatan, Mexico, to determine the serological prevalence of some zoonotic parasitic agents. Samples were taken to monitor the presence and intensity of infection with gastrointestinal parasites in dogs. In humans, the serological prevalence of T. canis, T. gondii, and T. spiralis was 29.2%, 91.0%, and 6.7%, respectively. No associations were found between positive cases and studied variables. From the total of blood samples taken from dogs, 87 (97.6%) were seropositive to T. gondii; only 52 viable fecal samples were collected from dogs of which 46.2% had the presence of gastrointestinal parasites with low to moderate intensity; from those, 12% had the presence of T. canis. This study demonstrates the presence of the studied zoonotic agents in the area particularly T. gondii which suggest a common source of infection in dogs and humans and a high number of oocyts present in the environment. Preventive measures must be designed towards good prophylactic practices in domestic and backyard animals (T. canis and T. spiralis). Contaminated sources with T. gondii (food and water) should be further investigated in order to design effective control measures. PMID:26770216

  14. FLOTAC: new multivalent techniques for qualitative and quantitative copromicroscopic diagnosis of parasites in animals and humans.

    PubMed

    Cringoli, Giuseppe; Rinaldi, Laura; Maurelli, Maria Paola; Utzinger, Jürg

    2010-03-01

    Accurate diagnosis of parasitic infections is of pivotal importance for both individual patient management and population-based studies, such as drug efficacy trials and surveillance of parasitic disease control and elimination programs, in both human and veterinary public health. In this study, we present protocols for the FLOTAC basic, dual and double techniques, which are promising new multivalent, sensitive, accurate and precise methods for qualitative and quantitative copromicroscopic analysis. These various methods make use of the FLOTAC apparatus, a cylindrical device with two 5-ml flotation chambers, which allows up to 1 g of stool to be prepared for microscopic analysis. Compared with currently more widely used diagnostic methods for parasite detection in animals (e.g., McMaster and Wisconsin techniques) and humans (e.g., Kato-Katz and ether-based concentration techniques), the FLOTAC techniques show higher sensitivity and accuracy. All FLOTAC techniques can be performed on fresh fecal material as well as preserved stool samples, and require approximately 12-15 min of preparation time before microscopic analysis.

  15. Interdomain lateral gene transfer of an essential ferrochelatase gene in human parasitic nematodes.

    PubMed

    Wu, Bo; Novelli, Jacopo; Jiang, Daojun; Dailey, Harry A; Landmann, Frédéric; Ford, Louise; Taylor, Mark J; Carlow, Clotilde K S; Kumar, Sanjay; Foster, Jeremy M; Slatko, Barton E

    2013-05-01

    Lateral gene transfer events between bacteria and animals highlight an avenue for evolutionary genomic loss/gain of function. Herein, we report functional lateral gene transfer in animal parasitic nematodes. Members of the Nematoda are heme auxotrophs, lacking the ability to synthesize heme; however, the human filarial parasite Brugia malayi has acquired a bacterial gene encoding ferrochelatase (BmFeCH), the terminal step in heme biosynthesis. BmFeCH, encoded by a 9-exon gene, is a mitochondrial-targeted, functional ferrochelatase based on enzyme assays, complementation, and inhibitor studies. Homologs have been identified in several filariae and a nonfilarial nematode. RNAi and ex vivo inhibitor experiments indicate that BmFeCH is essential for viability, validating it as a potential target for filariasis control.

  16. Interdomain lateral gene transfer of an essential ferrochelatase gene in human parasitic nematodes

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Bo; Novelli, Jacopo; Jiang, Daojun; Dailey, Harry A.; Landmann, Frédéric; Ford, Louise; Taylor, Mark J.; Carlow, Clotilde K. S.; Kumar, Sanjay; Foster, Jeremy M.; Slatko, Barton E.

    2013-01-01

    Lateral gene transfer events between bacteria and animals highlight an avenue for evolutionary genomic loss/gain of function. Herein, we report functional lateral gene transfer in animal parasitic nematodes. Members of the Nematoda are heme auxotrophs, lacking the ability to synthesize heme; however, the human filarial parasite Brugia malayi has acquired a bacterial gene encoding ferrochelatase (BmFeCH), the terminal step in heme biosynthesis. BmFeCH, encoded by a 9-exon gene, is a mitochondrial-targeted, functional ferrochelatase based on enzyme assays, complementation, and inhibitor studies. Homologs have been identified in several filariae and a nonfilarial nematode. RNAi and ex vivo inhibitor experiments indicate that BmFeCH is essential for viability, validating it as a potential target for filariasis control. PMID:23610429

  17. Transcriptionally Driven DNA Replication Program of the Human Parasite Leishmania major.

    PubMed

    Lombraña, Rodrigo; Álvarez, Alba; Fernández-Justel, José Miguel; Almeida, Ricardo; Poza-Carrión, César; Gomes, Fábia; Calzada, Arturo; Requena, José María; Gómez, María

    2016-08-01

    Faithful inheritance of eukaryotic genomes requires the orchestrated activation of multiple DNA replication origins (ORIs). Although origin firing is mechanistically conserved, how origins are specified and selected for activation varies across different model systems. Here, we provide a complete analysis of the nucleosomal landscape and replication program of the human parasite Leishmania major, building on a better evolutionary understanding of replication organization in Eukarya. We found that active transcription is a driving force for the nucleosomal organization of the L. major genome and that both the spatial and the temporal program of DNA replication can be explained as associated to RNA polymerase kinetics. This simple scenario likely provides flexibility and robustness to deal with the environmental changes that impose alterations in the genetic programs during parasitic life cycle stages. Our findings also suggest that coupling replication initiation to transcription elongation could be an ancient solution used by eukaryotic cells for origin maintenance. PMID:27477279

  18. The interaction between filarial parasites and human monocyte/macrophage populations.

    PubMed

    Semnani, Roshanak Tolouei

    2013-01-01

    Lymphatic filariasis is a mafor tropical disease affecting approximately 120 million people worldwide. Patent infection, by and large, is clinically asymptomatic but is associated with the inability of T cells to proliferate or produce IFN-γ in response to parasite antigen. Monocyte dysfunction is one hypothesis felt to explain the lack of an antigen-specific T cell response. In fact, monocytes from filaria-infected individuals have been shown to be studded with internalized filarial antigens. Understanding how the phenotype and the function of these monocytes are altered through the internalization of these parasite antigens is one of the areas our laboratory has focused on. In fact, the existence and/or function of alternatively activated macrophages in murine models of filarial infections have been extensively studied. Whether this population of macrophages can be induced in human filarial infections is the main focus of this review. PMID:23456837

  19. An interesting finding in the uterine cervix: Schistosoma hematobium calcified eggs

    PubMed Central

    Scopin, Ana Carolina; Apfel, Vanessa; Prigenzi, Karla Calaça Kabbach; Tso, Fernanda Kesselring; Focchi, Gustavo Rubino de Azevedo; Speck, Neila; Ribalta, Julisa

    2015-01-01

    Schistosoma hematobium infection is an endemic parasitic disease in Africa, which is frequently associated with urinary schistosomiasis. The parasite infection causes epithelial changes and disruption, facilitating the infection by the human papilloma virus and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The authors report the case of a 44-year-old African HIV-positive woman who presented an abnormal routine Pap smear. Colposcopy examination revealed dense acetowhite micropapillary epithelium covering the ectocervix, iodine-negative, an erosion area in endocervical canal, and atypical vessels. Histologic examination of the surgical specimens showed numerous calcified schistosome eggs (probably S. hematobium) and a high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia. The relation between S. hematobium infection and bladder cancer is well known; however, this relationship with cervical cancer remains controversial. The symptoms of schistosomiasis of the female genital tract are rather non-specific, and are often misdiagnosed with other pelvic diseases. The familiarity of health professionals with schistosomiasis of the female genital tract is less than expected, even in endemic regions. Therefore, great awareness of this differential diagnosis in routine gynecological practice is of paramount importance. PMID:26484333

  20. An interesting finding in the uterine cervix: Schistosoma hematobium calcified eggs.

    PubMed

    Toller, Alexia; Scopin, Ana Carolina; Apfel, Vanessa; Prigenzi, Karla Calaça Kabbach; Tso, Fernanda Kesselring; Focchi, Gustavo Rubino de Azevedo; Speck, Neila; Ribalta, Julisa

    2015-01-01

    Schistosoma hematobium infection is an endemic parasitic disease in Africa, which is frequently associated with urinary schistosomiasis. The parasite infection causes epithelial changes and disruption, facilitating the infection by the human papilloma virus and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The authors report the case of a 44-year-old African HIV-positive woman who presented an abnormal routine Pap smear. Colposcopy examination revealed dense acetowhite micropapillary epithelium covering the ectocervix, iodine-negative, an erosion area in endocervical canal, and atypical vessels. Histologic examination of the surgical specimens showed numerous calcified schistosome eggs (probably S. hematobium) and a high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia. The relation between S. hematobium infection and bladder cancer is well known; however, this relationship with cervical cancer remains controversial. The symptoms of schistosomiasis of the female genital tract are rather non-specific, and are often misdiagnosed with other pelvic diseases. The familiarity of health professionals with schistosomiasis of the female genital tract is less than expected, even in endemic regions. Therefore, great awareness of this differential diagnosis in routine gynecological practice is of paramount importance.

  1. Behavioural defences in animals against pathogens and parasites: parallels with the pillars of medicine in humans

    PubMed Central

    Hart, Benjamin L.

    2011-01-01

    No other theme in animal biology seems to be more central than the concept of employing strategies to survive and successfully reproduce. In nature, controlling or avoiding pathogens and parasites is an essential fitness strategy because of the ever-present disease-causing organisms. The disease-control strategies discussed here are: physical avoidance and removal of pathogens and parasites; quarantine or peripheralization of conspecifics that could be carrying potential pathogens; herbal medicine, animal style, to prevent or treat an infection; potentiation of the immune system; and care of sick or injured group members. These strategies are seen as also encompassing the pillars of human medicine: (i) quarantine; (ii) immune-boosting vaccinations; (iii) use of medicinal products; and (iv) caring or nursing. In contrast to animals, in humans, the disease-control strategies have been consolidated into a consistent and extensive medical system. A hypothesis that explains some of this difference between animals and humans is that humans are sick more often than animals. This increase in sickness in humans leading to an extensive, cognitively driven medical system is attributed to an evolutionary dietary transition from mostly natural vegetation to a meat-based diet, with an increase in health-eroding free radicals and a dietary reduction of free-radical-scavenging antioxidants. PMID:22042917

  2. Toxic effects of chromium on Schistosoma haematobium miracidia

    SciTech Connect

    Wolmarans, C.T.; Yssel, E.; Hamilton-Attwell, V.L.

    1988-12-01

    Various heavy metals have recently been evaluated as molluscicides for freshwater snails, which act as intermediate hosts of trematode parasites of medical or veterinary importance. Very little information, however, is available on heavy metals that may be suitable to eliminate the parasites as such. Suitable compounds should also inhibit the penetration ability of parasites as well as stunt the development of those who do not penetrate their hosts. In the light of these requirements, the present study evaluated the effect of chromium on the miracidia of Schistosoma haematobium, which causes urinary bilharzia. Attention was mainly focused on (1) the chromium concentration which resulted in 100% mortality (2) the effect of chromium on the external and internal morphology of the miracidia, and (3) the ability of the miracidia to form sporocytes in vitro and in vivo and to penetrate their intermediate host snail, Bulinus africanus.

  3. Anopheles gambiae Immune Responses to Human and Rodent Plasmodium Parasite Species

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Yuemei; Aguilar, Ruth; Xi, Zhiyong; Warr, Emma; Mongin, Emmanuel; Dimopoulos, George

    2006-01-01

    Transmission of malaria is dependent on the successful completion of the Plasmodium lifecycle in the Anopheles vector. Major obstacles are encountered in the midgut tissue, where most parasites are killed by the mosquito's immune system. In the present study, DNA microarray analyses have been used to compare Anopheles gambiae responses to invasion of the midgut epithelium by the ookinete stage of the human pathogen Plasmodium falciparum and the rodent experimental model pathogen P. berghei. Invasion by P. berghei had a more profound impact on the mosquito transcriptome, including a variety of functional gene classes, while P. falciparum elicited a broader immune response at the gene transcript level. Ingestion of human malaria-infected blood lacking invasive ookinetes also induced a variety of immune genes, including several anti-Plasmodium factors. Twelve selected genes were assessed for effect on infection with both parasite species and bacteria using RNAi gene silencing assays, and seven of these genes were found to influence mosquito resistance to both parasite species. An MD2-like receptor, AgMDL1, and an immunolectin, FBN39, showed specificity in regulating only resistance to P. falciparum, while the antimicrobial peptide gambicin and a novel putative short secreted peptide, IRSP5, were more specific for defense against the rodent parasite P. berghei. While all the genes that affected Plasmodium development also influenced mosquito resistance to bacterial infection, four of the antimicrobial genes had no effect on Plasmodium development. Our study shows that the impact of P. falciparum and P. berghei infection on A. gambiae biology at the gene transcript level is quite diverse, and the defense against the two Plasmodium species is mediated by antimicrobial factors with both universal and Plasmodium-species specific activities. Furthermore, our data indicate that the mosquito is capable of sensing infected blood constituents in the absence of invading

  4. Anopheles gambiae immune responses to human and rodent Plasmodium parasite species.

    PubMed

    Dong, Yuemei; Aguilar, Ruth; Xi, Zhiyong; Warr, Emma; Mongin, Emmanuel; Dimopoulos, George

    2006-06-01

    Transmission of malaria is dependent on the successful completion of the Plasmodium lifecycle in the Anopheles vector. Major obstacles are encountered in the midgut tissue, where most parasites are killed by the mosquito's immune system. In the present study, DNA microarray analyses have been used to compare Anopheles gambiae responses to invasion of the midgut epithelium by the ookinete stage of the human pathogen Plasmodium falciparum and the rodent experimental model pathogen P. berghei. Invasion by P. berghei had a more profound impact on the mosquito transcriptome, including a variety of functional gene classes, while P. falciparum elicited a broader immune response at the gene transcript level. Ingestion of human malaria-infected blood lacking invasive ookinetes also induced a variety of immune genes, including several anti-Plasmodium factors. Twelve selected genes were assessed for effect on infection with both parasite species and bacteria using RNAi gene silencing assays, and seven of these genes were found to influence mosquito resistance to both parasite species. An MD2-like receptor, AgMDL1, and an immunolectin, FBN39, showed specificity in regulating only resistance to P. falciparum, while the antimicrobial peptide gambicin and a novel putative short secreted peptide, IRSP5, were more specific for defense against the rodent parasite P. berghei. While all the genes that affected Plasmodium development also influenced mosquito resistance to bacterial infection, four of the antimicrobial genes had no effect on Plasmodium development. Our study shows that the impact of P. falciparum and P. berghei infection on A. gambiae biology at the gene transcript level is quite diverse, and the defense against the two Plasmodium species is mediated by antimicrobial factors with both universal and Plasmodium-species specific activities. Furthermore, our data indicate that the mosquito is capable of sensing infected blood constituents in the absence of invading

  5. Zoonotic intestinal parasites of hamadryas baboons Papio hamadryas in the western and northern regions of Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Ghandour, A M; Zahid, N Z; Banaja, A A; Kamal, K B; Bouq, A I

    1995-12-01

    Six hundred and thirty-three faecal samples were randomly collected and examined for ova and cysts of intestinal parasites from five groups of hamadryas baboons of different population densities, with different human contact and in different ecological conditions (Al-Baha, Turabah and Al-Taif in south-western and Al-Rihat and Al-Akhal in north-western Saudi Arabia). Nine parasites were recorded (Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica, Escherichia coli, Balantidium coli, Enterobius sp., Trichuris sp., Hookworm, Hymenolepis nana and Schistosoma mansoni) in 274 samples (43.28%). The prevalence of parasites was high (36.0-58.5%) in areas of mild, cool climatic conditions, where baboons were at high density and had maximum human contact. However, in an area (Al-Akhal) of hot, dry climatic conditions, low baboon density and minimum human contact, the parasites' prevalence was very low (9.5%). The concentration of parasites (ova or cysts per g of faeces) was medium. Post-mortem examination of 24, 20, 19 and 13 baboons from Al-Baha, Al-Taif, Turabah and Al-Rihat revealed most of the parasites recorded in random faecal samples at prevalence rates of 37.5, 30.0, 36.0 and 23.0% respectively. The overall prevalence rate was 32.9%. Most of the parasites recorded in baboons were also recorded in humans in the areas of study. PMID:8544227

  6. The prevalence and diversity of intestinal parasitic infections in humans and domestic animals in a rural Cambodian village.

    PubMed

    Schär, Fabian; Inpankaew, Tawin; Traub, Rebecca J; Khieu, Virak; Dalsgaard, Anders; Chimnoi, Wissanuwat; Chhoun, Chamnan; Sok, Daream; Marti, Hanspeter; Muth, Sinuon; Odermatt, Peter

    2014-08-01

    In Cambodia, intestinal parasitic infections are prevalent in humans and particularly in children. Yet, information on potentially zoonotic parasites in animal reservoir hosts is lacking. In May 2012, faecal samples from 218 humans, 94 dogs and 76 pigs were collected from 67 households in Dong village, Preah Vihear province, Cambodia. Faecal samples were examined microscopically using sodium nitrate and zinc sulphate flotation methods, the Baermann method, Koga Agar plate culture, formalin-ether concentration technique and Kato Katz technique. PCR was used to confirm hookworm, Ascaris spp., Giardia spp. and Blastocystis spp. Major gastrointestinal parasitic infections found in humans included hookworms (63.3%), Entamoeba spp. (27.1%) and Strongyloides stercoralis (24.3%). In dogs, hookworm (80.8%), Spirometra spp. (21.3%) and Strongyloides spp. (14.9%) were most commonly detected and in pigs Isospora suis (75.0%), Oesophagostomum spp. (73.7%) and Entamoeba spp. (31.6%) were found. Eleven parasite species were detected in dogs (eight helminths and three protozoa), seven of which have zoonotic potential, including hookworm, Strongyloides spp., Trichuris spp., Toxocara canis, Echinostoma spp., Giardia duodenalis and Entamoeba spp. Five of the parasite species detected in pigs also have zoonotic potential, including Ascaris spp., Trichuris spp., Capillaria spp., Balantidium coli and Entamoeba spp. Further molecular epidemiological studies will aid characterisation of parasite species and genotypes and allow further insight into the potential for zoonotic cross transmission of parasites in this community.

  7. The prevalence and diversity of intestinal parasitic infections in humans and domestic animals in a rural Cambodian village.

    PubMed

    Schär, Fabian; Inpankaew, Tawin; Traub, Rebecca J; Khieu, Virak; Dalsgaard, Anders; Chimnoi, Wissanuwat; Chhoun, Chamnan; Sok, Daream; Marti, Hanspeter; Muth, Sinuon; Odermatt, Peter

    2014-08-01

    In Cambodia, intestinal parasitic infections are prevalent in humans and particularly in children. Yet, information on potentially zoonotic parasites in animal reservoir hosts is lacking. In May 2012, faecal samples from 218 humans, 94 dogs and 76 pigs were collected from 67 households in Dong village, Preah Vihear province, Cambodia. Faecal samples were examined microscopically using sodium nitrate and zinc sulphate flotation methods, the Baermann method, Koga Agar plate culture, formalin-ether concentration technique and Kato Katz technique. PCR was used to confirm hookworm, Ascaris spp., Giardia spp. and Blastocystis spp. Major gastrointestinal parasitic infections found in humans included hookworms (63.3%), Entamoeba spp. (27.1%) and Strongyloides stercoralis (24.3%). In dogs, hookworm (80.8%), Spirometra spp. (21.3%) and Strongyloides spp. (14.9%) were most commonly detected and in pigs Isospora suis (75.0%), Oesophagostomum spp. (73.7%) and Entamoeba spp. (31.6%) were found. Eleven parasite species were detected in dogs (eight helminths and three protozoa), seven of which have zoonotic potential, including hookworm, Strongyloides spp., Trichuris spp., Toxocara canis, Echinostoma spp., Giardia duodenalis and Entamoeba spp. Five of the parasite species detected in pigs also have zoonotic potential, including Ascaris spp., Trichuris spp., Capillaria spp., Balantidium coli and Entamoeba spp. Further molecular epidemiological studies will aid characterisation of parasite species and genotypes and allow further insight into the potential for zoonotic cross transmission of parasites in this community. PMID:24704609

  8. Host density and human activities mediate increased parasite prevalence and richness in primates threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation.

    PubMed

    Mbora, David N M; McPeek, Mark A

    2009-01-01

    1. Habitat loss and fragmentation are the principal causes of the loss of biological diversity. In addition, parasitic diseases are an emerging threat to many animals. Nevertheless, relatively few studies have tested how habitat loss and fragmentation influence the prevalence and richness of parasites in animals. 2. Several studies of nonhuman primates have shown that measures of human activity and forest fragmentation correlate with parasitism in primates. However, these studies have not tested for the ecological mechanism(s) by which human activities or forest fragmentation influence the prevalence and richness of parasites. 3. We tested the hypothesis that increased host density due to forest fragmentation and loss mediates increases in the prevalence and richness of gastrointestinal parasites in two forest primates, the Tana River red colobus (Procolobus rufomitratus, Peters 1879) and mangabey (Cercocebus galeritus galeritus, Peters 1879). We focused on population density because epidemiological theory states that host density is a key determinant of the prevalence and richness of directly transmitted parasites in animals. 4. The Tana River red colobus and mangabey are endemic to a highly fragmented forest ecosystem in eastern Kenya where habitat changes are caused by a growing human population increasingly dependent on forest resources and on clearing forest for cultivation. 5. We found that the prevalence of parasites in the two monkeys was very high compared to primates elsewhere. Density of monkeys was positively associated with forest area and disturbance in forests. In turn, the prevalence and richness of parasites was significantly associated with monkey density, and attributes indicative of human disturbance in forests. 6. We also found significant differences in the patterns of parasitism between the colobus and the mangabey possibly attributable to differences in their behavioural ecology. Colobus are arboreal folivores while mangabeys are terrestrial

  9. Release of Small RNA-containing Exosome-like Vesicles from the Human Filarial Parasite Brugia malayi.

    PubMed

    Zamanian, Mostafa; Fraser, Lisa M; Agbedanu, Prince N; Harischandra, Hiruni; Moorhead, Andrew R; Day, Tim A; Bartholomay, Lyric C; Kimber, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is a socio-economically devastating mosquito-borne Neglected Tropical Disease caused by parasitic filarial nematodes. The interaction between the parasite and host, both mosquito and human, during infection, development and persistence is dynamic and delicately balanced. Manipulation of this interface to the detriment of the parasite is a promising potential avenue to develop disease therapies but is prevented by our very limited understanding of the host-parasite relationship. Exosomes are bioactive small vesicles (30-120 nm) secreted by a wide range of cell types and involved in a wide range of physiological processes. Here, we report the identification and partial characterization of exosome-like vesicles (ELVs) released from the infective L3 stage of the human filarial parasite Brugia malayi. Exosome-like vesicles were isolated from parasites in culture media and electron microscopy and nanoparticle tracking analysis were used to confirm that vesicles produced by juvenile B. malayi are exosome-like based on size and morphology. We show that loss of parasite viability correlates with a time-dependent decay in vesicle size specificity and rate of release. The protein cargo of these vesicles is shown to include common exosomal protein markers and putative effector proteins. These Brugia-derived vesicles contain small RNA species that include microRNAs with host homology, suggesting a potential role in host manipulation. Confocal microscopy shows J774A.1, a murine macrophage cell line, internalize purified ELVs, and we demonstrate that these ELVs effectively stimulate a classically activated macrophage phenotype in J774A.1. To our knowledge, this is the first report of exosome-like vesicle release by a human parasitic nematode and our data suggest a novel mechanism by which human parasitic nematodes may actively direct the host responses to infection. Further interrogation of the makeup and function of these bioactive vesicles could seed

  10. Release of Small RNA-containing Exosome-like Vesicles from the Human Filarial Parasite Brugia malayi

    PubMed Central

    Agbedanu, Prince N; Harischandra, Hiruni; Moorhead, Andrew R; Day, Tim A; Bartholomay, Lyric C; Kimber, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is a socio-economically devastating mosquito-borne Neglected Tropical Disease caused by parasitic filarial nematodes. The interaction between the parasite and host, both mosquito and human, during infection, development and persistence is dynamic and delicately balanced. Manipulation of this interface to the detriment of the parasite is a promising potential avenue to develop disease therapies but is prevented by our very limited understanding of the host-parasite relationship. Exosomes are bioactive small vesicles (30–120 nm) secreted by a wide range of cell types and involved in a wide range of physiological processes. Here, we report the identification and partial characterization of exosome-like vesicles (ELVs) released from the infective L3 stage of the human filarial parasite Brugia malayi. Exosome-like vesicles were isolated from parasites in culture media and electron microscopy and nanoparticle tracking analysis were used to confirm that vesicles produced by juvenile B. malayi are exosome-like based on size and morphology. We show that loss of parasite viability correlates with a time-dependent decay in vesicle size specificity and rate of release. The protein cargo of these vesicles is shown to include common exosomal protein markers and putative effector proteins. These Brugia-derived vesicles contain small RNA species that include microRNAs with host homology, suggesting a potential role in host manipulation. Confocal microscopy shows J774A.1, a murine macrophage cell line, internalize purified ELVs, and we demonstrate that these ELVs effectively stimulate a classically activated macrophage phenotype in J774A.1. To our knowledge, this is the first report of exosome-like vesicle release by a human parasitic nematode and our data suggest a novel mechanism by which human parasitic nematodes may actively direct the host responses to infection. Further interrogation of the makeup and function of these bioactive vesicles could seed

  11. Mycoplasma hominis and Trichomonas vaginalis: a unique case of symbiotic relationship between two obligate human parasites.

    PubMed

    Dessì, Daniele; Rappelli, Paola; Diaz, Nicia; Cappuccinelli, Piero; Fiori, Pier Luigi

    2006-01-01

    Mollicutes are the smallest and simplest self-replicating microorganisms. Despite the minimal genome and apparent lack of complexity, mycoplasmas show a high degree of adaptation to the most diverse environments. Mycoplasma hominis is a human sexually transmitted mycoplasma which is able to establish a biological association with Trichomonas vaginalis, a pathogenic flagellated protist. M. hominis and T. vaginalis share the same specific natural niche, the human genitourinary tract. Symbiotic relationships between unicellular eukaryotes and bacteria are well known and have been extensively studied, providing interesting insights into the biology of one or both the symbionts. The relationship between T. vaginalis and M. hominis is unique in that it was the first described association of two obligated human parasites. Several aspects of this relationship have been investigated, showing how the trichomonad may be viewed not only as a new niche for M. hominis, but also as a "Trojan horse" for the transmission of the bacterial infection to the human host. PMID:16720288

  12. Human Monoclonal Antibodies to Pf 155, a Major Antigen of Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Udomsangpetch, Rachanee; Lundgren, Katarina; Berzins, Klavs; Wahlin, Birgitta; Perlmann, Hedvig; Troye-Blomberg, Marita; Carlsson, Jan; Wahlgren, Mats; Perlmann, Peter; Bjorkman, Anders

    1986-01-01

    Pf 155, a protein of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, is strongly immunogenic in humans and is believed to be a prime candidate for the preparation of a vaccine. Human monoclonal antibodies to Pf 155 were obtained by cloning B cells that had been prepared from an immune donor and transformed with Epstein-Barr virus. When examined by indirect immunofluorescence, these antibodies stained the surface of infected erythrocytes, free merozoites, segmented schizonts, and gametocytes. They bound to a major polypeptide with a relative molecular weight of 155K and to two minor ones (135K and 120K), all having high affinity for human glycophorin. The antibodies strongly inhibited merozoite reinvasion in vitro, suggesting that they might be appropriate reagents for therapeutic administration in vivo.

  13. Insights into the pyrimidine biosynthetic pathway of human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum as chemotherapeutic target.

    PubMed

    Krungkrai, Sudaratana R; Krungkrai, Jerapan

    2016-06-01

    Malaria is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in humans. Artemisinins remain as the first-line treatment for Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) malaria although drug resistance has already emerged and spread in Southeast Asia. Thus, to fight this disease, there is an urgent need to develop new antimalarial drugs for malaria chemotherapy. Unlike human host cells, P. falciparum cannot salvage preformed pyrimidine bases or nucleosides from the extracellular environment and relies solely on nucleotides synthesized through the de novo biosynthetic pathway. This review presents significant progress on understanding the de novo pyrimidine pathway and the functional enzymes in the human parasite P. falciparum. Current knowledge in genomics and metabolomics are described, particularly focusing on the parasite purine and pyrimidine nucleotide metabolism. These include gene annotation, characterization and molecular mechanism of the enzymes that are different from the human host pathway. Recent elucidation of the three-dimensional crystal structures and the catalytic reactions of three enzymes: dihydroorotate dehydrogenase, orotate phosphoribosyltransferase, and orotidine 5'-monophosphate decarboxylase, as well as their inhibitors are reviewed in the context of their therapeutic potential against malaria. PMID:27262062

  14. Insights into the pyrimidine biosynthetic pathway of human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum as chemotherapeutic target.

    PubMed

    Krungkrai, Sudaratana R; Krungkrai, Jerapan

    2016-06-01

    Malaria is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in humans. Artemisinins remain as the first-line treatment for Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) malaria although drug resistance has already emerged and spread in Southeast Asia. Thus, to fight this disease, there is an urgent need to develop new antimalarial drugs for malaria chemotherapy. Unlike human host cells, P. falciparum cannot salvage preformed pyrimidine bases or nucleosides from the extracellular environment and relies solely on nucleotides synthesized through the de novo biosynthetic pathway. This review presents significant progress on understanding the de novo pyrimidine pathway and the functional enzymes in the human parasite P. falciparum. Current knowledge in genomics and metabolomics are described, particularly focusing on the parasite purine and pyrimidine nucleotide metabolism. These include gene annotation, characterization and molecular mechanism of the enzymes that are different from the human host pathway. Recent elucidation of the three-dimensional crystal structures and the catalytic reactions of three enzymes: dihydroorotate dehydrogenase, orotate phosphoribosyltransferase, and orotidine 5'-monophosphate decarboxylase, as well as their inhibitors are reviewed in the context of their therapeutic potential against malaria.

  15. Serine proteases of parasitic helminths.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yong; Wen, Yun jun; Cai, Ya Nan; Vallée, Isabelle; Boireau, Pascal; Liu, Ming Yuan; Cheng, Shi Peng

    2015-02-01

    Serine proteases form one of the most important families of enzymes and perform significant functions in a broad range of biological processes, such as intra- and extracellular protein metabolism, digestion, blood coagulation, regulation of development, and fertilization. A number of serine proteases have been identified in parasitic helminths that have putative roles in parasite development and nutrition, host tissues and cell invasion, anticoagulation, and immune evasion. In this review, we described the serine proteases that have been identified in parasitic helminths, including nematodes (Trichinella spiralis, T. pseudospiralis, Trichuris muris, Anisakis simplex, Ascaris suum, Onchocerca volvulus, O. lienalis, Brugia malayi, Ancylostoma caninum, and Steinernema carpocapsae), cestodes (Spirometra mansoni, Echinococcus granulosus, and Schistocephalus solidus), and trematodes (Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, and Schistosoma mansoni). Moreover, the possible biological functions of these serine proteases in the endogenous biological phenomena of these parasites and in the host-parasite interaction were also discussed. PMID:25748703

  16. Serine Proteases of Parasitic Helminths

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Yong; Wen, Yun jun; Cai, Ya Nan; Vallée, Isabelle; Boireau, Pascal; Liu, Ming Yuan; Cheng, Shi Peng

    2015-01-01

    Serine proteases form one of the most important families of enzymes and perform significant functions in a broad range of biological processes, such as intra- and extracellular protein metabolism, digestion, blood coagulation, regulation of development, and fertilization. A number of serine proteases have been identified in parasitic helminths that have putative roles in parasite development and nutrition, host tissues and cell invasion, anticoagulation, and immune evasion. In this review, we described the serine proteases that have been identified in parasitic helminths, including nematodes (Trichinella spiralis, T. pseudospiralis, Trichuris muris, Anisakis simplex, Ascaris suum, Onchocerca volvulus, O. lienalis, Brugia malayi, Ancylostoma caninum, and Steinernema carpocapsae), cestodes (Spirometra mansoni, Echinococcus granulosus, and Schistocephalus solidus), and trematodes (Fasciola hepatica, F. gigantica, and Schistosoma mansoni). Moreover, the possible biological functions of these serine proteases in the endogenous biological phenomena of these parasites and in the host-parasite interaction were also discussed. PMID:25748703

  17. The Clp Chaperones and Proteases of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    SciTech Connect

    Bakkouri, Majida El; Pow, Andre; Mulichak, Anne; Cheung, Kevin L.Y.; Artz, Jennifer D.; Amani, Mehrnaz; Fell, Stuart; de Koning-Ward, Tania F.; Goodman, C. Dean; McFadden, Geoffrey I.; Ortega, Joaquin; Hui, Raymond; Houry, Walid A.

    2015-02-09

    The Clp chaperones and proteases play an important role in protein homeostasis in the cell. They are highly conserved across prokaryotes and found also in the mitochondria of eukaryotes and the chloroplasts of plants. They function mainly in the disaggregation, unfolding and degradation of native as well as misfolded proteins. Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of the Clp chaperones and proteases in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The parasite contains four Clp ATPases, which we term PfClpB1, PfClpB2, PfClpC and PfClpM. One PfClpP, the proteolytic subunit, and one PfClpR, which is an inactive version of the protease, were also identified. Expression of all Clp chaperones and proteases was confirmed in blood-stage parasites. The proteins were localized to the apicoplast, a non-photosynthetic organelle that accommodates several important metabolic pathways in P. falciparum, with the exception of PfClpB2 (also known as Hsp101), which was found in the parasitophorous vacuole. Both PfClpP and PfClpR form mostly homoheptameric rings as observed by size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation and electron microscopy. The X-ray structure of PfClpP showed the protein as a compacted tetradecamer similar to that observed for Streptococcus pneumoniae and Mycobacterium tuberculosis ClpPs. Our data suggest the presence of a ClpCRP complex in the apicoplast of P. falciparum.

  18. A robust and automatic method for human parasite egg recognition in microscopic images.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhixun; Gong, Huiling; Zhang, Wei; Chen, Lian; Tao, Juncai; Song, Langui; Wu, Zhongdao

    2015-10-01

    With the accelerated movement of population, human parasitoses become an increasingly serious public health's problem. Currently, detections of parasite eggs through microscopic images are still the golden standard for diagnoses. However, this conventional method relies heavily on the experiences of inspectors, thus giving rise to misdiagnoses and missed diagnoses occasionally. And, as the number of clinical specimens increases rapidly, manual identification seems impractical. Hence, a fully automatic method is in desperate need. In this paper, we propose a robust method to segment and recognize the parasite eggs. Their contours are extracted using phase coherence technology, and the support vector machine (SVM) method based on shape and texture features is employed to classification of parasite eggs. Our novel method was comparable to the traditional method. The overall recognition rate was up to 95%, and the overall robustness indexes, including si, fnvf, fvpf, tpvf, were 95.7, 4.9, 3.7, 95.1, respectively, suggesting that our method is effective and the robustness is good, which has great potential to become a diagnostic method in the parasitological clinic.

  19. Assessment and Molecular Characterization of Human Intestinal Parasites in Bivalves from Orchard Beach, NY, USA

    PubMed Central

    Tei, Freda F.; Kowalyk, Steven; Reid, Jhenelle A.; Presta, Matthew A.; Yesudas, Rekha; Mayer, D.C. Ghislaine

    2016-01-01

    Bivalves have been shown to be carriers of the human intestinal parasites Cryptosporidium parvum and Toxoplasma gondii. The goal of this study is to determine the prevalence of protozoan parasites in mollusks of New York City using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay. Four species of mollusks, Mya arenaria, Geukensia demissa, Crassostrea virginica, and Mytilis edulis, were collected from Orchard Beach, NY in the fall of 2014, totaling 159 specimens. Each individual mollusk was dissected to harvest the digestive gland, the mantle, the gills, the foot and the siphon. The tissues were assayed for the presence of Cryptosporidium parvum, Giardia lamblia, and Toxoplasma gondii DNA by using primers that target parasite-specific genes. C. parvum was found at a prevalence of 50%, 11.3%, and 1%, respectively, in Mya arenaria, G. demissa, and Mytilis edulis. C. parvum DNA was detected in all the tissues of these bivalve species, except the gills. Furthermore, G. lamblia was detected in Mya arenaria, G. demissa, Crassostrea virginica and Mytilis edulis at a prevalence of 37.5%, 4.5%, 60%, and 20.6%, respectively, while T. gondii DNA was not detected. PMID:27043590

  20. Variation in infection length and superinfection enhance selection efficiency in the human malaria parasite.

    PubMed

    Chang, Hsiao-Han; Childs, Lauren M; Buckee, Caroline O

    2016-01-01

    The capacity for adaptation is central to the evolutionary success of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Malaria epidemiology is characterized by the circulation of multiple, genetically diverse parasite clones, frequent superinfection, and highly variable infection lengths, a large number of which are chronic and asymptomatic. The impact of these characteristics on the evolution of the parasite is largely unknown, however, hampering our understanding of the impact of interventions and the emergence of drug resistance. In particular, standard population genetic frameworks do not accommodate variation in infection length or superinfection. Here, we develop a population genetic model of malaria including these variations, and show that these aspects of malaria infection dynamics enhance both the probability and speed of fixation for beneficial alleles in complex and non-intuitive ways. We find that populations containing a mixture of short- and long-lived infections promote selection efficiency. Interestingly, this increase in selection efficiency occurs even when only a small fraction of the infections are chronic, suggesting that selection can occur efficiently in areas of low transmission intensity, providing a hypothesis for the repeated emergence of drug resistance in the low transmission setting of Southeast Asia. PMID:27193195

  1. Assessment and Molecular Characterization of Human Intestinal Parasites in Bivalves from Orchard Beach, NY, USA.

    PubMed

    Tei, Freda F; Kowalyk, Steven; Reid, Jhenelle A; Presta, Matthew A; Yesudas, Rekha; Mayer, D C Ghislaine

    2016-04-01

    Bivalves have been shown to be carriers of the human intestinal parasites Cryptosporidium parvum and Toxoplasma gondii. The goal of this study is to determine the prevalence of protozoan parasites in mollusks of New York City using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay. Four species of mollusks, Mya arenaria, Geukensia demissa, Crassostrea virginica, and Mytilis edulis, were collected from Orchard Beach, NY in the fall of 2014, totaling 159 specimens. Each individual mollusk was dissected to harvest the digestive gland, the mantle, the gills, the foot and the siphon. The tissues were assayed for the presence of Cryptosporidium parvum, Giardia lamblia, and Toxoplasma gondii DNA by using primers that target parasite-specific genes. C. parvum was found at a prevalence of 50%, 11.3%, and 1%, respectively, in Mya arenaria, G. demissa, and Mytilis edulis. C. parvum DNA was detected in all the tissues of these bivalve species, except the gills. Furthermore, G. lamblia was detected in Mya arenaria, G. demissa, Crassostrea virginica and Mytilis edulis at a prevalence of 37.5%, 4.5%, 60%, and 20.6%, respectively, while T. gondii DNA was not detected. PMID:27043590

  2. Natural infection of Plasmodium brasilianum in humans: Man and monkey share quartan malaria parasites in the Venezuelan Amazon

    PubMed Central

    Lalremruata, Albert; Magris, Magda; Vivas-Martínez, Sarai; Koehler, Maike; Esen, Meral; Kempaiah, Prakasha; Jeyaraj, Sankarganesh; Perkins, Douglas Jay; Mordmüller, Benjamin; Metzger, Wolfram G.

    2015-01-01

    Background The quartan malaria parasite Plasmodium malariae is the widest spread and best adapted human malaria parasite. The simian Plasmodium brasilianum causes quartan fever in New World monkeys and resembles P. malariae morphologically. Since the genetics of the two parasites are nearly identical, differing only in a range of mutations expected within a species, it has long been speculated that the two are the same. However, no naturally acquired infection with parasites termed as P. brasilianum has been found in humans until now. Methods We investigated malaria cases from remote Yanomami indigenous communities of the Venezuelan Amazon and analyzed the genes coding for the circumsporozoite protein (CSP) and the small subunit of ribosomes (18S) by species-specific PCR and capillary based-DNA sequencing. Findings Based on 18S rRNA gene sequencing, we identified 12 patients harboring malaria parasites which were 100% identical with P. brasilianum isolated from the monkey, Alouatta seniculus. Translated amino acid sequences of the CS protein gene showed identical immunodominant repeat units between quartan malaria parasites isolated from both humans and monkeys. Interpretation This study reports, for the first time, naturally acquired infections in humans with parasites termed as P. brasilianum. We conclude that quartan malaria parasites are easily exchanged between humans and monkeys in Latin America. We hypothesize a lack of host specificity in mammalian hosts and consider quartan malaria to be a true anthropozoonosis. Since the name P. brasilianum suggests a malaria species distinct from P. malariae, we propose that P. brasilianum should have a nomenclatorial revision in case further research confirms our findings. The expansive reservoir of mammalian hosts discriminates quartan malaria from other Plasmodium spp. and requires particular research efforts. PMID:26501116

  3. Circulating CD14brightCD16+ ‘Intermediate’ Monocytes Exhibit Enhanced Parasite Pattern Recognition in Human Helminth Infection

    PubMed Central

    Meurs, Lynn; Mbow, Moustapha; Dièye, Tandakha Ndiaye; Mboup, Souleymane; Polman, Katja; Mountford, Adrian P.

    2014-01-01

    Circulating monocyte sub-sets have recently emerged as mediators of divergent immune functions during infectious disease but their role in helminth infection has not been investigated. In this study we evaluated whether ‘classical’ (CD14brightCD16−), ‘intermediate’ (CD14brightCD16+), and ‘non-classical’ (CD14dimCD16+) monocyte sub-sets from peripheral blood mononuclear cells varied in both abundance and ability to bind antigenic material amongst individuals living in a region of Northern Senegal which is co-endemic for Schistosoma mansoni and S. haematobium. Monocyte recognition of excretory/secretory (E/S) products released by skin-invasive cercariae, or eggs, of S. mansoni was assessed by flow cytometry and compared between S. mansoni mono-infected, S. mansoni and S. haematobium co-infected, and uninfected participants. Each of the three monocyte sub-sets in the different infection groups bound schistosome E/S material. However, ‘intermediate’ CD14brightCD16+ monocytes had a significantly enhanced ability to bind cercarial and egg E/S. Moreover, this elevation of ligand binding was particularly evident in co-infected participants. This is the first demonstration of modulated parasite pattern recognition in CD14brightCD16+ intermediate monocytes during helminth infection, which may have functional consequences for the ability of infected individuals to respond immunologically to infection. PMID:24762736

  4. Associations between common intestinal parasites and bacteria in humans as revealed by qPCR.

    PubMed

    O'Brien Andersen, L; Karim, A B; Roager, H M; Vigsnæs, L K; Krogfelt, K A; Licht, T R; Stensvold, C R

    2016-09-01

    Several studies have shown associations between groups of intestinal bacterial or specific ratios between bacterial groups and various disease traits. Meanwhile, little is known about interactions and associations between eukaryotic and prokaryotic microorganisms in the human gut. In this work, we set out to investigate potential associations between common single-celled parasites such as Blastocystis spp. and Dientamoeba fragilis and intestinal bacteria. Stool DNA from patients with intestinal symptoms were selected based on being Blastocystis spp.-positive (B+)/negative (B-) and D. fragilis-positive (D+)/negative (D-), and split into four groups of 21 samples (B+ D+, B+ D-, B- D+, and B- D-). Quantitative PCR targeting the six bacterial taxa Bacteroides, Prevotella, the butyrate-producing clostridial clusters IV and XIVa, the mucin-degrading Akkermansia muciniphila, and the indigenous group of Bifidobacterium was subsequently performed, and the relative abundance of these bacteria across the four groups was compared. The relative abundance of Bacteroides in B- D- samples was significantly higher compared with B+ D- and B+ D+ samples (P < 0.05 and P < 0.01, respectively), and this association was even more significant when comparing all parasite-positive samples with parasite-negative samples (P < 0.001). Additionally, our data revealed that a low abundance of Prevotella and a higher abundance of Clostridial cluster XIVa was associated with parasite-negative samples (P < 0.05 and P < 0.01, respectively). Our data support the theory that Blastocystis alone or combined with D. fragilis is associated with gut microbiota characterized by low relative abundances of Bacteroides and Clostridial cluster XIVa and high levels of Prevotella. PMID:27230509

  5. A survey of gastrointestinal parasites of olive baboons (Papio anubis) in human settlement areas of Mole National Park, Ghana.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Sadie J; Brashares, Justin S; Walsh, Chesley; Milbers, Katherine; Kilroy, Cailean; Chapman, Colin A

    2012-08-01

    Fecal samples from 55 free-ranging olive baboons (Papio anubis) in Mole National Park, Ghana, were collected 22 June-7 July 2008 and analyzed for gastrointestinal parasites. This is the first survey of baboon gastrointestinal parasites in Ghana and provides baseline data for this area. Ninety-three percent of samples were infected, leaving 7% with no parasites observed. Of those infected, there was a 76% prevalence of strongyles, 53% Strongyloides spp., 11% Abbreviata caucasica , 62% prevalence of Balantidium coli (trophozoites and cysts identified), 4% Entomeba hystolytica/dispar, and 47% unidentified protozoan parasites. Of the strongyle infections, 9% were identified as Oesophagostamum sp. One sample contained an unidentified spirurid nematode that resembled Gongylonema sp. Mole has a mixed forest-savanna habitat, and baboons frequently range into human areas, which makes them subject to parasites from each habitat and multiple sources of exposure. We found a high prevalence of nematode parasites, consistent with a wet or cooler forest environment, or high rates of fecal contamination. The presence of Strongyloides sp., E. hystolitica/dispar, and B. coli suggest potential public health risk from baboons, but molecular identification of these parasites, and documentation of their presence in local human populations, would be necessary to confirm zoonotic transmission.

  6. A survey of gastrointestinal parasites of olive baboons (Papio anubis) in human settlement areas of Mole National Park, Ghana.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Sadie J; Brashares, Justin S; Walsh, Chesley; Milbers, Katherine; Kilroy, Cailean; Chapman, Colin A

    2012-08-01

    Fecal samples from 55 free-ranging olive baboons (Papio anubis) in Mole National Park, Ghana, were collected 22 June-7 July 2008 and analyzed for gastrointestinal parasites. This is the first survey of baboon gastrointestinal parasites in Ghana and provides baseline data for this area. Ninety-three percent of samples were infected, leaving 7% with no parasites observed. Of those infected, there was a 76% prevalence of strongyles, 53% Strongyloides spp., 11% Abbreviata caucasica , 62% prevalence of Balantidium coli (trophozoites and cysts identified), 4% Entomeba hystolytica/dispar, and 47% unidentified protozoan parasites. Of the strongyle infections, 9% were identified as Oesophagostamum sp. One sample contained an unidentified spirurid nematode that resembled Gongylonema sp. Mole has a mixed forest-savanna habitat, and baboons frequently range into human areas, which makes them subject to parasites from each habitat and multiple sources of exposure. We found a high prevalence of nematode parasites, consistent with a wet or cooler forest environment, or high rates of fecal contamination. The presence of Strongyloides sp., E. hystolitica/dispar, and B. coli suggest potential public health risk from baboons, but molecular identification of these parasites, and documentation of their presence in local human populations, would be necessary to confirm zoonotic transmission. PMID:22300265

  7. The parasite Entamoeba histolytica exploits the activities of human matrix metalloproteinases to invade colonic tissue.

    PubMed

    Thibeaux, Roman; Avé, Patrick; Bernier, Michèle; Morcelet, Marie; Frileux, Pascal; Guillén, Nancy; Labruyère, Elisabeth

    2014-10-07

    Intestinal invasion by the protozoan parasite Entamoeba histolytica is characterized by remodelling of the extracellular matrix (ECM). The parasite cysteine proteinase A5 (CP-A5) is thought to cooperate with human matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) involved in ECM degradation. Here, we investigate the role CP-A5 plays in the regulation of MMPs upon mucosal invasion. We use human colon explants to determine whether CP-A5 activates human MMPs. Inhibition of the MMPs' proteolytic activities abolishes remodelling of the fibrillar collagen structure and prevents trophozoite invasion of the mucosa. In the presence of trophozoites, MMPs-1 and -3 are overexpressed and are associated with fibrillar collagen remodelling. In vitro, CP-A5 performs the catalytic cleavage needed to activate pro-MMP-3, which in turn activates pro-MMP-1. Ex vivo, incubation with recombinant CP-A5 was enough to rescue CP-A5-defective trophozoites. Our results suggest that MMP-3 and/or CP-A5 inhibitors may be of value in further studies aiming to treat intestinal amoebiasis.

  8. Identification of Antigenic Glycans from Schistosoma mansoni by Using a Shotgun Egg Glycan Microarray

    PubMed Central

    Mickum, Megan L.; Prasanphanich, Nina Salinger; Song, Xuezheng; Dorabawila, Nelum; Mandalasi, Msano; Lasanajak, Yi; Luyai, Anthony; Secor, W. Evan; Wilkins, Patricia P.; Van Die, Irma; Smith, David F.; Nyame, A. Kwame

    2016-01-01

    Infection of mammals by the parasitic helminth Schistosoma mansoni induces antibodies to glycan antigens in worms and eggs, but the differential nature of the immune response among infected mammals is poorly understood. To better define these responses, we used a shotgun glycomics approach in which N-glycans from schistosome egg glycoproteins were prepared, derivatized, separated, and used to generate an egg shotgun glycan microarray. This array was interrogated with sera from infected mice, rhesus monkeys, and humans and with glycan-binding proteins and antibodies to gather information about the structures of antigenic glycans, which also were analyzed by mass spectrometry. A major glycan antigen targeted by IgG from different infected species is the FLDNF epitope [Fucα3GalNAcβ4(Fucα3)GlcNAc-R], which is also recognized by the IgG monoclonal antibody F2D2. The FLDNF antigen is expressed by all life stages of the parasite in mammalian hosts, and F2D2 can kill schistosomula in vitro in a complement-dependent manner. Different antisera also recognized other glycan determinants, including core β-xylose and highly fucosylated glycans. Thus, the natural shotgun glycan microarray of schistosome eggs is useful in identifying antigenic glycans and in developing new anti-glycan reagents that may have diagnostic applications and contribute to developing new vaccines against schistosomiasis. PMID:26883596

  9. The genomic proliferation of transposable elements in colonizing populations: Schistosoma mansoni in the new world.

    PubMed

    Wijayawardena, Bhagya K; DeWoody, J Andrew; Minchella, Dennis J

    2015-06-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are mobile genes with an inherent ability to move within and among genomes. Theory predicts that TEs proliferate extensively during physiological stress due to the breakdown of TE repression systems. We tested this hypothesis in Schistosoma mansoni, a widespread trematode parasite that causes the human disease schistosomiasis. According to phylogenetic analysis, S. mansoni invaded the new world during the last 500 years. We hypothesized that new world strains of S. mansoni would have more copies of TEs than old world strains due to the physiological stress associated with invasion of the new world. We quantified the copy number of six TEs (Saci-1, Saci-2 and Saci-3, Perere-1, Merlin-sm1, and SmTRC1) in the genome and the transcriptome of old world and new world strains of S. mansoni, using qPCR relative quantification. As predicted, the genomes of new world parasites contain significantly more copies of class I and class II TEs in both laboratory and field strains. However, such differences are not observed in the transcriptome suggesting that either TE silencing mechanisms have reactivated to control the expression of these elements or the presence of inactive truncated copies of TEs.

  10. Discovery and Characterization of Novel Anti-schistosomal Properties of the Anti-anginal Drug, Perhexiline and Its Impact on Schistosoma mansoni Male and Female Reproductive Systems

    PubMed Central

    Perlas, Emerald; Bolasco, Giulia; Nibbio, Martina; Monteagudo, Edith; Bresciani, Alberto; Ruberti, Giovina

    2016-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis, one of the world’s greatest human neglected tropical diseases, is caused by parasitic trematodes of the genus Schistosoma. A unique feature of schistosome biology is that the induction of sexual maturation as well as the maintenance of the differentiation status of female reproductive organs and egg production, necessary for both disease transmission and pathogenesis, are strictly dependent on the male. The treatment and most control initiatives of schistosomiasis rely today on the long-term application of a single drug, praziquantel (PZQ), mostly by campaigns of mass drug administration. PZQ, while very active on adult parasites, has much lower activity against juvenile worms. Monotherapy also favors the selection of drug resistance and, therefore, new drugs are urgently needed. Methods and Findings Following the screening of a small compound library with an ATP-based luminescent assay on Schistosoma mansoni schistosomula, we here report the identification and characterization of novel antischistosomal properties of the anti-anginal drug perhexiline maleate (PHX). By phenotypic worm survival assays and confocal microscopy studies we show that PHX, in vitro, has a marked lethal effect on all S. mansoni parasite life stages (newly transformed schistosomula, juvenile and adult worms) of the definitive host. We further demonstrate that sub-lethal doses of PHX significantly impair egg production and lipid depletion within the vitellarium of adult female worms. Moreover, we highlighted tegumental damage in adult male worms and remarkable reproductive system alterations in both female and male adult parasites. The in vivo study in S. mansoni-patent mice showed a notable variability of worm burdens in the individual experiments, with an overall minimal schistosomicidal effect upon PHX treatment. The short PHX half-life in mice, together with its very high rodent plasma proteins binding could be the cause of the modest efficacy of PHX in the

  11. Moxidectin causes adult worm mortality of human lymphatic filarial parasite Brugia malayi in rodent models.

    PubMed

    Verma, Meenakshi; Pathak, Manisha; Shahab, Mohd; Singh, Kavita; Mitra, Kalyan; Misra-Bhattacharya, Shailja

    2014-12-01

    Moxidectin is a macrocyclic lactone belonging to milbemycin family closely related to ivermectin and is currently progressing towards Phase III clinical trial against human infection with the filaria Onchocerca volvulus (Leuckart, 1894). There is a single report on the microfilaricidal and embryostatic activity of moxidectin in case of the human lymphatic filarial parasite Brugia malayi (Brug, 1927) in Mastomys coucha (Smith) but without any adulticidal action. In the present study, the in vitro and in vivo antifilarial efficacy of moxidectin was evaluated on, B. malayi. In vitro moxidectin showed 100% reduction in adult female worm motility at 0.6 μM concentration within 7 days with 68% inhibition in the reduction of MTT (3-(4, 5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide dye) (which is used to detect viability of worms). A 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) of moxidectin for adult female parasite was 0.242 μM, for male worm 0.186 μM and for microfilaria IC50 was 0.813 μM. In adult B. malayi-transplanted primary screening model (Meriones unguiculatus Milne-Edwards), moxidectin at a single optimal dose of 20 mg/kg by oral and subcutaneous route was found effective on both adult parasites and microfilariae. In secondary screening (M coucha, subcutaneously inoculated with infective larvae), moxidectin at the same dose by subcutaneous route brought about death of 49% of adult worms besides causing sterilisation in 54% of the recovered live female worms. The treated animals exhibited a continuous and sustained reduction in peripheral blood microfilaraemia throughout the observation period of 90 days. The mechanism of action of moxidectin is suggested to be similar to avermectins. The in silico studies were also designed to explore the interaction of moxidectin with glutamate-gated chloride channels of B. malayi. The docking results revealed a close interaction of moxidectin with various GluCl ligand sites of B. malayi. PMID:25651699

  12. Study of the gastrointestinal parasitic fauna of captive non-human primates (Macaca fascicularis).

    PubMed

    Zanzani, Sergio Aurelio; Gazzonis, Alessia Libera; Epis, Sara; Manfredi, Maria Teresa

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine helminths and protozoans in cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis) imported from registered breeding facilities in China and their relation to health risks for non-human primate handlers in biomedical research centers and in breeding facilities. Fresh fecal samples were collected from a total of 443 M. fascicularis and analyzed by copromicroscopical analysis, immunoenzymatic, or molecular assays. As to helminths, whose eggs were shed in 2.03% of the samples, Trichuris and Oesophagostomum were the only two taxa found, with low prevalence and low eggs per gram (EPG) values. Protozoans were more frequently detected (87.40%), with Entamoeba coli (85.19%) and Endolimax nana (79.26%) as the most prevalent species shed. Other parasites found by fecal smear examination were uninucleated-cyst-producing Entamoebas (78.52%), Iodamoeba bütschlii (42.96%), and Chilomastix mesnili (24.44%), while cysts of Balantidium coli (22.2%) were only observed by sedimentation. No coproantigens of Giardia duodenalis, Cryptosporidium spp., and Entamoeba histolytica complex were detected. Blastocystis sp. infection was noticed in 87.63% of macaques by PCR. These cynomolgus monkeys were infected with many subtypes (ST1, ST2, ST3, ST5, and ST7), where the predominant Blastocystis sp. subtypes were ST2 (77.5%), followed by ST1 (63.5%). Data collected confirmed the presence of potentially zoonotic parasites and a high parasite diversity, suggesting the need for appropriate and sensitive techniques to adequately control them and related health risks for handlers of non-human primates in biomedical research centers and in breeding facilities. PMID:26374536

  13. Leukocyte Lysis and Cytokine Induction by the Human Sexually Transmitted Parasite Trichomonas vaginalis

    PubMed Central

    Mercer, Frances; Diala, Fitz Gerald I.; Chen, Yi-Pei; Molgora, Brenda M.; Ng, Shek Hang; Johnson, Patricia J.

    2016-01-01

    Trichomonas vaginalis (Tv) is an extracellular protozoan parasite that causes the most common non-viral sexually transmitted infection: trichomoniasis. While acute symptoms in women may include vaginitis, infections are often asymptomatic, but can persist and are associated with medical complications including increased HIV susceptibility, infertility, pre-term labor, and higher incidence of cervical cancer. Heightened inflammation resulting from Tv infection could account for these complications. Effective cellular immune responses to Tv have not been characterized, and re-infection is common, suggesting a dysfunctional adaptive immune response. Using primary human leukocyte components, we have established an in vitro co-culture system to assess the interaction between Tv and the cells of the human immune system. We determined that in vitro, Tv is able to lyse T-cells and B-cells, showing a preference for B-cells. We also found that Tv lysis of lymphocytes was mediated by contact-dependent and soluble factors. Tv lysis of monocytes is far less efficient, and almost entirely contact-dependent. Interestingly, a common symbiont of Tv, Mycoplasma hominis, did not affect cytolytic activity of the parasite, but had a major impact on cytokine responses. M. hominis enabled more diverse inflammatory cytokine secretion in response to Tv and, of the cytokines tested, Tv strains cleared of M. hominis induced only IL-8 secretion from monocytes. The quality of the adaptive immune response to Tv is therefore likely influenced by Tv symbionts, commensals, and concomitant infections, and may be further complicated by direct parasite lysis of effector immune cells. PMID:27529696

  14. Leukocyte Lysis and Cytokine Induction by the Human Sexually Transmitted Parasite Trichomonas vaginalis.

    PubMed

    Mercer, Frances; Diala, Fitz Gerald I; Chen, Yi-Pei; Molgora, Brenda M; Ng, Shek Hang; Johnson, Patricia J

    2016-08-01

    Trichomonas vaginalis (Tv) is an extracellular protozoan parasite that causes the most common non-viral sexually transmitted infection: trichomoniasis. While acute symptoms in women may include vaginitis, infections are often asymptomatic, but can persist and are associated with medical complications including increased HIV susceptibility, infertility, pre-term labor, and higher incidence of cervical cancer. Heightened inflammation resulting from Tv infection could account for these complications. Effective cellular immune responses to Tv have not been characterized, and re-infection is common, suggesting a dysfunctional adaptive immune response. Using primary human leukocyte components, we have established an in vitro co-culture system to assess the interaction between Tv and the cells of the human immune system. We determined that in vitro, Tv is able to lyse T-cells and B-cells, showing a preference for B-cells. We also found that Tv lysis of lymphocytes was mediated by contact-dependent and soluble factors. Tv lysis of monocytes is far less efficient, and almost entirely contact-dependent. Interestingly, a common symbiont of Tv, Mycoplasma hominis, did not affect cytolytic activity of the parasite, but had a major impact on cytokine responses. M. hominis enabled more diverse inflammatory cytokine secretion in response to Tv and, of the cytokines tested, Tv strains cleared of M. hominis induced only IL-8 secretion from monocytes. The quality of the adaptive immune response to Tv is therefore likely influenced by Tv symbionts, commensals, and concomitant infections, and may be further complicated by direct parasite lysis of effector immune cells. PMID:27529696

  15. Study of the gastrointestinal parasitic fauna of captive non-human primates (Macaca fascicularis).

    PubMed

    Zanzani, Sergio Aurelio; Gazzonis, Alessia Libera; Epis, Sara; Manfredi, Maria Teresa

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine helminths and protozoans in cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis) imported from registered breeding facilities in China and their relation to health risks for non-human primate handlers in biomedical research centers and in breeding facilities. Fresh fecal samples were collected from a total of 443 M. fascicularis and analyzed by copromicroscopical analysis, immunoenzymatic, or molecular assays. As to helminths, whose eggs were shed in 2.03% of the samples, Trichuris and Oesophagostomum were the only two taxa found, with low prevalence and low eggs per gram (EPG) values. Protozoans were more frequently detected (87.40%), with Entamoeba coli (85.19%) and Endolimax nana (79.26%) as the most prevalent species shed. Other parasites found by fecal smear examination were uninucleated-cyst-producing Entamoebas (78.52%), Iodamoeba bütschlii (42.96%), and Chilomastix mesnili (24.44%), while cysts of Balantidium coli (22.2%) were only observed by sedimentation. No coproantigens of Giardia duodenalis, Cryptosporidium spp., and Entamoeba histolytica complex were detected. Blastocystis sp. infection was noticed in 87.63% of macaques by PCR. These cynomolgus monkeys were infected with many subtypes (ST1, ST2, ST3, ST5, and ST7), where the predominant Blastocystis sp. subtypes were ST2 (77.5%), followed by ST1 (63.5%). Data collected confirmed the presence of potentially zoonotic parasites and a high parasite diversity, suggesting the need for appropriate and sensitive techniques to adequately control them and related health risks for handlers of non-human primates in biomedical research centers and in breeding facilities.

  16. In silico multiple-targets identification for heme detoxification in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Phaiphinit, Suthat; Pattaradilokrat, Sittiporn; Lursinsap, Chidchanok; Plaimas, Kitiporn

    2016-01-01

    Detoxification of hemoglobin byproducts or free heme is an essential step and considered potential targets for anti-malaria drug development. However, most of anti-malaria drugs are no longer effective due to the emergence and spread of the drug resistant malaria parasites. Therefore, it is an urgent need to identify potential new targets and even for target combinations for effective malaria drug design. In this work, we reconstructed the metabolic networks of Plasmodium falciparum and human red blood cells for the simulation of steady mass and flux flows of the parasite's metabolites under the blood environment by flux balance analysis (FBA). The integrated model, namely iPF-RBC-713, was then adjusted into two stage-specific metabolic models, which first was for the pathological stage metabolic model of the parasite when invaded the red blood cell without any treatment and second was for the treatment stage of the parasite when a drug acted by inhibiting the hemozoin formation and caused high production rate of heme toxicity. The process of identifying target combinations consisted of two main steps. Firstly, the optimal fluxes of reactions in both the pathological and treatment stages were computed and compared to determine the change of fluxes. Corresponding enzymes of the reactions with zero fluxes in the treatment stage but non-zero fluxes in the pathological stage were predicted as a preliminary list of potential targets in inhibiting heme detoxification. Secondly, the combinations of all possible targets listed in the first step were examined to search for the best promising target combinations resulting in more effective inhibition of the detoxification to kill the malaria parasites. Finally, twenty-three enzymes were identified as a preliminary list of candidate targets which mostly were in pyruvate metabolism and citrate cycle. The optimal set of multiple targets for blocking the detoxification was a set of heme ligase, adenosine transporter, myo

  17. A genome-wide analysis of annexins from parasitic organisms and their vectors

    PubMed Central

    Cantacessi, Cinzia; Seddon, Jennifer M.; Miller, Terrence L.; Leow, Chiuan Yee; Thomas, Laëtitia; Mason, Lyndel; Willis, Charlene; Walker, Giselle; Loukas, Alex; Gasser, Robin B.; Jones, Malcolm K.; Hofmann, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we conduct an in-depth analysis of annexin proteins from a diverse range of invertebrate taxa, including the major groups that contain the parasites and vector organisms that are harmful to humans and domestic animals. Using structure-based amino acid sequence alignments and phylogenetic analyses, we present a classification for this protein group and assign names to sequences with ambiguous annotations in public databases. Our analyses reveal six distinct annexin clades, and the mapping of genes encoding annexins to the genome of the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni supports the hypothesis of gene duplication as a major evolutionary event in annexin genesis. This study illuminates annexin diversity from a novel perspective using contemporary phylogenetic hypotheses of eukaryote evolution, and will aid the consolidation of annexin protein identities in public databases and provide a foundation for future functional analysis and characterisation of these proteins in parasites of socioeconomic importance. PMID:24113121

  18. Parasites and fungi as risk factors for human and animal health.

    PubMed

    Góralska, Katarzyna; Błaszkowska, Joanna

    2015-01-01

    Recent literature data suggests that parasitic and fungal diseases, which pose a threat to both human and animal health, remain a clinical, diagnostic and therapeutic problem. Attention is increasingly paid to the role played by natural microbiota in maintaining homeostasis in humans. A particular emphasis is placed on the possibility of manipulating the human microbiota (permanent, transient, pathogenic) and macrobiota (e.g., Trichuris suis) to support the treatment of selected diseases such as Crohn's disease, obesity, diabetes and cancer. Emphasis is placed on important medical species whose infections not only impair health but can also be life threatening, such as Plasmodium falciparum, Echinococcus multilocularis and Baylisascaris procyonis, which expand into areas which have so far been uninhabited. This article also presents the epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment of opportunistic parasitoses imported from the tropics, which spread across large groups of people through human-to-human transmission (Enterobius vermicularis, Sarcoptes scabiei). It also discusses the problem of environmentally-conditioned parasitoses, particularly their etiological factors associated with food contaminated with invasive forms (Trichinella sp., Toxoplasma gondii). The analysis also concerns the presence of developmental forms of geohelminths (Toxocara sp.) and ectoparasites (ticks), which are vectors of serious human diseases (Lyme borreliosis, anaplasmosis, babesiosis), in the environment. Mycological topics contains rare cases of mycoses environmentally conditioned (CNS aspergillosis) and transmissions of these pathogens in a population of hospitalized individuals, as well as seeking new methods used to treat mycoses.

  19. Parasites and fungi as risk factors for human and animal health.

    PubMed

    Góralska, Katarzyna; Błaszkowska, Joanna

    2015-01-01

    Recent literature data suggests that parasitic and fungal diseases, which pose a threat to both human and animal health, remain a clinical, diagnostic and therapeutic problem. Attention is increasingly paid to the role played by natural microbiota in maintaining homeostasis in humans. A particular emphasis is placed on the possibility of manipulating the human microbiota (permanent, transient, pathogenic) and macrobiota (e.g., Trichuris suis) to support the treatment of selected diseases such as Crohn's disease, obesity, diabetes and cancer. Emphasis is placed on important medical species whose infections not only impair health but can also be life threatening, such as Plasmodium falciparum, Echinococcus multilocularis and Baylisascaris procyonis, which expand into areas which have so far been uninhabited. This article also presents the epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment of opportunistic parasitoses imported from the tropics, which spread across large groups of people through human-to-human transmission (Enterobius vermicularis, Sarcoptes scabiei). It also discusses the problem of environmentally-conditioned parasitoses, particularly their etiological factors associated with food contaminated with invasive forms (Trichinella sp., Toxoplasma gondii). The analysis also concerns the presence of developmental forms of geohelminths (Toxocara sp.) and ectoparasites (ticks), which are vectors of serious human diseases (Lyme borreliosis, anaplasmosis, babesiosis), in the environment. Mycological topics contains rare cases of mycoses environmentally conditioned (CNS aspergillosis) and transmissions of these pathogens in a population of hospitalized individuals, as well as seeking new methods used to treat mycoses. PMID:26878617

  20. Intestinal parasite co-infection among pulmonary tuberculosis cases without human immunodeficiency virus infection in a rural county in China.

    PubMed

    Li, Xin-Xu; Chen, Jia-Xu; Wang, Li-Xia; Tian, Li-Guang; Zhang, Yu-Ping; Dong, Shuang-Pin; Hu, Xue-Guang; Liu, Jian; Wang, Feng-Feng; Wang, Yue; Yin, Xiao-Mei; He, Li-Jun; Yan, Qiu-Ye; Zhang, Hong-Wei; Xu, Bian-Li; Zhou, Xiao-Nong

    2014-01-01

    Epidemiologic studies of co-infection with tuberculosis (TB) and intestinal parasites in humans have not been extensively investigated in China. A cross-section study was conducted in a rural county of Henan Province, China. Pulmonary TB (PTB) case-patients receiving treatment for infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis and healthy controls matched for geographic area, age, and sex were surveyed by using questionnaires. Fecal and blood specimens were collected for detection of intestinal parasites, routine blood examination, and infection with human immunodeficiency virus. The chi-square test was used for univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression models were used to adjust for potential confounding factors. A total of 369 persons with PTB and 366 healthy controls were included; all participants were negative for human immunodeficiency virus. The overall prevalence of intestinal parasites in persons with PTB was 14.9%, including intestinal protozoa (7.9%) and helminthes (7.6%). The infection spectrum of intestinal parasites was Entamoeba spp. (1.4%), Blastocystis hominis (6.2%), Trichomonas hominis (0.3%), Clonorchis sinensis (0.3%), Ascaris lumbricoides (0.5%), Trichuris trichiura (2.2%), and hookworm (4.6%). The prevalence of intestinal parasites showed no significant difference between persons with PTB and healthy controls after adjusting for potential confounding factors. There was no factor that affected infection rates for intestinal parasites between the two groups. Infection with intestinal parasites of persons with PTB was associated with female sex (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 2.05, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.01-4.17), body mass index ≤ 19 (AOR = 3.02, 95% CI = 1.47-6.20), and anemia (AOR = 2.43, 95% CI = 1.17-5.03). Infection of healthy controls was only associated with an annual labor time in farmlands > 2 months (AOR = 4.50, 95% CI = 2.03-10.00). In addition, there was no significant trend between rates of infection with

  1. Intestinal Parasite Co-infection among Pulmonary Tuberculosis Cases without Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection in a Rural County in China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xin-Xu; Chen, Jia-Xu; Wang, Li-Xia; Tian, Li-Guang; Zhang, Yu-Ping; Dong, Shuang-Pin; Hu, Xue-Guang; Liu, Jian; Wang, Feng-Feng; Wang, Yue; Yin, Xiao-Mei; He, Li-Jun; Yan, Qiu-Ye; Zhang, Hong-Wei; Xu, Bian-Li; Zhou, Xiao-Nong

    2014-01-01

    Epidemiologic studies of co-infection with tuberculosis (TB) and intestinal parasites in humans have not been extensively investigated in China. A cross-section study was conducted in a rural county of Henan Province, China. Pulmonary TB (PTB) case-patients receiving treatment for infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis and healthy controls matched for geographic area, age, and sex were surveyed by using questionnaires. Fecal and blood specimens were collected for detection of intestinal parasites, routine blood examination, and infection with human immunodeficiency virus. The chi-square test was used for univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression models were used to adjust for potential confounding factors. A total of 369 persons with PTB and 366 healthy controls were included; all participants were negative for human immunodeficiency virus. The overall prevalence of intestinal parasites in persons with PTB was 14.9%, including intestinal protozoa (7.9%) and helminthes (7.6%). The infection spectrum of intestinal parasites was Entamoeba spp. (1.4%), Blastocystis hominis (6.2%), Trichomonas hominis (0.3%), Clonorchis sinensis (0.3%), Ascaris lumbricoides (0.5%), Trichuris trichiura (2.2%), and hookworm (4.6%). The prevalence of intestinal parasites showed no significant difference between persons with PTB and healthy controls after adjusting for potential confounding factors. There was no factor that affected infection rates for intestinal parasites between the two groups. Infection with intestinal parasites of persons with PTB was associated with female sex (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 2.05, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.01–4.17), body mass index ≤ 19 (AOR = 3.02, 95% CI = 1.47–6.20), and anemia (AOR = 2.43, 95% CI = 1.17–5.03). Infection of healthy controls was only associated with an annual labor time in farmlands > 2 months (AOR = 4.50, 95% CI = 2.03–10.00). In addition, there was no significant trend between rates of infection with

  2. Genetic characterization of human-pathogenic Cyclospora cayetanensis parasites from three endemic regions at the 18S ribosomal RNA locus.

    PubMed

    Sulaiman, Irshad M; Ortega, Ynes; Simpson, Steven; Kerdahi, Khalil

    2014-03-01

    Cyclospora cayetanensis is an apicocomplexan parasite that infects the gastrointestinal tract and causes acute diarrheal disease in humans. In recent years, this human-pathogenic parasite has led to several foodborne outbreaks in the United States and Canada, mostly associated with imported produce. Understanding the biology and epidemiology of C. cayetanensis is difficult because little is known about its origin, possible zoonotic reservoirs, and genetic relationships with other coccidian parasites. Recently, we developed a 70kDa heat shock protein (HSP70) gene based nested PCR protocol for detection of C. cayetanensis parasite and sequenced the PCR products of 16 human isolates from Nepal, Mexico, and Peru. In this study, we have characterized the regions of 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene of 17 human C. cayetanensis isolates for molecular detection, and also to ascertain the genetic diversity of this parasite. The 18S rRNA primer sets were further tested by PCR amplification followed by nucleotide sequencing of the PCR amplified products of previously characterized C. cayetanensis isolates from three endemic regions at HSP70 locus. Although no genetic polymorphism was observed at the regions of HSP70 locus characterized in our previous study, the data analysis of this study revealed a minor genetic diversity at the 18S rRNA locus among the C. cayetanensis isolates. The 18S rRNA gene-based nested PCR protocol provides a useful genetic marker for the detection of C. cayetanensis parasite and confirms it as a genetically distinct species in genus Cyclospora. The results also supported lack of geographic segregation and existence of genetically homogeneous population for the C. cayetanensis parasites both at the HSP70 as well as at the18S rRNA loci.

  3. Evidence that leishmania donovani utilizes a mannose receptor on human mononuclear phagocytes to establish intracellular parasitism

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, M.E.; Pearson, R.D.

    1986-01-01

    The pathogenic protozoan Leishmania donovani must gain entrance into mononuclear phagocytes to successfully parasitize man. The parasite's extracellular promastigote stage is ingested by human peripheral blood monocytes or monocyte-derived macrophages in the absence of serum, in a manner characteristic of receptor-mediated endocytosis. Remarkable similarities have been found between the macrophage receptor(s) for promastigotes and a previously characterized eucaryotic receptor system, the mannose/fucose receptor (MFR), that mediates the binding of zymosan particles and mannose- or fucose-terminal glycoconjugates to macrophages. Ingestion of promastigotes by monocyte-derived macrophages was inhibited by several MFR ligands; that is mannan, mannose-BSA and fucose-BSA. In contrast, promastigote ingestion by monocytes was unaffected by MFR ligands. Furthermore, attachment of promastigotes to macrophages, assessed by using cytochalasin D to prevent phagocytosis, was reduced 49.8% by mannan. Reorientation of the MFR to the ventral surface of the cell was achieved by plating macrophages onto mannan-coated coverslips, reducing MFR activity on the exposed cell surface by 94% as assessed by binding of /sup 125/I-mannose-BSA. Under these conditions, ingestion of promastigotes was inhibited by 71.4%. Internalization of the MFR by exposure of macrophages to zymosan before infection with promastigotes resulted in a 62.3% decrease in parasite ingestion. Additionally, NH/sub 4/Cl decreased macrophage ingestion of promastigotes by 38.2%. Subinhibitory concentration of NH/sub 4/Cl (10 mM) and of mannan (0.25 mg/ml) together inhibited parsite ingestion by 76.4%.

  4. A New High-Throughput Approach to Genotype Ancient Human Gastrointestinal Parasites.

    PubMed

    Côté, Nathalie M L; Daligault, Julien; Pruvost, Mélanie; Bennett, E Andrew; Gorgé, Olivier; Guimaraes, Silvia; Capelli, Nicolas; Le Bailly, Matthieu; Geigl, Eva-Maria; Grange, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    Human gastrointestinal parasites are good indicators for hygienic conditions and health status of past and present individuals and communities. While microscopic analysis of eggs in sediments of archeological sites often allows their taxonomic identification, this method is rarely effective at the species level, and requires both the survival of intact eggs and their proper identification. Genotyping via PCR-based approaches has the potential to achieve a precise species-level taxonomic determination. However, so far it has mostly been applied to individual eggs isolated from archeological samples. To increase the throughput and taxonomic accuracy, as well as reduce costs of genotyping methods, we adapted a PCR-based approach coupled with next-generation sequencing to perform precise taxonomic identification of parasitic helminths directly from archeological sediments. Our study of twenty-five 100 to 7,200 year-old archeological samples proved this to be a powerful, reliable and efficient approach for species determination even in the absence of preserved eggs, either as a stand-alone method or as a complement to microscopic studies.

  5. Host Mitochondrial Association Evolved in the Human Parasite Toxoplasma gondii via Neofunctionalization of a Gene Duplicate.

    PubMed

    Adomako-Ankomah, Yaw; English, Elizabeth D; Danielson, Jeffrey J; Pernas, Lena F; Parker, Michelle L; Boulanger, Martin J; Dubey, Jitender P; Boyle, Jon P

    2016-05-01

    In Toxoplasma gondii, an intracellular parasite of humans and other animals, host mitochondrial association (HMA) is driven by a gene family that encodes multiple mitochondrial association factor 1 (MAF1) proteins. However, the importance of MAF1 gene duplication in the evolution of HMA is not understood, nor is the impact of HMA on parasite biology. Here we used within- and between-species comparative analysis to determine that the MAF1 locus is duplicated in T. gondii and its nearest extant relative Hammondia hammondi, but not another close relative, Neospora caninum Using cross-species complementation, we determined that the MAF1 locus harbors multiple distinct paralogs that differ in their ability to mediate HMA, and that only T. gondii and H. hammondi harbor HMA(+) paralogs. Additionally, we found that exogenous expression of an HMA(+) paralog in T. gondii strains that do not normally exhibit HMA provides a competitive advantage over their wild-type counterparts during a mouse infection. These data indicate that HMA likely evolved by neofunctionalization of a duplicate MAF1 copy in the common ancestor of T. gondii and H. hammondi, and that the neofunctionalized gene duplicate is selectively advantageous. PMID:26920761

  6. A New High-Throughput Approach to Genotype Ancient Human Gastrointestinal Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Côté, Nathalie M. L.; Daligault, Julien; Pruvost, Mélanie; Bennett, E. Andrew; Gorgé, Olivier; Guimaraes, Silvia; Capelli, Nicolas; Le Bailly, Matthieu; Geigl, Eva-Maria; Grange, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    Human gastrointestinal parasites are good indicators for hygienic conditions and health status of past and present individuals and communities. While microscopic analysis of eggs in sediments of archeological sites often allows their taxonomic identification, this method is rarely effective at the species level, and requires both the survival of intact eggs and their proper identification. Genotyping via PCR-based approaches has the potential to achieve a precise species-level taxonomic determination. However, so far it has mostly been applied to individual eggs isolated from archeological samples. To increase the throughput and taxonomic accuracy, as well as reduce costs of genotyping methods, we adapted a PCR-based approach coupled with next-generation sequencing to perform precise taxonomic identification of parasitic helminths directly from archeological sediments. Our study of twenty-five 100 to 7,200 year-old archeological samples proved this to be a powerful, reliable and efficient approach for species determination even in the absence of preserved eggs, either as a stand-alone method or as a complement to microscopic studies. PMID:26752051

  7. Investigation of intestinal parasites in pig feces that are also human pathogens.

    PubMed

    Uysal, Hayriye Kirkoyun; Boral, Ozden; Metiner, Kemal; Ilgaz, Atilla

    2009-01-01

    A total of 238 pig fecal specimens were collected from pig farms in Corlu (Tekirdağ), Ayazma, and Arnavutköy (Istanbul) during the summer. Out of the 238 pig specimens, 105 were from pigs younger than 6 months and 133 from pigs older than 6 months. These were investigated for intestine parasites in particular the ones that are human pathogens. Cryptosporidium spp. was detected In 21 fecal specimens (8.8%), Giardia spp. in 9 (3.7%), Balantidium coli cysts in 4 (1.6%) and Ascaris suum eggs in 9 (4.1%). Giardia lamblia were found in 8 (7.6%) of 105 pigs younger than 6 months, Cryptosporidium spp. in 12 (11.4%), Balantidium coli cysts in 2 (1.5%). In the pigs older than 6 months Giardia lamblia were found in 1 (0.7%), Cryptosporidium spp. in 9 (6.7%), Balantidium coli cysts in 2 (1.5%). and Ascaris suum eggs in 9 (6.7%). The difference in the rate of G. lamblia (p=0.01) in pigs less than 6 months and of A. suum in those over 6 months was found to be statistically significant (p=0.005). Our results revealed that pigs are important sources of these parasites. PMID:19851968

  8. An Isochore-Like Structure in the Genome of the Flatworm Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Lamolle, Guillermo; Protasio, Anna V.; Iriarte, Andrés; Jara, Eugenio; Simón, Diego; Musto, Héctor

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic genomes are compositionally heterogeneous, that is, composed by regions that differ in guanine–cytosine (GC) content (isochores). The most well documented case is that of vertebrates (mainly mammals) although it has been also noted among unicellular eukaryotes and invertebrates. In the human genome, regarded as a typical mammal, this heterogeneity is associated with several features. Specifically, genes located in GC-richest regions are the GC3-richest, display CpG islands and have shorter introns. Furthermore, these genes are more heavily expressed and tend to be located at the extremes of the chromosomes. Although the compositional heterogeneity seems to be widespread among eukaryotes, the associated properties noted in the human genome and other mammals have not been investigated in depth in other taxa. Here we provide evidence that the genome of the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni is compositionally heterogeneous and exhibits an isochore-like structure, displaying some features associated, until now, only with the human and other vertebrate genomes, with the exception of gene concentration. PMID:27435793

  9. An Isochore-Like Structure in the Genome of the Flatworm Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Lamolle, Guillermo; Protasio, Anna V; Iriarte, Andrés; Jara, Eugenio; Simón, Diego; Musto, Héctor

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic genomes are compositionally heterogeneous, that is, composed by regions that differ in guanine-cytosine (GC) content (isochores). The most well documented case is that of vertebrates (mainly mammals) although it has been also noted among unicellular eukaryotes and invertebrates. In the human genome, regarded as a typical mammal, this heterogeneity is associated with several features. Specifically, genes located in GC-richest regions are the GC3-richest, display CpG islands and have shorter introns. Furthermore, these genes are more heavily expressed and tend to be located at the extremes of the chromosomes. Although the compositional heterogeneity seems to be widespread among eukaryotes, the associated properties noted in the human genome and other mammals have not been investigated in depth in other taxa Here we provide evidence that the genome of the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni is compositionally heterogeneous and exhibits an isochore-like structure, displaying some features associated, until now, only with the human and other vertebrate genomes, with the exception of gene concentration.

  10. An Isochore-Like Structure in the Genome of the Flatworm Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Lamolle, Guillermo; Protasio, Anna V; Iriarte, Andrés; Jara, Eugenio; Simón, Diego; Musto, Héctor

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic genomes are compositionally heterogeneous, that is, composed by regions that differ in guanine-cytosine (GC) content (isochores). The most well documented case is that of vertebrates (mainly mammals) although it has been also noted among unicellular eukaryotes and invertebrates. In the human genome, regarded as a typical mammal, this heterogeneity is associated with several features. Specifically, genes located in GC-richest regions are the GC3-richest, display CpG islands and have shorter introns. Furthermore, these genes are more heavily expressed and tend to be located at the extremes of the chromosomes. Although the compositional heterogeneity seems to be widespread among eukaryotes, the associated properties noted in the human genome and other mammals have not been investigated in depth in other taxa Here we provide evidence that the genome of the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni is compositionally heterogeneous and exhibits an isochore-like structure, displaying some features associated, until now, only with the human and other vertebrate genomes, with the exception of gene concentration. PMID:27435793

  11. Zoonotic and non-zoonotic diseases in relation to human personality and societal values: support for the parasite-stress model.

    PubMed

    Thornhill, Randy; Fincher, Corey L; Murray, Damian R; Schaller, Mark

    2010-04-11

    The parasite-stress model of human sociality proposes that humans' ontogenetic experiences with infectious diseases as well as their evolutionary historical interactions with these diseases exert causal influences on human psychology and social behavior. This model has been supported by cross-national relationships between parasite prevalence and human personality traits, and between parasite prevalence and societal values. Importantly, the parasite-stress model emphasizes the causal role of non-zoonotic parasites (which have the capacity for human-to-human transmission), rather than zoonotic parasites (which do not), but previous studies failed to distinguish between these conceptually distinct categories. The present investigation directly tested the differential predictive effects of zoonotic and non-zoonotic (both human-specific and multihost) parasite prevalence on personality traits and societal values. Supporting the parasite-stress model, cross-national differences in personality traits (unrestricted sexuality, extraversion, openness to experiences) and in societal values (individualism, collectivism, gender equality, democratization) are predicted specifically by non-zoonotic parasite prevalence.

  12. Lactate as a Novel Quantitative Measure of Viability in Schistosoma mansoni Drug Sensitivity Assays

    PubMed Central

    Howe, Stephanie; Zöphel, Dorina; Subbaraman, Harini; Unger, Clemens; Held, Jana; Engleitner, Thomas; Hoffmann, Wolfgang H.

    2014-01-01

    Whole-organism compound sensitivity assays are a valuable strategy in infectious diseases to identify active molecules. In schistosomiasis drug discovery, larval-stage Schistosoma allows the use of a certain degree of automation in the screening of compounds. Unfortunately, the throughput is limited, as drug activity is determined by manual assessment of Schistosoma viability by microscopy. To develop a simple and quantifiable surrogate marker for viability, we targeted glucose metabolism, which is central to Schistosoma survival. Lactate is the end product of glycolysis in human Schistosoma stages and can be detected in the supernatant. We assessed lactate as a surrogate marker for viability in Schistosoma drug screening assays. We thoroughly investigated parameters of lactate measurement and performed drug sensitivity assays by applying schistosomula and adult worms to establish a proof of concept. Lactate levels clearly reflected the viability of schistosomula and correlated with schistosomulum numbers. Compounds with reported potencies were tested, and activities were determined by lactate assay and by microscopy. We conclude that lactate is a sensitive and simple surrogate marker to be measured to determine Schistosoma viability in compound screening assays. Low numbers of schistosomula and the commercial availability of lactate assay reagents make the assay particularly attractive to throughput approaches. Furthermore, standardization of procedures and quantitative evaluation of compound activities facilitate interassay comparisons of potencies and, thus, concerted drug discovery approaches. PMID:25487803

  13. Some secrets are revealed: parasitic keratitis amoebae as vectors of the scarcely described pandoraviruses to humans.

    PubMed

    Scheid, Patrick; Balczun, Carsten; Schaub, Günter A

    2014-10-01

    In this article, the results of a long effort to derive valuable phylogenetic data about an extraordinary spore-like infectious particle (endocytobiont) within host amoebae (Acanthamoeba sp.) recently isolated from the contact lens and the inflamed eye of a patient with keratitis are presented. The development of these endocytobionts has already been demonstrated with electron microscopic photo sequences, leading to a relevant model of its development presented here. The molecular biological investigation following the discovery of two other Pandoravirus species within aquatic sediments in 2013 led to the taxonomic affiliation of our endocytobiont with the genus Pandoravirus. A range of endocytobionts (intracellular biofilms) have been found in recent years, among which are several viruses which obligatorily proliferate within free-living amoebae. In human medicine, foreign objects which are placed in or on humans cause problems with microorganisms in biofilms. Contact lenses are especially important, because they are known as a source of a rapid formation of biofilm. These were the first Pandoraviruses described, and because this is additionally the first documented association with humans, we have clearly demonstrated how easily such (viral) endocytobionts can be transferred to humans. This case counts as an example of parasites acting as vectors of phylogenetically different microorganisms especially when living sympatric within their biocoenosis of biofilms. As the third part of the "Pandoravirus trilogy", it finally reveals the phylogenetic nature of these "extraordinary endocytobionts" within Acanthamoebae.

  14. Some secrets are revealed: parasitic keratitis amoebae as vectors of the scarcely described pandoraviruses to humans.

    PubMed

    Scheid, Patrick; Balczun, Carsten; Schaub, Günter A

    2014-10-01

    In this article, the results of a long effort to derive valuable phylogenetic data about an extraordinary spore-like infectious particle (endocytobiont) within host amoebae (Acanthamoeba sp.) recently isolated from the contact lens and the inflamed eye of a patient with keratitis are presented. The development of these endocytobionts has already been demonstrated with electron microscopic photo sequences, leading to a relevant model of its development presented here. The molecular biological investigation following the discovery of two other Pandoravirus species within aquatic sediments in 2013 led to the taxonomic affiliation of our endocytobiont with the genus Pandoravirus. A range of endocytobionts (intracellular biofilms) have been found in recent years, among which are several viruses which obligatorily proliferate within free-living amoebae. In human medicine, foreign objects which are placed in or on humans cause problems with microorganisms in biofilms. Contact lenses are especially important, because they are known as a source of a rapid formation of biofilm. These were the first Pandoraviruses described, and because this is additionally the first documented association with humans, we have clearly demonstrated how easily such (viral) endocytobionts can be transferred to humans. This case counts as an example of parasites acting as vectors of phylogenetically different microorganisms especially when living sympatric within their biocoenosis of biofilms. As the third part of the "Pandoravirus trilogy", it finally reveals the phylogenetic nature of these "extraordinary endocytobionts" within Acanthamoebae. PMID:25033816

  15. Water and urea transport in human erythrocytes infected with the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Zanner, M A; Galey, W R; Scaletti, J V; Brahm, J; Vander Jagt, D L

    1990-05-01

    The permeability properties of the human red cell membrane to various solutes are altered by malarial infection. In the present work we show that the permeability of the red cell membrane to water is also affected by the intraerythrocytic growth of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, whereas urea permeability appears unchanged. The data from infected cells show decreases in membrane surface area, cell volume, the osmotically active water fraction (Weff), and osmotic water permeability (Pf) as measured by stopped-flow spectroscopy. On the other hand, the data suggest an increase in diffusive water permeability (Pd) in infected cells with no change in urea permeability when measured by the continuous flow method. The decreased Pf/Pd ratio of infected cell membranes and its implications in the geometry of the red cell membrane water channel or pore are discussed. PMID:2194124

  16. An ensemble of specifically targeted proteins stabilizes cortical microtubules in the human parasite Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jun; He, Yudou; Benmerzouga, Imaan; Sullivan, William J.; Morrissette, Naomi S.; Murray, John M.; Hu, Ke

    2016-01-01

    Although all microtubules within a single cell are polymerized from virtually identical subunits, different microtubule populations carry out specialized and diverse functions, including directional transport, force generation, and cellular morphogenesis. Functional differentiation requires specific targeting of associated proteins to subsets or even subregions of these polymers. The cytoskeleton of Toxoplasma gondii, an important human parasite, contains at least five distinct tubulin-based structures. In this work, we define the differential localization of proteins along the cortical microtubules of T. gondii, established during daughter biogenesis and regulated by protein expression and exchange. These proteins distinguish cortical from mitotic spindle microtubules, even though the assembly of these subsets is contemporaneous during cell division. Finally, proteins associated with cortical microtubules collectively protect the stability of the polymers with a remarkable degree of functional redundancy. PMID:26680740

  17. Genome-wide mapping of DNA methylation in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    Ponts, Nadia; Fu, Lijuan; Harris, Elena Y.; Zhang, Jing; Chung, Duk-Won D.; Cervantes, Michael C.; Prudhomme, Jacques; Atanasova-Penichon, Vessela; Zehraoui, Enric; Bunnik, Evelien; Rodrigues, Elisandra M.; Lonardi, Stefano; Hicks, Glenn R.; Wang, Yinsheng; Le Roch, Karine G.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Cytosine DNA methylation is an epigenetic mark in most eukaryotic cells that regulates numerous processes, including gene expression and stress responses. We performed a genome-wide analysis of DNA methylation in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. We mapped the positions of methylated cytosines and identified a single functional DNA methyltransferase, PfDNMT, that may mediate these genomic modifications. These analyses revealed that the malaria genome is asymmetrically methylated, in which only one DNA strand is methylated, and shares common features with undifferentiated plant and mammalian cells. Notably, core promoters are hypomethylated and transcript levels correlate with intra-exonic methylation. Additionally, there are sharp methylation transitions at nucleosome and exon-intron boundaries. These data suggest that DNA methylation could regulate virulence gene expression and transcription elongation. Furthermore, the broad range of action of DNA methylation and uniqueness of PfDNMT suggest that the methylation pathway is a potential target for anti-malarial strategies. PMID:24331467

  18. Parasitic, fungal and prion zoonoses: an expanding universe of candidates for human disease.

    PubMed

    Akritidis, N

    2011-03-01

    Zoonotic infections have emerged as a burden for millions of people in recent years, owing to re-emerging or novel pathogens often causing outbreaks in the developing world in the presence of inadequate public health infrastructure. Among zoonotic infections, those caused by parasitic pathogens are the ones that affect millions of humans worldwide, who are also at risk of developing chronic disease. The present review discusses the global effect of protozoan pathogens such as Leishmania sp., Trypanosoma sp., and Toxoplasma sp., as well as helminthic pathogens such as Echinococcus sp., Fasciola sp., and Trichinella sp. The zoonotic aspects of agents that are not essentially zoonotic are also discussed. The review further focuses on the zoonotic dynamics of fungal pathogens and prion diseases as observed in recent years, in an evolving environment in which novel patient target groups have developed for agents that were previously considered to be obscure or of minimal significance.

  19. An ensemble of specifically targeted proteins stabilizes cortical microtubules in the human parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jun; He, Yudou; Benmerzouga, Imaan; Sullivan, William J; Morrissette, Naomi S; Murray, John M; Hu, Ke

    2016-02-01

    Although all microtubules within a single cell are polymerized from virtually identical subunits, different microtubule populations carry out specialized and diverse functions, including directional transport, force generation, and cellular morphogenesis. Functional differentiation requires specific targeting of associated proteins to subsets or even subregions of these polymers. The cytoskeleton of Toxoplasma gondii, an important human parasite, contains at least five distinct tubulin-based structures. In this work, we define the differential localization of proteins along the cortical microtubules of T. gondii, established during daughter biogenesis and regulated by protein expression and exchange. These proteins distinguish cortical from mitotic spindle microtubules, even though the assembly of these subsets is contemporaneous during cell division. Finally, proteins associated with cortical microtubules collectively protect the stability of the polymers with a remarkable degree of functional redundancy. PMID:26680740

  20. Structure of a two-CAP-domain protein from the human hookworm parasite Necator americanus

    SciTech Connect

    Asojo, Oluwatoyin A.

    2011-05-01

    The first structure of a two-CAP-domain protein, Na-ASP-1, from the major human hookworm parasite N. americanus refined to a resolution limit of 2.2 Å is presented. Major proteins secreted by the infective larval stage hookworms upon host entry include Ancylostoma secreted proteins (ASPs), which are characterized by one or two CAP (cysteine-rich secretory protein/antigen 5/pathogenesis related-1) domains. The CAP domain has been reported in diverse phylogenetically unrelated proteins, but has no confirmed function. The first structure of a two-CAP-domain protein, Na-ASP-1, from the major human hookworm parasite Necator americanus was refined to a resolution limit of 2.2 Å. The structure was solved by molecular replacement (MR) using Na-ASP-2, a one-CAP-domain ASP, as the search model. The correct MR solution could only be obtained by truncating the polyalanine model of Na-ASP-2 and removing several loops. The structure reveals two CAP domains linked by an extended loop. Overall, the carboxyl-terminal CAP domain is more similar to Na-ASP-2 than to the amino-terminal CAP domain. A large central cavity extends from the amino-terminal CAP domain to the carboxyl-terminal CAP domain, encompassing the putative CAP-binding cavity. The putative CAP-binding cavity is a characteristic cavity in the carboxyl-terminal CAP domain that contains a His and Glu pair. These residues are conserved in all single-CAP-domain proteins, but are absent in the amino-terminal CAP domain. The conserved His residues are oriented such that they appear to be capable of directly coordinating a zinc ion as observed for CAP proteins from reptile venoms. This first structure of a two-CAP-domain ASP can serve as a template for homology modeling of other two-CAP-domain proteins.

  1. The tegument of Schistosoma hippopotami from Hippopotamus amphibius in the Kruger National Park.

    PubMed

    Kruger, F J; Hamilton-Attwell, V L; Joubert, P H; Visser, P S

    1988-09-01

    Schistosoma hippopotami were collected from the right heart chambers and pulmonary arteries of Hippopotamus amphibius culled in the Kruger National Park. The schistosomes were subjected to scanning electron microscopy as well as optical microscopy. The results indicate that S. hippopotami is not conspecific to S. mansoni as suggested in the literature. On account of the morphology of certain tegumental structures of both male and female parasites, it is suggested that S. hippopotami is adapted to the pulmonary arterial circulation of its host.

  2. Schistosoma mansoni and Biomphalaria: past history and future trends.

    PubMed

    Morgan, J A; Dejong, R J; Snyder, S D; Mkoji, G M; Loker, E S

    2001-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni is one of the most abundant infectious agents of humankind. Its widespread distribution is permitted by the broad geographic range of susceptible species of the freshwater snail genus Biomphalaria that serve as obligatory hosts for its larval stages. Molecular phylogenetic studies suggest that Schistosoma originated in Asia, and that a pulmonate-transmitted progenitor colonized Africa and gave rise to both terminal-spined and lateral-spined egg species groups, the latter containing S. mansoni. Schistosoma mansoni likely appeared only after the trans-Atlantic dispersal of Biomphalaria from the Neotropics to Africa, an event that, based on the present African fossil record, occurred only 2-5 million years ago. This parasite became abundant in tropical Africa and then entered the New World with the slave trade. It prospered in the Neotropics because a remarkably susceptible and productive host, B. glabrata, was widely distributed there. Indeed, a snail similar to B. glabrata may have given rise to the African species of Biomphalaria. Schistosoma mansoni has since spread into other Neotropical Biomphalaria species and mammalian hosts. The distribution of S. mansoni is in a state of flux. In Egypt, S. mansoni has nearly completely replaced S. haematobium in the Nile Delta, and has spread to other regions of the country. A susceptible host snail, B. straminea, has been introduced into Asia and there is evidence of S. mansoni transmission in Nepal. Dam and barrage construction has lead to an epidemic of S. mansoni in Senegal, and the parasite continues its spread in Brazil. Because of competition with introduced aquatic species and environmental changes, B. glabrata and consequently S. mansoni have become less abundant on the Caribbean islands. Control of S. mansoni using praziquantel and oxamniquine has reduced global prevalence but control is difficult to sustain, and S. mansoni can develop tolerance/resistance to praziquantel, raising concerns about

  3. Angiogenesis and parasitic helminth-associated neovascularization.

    PubMed

    Dennis, Roger D; Schubert, Uwe; Bauer, Christian

    2011-04-01

    Successful metazoan parasitism, among many other factors, requires a supply of nutrients and the removal of waste products. There is a prerequisite for a parasite-defined vasculature. The angiogenic mechanism(s) involved presumably depend on the characteristics of the tissue- and vascular system-dwelling, parasitic helminths. Simplistically, 2 possibilities or a combination of both have been considered in this review. The multifactorial induction of parasitic helminth-associated neovascularization could arise through, either a host-, a parasite- or a host-/parasite-dependent, angiogenic switch. Most studies appear to support the first and third hypotheses, but evidence exists for the intrahepatic cestode Echinococcus multilocularis, the free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and the intravascular trematode Schistosoma mansoni for the second inference. In contrast, the nematode anti-coagulant protein NAPc2 from adult Ancylostoma caninum is also an anti-angiogenic factor. PMID:21232174

  4. Transcriptome analysis of Schistosoma mansoni larval development using serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE)

    PubMed Central

    TAFT, A. S.; VERMEIRE, J. J.; BERNIER, J.; BIRKELAND, S.R.; CIPRIANO, M. J.; PAPA, A. R.; MCARTHUR, A.G.; YOSHINO, T. P.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Infection of the snail, Biomphalaria glabrata, by the free-swimming miracidial stage of the human blood fluke, Schistosoma mansoni, and its subsequent development to the parasitic sporocyst stage is critical to establishment of viable infections and continued human transmission. We performed a genome-wide expression analysis of the S. mansoni miracidia and developing sporocyst using Long Serial Analysis of Gene Expression (LongSAGE). Five cDNA libraries were constructed from miracidia and in vitro cultured 6- and 20-day-old sporocysts maintained in sporocyst medium (SM) or in SM conditioned by previous cultivation with cells of the B. glabrata embryonic (Bge) cell line. We generated 21 440 SAGE tags and mapped 13 381 to the S. mansoni gene predictions (v4.0e) either by estimating theoretical 3′ UTR lengths or using existing 3′ EST sequence data. Overall, 432 transcripts were found to be differentially expressed amongst all 5 libraries. In total, 172 tags were differentially expressed between miracidia and 6-day conditioned sporocysts and 152 were differentially expressed between miracidia and 6-day unconditioned sporocysts. In addition, 53 and 45 tags, respectively, were differentially expressed in 6-day and 20-day cultured sporocysts, due to the effects of exposure to Bge cell-conditioned medium. PMID:19265565

  5. Use of Geospatial Modeling to Predict Schistosoma mansoni Prevalence in Nyanza Province, Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Woodhall, Dana M.; Wiegand, Ryan E.; Wellman, Michael; Matey, Elizabeth; Abudho, Bernard; Karanja, Diana M. S.; Mwinzi, Pauline M. N.; Montgomery, Susan P.; Secor, W. Evan

    2013-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease that affects over 200 million people, can lead to significant morbidity and mortality; distribution of single dose preventative chemotherapy significantly reduces disease burden. Implementation of control programs is dictated by disease prevalence rates, which are determined by costly and labor intensive screening of stool samples. Because ecological and human factors are known to contribute to the focal distribution of schistosomiasis, we sought to determine if specific environmental and geographic factors could be used to accurately predict Schistosoma mansoni prevalence in Nyanza Province, Kenya. Methodology/Principal Findings A spatial mixed model was fit to assess associations with S. mansoni prevalence in schools. Data on S. mansoni prevalence and GPS location of the school were obtained from 457 primary schools. Environmental and geographic data layers were obtained from publicly available sources. Spatial models were constructed using ArcGIS 10 and R 2.13.0. Lower S.mansoni prevalence was associated with further distance (km) to Lake Victoria, higher day land surface temperature (LST), and higher monthly rainfall totals. Altitude, night LST, human influence index, normalized difference vegetation index, soil pH, soil texture, soil bulk density, soil water capacity, population, and land use variables were not significantly associated with S. mansoni prevalence. Conclusions Our model suggests that there are specific environmental and geographic factors that influence S. mansoni prevalence rates in Nyanza Province, Kenya. Validation and use of schistosomiasis prevalence maps will allow control programs to plan and prioritize efficient control campaigns to decrease schistosomiasis burden. PMID:23977096

  6. Genital Schistosomiasis: A Report on Two Cases of Ovarian Carcinomas Containing Viable Eggs of Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves Amorim, Andressa; Alves Barbosa Pagio, Fernanda; Neves Ferreira, Rodrigo; Chambô Filho, Antônio

    2014-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a parasitic infection that is highly prevalent worldwide, with a variety of species being responsible for causing the disease. In Brazil, however, the only identified species is Schistosoma mansoni. The adult parasites inhabit the blood vessels of the hepatic portal system of the main host. The disease may range from being asymptomatic to provoking liver damage or portal hypertension. Furthermore, ectopic schistosomiasis may develop, and several hypotheses have been raised to explain the occurrence of the disease. This paper describes two cases, one in a 39-year-old woman and the other in a 47-year-old woman. Both had similar symptoms of pain and abdominal distension caused by a large abdominal/pelvic mass. Histopathology of the ovary showed a mucinous cystadenocarcinoma of the intestinal type in the first patient and a papillary serous carcinoma in the second, with both tumors containing viable eggs of Schistosoma mansoni. The neoplasms probably serve as a migratory route for the adult parasites and the embolization of eggs. Nevertheless, there is insufficient evidence to confirm the malignization of a benign lesion due to the presence of Schistosoma mansoni. Few cases have been reported in the international literature on the association between ovarian schistosomiasis and neoplasms. PMID:25587473

  7. Draft genome of neurotropic nematode parasite Angiostrongylus cantonensis, causative agent of human eosinophilic meningitis.

    PubMed

    Yong, Hoi-Sen; Eamsobhana, Praphathip; Lim, Phaik-Eem; Razali, Rozaimi; Aziz, Farhanah Abdul; Rosli, Nurul Shielawati Mohamed; Poole-Johnson, Johan; Anwar, Arif

    2015-08-01

    Angiostrongylus cantonensis is a bursate nematode parasite that causes eosinophilic meningitis (or meningoencephalitis) in humans in many parts of the world. The genomic data from A. cantonensis will form a useful resource for comparative genomic and chemogenomic studies to aid the development of diagnostics and therapeutics. We have sequenced, assembled and annotated the genome of A. cantonensis. The genome size is estimated to be ∼260 Mb, with 17,280 genomic scaffolds, 91X coverage, 81.45% for complete and 93.95% for partial score based on CEGMA analysis of genome completeness. The number of predicted genes of ≥300 bp was 17,482. A total of 7737 predicted protein-coding genes of ≥50 amino acids were identified in the assembled genome. Among the proteins of known function, kinases are the most abundant followed by transferases. The draft genome contains 34 excretory-secretory proteins (ES), a minimum of 44 Nematode Astacin (NAS) metalloproteases, 12 Homeobox (HOX) genes, and 30 neurotransmitters. The assembled genome size (260 Mb) is larger than those of Pristionchus pacificus, Caenorhabditis elegans, Necator americanus, Caenorhabditis briggsae, Trichinella spiralis, Brugia malayi and Loa loa, but smaller than Haemonchus contortus and Ascaris suum. The repeat content (25%) is similar to H. contortus. The GC content (41.17%) is lower compared to P. pacificus (42.7%) and H. contortus (43.1%) but higher compared to C. briggsae (37.69%), A. suum (37.9%) and N. americanus (40.2%) while the scaffold N50 is 42,191. This draft genome will facilitate the understanding of many unresolved issues on the parasite and the disorder it causes. PMID:25910624

  8. Draft genome of neurotropic nematode parasite Angiostrongylus cantonensis, causative agent of human eosinophilic meningitis.

    PubMed

    Yong, Hoi-Sen; Eamsobhana, Praphathip; Lim, Phaik-Eem; Razali, Rozaimi; Aziz, Farhanah Abdul; Rosli, Nurul Shielawati Mohamed; Poole-Johnson, Johan; Anwar, Arif

    2015-08-01

    Angiostrongylus cantonensis is a bursate nematode parasite that causes eosinophilic meningitis (or meningoencephalitis) in humans in many parts of the world. The genomic data from A. cantonensis will form a useful resource for comparative genomic and chemogenomic studies to aid the development of diagnostics and therapeutics. We have sequenced, assembled and annotated the genome of A. cantonensis. The genome size is estimated to be ∼260 Mb, with 17,280 genomic scaffolds, 91X coverage, 81.45% for complete and 93.95% for partial score based on CEGMA analysis of genome completeness. The number of predicted genes of ≥300 bp was 17,482. A total of 7737 predicted protein-coding genes of ≥50 amino acids were identified in the assembled genome. Among the proteins of known function, kinases are the most abundant followed by transferases. The draft genome contains 34 excretory-secretory proteins (ES), a minimum of 44 Nematode Astacin (NAS) metalloproteases, 12 Homeobox (HOX) genes, and 30 neurotransmitters. The assembled genome size (260 Mb) is larger than those of Pristionchus pacificus, Caenorhabditis elegans, Necator americanus, Caenorhabditis briggsae, Trichinella spiralis, Brugia malayi and Loa loa, but smaller than Haemonchus contortus and Ascaris suum. The repeat content (25%) is similar to H. contortus. The GC content (41.17%) is lower compared to P. pacificus (42.7%) and H. contortus (43.1%) but higher compared to C. briggsae (37.69%), A. suum (37.9%) and N. americanus (40.2%) while the scaffold N50 is 42,191. This draft genome will facilitate the understanding of many unresolved issues on the parasite and the disorder it causes.

  9. Parasites, Plants, and People.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Marion; Moore, Tony

    2016-06-01

    Anthelminthic resistance is acknowledged worldwide and is a major problem in Aotearoa New Zealand, thus alternative parasite management strategies are imperative. One Health is an initiative linking animal, human, and environmental health. Parasites, plants, and people illustrate the possibilities of providing diverse diets for stock thereby lowering parasite burdens, improving the cultural wellbeing of a local community, and protecting the environment. PMID:27105933

  10. Molecular Differentiation of Schistosoma japonicum and Schistosoma mekongi by Real-Time PCR with High Resolution Melting Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Kongklieng, Amornmas; Kaewkong, Worasak; Intapan, Pewpan M.; Sanpool, Oranuch; Janwan, Penchom; Thanchomnang, Tongjit; Lulitanond, Viraphong; Sri-Aroon, Pusadee; Limpanont, Yanin

    2013-01-01

    Human schistosomiasis caused by Schistosoma japonicum and Schistosoma mekongi is a chronic and debilitating helminthic disease still prevalent in several countries of Asia. Due to morphological similarities of cercariae and eggs of these 2 species, microscopic differentiation is difficult. High resolution melting (HRM) real-time PCR is developed as an alternative tool for the detection and differentiation of these 2 species. A primer pair was designed for targeting the 18S ribosomal RNA gene to generate PCR products of 156 base pairs for both species. The melting points of S. japonicum and S. mekongi PCR products were 84.5±0.07℃ and 85.7±0.07℃, respectively. The method permits amplification from a single cercaria or an egg. The HRM real-time PCR is a rapid and simple tool for differentiation of S. japonicum and S. mekongi in the intermediate and final hosts. PMID:24516269

  11. A synthetic peptide derived from the parasite Toxoplasma gondii triggers human dendritic cells' migration.

    PubMed

    Persat, Florence; Mercier, Corinne; Ficheux, Damien; Colomb, Evelyne; Trouillet, Sophie; Bendridi, Nadia; Musset, Karine; Loeuillet, Corinne; Cesbron-Delauw, Marie-France; Vincent, Claude

    2012-12-01

    The migration of DCs is a critical function, enabling information to be carried to where the immunological response occurs. Parasites are known to weaken host immunity by interfering with the functions of DCs and thus, may be a source of molecules with immunomodulatory properties. Here, we demonstrate that the soluble protein, GRA5, specific to Toxoplasma gondii, is able to increase the migration of human CD34-DCs toward CCL19. A synthetic Pep29 derived from the GRA5 hydrophilic NT region (Pep29) was found to be internalized by macropinocytosis and to trigger in vitro migration of CD34-DCs via CCR7 expression without activating DCs. Pep29 also induced a decrease in the number of LCs from human skin epidermis. As local depletion of DCs and migration of immature DCs lead to a disruption of the specific innate response, our results highlight the potential of using pathogen-derived synthetic peptides as novel cell modulators with a therapeutic potential to reduce symptoms in inflammatory disorders.

  12. NMR and crystallographic structures of the FK506 binding domain of human malarial parasite Plasmodium vivax FKBP35

    PubMed Central

    Alag, Reema; Qureshi, Insaf A; Bharatham, Nagakumar; Shin, Joon; Lescar, Julien; Yoon, Ho Sup

    2010-01-01

    The emergence of drug-resistant malaria parasites is the major threat to effective malaria control, prompting a search for novel compounds with mechanisms of action that are different from the traditionally used drugs. The immunosuppressive drug FK506 shows an antimalarial activity. The mechanism of the drug action involves the molecular interaction with the parasite target proteins PfFKBP35 and PvFKBP35, which are novel FK506 binding protein family (FKBP) members from Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax, respectively. Currently, molecular mechanisms of the FKBP family proteins in the parasites still remain elusive. To understand their functions, here we have determined the structures of the FK506 binding domain of Plasmodium vivax (PvFKBD) in unliganded form by NMR spectroscopy and in complex with FK506 by X-ray crystallography. We found out that PvFKBP35 exhibits a canonical FKBD fold and shares kinetic profiles similar to those of PfFKBP35, the homologous protein in P. falciparum, indicating that the parasite FKBP family members play similar biological roles in their life cycles. Despite the similarity, differences were observed in the ligand binding modes between PvFKBD and HsFKBP12, a human FKBP homolog, which could provide insightful information into designing selective antimalarial drug against the parasites. PMID:20572013

  13. Brazilian studies on the genetics of Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Gentile, Rosana; Oliveira, Guilherme

    2009-01-01

    The parasite Schistosoma is known to exhibit variations among species, strains and genera, such as, the levels of infectivity, pathogenicity and immunogenicity. These factors may differ among parasite populations according to the local epidemiological conditions. Diversity observed in S. mansoni from different geographical regions or within individuals of the same region can be determined by differences in the genotype of each parasite strain. However, until recently, finding adequate genetic markers to investigate infectivity or other epidemiological characteristics of a transmission area proved difficult. Several studies have been conducted to evaluate the genetic variability of S. mansoni, using different techniques. Intraspecific variability was observed in morphological characters, isoenzyme studies, mtDNA, ribosomal gene probes, RAPD and microsatellites. The sequencing of the S. mansoni genome was the most important achievement concerning genetic approaches to the study of this parasite and may improve the development of drugs, vaccines and diagnostics of schistosomiasis. The knowledge of the genetic structure of schistosome populations in relation to epidemiological data and host variability is essential for the understanding of the epidemiology of the disease and the design of control strategies. PMID:18831955

  14. DETC Induces Leishmania Parasite Killing in Human In Vitro and Murine In Vivo Models: A Promising Therapeutic Alternative in Leishmaniasis

    PubMed Central

    Khouri, Ricardo; Novais, Fernanda; Santana, Gisélia; de Oliveira, Camila Indiani; Vannier dos Santos, Marcos André; Barral, Aldina; Barral-Netto, Manoel; Van Weyenbergh, Johan

    2010-01-01

    Background Chemotherapy remains the primary tool for treatment and control of human leishmaniasis. However, currently available drugs present serious problems regarding side-effects, variable efficacy, and cost. Affordable and less toxic drugs are urgently needed for leishmaniasis. Methodology/Principal Findings We demonstrate, by microscopy and viability assays, that superoxide dismutase inhibitor diethyldithiocarbamate (DETC) dose-dependently induces parasite killing (p<0.001) and is able to “sterilize” Leishmania amazonensis infection at 2 mM in human macrophages in vitro. We also show that DETC-induced superoxide production (p<0.001) and parasite destruction (p<0.05) were reverted by the addition of the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine, indicating that DETC-induced killing occurs through oxidative damage. Furthermore, ultrastructural analysis by electron microscopy demonstrates a rapid and highly selective destruction of amastigotes in the phagosome upon DETC treatment, without any apparent damage to the host cell, including its mitochondria. In addition, DETC significantly induced parasite killing in Leishmania promastigotes in axenic culture. In murine macrophages infected with Leishmania braziliensis, DETC significantly induced in vitro superoxide production (p = 0.0049) and parasite killing (p = 0.0043). In vivo treatment with DETC in BALB/C mice infected with Leishmania braziliensis caused a significant decrease in lesion size (p<0.0001), paralleled by a 100-fold decrease (p = 0.0087) in parasite burden. Conclusions/Significance Due to its strong leishmanicidal effect in human macrophages in vitro, its in vivo effectiveness in a murine model, and its previously demonstrated in vivo safety profile in HIV treatment, DETC treatment might be considered as a valuable therapeutic option in human leishmaniasis, including HIV/Leishmania co-infection. PMID:21200432

  15. Extending parasite-stress theory to variation in human mate preferences.

    PubMed

    DeBruine, Lisa M; Little, Anthony C; Jones, Benedict C

    2012-04-01

    In this commentary we suggest that Fincher & Thornhill's (F&T's) parasite-stress theory of social behaviors and attitudes can be extended to mating behaviors and preferences. We discuss evidence from prior correlational and experimental studies that support this claim. We also reanalyze data from two of those studies using F&T's new parasite stress measures.

  16. Cross-reactivity of Schistosoma mansoni-Fasciola gigantica influenced by saponins.

    PubMed

    Maghraby, Amany Sayed; Shaker, Kamel H; Gaber, Hanaa M

    2009-01-01

    The aim of the present work was to investigate the Schistosoma mansoni and Fasciola gigantica cross-reactivity between adult worms and egg homogenates of the parasites. Immunoprophylactic effects of crude Schistosoma mansoni worms and egg antigens mixed with or without saponins extracted from Atriplex nummularia were studied followed by challenge with 80 cercariae of Schistosoma mansoni. Our results showed that post 1st immunization with schistosome egg antigens (SEA) there was a significant change (P approximately 0.05) in the IgM levels against Fasciola egg homogenate (FgEH) without saponins. Post 2nd immunization with SEA mixed with saponins the levels of IgM increased significantly (P approximately 0.05) against Fasciola worm homogenate (FgWH) as compared with a non-immunized group. Post 2nd immunization the level of IgG was significantly elevated (P approximately 0.05) by SEA mixed with saponins against FgWH. Post 2nd immunizations with SEA mixed with saponins showed a significant change (P approximately 0.05) in IgG levels against FgEH. These results clearly demonstrated that there is a cross-reactivity between Schistosoma mansoni eggs and Fasciola gigantica worms and eggs. Saponins were found to be immunostimulatory adjuvants in our study. PMID:19526726

  17. Structure of a Protozoan Virus from the Human Genitourinary Parasite Trichomonas vaginalis

    PubMed Central

    Parent, Kristin N.; Takagi, Yuko; Cardone, Giovanni; Olson, Norman H.; Ericsson, Maria; Yang, May; Lee, Yujin; Asara, John M.; Fichorova, Raina N.; Baker, Timothy S.; Nibert, Max L.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT The flagellated protozoan Trichomonas vaginalis is an obligate human genitourinary parasite and the most frequent cause of sexually transmitted disease worldwide. Most clinical isolates of T. vaginalis are persistently infected with one or more double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) viruses from the genus Trichomonasvirus, family Totiviridae, which appear to influence not only protozoan biology but also human disease. Here we describe the three-dimensional structure of Trichomonas vaginalis virus 1 (TVV1) virions, as determined by electron cryomicroscopy and icosahedral image reconstruction. The structure reveals a T = 1 capsid comprising 120 subunits, 60 in each of two nonequivalent positions, designated A and B, as previously observed for fungal Totiviridae family members. The putative protomer is identified as an asymmetric AB dimer consistent with either decamer or tetramer assembly intermediates. The capsid surface is notable for raised plateaus around the icosahedral 5-fold axes, with canyons connecting the 2- and 3-fold axes. Capsid-spanning channels at the 5-fold axes are unusually wide and may facilitate release of the viral genome, promoting dsRNA-dependent immunoinflammatory responses, as recently shown upon the exposure of human cervicovaginal epithelial cells to either TVV-infected T. vaginalis or purified TVV1 virions. Despite extensive sequence divergence, conservative features of the capsid reveal a helix-rich fold probably derived from an ancestor shared with fungal Totiviridae family members. Also notable are mass spectrometry results assessing the virion proteins as a complement to structure determination, which suggest that translation of the TVV1 RNA-dependent RNA polymerase in fusion with its capsid protein involves −2, and not +1, ribosomal frameshifting, an uncommonly found mechanism to date. PMID:23549915

  18. Structure, Function and Inhibition of the Phosphoethanolamine Methyltransferases of the Human Malaria Parasites Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi

    SciTech Connect

    Garg, Aprajita; Lukk, Tiit; Kumar, Vidya; Choi, Jae-Yeon; Augagneur, Yoann; Voelker, Dennis R.; Nair, Satish; Mamoun, Choukri Ben

    2015-03-12

    Phosphoethanolamine methyltransferases (PMTs) catalyze the three-step methylation of phosphoethanolamine to form phosphocholine, a critical step in the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine in a select number of eukaryotes including human malaria parasites, nematodes and plants. Genetic studies in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum have shown that the methyltransferase PfPMT plays a critical function in parasite development and differentiation. The presence of PMT orthologs in other malaria parasites that infect humans and their absence in mammals make them ideal targets for the development of selective antimalarials with broad specificity against different Plasmodium species. Here we describe the X-ray structures and biochemical properties of PMT orthologs from Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi and show that both enzymes are inhibited by amodiaquine and NSC158011, two drugs with potent antimalarial activity. Metabolic studies in a yeast mutant that relies on PkPMT or PvPMT for survival demonstrated that these compounds inhibit phosphatidylcholine biosynthesis from ethanolamine. Our structural and functional data provide insights into the mechanism of catalysis and inhibition of PMT enzymes and set the stage for a better design of more specific and selective antimalarial drugs.

  19. Structure, Function and Inhibition of the Phosphoethanolamine Methyltransferases of the Human Malaria Parasites Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi

    DOE PAGES

    Garg, Aprajita; Lukk, Tiit; Kumar, Vidya; Choi, Jae-Yeon; Augagneur, Yoann; Voelker, Dennis R.; Nair, Satish; Mamoun, Choukri Ben

    2015-03-12

    Phosphoethanolamine methyltransferases (PMTs) catalyze the three-step methylation of phosphoethanolamine to form phosphocholine, a critical step in the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine in a select number of eukaryotes including human malaria parasites, nematodes and plants. Genetic studies in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum have shown that the methyltransferase PfPMT plays a critical function in parasite development and differentiation. The presence of PMT orthologs in other malaria parasites that infect humans and their absence in mammals make them ideal targets for the development of selective antimalarials with broad specificity against different Plasmodium species. Here we describe the X-ray structures and biochemical properties ofmore » PMT orthologs from Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi and show that both enzymes are inhibited by amodiaquine and NSC158011, two drugs with potent antimalarial activity. Metabolic studies in a yeast mutant that relies on PkPMT or PvPMT for survival demonstrated that these compounds inhibit phosphatidylcholine biosynthesis from ethanolamine. Our structural and functional data provide insights into the mechanism of catalysis and inhibition of PMT enzymes and set the stage for a better design of more specific and selective antimalarial drugs.« less

  20. Structure, Function and Inhibition of the Phosphoethanolamine Methyltransferases of the Human Malaria Parasites Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi

    PubMed Central

    Garg, Aprajita; Lukk, Tiit; Kumar, Vidya; Choi, Jae-Yeon; Augagneur, Yoann; Voelker, Dennis R.; Nair, Satish; Mamoun, Choukri Ben

    2015-01-01

    Phosphoethanolamine methyltransferases (PMTs) catalyze the three-step methylation of phosphoethanolamine to form phosphocholine, a critical step in the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine in a select number of eukaryotes including human malaria parasites, nematodes and plants. Genetic studies in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum have shown that the methyltransferase PfPMT plays a critical function in parasite development and differentiation. The presence of PMT orthologs in other malaria parasites that infect humans and their absence in mammals make them ideal targets for the development of selective antimalarials with broad specificity against different Plasmodium species. Here we describe the X-ray structures and biochemical properties of PMT orthologs from Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium knowlesi and show that both enzymes are inhibited by amodiaquine and NSC158011, two drugs with potent antimalarial activity. Metabolic studies in a yeast mutant that relies on PkPMT or PvPMT for survival demonstrated that these compounds inhibit phosphatidylcholine biosynthesis from ethanolamine. Our structural and functional data provide insights into the mechanism of catalysis and inhibition of PMT enzymes and set the stage for a better design of more specific and selective antimalarial drugs. PMID:25761669

  1. Parasites of importance for human health in Nigerian dogs: high prevalence and limited knowledge of pet owners

    PubMed Central

    Ugbomoiko, Uade Samuel; Ariza, Liana; Heukelbach, Jorg

    2008-01-01

    Background Dogs are the most common pet animals worldwide. They may harbour a wide range of parasites with zoonotic potential, thus causing a health risk to humans. In Nigeria, epidemiological knowledge on these parasites is limited. Methods In a community-based study, we examined 396 dogs in urban and rural areas of Ilorin (Kwara State, Central Nigeria) for ectoparasites and intestinal helminths. In addition, a questionnaire regarding knowledge and practices was applied to pet owners. Results Nine ectoparasite species belonging to four taxa and six intestinal helminth species were identified: fleas (Ctenocephalides canis, Pulex irritans, Tunga penetrans), mites (Demodex canis, Otodectes sp., Sarcoptes scabiei var. canis), ticks (Rhipicephalus sanguineus, Ixodes sp.), and lice (Trichodectes canis); and Toxocara canis, Ancylostoma sp., Trichuris vulpis, Dipylidium caninum, Taenidae and Strongyloides sp. Overall prevalence of ectoparasites was 60.4% and of intestinal helminths 68.4%. The occurrence of C. canis, R. sanguineus, T. canis, Ancylostoma sp. and T. vulpis was most common (prevalence 14.4% to 41.7%). Prevalence patterns in helminths were age-dependent, with T. canis showing a decreasing prevalence with age of host, and a reverse trend in other parasite species. Knowledge regarding zoonoses was very limited and the diseases not considered a major health problem. Treatment with antiparasitic drugs was more frequent in urban areas. Conclusion Parasites of importance for human health were highly prevalent in Nigerian dogs. Interventions should include health education provided to dog owners and the establishment of a program focusing on zoonotic diseases. PMID:19068110

  2. Kicking in the Guts: Schistosoma mansoni Digestive Tract Proteins are Potential Candidates for Vaccine Development

    PubMed Central

    Figueiredo, Barbara Castro-Pimentel; Ricci, Natasha Delaqua; de Assis, Natan Raimundo Gonçalves; de Morais, Suellen Batistoni; Fonseca, Cristina Toscano; Oliveira, Sergio Costa

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a debilitating disease that represents a major health problem in at least 74 tropical and subtropical countries. Current disease control strategies consist mainly of chemotherapy, which cannot prevent recurrent re-infection of people living in endemic area. In the last decades, many researchers made a remarkable effort in the search for an effective vaccine to provide long-term protection. Parasitic platyhelminthes of Schistosoma genus, which cause the disease, live in the blood vessels of definitive hosts where they are bathed in host blood for many years. Among the most promising molecules as vaccine candidates are the proteins present in the host–parasite interface, so numerous tegument antigens have been assessed and the achieved protection never got even close to 100%. Besides the tegument, the digestive tract is the other major site of host–parasite interface. Since parasites feed on blood, they need to swallow a considerable amount of blood for nutrient acquisition. Host blood ingested by schistosomes passes through the esophagus and reaches the gut where many peptidases catalyze the proteolysis of blood cells. Recent studies show the emergence of antigens related to the parasite blood feeding, such as esophageal gland proteins, proteases, and other proteins related to nutrient uptake. Herein, we review what is known about Schistosoma mansoni digestive tract proteins, emphasizing the ones described as potential vaccine candidates. PMID:25674091

  3. Towards an Understanding of the Function of the Phytochelatin Synthase of Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Rigouin, Coraline; Nylin, Elyse; Cogswell, Alexis A.; Schaumlöffel, Dirk; Dobritzsch, Dirk; Williams, David L.

    2013-01-01

    Phytochelatin synthase (PCS) is a protease-like enzyme that catalyzes the production of metal chelating peptides, the phytochelatins, from glutathione (GSH). In plants, algae, and fungi phytochelatin production is important for metal tolerance and detoxification. PCS proteins also function in xenobiotic metabolism by processing GSH S-conjugates. The aim of the present study is to elucidate the role of PCS in the parasitic worm Schistosoma mansoni. Recombinant S. mansoni PCS proteins expressed in bacteria could both synthesize phytochelatins and hydrolyze various GSH S-conjugates. We found that both the N-truncated protein and the N- and C-terminal truncated form of the enzyme (corresponding to only the catalytic domain) work through a thiol-dependant and, notably, metal-independent mechanism for both transpeptidase (phytochelatin synthesis) and peptidase (hydrolysis of GSH S-conjugates) activities. PCS transcript abundance was increased by metals and xenobiotics in cultured adult worms. In addition, these treatments were found to increase transcript abundance of other enzymes involved in GSH metabolism. Highest levels of PCS transcripts were identified in the esophageal gland of adult worms. Taken together, these results suggest that S. mansoni PCS participates in both metal homoeostasis and xenobiotic metabolism rather than metal detoxification as previously suggested and that the enzyme may be part of a global stress response in the worm. Because humans do not have PCS, this enzyme is of particular interest as a drug target for schistosomiasis. PMID:23383357

  4. Increase of malaria attacks among children presenting concomitant infection by Schistosoma mansoni in Senegal

    PubMed Central

    Sokhna, Cheikh; Le Hesran, Jean-Yves; Mbaye, Pape A; Akiana, Jean; Camara, Pape; Diop, Mamadou; Ly, Abdoulaye; Druilhe, Pierre

    2004-01-01

    Helminthic infections concomitant with malaria are common in inter-tropical areas. A recent study showed that mice co-infected with Schistosoma mansoni and Plasmodium chabaudi develop higher P. chabaudi parasitaemia and had a higher mortality rate. This important observation deserved to be further investigated among human populations. Malaria attacks were recorded in 512 children aged 6–15 years living in Richard Toll (Northern Senegal) among whom 336 were infected by S. mansoni, and 175 were not. The incidence rate of malaria attacks was significantly higher among S. mansoni-infected individuals, particularly those carrying the highest worm loads, as compared to uninfected subjects (26.6% versus 16,4 %). In contrast, the rate of malaria attacks was lower, without reaching significance, in medium grade S. mansoni infections. Thus, infection by S. mansoni affects susceptibility to malaria, but this can vary according to the intensity of parasite load. The immunological mechanisms underlying this dual effect need to be further explored. PMID:15544703

  5. Towards an understanding of the function of the phytochelatin synthase of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Rigouin, Coraline; Nylin, Elyse; Cogswell, Alexis A; Schaumlöffel, Dirk; Dobritzsch, Dirk; Williams, David L

    2013-01-01

    Phytochelatin synthase (PCS) is a protease-like enzyme that catalyzes the production of metal chelating peptides, the phytochelatins, from glutathione (GSH). In plants, algae, and fungi phytochelatin production is important for metal tolerance and detoxification. PCS proteins also function in xenobiotic metabolism by processing GSH S-conjugates. The aim of the present study is to elucidate the role of PCS in the parasitic worm Schistosoma mansoni. Recombinant S. mansoni PCS proteins expressed in bacteria could both synthesize phytochelatins and hydrolyze various GSH S-conjugates. We found that both the N-truncated protein and the N- and C-terminal truncated form of the enzyme (corresponding to only the catalytic domain) work through a thiol-dependant and, notably, metal-independent mechanism for both transpeptidase (phytochelatin synthesis) and peptidase (hydrolysis of GSH S-conjugates) activities. PCS transcript abundance was increased by metals and xenobiotics in cultured adult worms. In addition, these treatments were found to increase transcript abundance of other enzymes involved in GSH metabolism. Highest levels of PCS transcripts were identified in the esophageal gland of adult worms. Taken together, these results suggest that S. mansoni PCS participates in both metal homoeostasis and xenobiotic metabolism rather than metal detoxification as previously suggested and that the enzyme may be part of a global stress response in the worm. Because humans do not have PCS, this enzyme is of particular interest as a drug target for schistosomiasis.

  6. Schistosoma incognitum and its zoonotic potential role in Phitsanulok and Phichit provinces, northern Thailand.

    PubMed

    Bunnag, T; Thirachandra, S; Impand, P; Vorasanta, P; Imlarp, S

    1983-06-01

    A study on Schistosoma incognitum, a blood fluke of a variety of mammals, was conducted in different ecological conditions in Phitsanulok and Phichit, northern Thailand. The intermediate host of S. incognitum in permanent water habitats studied, i.e; swamps and ditches is Radix (Lymnaea) auricularia rubiginosa. Of 44,412 mollusks representing 13 different species collected from 24 water habitats studied, 7,186 were R. a. rubiginosa. S. incognitum infection rate in the snails was 2.1%. 483 Rattus rattus, 8 R. argentiventer, 280 Bandicota indica and 65 B. savilei were found infected with S. incognitum with an overall infection rate of 41.7%. R. argentiventer and B. savilei are reported as new mammalian hosts of the parasite. Also, 3.9% of dogs in the study area were found excreting S. incognitum eggs in their stools for the first time. The possibility of S. incognitum as a zoonotic potentiality to humans is discussed and is still an equivocal issue deserving further study.

  7. Trickle or clumped infection process? An analysis of aggregation in the weights of the parasitic roundworm of humans, Ascaris lumbricoides.

    PubMed

    Walker, Martin; Hall, Andrew; Basáñez, María-Gloria

    2010-10-01

    Studying the distribution of parasitic helminth body size across a population of definitive hosts can advance our understanding of parasite population biology. Body size is typically correlated with egg production. Consequently, inequalities in body size have been frequently measured to infer variation in reproductive success (VRS). Body size is also related to parasite age (time since entering the definitive host) and potentially provides valuable information on the mode of acquisition and establishment of immature (larval) parasites within the host: whether parasites tend to establish singly or in aggregates. The mode of acquisition of soil-transmitted helminths has been a theoretical consideration in the parasitological literature but has eluded data-driven investigation. In this paper, we analyse individual Ascaris lumbricoides weight data collected from a cohort of human hosts before and after re-infection following curative treatment, and explore its distribution within and among individuals in the population. Lorenz curves and Gini coefficients indicate that levels of weight inequality (a proxy for VRS) in A.lumbricoides are lower than other published estimates from animal-helminth systems. We explore levels of intra-host weight aggregation using statistical models to estimate the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) while adjusting for covariates using a flexible fractional polynomial transformation approach capable of handling non-linear functional relationships. The estimated ICCs indicate that weights are aggregated within hosts both at equilibrium and after re-infection, suggesting that parasites may establish within the host in clumps. The implications of a clumped infection process are discussed in terms of ascariasis transmission dynamics, control and anthelmintic resistance.

  8. The pattern of parasitic infection in human gut at the Specialist Hospital, Benin City, Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Obiamiwe, B A

    1977-03-01

    In a survey of 6213 persons conducted between January 1973 to December 1974, at the Specialist Hospital, Benin City, the most common helminths were Necator americanus (16.8%), Ascaris lumbricoides (19l5%) and Trichuris trichiur (5-9%). Dicrocoelium hospes (0-06%) was also recorded and this may become an important liver parasite of man in Nigeria. Its snail vectors are believed to be species of Limicolaria and Achatina which are widely dispersed in Nigeria. Entamoeba coli and E. histolytica showed peaks during the "fly seasons", indicating that the housefly, as well as water, may be an important source of contamination. Trichomonas hominis showed peaks in the rainy seasons, and this suggests that in Benin City transmission is chiefly via contaminated domestic water-supply. The incidence of A. lumbricoides and N. americanus was high throughout the rainy and dry seasons, indicating poor disposal of human excreta and a continuous pattern of infection. The type of food and method of cooking prevented or reduced the incidence of Taenia solium, T. saginata, Diphyllobothrium latum and Fasciola gigantica. PMID:849017

  9. Glycosylation of the Major Polar Tube Protein of Encephalitozoon hellem, a Microsporidian Parasite That Infects Humans

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yanji; Takvorian, Peter M.; Cali, Ann; Orr, George; Weiss, Louis M.

    2004-01-01

    The microsporidia are ubiquitous, obligate intracellular eukaryotic spore-forming parasites infecting a wide range of invertebrates and vertebrates, including humans. The defining structure of microsporidia is the polar tube, which forms a hollow tube through which the sporoplasm is transferred to the host cell. Research on the molecular and cellular biology of the polar tube has resulted in the identification of three polar tube proteins: PTP1, PTP2, and PTP3. The major polar tube protein, PTP1, accounts for at least 70% of the mass of the polar tube. In the present study, PTP1 was found to be posttranslationally modified. Concanavalin A (ConA) bound to PTP1 and to the polar tube of several different microsporidia species. Analysis of the glycosylation of Encephalitozoon hellem PTP1 suggested that it is modified by O-linked mannosylation, and ConA binds to these O-linked mannose residues. Mannose pretreatment of RK13 host cells decreased their infection by E. hellem, consistent with an interaction between the mannosylation of PTP1 and some unknown host cell mannose-binding molecule. A CHO cell line (Lec1) that is unable to synthesize complex-type N-linked oligosaccharides had an increased susceptibility to E. hellem infection compared to wild-type CHO cells. These data suggest that the O-mannosylation of PTP1 may have functional significance for the ability of microsporidia to invade their host cells. PMID:15501763

  10. Chromatin-driven de novo discovery of DNA binding motifs in the human malaria parasite

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Despite extensive efforts to discover transcription factors and their binding sites in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, only a few transcription factor binding motifs have been experimentally validated to date. As a consequence, gene regulation in P. falciparum is still poorly understood. There is now evidence that the chromatin architecture plays an important role in transcriptional control in malaria. Results We propose a methodology for discovering cis-regulatory elements that uses for the first time exclusively dynamic chromatin remodeling data. Our method employs nucleosome positioning data collected at seven time points during the erythrocytic cycle of P. falciparum to discover putative DNA binding motifs and their transcription factor binding sites along with their associated clusters of target genes. Our approach results in 129 putative binding motifs within the promoter region of known genes. About 75% of those are novel, the remaining being highly similar to experimentally validated binding motifs. About half of the binding motifs reported show statistically significant enrichment in functional gene sets and strong positional bias in the promoter region. Conclusion Experimental results establish the principle that dynamic chromatin remodeling data can be used in lieu of gene expression data to discover binding motifs and their transcription factor binding sites. Our approach can be applied using only dynamic nucleosome positioning data, independent from any knowledge of gene function or expression. PMID:22165844

  11. Vaccination against cestode parasites.

    PubMed

    Lightowlers, M W; Rickard, M D

    1993-10-01

    Cestodes are tapeworm parasites. Infection in the intermediate host with larval (metacestode) parasites causes medically and economically important diseases known as hydatidosis and cysticercosis. Immunization against experimental infection with metacestode parasites has been highly successful, in marked contrast with the relative ineffectiveness of vaccines against infection with most parasitic organisms. High levels of immunity against a challenge infection with taeniid cestode eggs can be stimulated by immunization with extracts of the parasites, particularly with extracts of the oncosphere life-cycle stage. This led to the production of a recombinant antigen vaccine against infection in sheep with the parasite Taenia ovis, the first highly effective, non-living vaccine against a parasitic infection in animals or humans. This paper reviews immunity to the adult and metacestode life-cycle stages of cestode parasites, development and application of the T. ovis vaccine, and prospects for vaccines against other cestode infections.

  12. Human schistosomiasis

    PubMed Central

    Colley, Daniel G; Bustinduy, Amaya L; Secor, W Evan; King, Charles H

    2015-01-01

    Human schistosomiasis—or bilharzia—is a parasitic disease caused by trematode flukes of the genus Schistosoma. By conservative estimates, at least 230 million people worldwide are infected with Schistosoma spp. Adult schistosome worms colonise human blood vessels for years, successfully evading the immune system while excreting hundreds to thousands of eggs daily, which must either leave the body in excreta or become trapped in nearby tissues. Trapped eggs induce a distinct immune-mediated granulomatous response that causes local and systemic pathological effects ranging from anaemia, growth stunting, impaired cognition, and decreased physical fitness, to organ-specific effects such as severe hepatosplenism, periportal fibrosis with portal hypertension, and urogenital inflammation and scarring. At present, preventive public health measures in endemic regions consist of treatment once every 1 or 2 years with the isoquinolinone drug, praziquantel, to suppress morbidity. In some locations, elimination of transmission is now the goal; however, more sensitive diagnostics are needed in both the field and clinics, and integrated environmental and health-care management will be needed to ensure elimination. PMID:24698483

  13. Trickle or clumped infection process? A stochastic model for the infection process of the parasitic roundworm of humans, Ascaris lumbricoides.

    PubMed

    Walker, Martin; Hall, Andrew; Basáñez, María-Gloria

    2010-10-01

    The importance of the mode of acquisition of infectious stages of directly-transmitted parasitic helminths has been acknowledged in population dynamics models; hosts may acquire eggs/larvae singly in a "trickle" type manner or in "clumps". Such models have shown that the mode of acquisition influences the distribution and dynamics of parasite loads, the stability of host-parasite systems and the rate of emergence of anthelmintic resistance, yet very few field studies have allowed these questions to be explored with empirical data. We have analysed individual worm weight data for the parasitic roundworm of humans, Ascaris lumbricoides, collected from a three-round chemo-expulsion study in Dhaka, Bangladesh, with the aim of discerning whether a trickle or a clumped infection process predominates. We found that hosts tend to harbour female worms of a similar weight, indicative of a clumped infection process, but acknowledged that unmeasured host heterogeneities (random effects) could not be completely excluded as a cause. Here, we complement our previous statistical analyses using a stochastic infection model to simulate sizes of individual A. lumbricoides infecting a population of humans. We use the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) as a quantitative measure of similarity among simulated worm sizes and explore the behaviour of this statistic under assumptions corresponding to trickle or clumped infections and unmeasured host heterogeneities. We confirm that both mechanisms are capable of generating aggregates of similar-sized worms, but that the particular pattern of ICCs described pre- and post-anthelmintic treatment in the data is more consistent with aggregation generated by clumped infections than by host heterogeneities alone. This provides support to the notion that worms may be acquired in clumps. We discuss our results in terms of the population biology of A. lumbricoides and highlight the significance of our modelling approach for the study of the

  14. Plasmodium falciparum-like parasites infecting wild apes in southern Cameroon do not represent a recurrent source of human malaria

    PubMed Central

    Sundararaman, Sesh A.; Liu, Weimin; Keele, Brandon F.; Learn, Gerald H.; Bittinger, Kyle; Mouacha, Fatima; Ahuka-Mundeke, Steve; Manske, Magnus; Sherrill-Mix, Scott; Li, Yingying; Malenke, Jordan A.; Delaporte, Eric; Laurent, Christian; Mpoudi Ngole, Eitel; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.; Shaw, George M.; Rayner, Julian C.; Peeters, Martine; Sharp, Paul M.; Bushman, Frederic D.; Hahn, Beatrice H.

    2013-01-01

    Wild-living chimpanzees and gorillas harbor a multitude of Plasmodium species, including six of the subgenus Laverania, one of which served as the progenitor of Plasmodium falciparum. Despite the magnitude of this reservoir, it is unknown whether apes represent a source of human infections. Here, we used Plasmodium species-specific PCR, single-genome amplification, and 454 sequencing to screen humans from remote areas of southern Cameroon for ape Laverania infections. Among 1,402 blood samples, we found 1,000 to be Plasmodium mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) positive, all of which contained human parasites as determined by sequencing and/or restriction enzyme digestion. To exclude low-abundance infections, we subjected 514 of these samples to 454 sequencing, targeting a region of the mtDNA genome that distinguishes ape from human Laverania species. Using algorithms specifically developed to differentiate rare Plasmodium variants from 454-sequencing error, we identified single and mixed-species infections with P. falciparum, Plasmodium malariae, and/or Plasmodium ovale. However, none of the human samples contained ape Laverania parasites, including the gorilla precursor of P. falciparum. To characterize further the diversity of P. falciparum in Cameroon, we used single-genome amplification to amplify 3.4-kb mtDNA fragments from 229 infected humans. Phylogenetic analysis identified 62 new variants, all of which clustered with extant P. falciparum, providing further evidence that P. falciparum emerged following a single gorilla-to-human transmission. Thus, unlike Plasmodium knowlesi-infected macaques in southeast Asia, African apes harboring Laverania parasites do not seem to serve as a recurrent source of human malaria, a finding of import to ongoing control and eradication measures. PMID:23569255

  15. Schistosoma mansoni: TGF-β Signaling Pathways

    PubMed Central

    LoVerde, Philip T.; Osman, Ahmed; Hinck, Andrew

    2007-01-01

    Schistosome parasites have co-evolved an intricate relationship with their human and snail hosts as well as a novel interplay between the adult male and female parasites. We review the role of the TGF-β signaling pathway in parasite development, host-parasite interactions and male-female interactions. The data to date supports multiple roles for the TGF-β signaling pathway throughout schistosome development, in particular in the tegument which is at the interface with the host and between the male and female schistosome, development of vitelline cells in female worms whose genes and development are regulated by a stimulus from the male schistosome and embryogenesis of the egg. The human ligand TGF-β1 has been demonstrated to regulate the expression of a schistosome target gene that encodes a gynecophoric canal protein in the schistosome worm itself. Studies on signaling in schistosomes opens a new era for investigation of host-parasite and male-female interactions. PMID:17643432

  16. Prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites in primate bushmeat and pets in Cameroon.

    PubMed

    Pourrut, X; Diffo, J L D; Somo, R M; Bilong Bilong, C F; Delaporte, E; LeBreton, M; Gonzalez, J P

    2011-01-10

    To document the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites in Cameroonian monkeys and to assess the risk of transmission to humans, we sampled 125 primates belonging to 15 species, of which 78 had been captured for bushmeat in the wild, and 47 were pets kept in urban areas. Seven nematode species, one trematode, one cestode and three protozoa were detected. Eight different parasite species were found in Cercopithecus nictitans and six in C. neglectus, C. pogonias and Cercocebus agilis. Helminths were found in 77% of monkeys, and protozoa in 36%. Trichuris sp. and Entamoeba coli were the most frequent parasites, being found in 54% and 36% of animals, respectively. Helminths were more frequent in adults than in juveniles, while the prevalence of protozoa was not age-related. No significant gender difference was found. Bushmeat monkeys had a significantly higher prevalence of helminth infection than pets (92% versus 51%), whereas there was no significant difference in the prevalence of protozoa (32% versus 43%). Among helminth species, Strongyloides fulleborni was more prevalent in bushmeat monkeys than in pets (55% versus 15%), as were Ancylostoma spp. (62% versus 9%). As these parasites are transmitted transcutaneously by infectious larva, they have a high potential for transmission to humans, during butchering. One pet monkey kept in an urban household in Yaoundé was infected by Schistosoma mansoni. The potential public health implications of these findings are discussed.

  17. Cercarial emergence pattern of Schistosoma haematobium from Libreville, Gabon.

    PubMed

    Mintsa-Nguéma, Rodrigue; Moné, Hélène; Ibikounlé, Moudachirou; Mengué-Ngou-Milama, Krystina; Kombila, Maryvonne; Mouahid, Gabriel

    2014-01-01

    Although schistosomiasis has been a public health issue in Gabon for nearly a century, little is known about its current transmission dynamics. We analyzed the chronobiology of 137 cercarial emission profiles of Schistosoma haematobium from Libreville, the capital of Gabon, located in an open area for schistosomiasis. We found that 88% of the cercariae were shed between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. and that the average pattern was of circadian type, with the average peak at 1 p.m., and representing 27% of the total number of cercariae of the day. The rhythms of emergence may be associated with environmental pressures on the parasite, especially those related to their definitive hosts.

  18. Cercarial emergence pattern of Schistosoma haematobium from Libreville, Gabon

    PubMed Central

    Mintsa-Nguéma, Rodrigue; Moné, Hélène; Ibikounlé, Moudachirou; Mengué-Ngou-Milama, Krystina; Kombila, Maryvonne; Mouahid, Gabriel

    2014-01-01

    Although schistosomiasis has been a public health issue in Gabon for nearly a century, little is known about its current transmission dynamics. We analyzed the chronobiology of 137 cercarial emission profiles of Schistosoma haematobium from Libreville, the capital of Gabon, located in an open area for schistosomiasis. We found that 88% of the cercariae were shed between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. and that the average pattern was of circadian type, with the average peak at 1 p.m., and representing 27% of the total number of cercariae of the day. The rhythms of emergence may be associated with environmental pressures on the parasite, especially those related to their definitive hosts. PMID:24502943

  19. Resistance to Schistosoma mansoni by transplantation of APO Biomphalaria tenagophila.

    PubMed

    Barbosa, L; Caldeira, R L; Carvalho, O S; Vidigal, T H D A; Jannotti-Passos, L K; Coelho, P M Z

    2006-05-01

    Transplantation of the haematopoietic organ from Biomphalaria tenagophila (Taim strain, RS, Brazil), resistant to Schistosoma mansoni, to a highly susceptible strain (Cabo Frio, RJ, Brazil) of the same species, showed in the recipient snails resistance against the trematode, when a successful transplant occurred. The success of transplantation could be confirmed by a typical molecular marker of the Taim strain in haemocytes of the recipients (350 bp detected by PCR-RFLP). The recipient snails which did not present the donor marker in haemocytes (unsuccessful transplantation) were infected with the parasite. The use of an atoxic modelling clay for closing the hole in the transplantation site reduced significantly the mortality caused by bleeding after transplantation procedures. PMID:16629706

  20. Resistance to Schistosoma mansoni by transplantation of APO Biomphalaria tenagophila.

    PubMed

    Barbosa, L; Caldeira, R L; Carvalho, O S; Vidigal, T H D A; Jannotti-Passos, L K; Coelho, P M Z

    2006-05-01

    Transplantation of the haematopoietic organ from Biomphalaria tenagophila (Taim strain, RS, Brazil), resistant to Schistosoma mansoni, to a highly susceptible strain (Cabo Frio, RJ, Brazil) of the same species, showed in the recipient snails resistance against the trematode, when a successful transplant occurred. The success of transplantation could be confirmed by a typical molecular marker of the Taim strain in haemocytes of the recipients (350 bp detected by PCR-RFLP). The recipient snails which did not present the donor marker in haemocytes (unsuccessful transplantation) were infected with the parasite. The use of an atoxic modelling clay for closing the hole in the transplantation site reduced significantly the mortality caused by bleeding after transplantation procedures.

  1. DNA-Sequence Variation Among Schistosoma mekongi Populations and Related Taxa; Phylogeography and the Current Distribution of Asian Schistosomiasis

    PubMed Central

    Attwood, Stephen W.; Fatih, Farrah A.; Upatham, E. Suchart

    2008-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis in humans along the lower Mekong River has proven a persistent public health problem in the region. The causative agent is the parasite Schistosoma mekongi (Trematoda: Digenea). A new transmission focus is reported, as well as the first study of genetic variation among S. mekongi populations. The aim is to confirm the identity of the species involved at each known focus of Mekong schistosomiasis transmission, to examine historical relationships among the populations and related taxa, and to provide data for use (a priori) in further studies of the origins, radiation, and future dispersal capabilities of S. mekongi. Methodology/Principal Findings DNA sequence data are presented for four populations of S. mekongi from Cambodia and southern Laos, three of which were distinguishable at the COI (cox1) and 12S (rrnS) mitochondrial loci sampled. A phylogeny was estimated for these populations and the other members of the Schistosoma sinensium group. The study provides new DNA sequence data for three new populations and one new locus/population combination. A Bayesian approach is used to estimate divergence dates for events within the S. sinensium group and among the S. mekongi populations. Conclusions/Significance The date estimates are consistent with phylogeographical hypotheses describing a Pliocene radiation of the S. sinensium group and a mid-Pleistocene invasion of Southeast Asia by S. mekongi. The date estimates also provide Bayesian priors for future work on the evolution of S. mekongi. The public health implications of S. mekongi transmission outside the lower Mekong River are also discussed. PMID:18350111

  2. SURVEY OF HOUSE RAT INTESTINAL PARASITES FROM SURABAYA DISTRICT, EAST JAVA, INDONESIA THAT CAN CAUSE OPPORTUNISTIC INFECTIONS IN HUMANS.

    PubMed

    Prasetyo, R H

    2016-03-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence of house rat zoonotic intestinal parasites from Surabaya District, East Java, Indonesia that have the potential to cause opportunistic infection in humans. House rat fecal samples were collected from an area of Surabaya District with a dense rat population during May 2015. Intestinal parasites were detected microscopically using direct smear of feces stained with Lugol's iodine and modified Ziehl-Neelsen stains. The fecal samples were also cultured for Strongyloides stercoralis. Ninety-eight house rat fecal samples were examined. The potential opportunistic infection parasite densities found in those samples were Strongyloides stercoralis in 53%, Hymenolepis nana in 42%, Cryptosporidium spp in 33%, and Blastocystis spp in 6%. This is the first report of this kind in Surabaya District. Measures need to be taken to control the house rat population in the study area to reduce the risk of the public health problem. Keywords: zoonotic intestinal parasites, opportunistic infection, house rat, densely populated area, Indonesia PMID:27244955

  3. Infection with schistosome parasites in snails leads to increased predation by prawns: implications for human schistosomiasis control.

    PubMed

    Swartz, Scott J; De Leo, Giulio A; Wood, Chelsea L; Sokolow, Susanne H

    2015-12-01

    Schistosomiasis - a parasitic disease that affects over 200 million people across the globe - is primarily transmitted between human definitive hosts and snail intermediate hosts. To reduce schistosomiasis transmission, some have advocated disrupting the schistosome life cycle through biological control of snails, achieved by boosting the abundance of snails' natural predators. But little is known about the effect of parasitic infection on predator-prey interactions, especially in the case of schistosomiasis. Here, we present the results of laboratory experiments performed on Bulinus truncatus and Biomphalaria glabrata snails to investigate: (i) rates of predation on schistosome-infected versus uninfected snails by a sympatric native river prawn, Macrobrachium vollenhovenii, and (ii) differences in snail behavior (including movement, refuge-seeking and anti-predator behavior) between infected and uninfected snails. In predation trials, prawns showed a preference for consuming snails infected with schistosome larvae. In behavioral trials, infected snails moved less quickly and less often than uninfected snails, and were less likely to avoid predation by exiting the water or hiding under substrate. Although the mechanism by which the parasite alters snail behavior remains unknown, these results provide insight into the effects of parasitic infection on predator-prey dynamics and suggest that boosting natural rates of predation on snails may be a useful strategy for reducing transmission in schistosomiasis hotspots. PMID:26677260

  4. SURVEY OF HOUSE RAT INTESTINAL PARASITES FROM SURABAYA DISTRICT, EAST JAVA, INDONESIA THAT CAN CAUSE OPPORTUNISTIC INFECTIONS IN HUMANS.

    PubMed

    Prasetyo, R H

    2016-03-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence of house rat zoonotic intestinal parasites from Surabaya District, East Java, Indonesia that have the potential to cause opportunistic infection in humans. House rat fecal samples were collected from an area of Surabaya District with a dense rat population during May 2015. Intestinal parasites were detected microscopically using direct smear of feces stained with Lugol's iodine and modified Ziehl-Neelsen stains. The fecal samples were also cultured for Strongyloides stercoralis. Ninety-eight house rat fecal samples were examined. The potential opportunistic infection parasite densities found in those samples were Strongyloides stercoralis in 53%, Hymenolepis nana in 42%, Cryptosporidium spp in 33%, and Blastocystis spp in 6%. This is the first report of this kind in Surabaya District. Measures need to be taken to control the house rat population in the study area to reduce the risk of the public health problem. Keywords: zoonotic intestinal parasites, opportunistic infection, house rat, densely populated area, Indonesia

  5. Humans, dogs and parasitic zoonoses--unravelling the relationships in a remote endemic community in northeast India using molecular tools.

    PubMed

    Traub, R J; Robertson, I D; Irwin, P; Mencke, N; Monis, P; Thompson, R C A

    2003-07-01

    Canine parasitic zoonoses pose a continuing public health problem, especially in developing countries and communities that are socioeconomically disadvantaged. Our study combined the use of conventional and molecular epidemiological tools to determine the role of dogs in transmission of gastrointestinal (GI) parasites such as hookworms, Giardiaand Ascarisin a parasite endemic tea-growing community in northeast India. A highly sensitive and specific PCR-RFLP was developed to detect and differentiate the zoonotic species of canine hookworm eggs directly from faeces. This allowed epidemiological screening of canine hookworm species in this community to be conducted with ease and accuracy. Seventy two percent of dogs were found to harbour A. caninum, 60% A. braziliense and 37% harboured mixed infections with both hookworms. No A. ceylanicum was detected in the dog population. The zoonotic potential of canine Giardiawas also investigated by characterising Giardia duodenalisrecovered from humans and dogs living in the same locality and households, at three different loci. Phylogenetic and epidemiological analysis provided compelling evidence to support the zoonotic transmission of canine Giardia. Molecular tools were also used to identify the species of Ascarisegg present in over 30% of dog faecal samples. The results demonstrated the role of dogs as a significant disseminator and environmental contaminator of Ascaris lumbricoidesin communities where promiscuous defecation practices exist. Our study demonstrated the usefulness of combining conventional and molecular parasitological and epidemiological tools to help solve unresolved relationships with regards to parasitic zoonoses. PMID:12928889

  6. Sex Steroids Effects on the Molting Process of the Helminth Human Parasite Trichinella spiralis

    PubMed Central

    Hernández-Bello, Romel; Ramirez-Nieto, Ricardo; Muñiz-Hernández, Saé; Nava-Castro, Karen; Pavón, Lenin; Sánchez-Acosta, Ana Gabriela; Morales-Montor, Jorge

    2011-01-01

    We evaluated the in vitro effects of estradiol, progesterone, and testosterone on the molting process, which is the initial and crucial step in the development of the muscular larvae (ML or L1) to adult worm. Testosterone had no significative effect on the molting rate of the parasite, however, progesterone decreased the molting rate about a 50% in a concentration- and time-independent pattern, while estradiol had a slight effect (10%). The gene expression of caveolin-1, a specific gene used as a marker of parasite development, showed that progesterone and estradiol downregulated its expression, while protein expression was unaffected. By using flow citometry, a possible protein that is recognized by a commercial antiprogesterone receptor antibody was detected. These findings may have strong implications in the host-parasite coevolution, in the sex-associated susceptibility to this infection and could point out to possibilities to use antihormones to inhibit parasite development. PMID:22162638

  7. Protective Effect of Chronic Schistosomiasis in Baboons Coinfected with Schistosoma mansoni and Plasmodium knowlesi.

    PubMed

    Nyakundi, Ruth K; Nyamongo, Onkoba; Maamun, Jeneby; Akinyi, Mercy; Mulei, Isaac; Farah, Idle O; Blankenship, D'Arbra; Grimberg, Brian; Hau, Jann; Malhotra, Indu; Ozwara, Hastings; King, Christopher L; Kariuki, Thomas M

    2016-05-01

    Malaria and schistosomiasis coinfections are common, and chronic schistosomiasis has been implicated in affecting the severity of acute malaria. However, whether it enhances or attenuates malaria has been controversial due the lack of appropriately controlled human studies and relevant animal models. To examine this interaction, we conducted a randomized controlled study using the baboon (Papio anubis) to analyze the effect of chronic schistosomiasis on severe malaria. Two groups of baboons (n = 8 each) and a schistosomiasis control group (n = 3) were infected with 500 Schistosoma mansoni cercariae. At 14 and 15 weeks postinfection, one group was given praziquantel to treat schistosomiasis infection. Four weeks later, the two groups plus a new malaria control group (n = 8) were intravenously inoculated with 10(5) Plasmodium knowlesi parasites and monitored daily for development of severe malaria. A total of 81% of baboons exposed to chronic S. mansoni infection with or without praziquantel treatment survived malaria, compared to only 25% of animals infected with P. knowlesi only (P = 0.01). Schistosome-infected animals also had significantly lower parasite burdens (P = 0.004) than the baboons in the P. knowlesi-only group and were protected from severe anemia. Coinfection was associated with increased spontaneous production of interleukin-6 (IL-6), suggesting an enhanced innate immune response, whereas animals infected with P. knowlesi alone failed to develop mitogen-driven tumor necrosis factor alpha and IL-10, indicating the inability to generate adequate protective and balancing immunoregulatory responses. These results indicate that chronic S. mansoni attenuates the severity of P. knowlesi coinfection in baboons by mechanisms that may enhance innate immunity to malaria. PMID:26883586

  8. Protective Effect of Chronic Schistosomiasis in Baboons Coinfected with Schistosoma mansoni and Plasmodium knowlesi.

    PubMed

    Nyakundi, Ruth K; Nyamongo, Onkoba; Maamun, Jeneby; Akinyi, Mercy; Mulei, Isaac; Farah, Idle O; Blankenship, D'Arbra; Grimberg, Brian; Hau, Jann; Malhotra, Indu; Ozwara, Hastings; King, Christopher L; Kariuki, Thomas M

    2016-05-01

    Malaria and schistosomiasis coinfections are common, and chronic schistosomiasis has been implicated in affecting the severity of acute malaria. However, whether it enhances or attenuates malaria has been controversial due the lack of appropriately controlled human studies and relevant animal models. To examine this interaction, we conducted a randomized controlled study using the baboon (Papio anubis) to analyze the effect of chronic schistosomiasis on severe malaria. Two groups of baboons (n = 8 each) and a schistosomiasis control group (n = 3) were infected with 500 Schistosoma mansoni cercariae. At 14 and 15 weeks postinfection, one group was given praziquantel to treat schistosomiasis infection. Four weeks later, the two groups plus a new malaria control group (n = 8) were intravenously inoculated with 10(5) Plasmodium knowlesi parasites and monitored daily for development of severe malaria. A total of 81% of baboons exposed to chronic S. mansoni infection with or without praziquantel treatment survived malaria, compared to only 25% of animals infected with P. knowlesi only (P = 0.01). Schistosome-infected animals also had significantly lower parasite burdens (P = 0.004) than the baboons in the P. knowlesi-only group and were protected from severe anemia. Coinfection was associated with increased spontaneous production of interleukin-6 (IL-6), suggesting an enhanced innate immune response, whereas animals infected with P. knowlesi alone failed to develop mitogen-driven tumor necrosis factor alpha and IL-10, indicating the inability to generate adequate protective and balancing immunoregulatory responses. These results indicate that chronic S. mansoni attenuates the severity of P. knowlesi coinfection in baboons by mechanisms that may enhance innate immunity to malaria.

  9. Protective Effect of Chronic Schistosomiasis in Baboons Coinfected with Schistosoma mansoni and Plasmodium knowlesi

    PubMed Central

    Nyakundi, Ruth K.; Nyamongo, Onkoba; Maamun, Jeneby; Akinyi, Mercy; Mulei, Isaac; Farah, Idle O.; Blankenship, D'Arbra; Grimberg, Brian; Hau, Jann; Malhotra, Indu; Ozwara, Hastings; King, Christopher L.

    2016-01-01

    Malaria and schistosomiasis coinfections are common, and chronic schistosomiasis has been implicated in affecting the severity of acute malaria. However, whether it enhances or attenuates malaria has been controversial due the lack of appropriately controlled human studies and relevant animal models. To examine this interaction, we conducted a randomized controlled study using the baboon (Papio anubis) to analyze the effect of chronic schistosomiasis on severe malaria. Two groups of baboons (n = 8 each) and a schistosomiasis control group (n = 3) were infected with 500 Schistosoma mansoni cercariae. At 14 and 15 weeks postinfection, one group was given praziquantel to treat schistosomiasis infection. Four weeks later, the two groups plus a new malaria control group (n = 8) were intravenously inoculated with 105 Plasmodium knowlesi parasites and monitored daily for development of severe malaria. A total of 81% of baboons exposed to chronic S. mansoni infection with or without praziquantel treatment survived malaria, compared to only 25% of animals infected with P. knowlesi only (P = 0.01). Schistosome-infected animals also had significantly lower parasite burdens (P = 0.004) than the baboons in the P. knowlesi-only group and were protected from severe anemia. Coinfection was associated with increased spontaneous production of interleukin-6 (IL-6), suggesting an enhanced innate immune response, whereas animals infected with P. knowlesi alone failed to develop mitogen-driven tumor necrosis factor alpha and IL-10, indicating the inability to generate adequate protective and balancing immunoregulatory responses. These results indicate that chronic S. mansoni attenuates the severity of P. knowlesi coinfection in baboons by mechanisms that may enhance innate immunity to malaria. PMID:26883586

  10. Biochemical characterization and role of the proteasome in the oxidative stress response of adult Schistosoma mansoni worms.

    PubMed

    de Paula, Renato Graciano; Ornelas, Alice Maria de Magalhães; Morais, Enyara Rezende; Borges, William de Castro; Natale, Massimo; Magalhães, Lizandra Guidi; Rodrigues, Vanderlei

    2014-08-01

    The trematode Schistosoma mansoni, an important parasite of humans, is the principle agent of the disease schistosomiasis. In the human host, one of the most important stress factors of this parasite is the oxidative stress generated by both the metabolism of the worm and the immune system of the host. The proteasomal system is responsible for protein homeostasis during oxidative stress. The 26S proteasome is a multicatalytic protease formed by two compartments, a 20S core and regulatory particle 19S, and controls the degradation of intracellular proteins, hence regulating many cellular processes. In the present report, we describe the biochemical characterization and role of the 20S proteasome in the response of adult S. mansoni worms exposed to hydrogen peroxide. Characterization of the response to the oxidative stress included the evaluation of viability, egg production, mortality, tegument integrity, and both expression and activity of proteasome. We observed decreases in viability, egg production as well as 100% mortality at the higher concentrations of hydrogen peroxide tested. The main changes observed in the tegument of adult worms were peeling as well as the appearance of bubbles and a decrease of spines on the tubercles. Furthermore, there were increases in 26S activity to the same extent as 20S proteasome activity, although there was increase of 20S proteasome content, suggesting that degradation of protein oxidized in adult worms is due to the 20S proteasome. It was demonstrated that adult S. mansoni worms are sensitive to oxidative stress, and that a variety of processes in this parasite are altered under this condition. The work contributes to a better understanding of the mechanisms employed by S. mansoni to survive under oxidative stress. PMID:24870249

  11. Human behavior and opportunities for parasite transmission in communities surrounding long-tailed macaque populations in Bali, Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Lane-DeGraaf, Kelly E; Putra, I G A Arta; Wandia, I Nengah; Rompis, Aida; Hollocher, Hope; Fuentes, Agustin

    2014-02-01

    Spatial overlap and shared resources between humans and wildlife can exacerbate parasite transmission dynamics. In Bali, Indonesia, an agricultural-religious temple system provides sanctuaries for long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis), concentrating them in areas in close proximity to humans. In this study, we interviewed individuals in communities surrounding 13 macaque populations about their willingness to participate in behaviors that would put them at risk of exposure to gastrointestinal parasites to understand if age, education level, or occupation are significant determinants of exposure behaviors. These exposure risk behaviors and attitudes include fear of macaques, direct contact with macaques, owning pet macaques, hunting and eating macaques, and overlapping water uses. We find that willingness to participate in exposure risk behaviors are correlated with an individual's occupation, age, and/or education level. We also found that because the actual risk of infection varies across populations, activities such as direct macaque contact and pet ownership, could be putting individuals at real risk in certain contexts. Thus, we show that human demographics and social structure can influence willingness to participate in behaviors putting them at increased risk for exposure to parasites.

  12. Human-induced eutrophication maintains high parasite prevalence in breeding threespine stickleback populations.

    PubMed

    Budria, Alexandre; Candolin, Ulrika

    2015-04-01

    Anthropogenic activities are having profound impacts on species interactions, with further consequences for populations and communities. We investigated the influence that anthropogenic eutrophication has on the prevalence of the parasitic tapeworm Schistocephalus solidus in threespine stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus populations. We caught stickleback from four areas along the coast of Finland, and within each area from one undisturbed and one eutrophied habitat. We found the prevalence of the parasite to be lower in the eutrophied habitats at the start of the breeding season, probably because of fewer piscivorous birds that transmit the parasite. However, while the prevalence of the parasite declined across the season in the undisturbed habitat, it did less so in eutrophied habitats. We discuss different processes that could be behind the differences, such as lower predation rate on infected fish, higher food availability and less dispersal in eutrophied habitats. We found no effect of eutrophication on the proportion of infected stickleback that entered reproductive condition. Together with earlier findings, this suggests that eutrophication increases the proportion of infected stickleback that reproduce. This could promote the evolution of less parasite resistant populations, with potential consequences for the viability of the interacting parties of the host-parasite system.

  13. A Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification (LAMP) Assay for Early Detection of Schistosoma mansoni in Stool Samples: A Diagnostic Approach in a Murine Model

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-Soto, Pedro; Gandasegui Arahuetes, Javier; Sánchez Hernández, Alicia; López Abán, Julio; Vicente Santiago, Belén; Muro, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    Background Human schistosomiasis, mainly due to Schistosoma mansoni species, is one of the most prevalent parasitic diseases worldwide. To overcome the drawbacks of classical parasitological and serological methods in detecting S. mansoni infections, especially in acute stage of the disease, development of cost-effective, simple and rapid molecular methods is still needed for the diagnosis of schistosomiasis. A promising approach is the loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) technology. Compared to PCR-based assays, LAMP has the advantages of reaction simplicity, rapidity, specificity, cost-effectiveness and higher amplification efficiency. Additionally, as results can be inspected by the naked eye, the technique has great potential for use in low-income countries. Methodology/Principal findings A sequence corresponding to a mitochondrial S. mansoni minisatellite DNA region was selected as a target for designing a LAMP-based method to detect S. mansoni DNA in stool samples. We used a S. mansoni murine model to obtain well defined stool and sera samples from infected mice with S. mansoni cercariae. Samples were taken weekly from week 0 to 8 post-infection and the Kato-Katz and ELISA techniques were used for monitoring the infection. Primer set designed were tested using a commercial reaction mixture for LAMP assay and an in house mixture to compare results. Specificity of LAMP was tested using 16 DNA samples from different parasites, including several Schistosoma species, and no cross-reactions were found. The detection limit of our LAMP assay (SmMIT-LAMP) was 1 fg of S. mansoni DNA. When testing stool samples from infected mice the SmMIT-LAMP detected S. mansoni DNA as soon as 1 week post-infection. Conclusions/Significance We have developed, for the first time, a cost-effective, easy to perform, specific and sensitive LAMP assay for early detection of S. mansoni in stool samples. The method is potentially and readily adaptable for field diagnosis and

  14. Parasite sources and sinks in a patched Ross-Macdonald malaria model with human and mosquito movement: Implications for control.

    PubMed

    Ruktanonchai, Nick W; Smith, David L; De Leenheer, Patrick

    2016-09-01

    We consider the dynamics of a mosquito-transmitted pathogen in a multi-patch Ross-Macdonald malaria model with mobile human hosts, mobile vectors, and a heterogeneous environment. We show the existence of a globally stable steady state, and a threshold that determines whether a pathogen is either absent from all patches, or endemic and present at some level in all patches. Each patch is characterized by a local basic reproduction number, whose value predicts whether the disease is cleared or not when the patch is isolated: patches are known as "demographic sinks" if they have a local basic reproduction number less than one, and hence would clear the disease if isolated; patches with a basic reproduction number above one would sustain endemic infection in isolation, and become "demographic sources" of parasites when connected to other patches. Sources are also considered focal areas of transmission for the larger landscape, as they export excess parasites to other areas and can sustain parasite populations. We show how to determine the various basic reproduction numbers from steady state estimates in the patched network and knowledge of additional model parameters, hereby identifying parasite sources in the process. This is useful in the context of control of the infection on natural landscapes, because a commonly suggested strategy is to target focal areas, in order to make their corresponding basic reproduction numbers less than one, effectively turning them into sinks. We show that this is indeed a successful control strategy-albeit a conservative and possibly expensive one-in case either the human host, or the vector does not move. However, we also show that when both humans and vectors move, this strategy may fail, depending on the specific movement patterns exhibited by hosts and vectors. PMID:27436636

  15. High Throughput Screening Identifies Novel Lead Compounds with Activity against Larval, Juvenile and Adult Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Mansour, Nuha R; Paveley, Ross; Gardner, J Mark F; Bell, Andrew S; Parkinson, Tanya; Bickle, Quentin

    2016-04-01

    An estimated 600 million people are affected by the helminth disease schistosomiasis caused by parasites of the genus Schistosoma. There is currently only one drug recommended for treating schistosomiasis, praziquantel (PZQ), which is effective against adult worms but not against the juvenile stage. In an attempt to identify improved drugs for treating the disease, we have carried out high throughput screening of a number of small molecule libraries with the aim of identifying lead compounds with balanced activity against all life stages of Schistosoma. A total of almost 300,000 compounds were screened using a high throughput assay based on motility of worm larvae and image analysis of assay plates. Hits were screened against juvenile and adult worms to identify broadly active compounds and against a mammalian cell line to assess cytotoxicity. A number of compounds were identified as promising leads for further chemical optimization. PMID:27128493

  16. High Throughput Screening Identifies Novel Lead Compounds with Activity against Larval, Juvenile and Adult Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Gardner, J. Mark F.; Bell, Andrew S.; Parkinson, Tanya; Bickle, Quentin

    2016-01-01

    An estimated 600 million people are affected by the helminth disease schistosomiasis caused by parasites of the genus Schistosoma. There is currently only one drug recommended for treating schistosomiasis, praziquantel (PZQ), which is effective against adult worms but not against the juvenile stage. In an attempt to identify improved drugs for treating the disease, we have carried out high throughput screening of a number of small molecule libraries with the aim of identifying lead compounds with balanced activity against all life stages of Schistosoma. A total of almost 300,000 compounds were screened using a high throughput assay based on motility of worm larvae and image analysis of assay plates. Hits were screened against juvenile and adult worms to identify broadly active compounds and against a mammalian cell line to assess cytotoxicity. A number of compounds were identified as promising leads for further chemical optimization. PMID:27128493

  17. High Throughput Screening Identifies Novel Lead Compounds with Activity against Larval, Juvenile and Adult Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Mansour, Nuha R; Paveley, Ross; Gardner, J Mark F; Bell, Andrew S; Parkinson, Tanya; Bickle, Quentin

    2016-04-01

    An estimated 600 million people are affected by the helminth disease schistosomiasis caused by parasites of the genus Schistosoma. There is currently only one drug recommended for treating schistosomiasis, praziquantel (PZQ), which is effective against adult worms but not against the juvenile stage. In an attempt to identify improved drugs for treating the disease, we have carried out high throughput screening of a number of small molecule libraries with the aim of identifying lead compounds with balanced activity against all life stages of Schistosoma. A total of almost 300,000 compounds were screened using a high throughput assay based on motility of worm larvae and image analysis of assay plates. Hits were screened against juvenile and adult worms to identify broadly active compounds and against a mammalian cell line to assess cytotoxicity. A number of compounds were identified as promising leads for further chemical optimization.

  18. A drug-based intervention study on the importance of buffaloes for human Schistosoma japonicum infection around Poyang Lake, People's Republic of China.

    PubMed

    Guo, Jiagang; Li, Yuesheng; Gray, Darren; Ning, An; Hu, Guanghan; Chen, Honggen; Davis, George M; Sleigh, Adrian C; Feng, Zheng; McManus, Donald P; Williams, Gail M

    2006-02-01

    Schistosomiasis japonica is a zoonosis of major public health importance in southern China. We undertook a drug intervention to test the hypothesis that buffalo are major reservoirs for human infection in the marshlands/lake areas, where one million people are infected. We compared human and buffalo infection rates and intensity in an intervention village (Jishan), where humans and buffalo were treated with praziquantel, and a control village (Hexi), where only humans were treated, in the Poyang Lake region. Over the four-year study, human incidence in Jishan decreased but increased in Hexi. Adjustment of incidence by age, sex, water exposure, year, and village further confirmed the decreased human infection in Jishan. Chemotherapy for buffaloes resulted in a decrease in buffalo infection rates in Jishan, which coincided with the reduction in human infection rates there in the last two years of the study. Mathematical modeling predicted that buffalo are responsible for 75% of human transmission in Jishan.

  19. [Arthropodan vectors of human parasites: their pathology and defence reactions (author's transl)].

    PubMed

    Maier, W A

    1976-02-01

    Many infectious diseases of man are transmitted by arthropods. It is not known whether the carriers were primarily susceptible or insusceptible as the cycle first came into existence. Similarly so little is understood, why some arthropods are suitable vectors and other close relatives are not suitable. Only the hypothesis that the agents are original parasites and not at all commensals or symbionts can reasonably explain the evolution of the cycles. It is shown by means of numerous examples how the vector can be damaged by the parasite. Some organs of the vector might become unfunctional, the reproduction rate might be lowered and the vector itself may die. On the other hand the vector has at its disposal defence mechanisms which are according to our present point of view limited to the midgut barrier and the hemolymph reactions. Both components of the system, the vector and the parasite together are capable of change under the influence of the other. For example through the high mortality of the susceptible part of a vector population the resistant and the tolerant individuals will be selected. On the contrary harmful parasites cannot transmit their genetic information when their virulence is so high that the vector will suffer death. Due to this the parasites succumb to a selection pressure and only the careful treatment of the vector is rewarding. Besides this rough pattern of actions and reactions exists also the possibility of developing finer adjustments, with the "molecular mimikry" as a well known example. PMID:769379

  20. Comparative evaluation of Schistosoma mansoni, Schistosoma intercalatum, and Schistosoma haematobium alkaline phosphatase antigenicity by the alkaline phosphatase immunoassay (APIA).

    PubMed

    Cesari, I M; Ballén, D E; Mendoza, L; Ferrer, A; Pointier, J-P; Kombila, M; Richard-Lenoble, D; Théron, A

    2014-04-01

    To know if alkaline phosphatase (AP) from schistosomes other than Schistosoma mansoni can be used as diagnostic marker for schistosomiasis in alkaline phosphatase immunocapture assay (APIA), we comparatively tested n-butanol extracts of adult worm membranes from a Venezuelan (JL) strain of S. mansoni (Ven/AWBE/Sm); a Cameroonian (EDEN) strain of Schistosoma intercalatum (Cam/AWBE/Si) and a Yemeni strain of Schistosoma haematobium (Yem/AWBE/Sh). APIA was evaluated with sera of patients from Venezuela, Senegal, and Gabon infected with S. mansoni, from Gabon infected with S. intercalatum or S. haematobium, from Chine infected with Schistosoma japonicum and from Cambodian patients infected with Schistosoma mekongi. Results indicate that 92.5% (37/40) of Venezuela sera, 75% (15/20) of Senegal sera, 39.5% (17/43) of S. haematobium sera, and 19.2% (5/26) S. intercalatum sera were APIA-positive with the Ven/AWBE/Sm preparation. APIA with the Cam/AWBE/Si preparation showed that 53.8% of S. intercalatum-positive sera had anti-AP antibodies, and 51.2% S. haematobium-positive sera cross-immunocapturing the S. intercalatum AP. APIA performed with Yem/AWBE/Sh showed that 55.8% S. haematobium sera were positive. Only two out of nine S. japonicum sera were APIA-positive with the Ven/AWBE/Sm and Cam/AWBE/Si, and no reaction was observed with Cambodian S. mekongi-positive sera. AP activity was shown to be present in all the schistosome species/strains studied. The use of APIA as a tool to explore the APs antigenicity and the presence of Schistosoma sp. infections through the detection of anti-Schistosoma sp. AP antibodies in a host, allowed us to demonstrate the antigenicity of APs of S. mansoni, S. intercalatum, and S. haematobium.

  1. Drug resistance. Population transcriptomics of human malaria parasites reveals the mechanism of artemisinin resistance.

    PubMed

    Mok, Sachel; Ashley, Elizabeth A; Ferreira, Pedro E; Zhu, Lei; Lin, Zhaoting; Yeo, Tomas; Chotivanich, Kesinee; Imwong, Mallika; Pukrittayakamee, Sasithon; Dhorda, Mehul; Nguon, Chea; Lim, Pharath; Amaratunga, Chanaki; Suon, Seila; Hien, Tran Tinh; Htut, Ye; Faiz, M Abul; Onyamboko, Marie A; Mayxay, Mayfong; Newton, Paul N; Tripura, Rupam; Woodrow, Charles J; Miotto, Olivo; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P; Nosten, François; Day, Nicholas P J; Preiser, Peter R; White, Nicholas J; Dondorp, Arjen M; Fairhurst, Rick M; Bozdech, Zbynek

    2015-01-23

    Artemisinin resistance in Plasmodium falciparum threatens global efforts to control and eliminate malaria. Polymorphisms in the kelch domain-carrying protein K13 are associated with artemisinin resistance, but the underlying molecular mechanisms are unknown. We analyzed the in vivo transcriptomes of 1043 P. falciparum isolates from patients with acute malaria and found that artemisinin resistance is associated with increased expression of unfolded protein response (UPR) pathways involving the major PROSC and TRiC chaperone complexes. Artemisinin-resistant parasites also exhibit decelerated progression through the first part of the asexual intraerythrocytic development cycle. These findings suggest that artemisinin-resistant parasites remain in a state of decelerated development at the young ring stage, whereas their up-regulated UPR pathways mitigate protein damage caused by artemisinin. The expression profiles of UPR-related genes also associate with the geographical origin of parasite isolates, further suggesting their role in emerging artemisinin resistance in the Greater Mekong Subregion.

  2. Methodology and Application of Flow Cytometry for Investigation of Human Malaria Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Grimberg, Brian T.

    2011-01-01

    Historically, examinations of the inhibition of malaria parasite growth/invasion, whether using drugs or antibodies, have relied on the use of microscopy or radioactive hypoxanthine uptake. These are considered gold standards for measuring the effectiveness of antimalarial treatments, however, these methods have well known shortcomings. With the advent of flow cytometry coupled with the use of fluorescent DNA stains allowed for increased speed, reproducibility, and qualitative estimates of the effectiveness of antibodies and drugs to limit malaria parasite growth which addresses the challenges of traditional techniques. Because materials and machines available to research facilities are so varied, different methods have been developed to investigate malaria parasites by flow cytometry. This review is intended to serve as a reference guide for advanced users and importantly, as a primer for new users, to support expanded use and improvements to malaria flow cytometry, particularly in endemic countries. PMID:21296083

  3. Methodology and application of flow cytometry for investigation of human malaria parasites.

    PubMed

    Grimberg, Brian T

    2011-03-31

    Historically, examinations of the inhibition of malaria parasite growth/invasion, whether using drugs or antibodies, have relied on the use of microscopy or radioactive hypoxanthine uptake. These are considered gold standards for measuring the effectiveness of antimalarial treatments, however, these methods have well known shortcomings. With the advent of flow cytometry coupled with the use of fluorescent DNA stains allowed for increased speed, reproducibility, and qualitative estimates of the effectiveness of antibodies and drugs to limit malaria parasite growth which addresses the challenges of traditional techniques. Because materials and machines available to research facilities are so varied, different methods have been developed to investigate malaria parasites by flow cytometry. This review is intended to serve as a reference guide for advanced users and importantly, as a primer for new users, to support expanded use and improvements to malaria flow cytometry, particularly in endemic countries.

  4. Drug resistance. Population transcriptomics of human malaria parasites reveals the mechanism of artemisinin resistance.

    PubMed

    Mok, Sachel; Ashley, Elizabeth A; Ferreira, Pedro E; Zhu, Lei; Lin, Zhaoting; Yeo, Tomas; Chotivanich, Kesinee; Imwong, Mallika; Pukrittayakamee, Sasithon; Dhorda, Mehul; Nguon, Chea; Lim, Pharath; Amaratunga, Chanaki; Suon, Seila; Hien, Tran Tinh; Htut, Ye; Faiz, M Abul; Onyamboko, Marie A; Mayxay, Mayfong; Newton, Paul N; Tripura, Rupam; Woodrow, Charles J; Miotto, Olivo; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P; Nosten, François; Day, Nicholas P J; Preiser, Peter R; White, Nicholas J; Dondorp, Arjen M; Fairhurst, Rick M; Bozdech, Zbynek

    2015-01-23

    Artemisinin resistance in Plasmodium falciparum threatens global efforts to control and eliminate malaria. Polymorphisms in the kelch domain-carrying protein K13 are associated with artemisinin resistance, but the underlying molecular mechanisms are unknown. We analyzed the in vivo transcriptomes of 1043 P. falciparum isolates from patients with acute malaria and found that artemisinin resistance is associated with increased expression of unfolded protein response (UPR) pathways involving the major PROSC and TRiC chaperone complexes. Artemisinin-resistant parasites also exhibit decelerated progression through the first part of the asexual intraerythrocytic development cycle. These findings suggest that artemisinin-resistant parasites remain in a state of decelerated development at the young ring stage, whereas their up-regulated UPR pathways mitigate protein damage caused by artemisinin. The expression profiles of UPR-related genes also associate with the geographical origin of parasite isolates, further suggesting their role in emerging artemisinin resistance in the Greater Mekong Subregion. PMID:25502316

  5. [Human intestinal parasites in Subsaharan Africa. III. Pemba Island (Zanzibar-Tanzania)].

    PubMed

    Pampiglione, S; Visconti, S; Stefanini, A

    1987-04-01

    The authors carried out a coprological survey in Pemba Island, analysing, by modified Ritchie technique, 413 stools samples. The specimens were collected among the population from apparently healthy subjects chosen at random in a number equal to 2% of the whole population. The examined subjects were divided in 3 age groups, 211 were males, 202 females. The following results were obtained (in order of prevalence): a) Protozoa: Entamoeba coli 35.6%, Giardia intestinalis 5.6%, Endolimax nana 4.3%, E. histolytica 3.1%, Chilomastix mesnili 2.9%, Iodamoeba buetschlii 4.3%, E. hartmanni 0.7%; b) Helminths: Trichuris trichiura 87.9%, Ancylostomatidae 67.5%, Ascaris lumbricoides 39.7%, Strongyloides stercoralis 18.9%, Schistosoma haematobium 1.9%, S. mansoni 0.2%, S. fuelleborni 0.2%, Enterobius vermicularis 0.2%. The high moisture of soil and the rain distribution during the year could be favouring the high prevalence of T. trichiura and Ancylostomatidae. The case of schistosomiasis due to S. mansoni reported, seems to be imported from the Mainland, while the case of S. fuelleborni could be autochtonous. Totally, 392 subjects (94.4%) were found positive for pathogenic species (Helminths and Protozoa). PMID:3508507

  6. Schistosoma mansoni-like infection in Phayao Province, Northern Thailand.

    PubMed

    Attawibool, S; Bunnag, T; Thirachandra, S; Sinthuprama, K; Sornmani, S

    1983-12-01

    Schistosome ova were found in the serosa of colon mass of a 65-year old Thai woman from Dokkhumtai District, Phayao Province. On the basis of the shape and microscopic appearance of the ova, they probably belonged to those of Schistosoma mansoni complex. In follow-up study, no ova were found by faecal examinations and rectal biopsy. There are evidences suggesting the presence of two distinct mammalian strains in Thailand: Orientobilhorzia harinasutai, a schistosome of water buffalo in Southern region and Tricula bollingi schistosome, a rodent schistosome in Northern region. This case is believed to be the first human schistosome infection with mammalian strain of S. mansoni complex in Thailand.

  7. Screening of the municipal water system of La Plata, Argentina, for human intestinal parasites.

    PubMed

    Basualdo, J; Pezzani, B; De Luca, M; Córdoba, A; Apezteguía, M

    2000-10-01

    The La Plata River, though severely contaminated by intestinal parasites through the discharge of tons of crude fecal material from a main sewage channel, nevertheless provides drinking water to two-thirds of La Plata, Argentina, after conventional purification at a processing plant. With intestinal parasitosis being endemic here, we investigated the importance of this water in transmitting such pathogens to the city's populace by means of standard methodology for sample acquisition and processing involving filter-concentration of waterborne particulates. Of 14 tap-water samples collected from the distribution network, 12 pertained to four zones (A-D) within the city center; while the remaining 2 were obtained near the processing plant, 15 kilometers outside the city. Although parasites were found within the samples derived from the four urban zones, none were detected in the specimens obtained near the plant. The four downtown areas differed from each other as to the quantity and nature of the parasites present in their water: whereas zones A and B registered similar lower levels of contaminants, C and D exhibited higher values significantly different from the former two and from each other. Given an average parasite count/l citywide of 0.38 and a probability of encountering a parasite within 11 of water of 0.32, the municipal network is seen to contribute to the transmission of intestinal parasites. A routine system of water-quality control is therefore needed throughout the city along with the establishment of infrastructures for locating and eliminating peripheral sources of contamination.

  8. Selective killing of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum by a benzylthiazolium dye.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Jane X; Winter, Rolf W; Braun, Theodore P; Osei-Agyemang, Myralyn; Hinrichs, David J; Riscoe, Michael K

    2007-06-01

    Malaria is an infectious disease caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium. The most virulent form of the disease is caused by Plasmodium falciparum which infects hundreds of millions of people and is responsible for the deaths of 1-2 million individuals each year. An essential part of the parasitic process is the remodeling of the red blood cell membrane and its protein constituents to permit a higher flux of nutrients and waste products into or away from the intracellular parasite. Much of this increased permeability is due to a single type of broad specificity channel variously called the new permeation pathway (NPP), the nutrient channel, and the Plasmodial surface anion channel (PSAC). This channel is permeable to a range of low molecular weight solutes both charged and uncharged, with a strong preference for anions. Drugs such as furosemide that are known to block anion-selective channels inhibit PSAC. In this study, we have investigated a dye known as benzothiocarboxypurine, BCP, which had been studied as a possible diagnostic aid given its selective uptake by P. falciparum infected red cells. We found that the dye enters parasitized red cells via the furosemide-inhibitable PSAC, forms a brightly fluorescent complex with parasite nucleic acids, and is selectively toxic to infected cells. Our study describes an antimalarial agent that exploits the altered permeability of Plasmodium-infected red cells as a means to killing the parasite and highlights a chemical reagent that may prove useful in high throughput screening of compounds for inhibitors of the channel.

  9. Selective Killing of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum by a Benzylthiazolium dye

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, Jane X.; Winter, Rolf W.; Braun, Theodore P.; Osei-Agyemang, Myralyn; Hinrichs, David J.; Riscoe, Michael K.

    2007-01-01

    Malaria is an infectious disease caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium. The most virulent form of the disease is caused by P. falciparum which infects hundreds of millions of people and is responsible for the deaths of 1 to 2 million individuals each year. An essential part of the parasitic process is the remodeling of the red blood cell membrane and its protein constituents to permit a higher flux of nutrients and waste products into or away from the intracellular parasite. Much of this increased permeability is due to a single type of broad specificity channel variously called the new permeation pathway (NPP), the nutrient channel, and the Plasmodial surface anion channel (PSAC). This channel is permeable to a range of low molecular weight solutes both charged and uncharged, with a strong preference for anions. Drugs such as furosemide that are known to block anion-selective channels inhibit PSAC. In this study we have investigated a dye known as benzothiocarboxypurine, BCP, which had been studied as a possible diagnostic aid given its selective uptake by P. falciparum infected red cells. We found that the dye enters parasitized red cells via the furosemide-inhibitable PSAC, forms a brightly fluorescent complex with parasite nucleic acids, and is selectively toxic to infected cells. Our study describes an antimalarial agent that exploits the altered permeability of Plasmodium-infected red cells as a means to killing the parasite and highlights a chemical reagent that may prove useful in high throughput screening of compounds for inhibitors of the channel. PMID:17266952

  10. Parasitic Diseases

    MedlinePlus

    ... a bug bite, or sexual contact. Some parasitic diseases are easily treated and some are not. Parasites ... be seen with the naked eye. Some parasitic diseases occur in the United States. Contaminated water supplies ...

  11. An Infectious Topic in Reticulate Evolution: Introgression and Hybridization in Animal Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Detwiler, Jillian T.; Criscione, Charles D.

    2010-01-01

    Little attention has been given to the role that introgression and hybridization have played in the evolution of parasites. Most studies are host-centric and ask if the hybrid of a free-living species is more or less susceptible to parasite infection. Here we focus on what is known about how introgression and hybridization have influenced the evolution of protozoan and helminth parasites of animals. There are reports of genome or gene introgression from distantly related taxa into apicomplexans and filarial nematodes. Most common are genetic based reports of potential hybridization among congeneric taxa, but in several cases, more work is needed to definitively conclude current hybridization. In the medically important Trypanosoma it is clear that some clonal lineages are the product of past hybridization events. Similarly, strong evidence exists for current hybridization in human helminths such as Schistosoma and Ascaris. There remain topics that warrant further examination such as the potential hybrid origin of polyploid platyhelminths. Furthermore, little work has investigated the phenotype or fitness, and even less the epidemiological significance of hybrid parasites. PMID:24710013

  12. Molecular and functional characterization of a putative PA28γ proteasome activator orthologue in Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Soares, Cláudia Sossai; Morais, Enyara Rezende; Magalhães, Lizandra G.; Machado, Carla Botelho; Moreira, Érika Bueno de Carvalho; Teixeira, Felipe Roberti; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Yoshino, Timothy P.

    2013-01-01

    PA28γ is a proteasome activator involved in the regulation of the cellular proliferation, differentiation and growth. In the present study, we identified and characterized a cDNA from Schistosoma mansoni exhibiting significant homology to PA28γ of diverse taxa ranging from mammals (including humans) to simple invertebrates. Designated SmPA28γ, this transcript has a 753 bp predicted ORF encoding a protein of 250 amino acid residues. Alignment of SmPA28γ with multiple PA28γ orthologues revealed an average similarity of ~40% among the investigated organisms, and 90% similarity with PA28γ from Schistosoma japonicum. In addition, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated a close linkage between SmPA28γ to its sister group that contains well-characterized PA28γ sequences from Drosophila spp., as well as sharing the same branch with PA28γ from S. japonicum. Gene expression profiling of SmPA28γ using real-time quantitative PCR revealed elevated steady-state transcript levels in the eggs, miracidia and paired adult worms compared to other stages. In parallel with gene expression profiles, an affinity-purified anti-SmPA28γ antibody produced against recombinant protein exhibited strongest reactivity in Western blot analyses to endogenous SmPA28γ from miracidia, sporocysts and paired adult worms. Given its known regulatory function in other organisms, we hypothesized that the high level of SmPA28γ transcript and protein in these stages may be correlated with an important role of the PA28γ in the cellular growth and/or development of this parasite. To address this hypothesis, miracidia were transformed in vitro to sporocysts in the presence of SmPA28γ double-stranded RNAs (dsRNAs) and cultivated for 4 days, after which time steady-state transcript and protein levels, and phenotypic changes were evaluated. SmPA28γ dsRNA treatment resulted in gene and protein knockdown of ~60% and ~80%, respectively, which were correlated with a significant decrease in larval length

  13. [Adult of Drosophila melanogaster parasitized in human nasal cavity: a case report].

    PubMed

    Zhan, Xiaodong; Tang, Xiaoniu; Wang, Shaosheng

    2015-05-01

    We reported a case of adult Drosophila melanogaster parasitized in nasal cavity of a 81-year-old woman who was living in Xuancheng City, Anhui Province now. She was admitted for treatment of cerebral infarction and water accumulation in the lungs in 2014 June. The patient was also suffering from secretory otitis media, a history of hypertension and heart stents were placed in 2007. A foreign body was found in the left nasal cavity during the preoperative examination process, and then the part of the inflammatory tissue was removed through the nasal endoscopy, and sent to our department for identification. There are three adults of Drosophila in paraffin-embedded biopsy specimens. The parasites length is approximately 3mm, with huge red compound eyes. The end of the body is tip, with 5 ring lines in back, has no dark spots. The abdomen of the parasites have seven sections. Tarsus of foot I have no sex comb on base, and they are male adult of Drosophila melanogaster after identification. After a thorough reviewing of medical history, we knew the patient began to sneeze violently and frequently six years ago. But there was no clear or purulent nasal discharge flowing, therefore did not attract attention. After removing the parasites the sneezing symptoms were relieved, and had no abnormal symptoms in the follow-up 6 months. PMID:26281068

  14. On the adaptive origins and maladaptive consequences of human inbreeding: parasite prevalence, immune functioning, and consanguineous marriage.

    PubMed

    Hoben, Ashley D; Buunk, Abraham P; Fincher, Corey L; Thornhill, Randy; Schaller, Mark

    2010-11-13

    We propose that consanguineous marriages arise adaptively in response to high parasite prevalence and function to maintain coadapted gene complexes and associated local adaptation that defend against local pathogens. Therefore, a greater prevalence of inbreeding by consanguineous marriage is expected in geographical regions that historically have had high levels of disease-causing parasites. Eventually such marriages may, under the contemporary high movement of people with modern transportation, jeopardize the immunity of those who practice inbreeding as this leads to an increased susceptibility to novel pathogens. Therefore, a greater frequency of inbreeding is expected to predict higher levels of contemporary mortality and morbidity from infectious diseases. This parasite model of human inbreeding was supported by an analysis involving 72 countries worldwide. We found that historically high levels of pathogen prevalence were related positively to the proportion of consanguineous marriages, and that a higher prevalence of such marriages was associated with higher contemporary mortality and morbidity due to pathogens. Our study addresses plausible alternative explanations. The results suggest that consanguineous marriage is an adaptive consequence of historical pathogen ecologies, but is maladaptive in contemporary disease ecologies.

  15. Expression of senescent antigen on erythrocytes infected with a knobby variant of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    SciTech Connect

    Winograd, E.; Greenan, J.R.T.; Sherman, I.W.

    1987-04-01

    Erythrocytes infected with a knobby variant of Plasmodium falciparum selectively bind IgG autoantibodies in normal human serum. Quantification of membrane-bound IgG, by use of /sup 125/I-labeled protein A, revealed that erythrocytes infected with the knobby variant bound 30 times more protein A than did noninfected erythrocytes; infection with a knobless variant resulted in less than a 2-fold difference compared with noninfected erythrocytes. IgG binding to knobby erythrocytes appeared to be related to parasite development, since binding of /sup 125/I-labeled protein A to cells bearing young trophozoites (less than 20 hr after parasite invasion) was similar to binding to uninfected erythrocytes. By immunoelectron microscopy, the membrane-bound IgG on erythrocytes infected with the knobby variant was found to be preferentially associated with the protuberances (knobs) of the plasma membrane. The removal of aged or senescent erythrocytes from the peripheral circulation is reported to involve the binding of specific antibodies to an antigen (senescent antigen) related to the major erythrocyte membrane protein band 3. Since affinity-purified autoantibodies against band 3 specifically bound to the plasma membrane of erythrocytes infected with the knobby variant of P. falciparum, it is clear that the malaria parasite induces expression of senescent antigen.

  16. A cloned ATP:guanidino kinase in the trematode Schistosoma mansoni has a novel duplicated structure.

    PubMed

    Stein, L D; Harn, D A; David, J R

    1990-04-25

    Creatine kinase (CK) is part of a conserved family of ATP:guanidino phosphotransferases whose members play important roles in intracellular energy flow. Previously characterized members of this family are approximately 80-kDa dimers of two related 40-kDa subunits. We have cloned a gene from the parasitic trematode Schistosoma mansoni which has substantial amino acid sequence similarities to CK. Like the genes for vertebrate CKs, this gene is developmentally regulated; mRNA levels are high in the infective cercarial stage but rapidly decrease upon transformation to the parasitic schistosomulum stage. In contrast to members of the guanidino phosphotransferase family characterized previously, however, the schistosome gene appears to be a direct fusion of two CK-like domains that encode a single 74-kDa polypeptide. Correlative evidence from enzyme assays of crude parasite homogenates suggests that the cloned gene is a creatine kinase. This represents the first molecular cloning of an invertebrate ATP:guanidino phosphotransferase.

  17. Structure-Based Design and Synthesis of Novel Inhibitors Targeting HDAC8 from Schistosoma mansoni for the Treatment of Schistosomiasis.

    PubMed

    Heimburg, Tino; Chakrabarti, Alokta; Lancelot, Julien; Marek, Martin; Melesina, Jelena; Hauser, Alexander-Thomas; Shaik, Tajith B; Duclaud, Sylvie; Robaa, Dina; Erdmann, Frank; Schmidt, Matthias; Romier, Christophe; Pierce, Raymond J; Jung, Manfred; Sippl, Wolfgang

    2016-03-24

    Schistosomiasis is a major neglected parasitic disease that affects more than 265 million people worldwide and for which the control strategy consists of mass treatment with the only available drug, praziquantel. In this study, a series of new benzohydroxamates were prepared as potent inhibitors of Schistosoma mansoni histone deacetylase 8 (smHDAC8). Crystallographic analysis provided insights into the inhibition mode of smHDAC8 activity by these 3-amidobenzohydroxamates. The newly designed inhibitors were evaluated in screens for enzyme inhibitory activity against schistosome and human HDACs. Twenty-seven compounds were found to be active in the nanomolar range, and some of them showed selectivity toward smHDAC8 over the major human HDACs (1 and 6). The active benzohydroxamates were additionally screened for lethality against the schistosome larval stage using a fluorescence-based assay. Four of these showed significant dose-dependent killing of the schistosome larvae and markedly impaired egg laying of adult worm pairs maintained in culture. PMID:26937828

  18. Multiple stiffening effects of nanoscale knobs on human red blood cells infected with Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yao; Kim, Sangtae; Golkaram, Mahdi; Dixon, Matthew W. A.; Tilley, Leann; Li, Ju; Zhang, Sulin; Suresh, Subra

    2015-01-01

    During its asexual development within the red blood cell (RBC), Plasmodium falciparum (Pf), the most virulent human malaria parasite, exports proteins that modify the host RBC membrane. The attendant increase in cell stiffness and cytoadherence leads to sequestration of infected RBCs in microvasculature, which enables the parasite to evade the spleen, and leads to organ dysfunction in severe cases of malaria. Despite progress in understanding malaria pathogenesis, the molecular mechanisms responsible for the dramatic loss of deformability of Pf-infected RBCs have remained elusive. By recourse to a coarse-grained (CG) model that captures the molecular structures of Pf-infected RBC membrane, here we show that nanoscale surface protrusions, known as “knobs,” introduce multiple stiffening mechanisms through composite strengthening, strain hardening, and knob density-dependent vertical coupling. On one hand, the knobs act as structural strengtheners for the spectrin network; on the other, the presence of knobs results in strain inhomogeneity in the spectrin network with elevated shear strain in the knob-free regions, which, given its strain-hardening property, effectively stiffens the network. From the trophozoite to the schizont stage that ensues within 24–48 h of parasite invasion into the RBC, the rise in the knob density results in the increased number of vertical constraints between the spectrin network and the lipid bilayer, which further stiffens the membrane. The shear moduli of Pf-infected RBCs predicted by the CG model at different stages of parasite maturation are in agreement with experimental results. In addition to providing a fundamental understanding of the stiffening mechanisms of Pf-infected RBCs, our simulation results suggest potential targets for antimalarial therapies. PMID:25918423

  19. The importance of sensitive detection of malaria parasites in the human and insect hosts in epidemiological studies, as shown by the analysis of field samples from Guinea Bissau.

    PubMed

    Snounou, G; Pinheiro, L; Gonçalves, A; Fonseca, L; Dias, F; Brown, K N; do Rosario, V E

    1993-01-01

    A method based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for highly sensitive detection and identification of human malaria parasites was applied to blood and mosquito samples obtained from a village in Guinea Bissau. The prevalence of parasites in the human population was shown to be greatly underestimated by microscopical examination. In particular, a high incidence of Plasmodium malariae and P. ovale parasites was revealed only by the PCR assay. Preliminary evidence was obtained to show that the distribution of P. malariae infections within the village was non-random. This was supported by analysis of the parasite species infecting the mosquito vector. The implication of these results for the design and interpretation of epidemiological surveys is discussed.

  20. Efficient genotyping of Schistosoma mansoni miracidia following whole genome amplification.

    PubMed

    Valentim, Claudia L L; LoVerde, Philip T; Anderson, Timothy J C; Criscione, Charles D

    2009-07-01

    Small parasites and larval stages pose a problem for molecular analyses because limited amounts of DNA template are available. Isothermal methods for faithfully copying DNA have the potential to revolutionize studies of such organisms. We evaluated the fidelity of multiple displacement amplification (MDA) for amplifying DNA extracted from a single miracidium of Schistosoma mansoni. To do this we genotyped DNA extracted from 28 F1 miracidia following MDA using 56 microsatellite markers. Because these miracidia were obtained from a cross between a male and female worm of known genotypes, we were able to predict the alleles present in the progeny and quantify the genotyping error rate. We found just 8/1568 genotypes deviated from Mendelian expectations. Furthermore, because 1 of these resulted from a genuine mutation, the error rate due to MDA is 7/1568 (0.45%). We conclude that many hundreds of microsatellites or other genetic markers can be accurately genotyped from a single miracidium using this method, greatly expanding the scope of population genetic, epidemiological and evolutionary studies on this parasite. PMID:19428677

  1. Exploring molecular variation in Schistosoma japonicum in China

    PubMed Central

    Young, Neil D.; Chan, Kok-Gan; Korhonen, Pasi K.; Min Chong, Teik; Ee, Robson; Mohandas, Namitha; Koehler, Anson V.; Lim, Yan-Lue; Hofmann, Andreas; Jex, Aaron R.; Qian, Baozhen; Chilton, Neil B.; Gobert, Geoffrey N.; McManus, Donald P.; Tan, Patrick; Webster, Bonnie L.; Rollinson, David; Gasser, Robin B.

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a neglected tropical disease that affects more than 200 million people worldwide. The main disease-causing agents, Schistosoma japonicum, S. mansoni and S. haematobium, are blood flukes that have complex life cycles involving a snail intermediate host. In Asia, S. japonicum causes hepatointestinal disease (schistosomiasis japonica) and is challenging to control due to a broad distribution of its snail hosts and range of animal reservoir hosts. In China, extensive efforts have been underway to control this parasite, but genetic variability in S. japonicum populations could represent an obstacle to eliminating schistosomiasis japonica. Although a draft genome sequence is available for S. japonicum, there has been no previous study of molecular variation in this parasite on a genome-wide scale. In this study, we conducted the first deep genomic exploration of seven S. japonicum populations from mainland China, constructed phylogenies using mitochondrial and nuclear genomic data sets, and established considerable variation between some of the populations in genes inferred to be linked to key cellular processes and/or pathogen-host interactions. Based on the findings from this study, we propose that verifying intraspecific conservation in vaccine or drug target candidates is an important first step toward developing effective vaccines and chemotherapies against schistosomiasis. PMID:26621075

  2. Conservation and developmental expression of ubiquitin isopeptidases in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Roberta Verciano; Vieira, Helaine Graziele Santos; Oliveira, Victor Fernandes de; Gomes, Matheus de Souza; Passos, Liana Konovaloff Jannotti; Borges, William de Castro; Guerra-Sá, Renata

    2014-02-01

    Several genes related to the ubiquitin (Ub)-proteasome pathway, including those coding for proteasome subunits and conjugation enzymes, are differentially expressed during the Schistosoma mansoni life cycle. Although deubiquitinating enzymes have been reported to be negative regulators of protein ubiquitination and shown to play an important role in Ub-dependent processes, little is known about their role in S. mansoni . In this study, we analysed the Ub carboxyl-terminal hydrolase (UCHs) proteins found in the database of the parasite's genome. An in silico ana- lysis (GeneDB and MEROPS) identified three different UCH family members in the genome, Sm UCH-L3, Sm UCH-L5 and Sm BAP-1 and a phylogenetic analysis confirmed the evolutionary conservation of the proteins. We performed quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and observed a differential expression profile for all of the investigated transcripts between the cercariae and adult worm stages. These results were corroborated by low rates of Z-Arg-Leu-Arg-Gly-Gly-AMC hydrolysis in a crude extract obtained from cercariae in parallel with high Ub conjugate levels in the same extracts. We suggest that the accumulation of ubiquitinated proteins in the cercaria and early schistosomulum stages is related to a decrease in 26S proteasome activity. Taken together, our data suggest that UCH family members contribute to regulating the activity of the Ub-proteasome system during the life cycle of this parasite. PMID:24271000

  3. Preliminary analysis of miRNA pathway in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Gomes, Matheus S; Cabral, Fernanda J; Jannotti-Passos, Liana K; Carvalho, Omar; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Baba, Elio H; Sá, Renata G

    2009-03-01

    RNA silencing refers to a series of nuclear and cytoplasmatic processes involved in the post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression or post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS), either by sequence-specific mRNA degradation or by translational arrest. The best characterized small RNAs are microRNAs (miRNAs), which predominantly perform gene silencing through post-transcriptional mechanisms. In this work we used bioinformatic approaches to identify the parasitic trematode Schistosoma mansoni sequences that are similar to enzymes involved in the post-transcriptional gene silencing mediated by miRNA pathway. We used amino acid sequences of well-known proteins involved in the miRNA pathway against S. mansoni genome and transcriptome databases identifying a total of 13 putative proteins in the parasite. In addition, the transcript levels of SmDicer1 and SmAgo2/3/4 were identified by qRT-PCR using cercariae, adult worms, eggs and in vitro cultivated schistosomula. Our results showed that the SmDicer1 and SmAgo2/3/4 are differentially expressed during schistosomula development, suggesting that the miRNA pathway is regulated at the transcript level and therefore may control gene expression during the life cycle of S. mansoni.

  4. Protein Export Marks the Early Phase of Gametocytogenesis of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum*

    PubMed Central

    Silvestrini, Francesco; Lasonder, Edwin; Olivieri, Anna; Camarda, Grazia; van Schaijk, Ben; Sanchez, Massimo; Younis Younis, Sumera; Sauerwein, Robert; Alano, Pietro

    2010-01-01

    Despite over a century of study of malaria parasites, parts of the Plasmodium falciparum life cycle remain virtually unknown. One of these is the early gametocyte stage, a round shaped cell morphologically similar to an asexual trophozoite in which major cellular transformations ensure subsequent development of the elongated gametocyte. We developed a protocol to obtain for the first time highly purified preparations of early gametocytes using a transgenic line expressing a green fluorescent protein from the onset of gametocytogenesis. We determined the cellular proteome (1427 proteins) of this parasite stage by high accuracy tandem mass spectrometry and newly determined the proteomes of asexual trophozoites and mature gametocytes, identifying altogether 1090 previously undetected parasite proteins. Quantitative label-free comparative proteomics analysis determined enriched protein clusters for the three parasite developmental stages. Gene set enrichment analysis on the 251 proteins enriched in the early gametocyte proteome revealed that proteins putatively exported and involved in erythrocyte remodeling are the most overrepresented protein set in these stages. One-tenth of the early gametocyte-enriched proteome is constituted of putatively exported proteins, here named PfGEXPs (P. falciparum gametocyte-exported proteins). N-terminal processing and N-acetylation at a conserved leucine residue within the Plasmodium export element pentamotif were detected by mass spectrometry for three such proteins in the early but not in the mature gametocyte sample, further supporting a specific role in protein export in early gametocytogenesis. Previous reports and results of our experiments confirm that the three proteins are indeed exported in the erythrocyte cytoplasm. This work indicates that protein export profoundly marks early sexual differentiation in P. falciparum, probably contributing to host cell remodeling in this phase of the life cycle, and that gametocyte

  5. Genome editing in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum using the CRISPR-Cas9 system.

    PubMed

    Ghorbal, Mehdi; Gorman, Molly; Macpherson, Cameron Ross; Martins, Rafael Miyazawa; Scherf, Artur; Lopez-Rubio, Jose-Juan

    2014-08-01

    Genome manipulation in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum remains largely intractable and improved genomic tools are needed to further understand pathogenesis and drug resistance. We demonstrated the CRISPR-Cas9 system for use in P. falciparum by disrupting chromosomal loci and generating marker-free, single-nucleotide substitutions with high efficiency. Additionally, an artemisinin-resistant strain was generated by introducing a previously implicated polymorphism, thus illustrating the value of efficient genome editing in malaria research.

  6. Helminth Allergens, Parasite-Specific IgE, and Its Protective Role in Human Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Fitzsimmons, Colin Matthew; Falcone, Franco Harald; Dunne, David William

    2014-01-01

    The Th2 immune response, culminating in eosinophilia and IgE production, is not only characteristic of allergy but also of infection by parasitic worms (helminths). Anti-parasite IgE has been associated with immunity against a range of helminth infections and many believe that IgE and its receptors evolved to help counter metazoan parasites. Allergens (IgE-antigens) are present in only a small minority of protein families and known IgE targets in helminths belong to these same families (e.g., EF-hand proteins, tropomyosin, and PR-1 proteins). During some helminth infection, especially with the well adapted hookworm, the Th2 response is moderated by parasite-expressed molecules. This has been associated with reduced allergy in helminth endemic areas and worm infection or products have been proposed as treatments for allergic conditions. However, some infections (especially Ascaris) are associated with increased allergy and this has been linked to cross-reactivity between worm proteins (e.g., tropomyosins) and highly similar molecules in dust-mites and insects. The overlap between allergy and helminth infection is best illustrated in Anisakis simplex, a nematode that when consumed in under-cooked fish can be both an infective helminth and a food allergen. Nearly 20 molecular allergens have been isolated from this species, including tropomyosin (Ani s 3) and the EF-hand protein, Ani s troponin. In this review, we highlight aspects of the biology and biochemistry of helminths that may have influenced the evolution of the IgE response. We compare dominant IgE-antigens in worms with clinically important environmental allergens and suggest that arrays of such molecules will provide important information on anti-worm immunity as well as allergy. PMID:24592267

  7. Cystatins of parasitic organisms.

    PubMed

    Klotz, Christian; Ziegler, Thomas; Daniłowicz-Luebert, Emilia; Hartmann, Susanne

    2011-01-01

    The cystatin superfamily comprises several groups of protease inhibitors. In this chapter we will focus on I25 family members, which consist predominantly of the type 2 cystatins. Recently, a wealth of information on these molecules and their activities has been described. Parasite cystatins are shown to have dual functions via interaction with both parasite and host proteases. Thereby, parasite cystatins are not only essentially involved in the regulation of physiological processes during parasite development, but also represent important pathogenicity factors. Interestingly, some studies indicate that parasite cystatins evolved exceptional immuno-modulatory properties. these capacities could be exploited to interfere with unwanted immune responses in unrelated human inflammatory diseases. We highlight the different biological roles of parasite cystatins and the anticipated future developments.

  8. Microsatellite polymorphism in the sexually transmitted human pathogen Trichomonas vaginalis indicates a genetically diverse parasite.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Melissa; Zubacova, Zuzana; Dunn, Linda A; Upcroft, Jacqui; Sullivan, Steven A; Tachezy, Jan; Carlton, Jane M

    2011-01-01

    Given the growing appreciation of serious health sequelae from widespread Trichomonas vaginalis infection, new tools are needed to study the parasite's genetic diversity. To this end we have identified and characterized a panel of 21 microsatellites and six single-copy genes from the T. vaginalis genome, using seven laboratory strains of diverse origin. We have (1) adapted our microsatellite typing method to incorporate affordable fluorescent labeling, (2) determined that the microsatellite loci remain stable in parasites continuously cultured for up to 17 months, and (3) evaluated microsatellite marker coverage of the six chromosomes that comprise the T. vaginalis genome, using fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH). We have used the markers to show that T. vaginalis is a genetically diverse parasite in a population of commonly used laboratory strains. In addition, we have used phylogenetic methods to infer evolutionary relationships from our markers in order to validate their utility in future population analyses. Our panel is the first series of robust polymorphic genetic markers for T. vaginalis that can be used to classify and monitor lab strains, as well as provide a means to measure the genetic diversity and population structure of extant and future T. vaginalis isolates. PMID:20813140

  9. Does Magnetic Field Affect Malaria Parasite Replication in Human Red Blood Cells?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chanturiya, Alexandr N.; Glushakova, Svetlana; Yin, Dan; Zimmerberg, Joshua

    2004-01-01

    Digestion of red blood cell (RBC) hemoglobin by the malaria parasite results in the formation of paramagnetic hemazoin crystals inside the parasite body. A number of reports suggest that magnetic field interaction with hamazoin crystals significantly reduces the number of infected cells in culture, and thus magnetic field can be used to combat malaria. We studies the effects of magnetic filed on the Plasmodium falciparum asexual life cycle inside RBCs under various experimental conditions. No effect was found during prolonged exposure of infected RBCs to constant magnetic fields up to 6000 Gauss. Infected RBCs were also exposed, under temperature-controlled conditions, to oscillating magnetic fields with frequencies in the range of 500-20000 kHz, and field strength 30-600 Gauss. This exposure often changed the proportion of different parasite stages in treated culture compared to controls. However, no significant effect on parasitemia was observed in treated cultures. This result indicates that the magnetic field effect on Plasmodium falciparum is negligible, or that hypothetical negative and positive effects on different stages within one 48-hour compensate each other.

  10. Microsatellite polymorphism in the sexually transmitted human pathogen Trichomonas vaginalis indicates a genetically diverse parasite.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Melissa; Zubacova, Zuzana; Dunn, Linda A; Upcroft, Jacqui; Sullivan, Steven A; Tachezy, Jan; Carlton, Jane M

    2011-01-01

    Given the growing appreciation of serious health sequelae from widespread Trichomonas vaginalis infection, new tools are needed to study the parasite's genetic diversity. To this end we have identified and characterized a panel of 21 microsatellites and six single-copy genes from the T. vaginalis genome, using seven laboratory strains of diverse origin. We have (1) adapted our microsatellite typing method to incorporate affordable fluorescent labeling, (2) determined that the microsatellite loci remain stable in parasites continuously cultured for up to 17 months, and (3) evaluated microsatellite marker coverage of the six chromosomes that comprise the T. vaginalis genome, using fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH). We have used the markers to show that T. vaginalis is a genetically diverse parasite in a population of commonly used laboratory strains. In addition, we have used phylogenetic methods to infer evolutionary relationships from our markers in order to validate their utility in future population analyses. Our panel is the first series of robust polymorphic genetic markers for T. vaginalis that can be used to classify and monitor lab strains, as well as provide a means to measure the genetic diversity and population structure of extant and future T. vaginalis isolates.

  11. Crystallization and X-ray analysis of the Schistosoma mansoni guanidino kinase.

    PubMed

    Awama, Ayman M; Paracuellos, Patricia; Laurent, Sabine; Dissous, Colette; Marcillat, Olivier; Gouet, Patrice

    2008-09-01

    The 716-amino-acid guanidino kinase from the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni results from the fusion of two guanidino kinase subunits. Crystals of this 80 kDa protein have been obtained in the monoclinic space group P2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 52.7, b = 122.1, c = 63.2 A, beta = 108.5 degrees . Synchrotron data were collected to 2.8 A resolution on ESRF beamline ID29. The structure was solved by the molecular-replacement method, using the 357-amino-acid structure of the arginine kinase from Trypanosoma cruzi as the search model. PMID:18765922

  12. Crystallization and X-ray analysis of the Schistosoma mansoni guanidino kinase

    PubMed Central

    Awama, Ayman M.; Paracuellos, Patricia; Laurent, Sabine; Dissous, Colette; Marcillat, Olivier; Gouet, Patrice

    2008-01-01

    The 716-amino-acid guanidino kinase from the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni results from the fusion of two guanidino kinase subunits. Crystals of this 80 kDa protein have been obtained in the monoclinic space group P21, with unit-cell parameters a = 52.7, b = 122.1, c = 63.2 Å, β = 108.5°. Synchrotron data were collected to 2.8 Å resolution on ESRF beamline ID29. The structure was solved by the molecular-replacement method, using the 357-amino-acid structure of the arginine kinase from Trypanosoma cruzi as the search model. PMID:18765922

  13. Evaluation of dihydroisocoumarins produced by the endophytic fungus Arthrinium state of Apiospora montagnei against Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Ramos, Henrique P; Simão, Marilia R; de Souza, Julia M; Magalhães, Lizandra G; Rodrigues, Vanderlei; Ambrósio, Sérgio R; Said, Suraia

    2013-01-01

    Fractionation of extracts from the fermentation broth of the endophytic fungus Arthrinium state of Apiospora montagnei resulted in the isolation of the major secondary metabolites, R-(-)-mellein (1) and cis-(3R,4R)-4-hydroxymellein (2). The chemical structures of compounds were determined by spectroscopic analyses. The isolated compounds were tested in vitro to determine their activity against Schistosoma mansoni adult worms. Compounds 1 and 2 caused death of 100% of parasites at 200 and 50 μg mL(-1), respectively. Ultrastructural analysis suggested that the tegument can be a target of compound 1.

  14. The bladder carcinoma secondary to schistosoma mansoni infection: A case report with review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    Kiremit, Murat Can; Cakir, Asli; Arslan, Ferhat; Ormeci, Tugrul; Erkurt, Bulent; Albayrak, Selami

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Schistosomiasis is a rare condition in Turkey but remains second most prevelant parasitic infestation worldwide. Presentation of case A 67-years old male patient admitted to a hospital with macroscopic hematuria. Bladder tumor was diagnosed and referred to our department for the treatment. Transurethral resection of bladder tumor was performed and pathological examination revealed high-grade papillary urothelial carcinoma and Schistosoma mansoni eggs. The patient used praziquantel 40 mg orally for the treatment of Schistosomiasis and intravesical immunotherapy was applied 6 weeks along per week. Neither recurrence of tumor nor S. mansoni eggs in the urine were detected at the 18th month. Discussion In spite of well-known etiological relationships between Schistosoma haematobium and bladder cancer, there is very limited number of cases of bladder carcinoma secondary to S. mansoni infestation in the literature. All of the reported 5 cases were from the rural regions of Brazil. On the other hand, it was noticed that pathological examination had been reported in only one of these cases, and the diagnosis was leiomyoma. Therefore, to the best of our knowledge, there is no data in the literature regarding the clinical course of the transitional cell carcinoma secondary to S. mansoni. Conclusion Regarding the increasing travels all around the world, clinicians should remember that Schistosoma infection is certainly a part of the differential diagnosis of bladder carcinoma, even if the patients are not from endemic regions. PMID:26125519

  15. Sex-biased expression of microRNAs in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Marco, Antonio; Kozomara, Ana; Hui, Jerome H L; Emery, Aidan M; Rollinson, David; Griffiths-Jones, Sam; Ronshaugen, Matthew

    2013-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is an important neglected tropical disease caused by digenean helminth parasites of the genus Schistosoma. Schistosomes are unusual in that they are dioecious and the adult worms live in the blood system. MicroRNAs play crucial roles during gene regulation and are likely to be important in sex differentiation in dioecious species. Here we characterize 112 microRNAs from adult Schistosoma mansoni individuals, including 84 novel microRNA families, and investigate the expression pattern in different sexes. By deep sequencing, we measured the relative expression levels of conserved and newly identified microRNAs between male and female samples. We observed that 13 microRNAs exhibited sex-biased expression, 10 of which are more abundant in females than in males. Sex chromosomes showed a paucity of female-biased genes, as predicted by theoretical evolutionary models. We propose that the recent emergence of separate sexes in Schistosoma had an effect on the chromosomal distribution and evolution of microRNAs, and that microRNAs are likely to participate in the sex differentiation/maintenance process.

  16. Histone H3K9 acetylation level modulates gene expression and may affect parasite growth in human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Srivastava, Sandeep; Bhowmick, Krishanu; Chatterjee, Snehajyoti; Basha, Jeelan; Kundu, Tapas K; Dhar, Suman K

    2014-12-01

    Three-dimensional positioning of the nuclear genome plays an important role in the epigenetic regulation of genes. Although nucleographic domain compartmentalization in the regulation of epigenetic state and gene expression is well established in higher organisms, it remains poorly understood in the pathogenic parasite Plasmodium falciparum. In the present study, we report that two histone tail modifications, H3K9Ac and H3K14Ac, are differentially distributed in the parasite nucleus. We find colocalization of active gene promoters such as Tu1 (tubulin-1 expressed in the asexual stages) with H3K9Ac marks at the nuclear periphery. By contrast, asexual stage inactive gene promoters such as Pfg27 (gametocyte marker) and Pfs28 (ookinete marker) occupy H3K9Ac devoid zones at the nuclear periphery. The histone H3K9 is predominantly acetylated by the PCAF/GCN5 class of lysine acetyltransferases, which is well characterized in the parasite. Interestingly, embelin, a specific inhibitor of PCAF/GCN5 family histone acetyltransferase, selectively decreases total H3K9Ac acetylation levels (but not H3K14Ac levels) around the var gene promoters, leading to the downregulation of var gene expression, suggesting interplay among histone acetylation status, as well as subnuclear compartmentalization of different genes and their activation in the parasites. Finally, we found that embelin inhibited parasitic growth at the low micromolar range, raising the possibility of using histone acetyltransferases as a target for antimalarial therapy.

  17. Epigenetic modulation, stress and plasticity in susceptibility of the snail host, Biomphalaria glabrata, to Schistosoma mansoni infection.

    PubMed

    Knight, Matty; Ittiprasert, Wannaporn; Arican-Goktas, Halime D; Bridger, Joanna M

    2016-06-01

    Blood flukes are the causative agent of schistosomiasis - a major neglected tropical disease that remains endemic in numerous countries of the tropics and sub-tropics. During the past decade, a concerted effort has been made to control the spread of schistosomiasis, using a drug intervention program aimed at curtailing transmission. These efforts notwithstanding, schistosomiasis has re-emerged in southern Europe, raising concerns that global warming could contribute to the spread of this disease to higher latitude countries where transmission presently does not take place. Vaccines against schistosomiasis are not currently available and reducing transmission by drug intervention programs alone does not prevent reinfection in treated populations. These challenges have spurred awareness that new interventions to control schistosomiasis are needed, especially since the World Health Organization hopes to eradicate the disease by 2025. For one of the major species of human schistosomes, Schistosoma mansoni, the causative agent of hepatointestinal schistosomiasis in Africa and the Western Hemisphere, freshwater snails of the genus Biomphalaria serve as the obligate intermediate host of this parasite. To determine mechanisms that underlie parasitism by S. mansoni of Biomphalaria glabrata, which might be manipulated to block the development of intramolluscan larval stages of the parasite, we focused effort on the impact of schistosome infection on the epigenome of the snail. Results to date reveal a complex relationship, manifested by the ability of the schistosome to manipulate the snail genome, including the expression of specific genes. Notably, the parasite subverts the stress response of the host to ensure productive parasitism. Indeed, in isolates of B. glabrata native to central and South America, susceptible to infection with S. mansoni, the heat shock protein 70 (Bg-HSP70) gene of this snail is rapidly relocated in the nucleus and transcribed to express HSP70

  18. Morphological Characteristics of Schistosoma mansoni PZQ-Resistant and -Susceptible Strains Are Different in Presence of Praziquantel

    PubMed Central

    Pinto-Almeida, António; Mendes, Tiago; de Oliveira, Rosimeire Nunes; Corrêa, Sheila de Andrade Penteado; Allegretti, Silmara Marques; Belo, Silvana; Tomás, Ana; Anibal, Fernanda de Freitas; Carrilho, Emanuel; Afonso, Ana

    2016-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is one of the most common human parasitic diseases whose socioeconomic impact is only surpassed by malaria. Praziquantel (PZQ) is the only drug commercially available for the treatment of all schistosome species causing disease in humans. However, there has been stronger evidences of PZQ-resistance on Schistosoma mansoni and thus it is very important to study the phenotypic characteristics associated with it. The aim of this study was to evaluate morphological alterations in S. mansoni PZQ-resistant adult worms and eggs, by comparing a PZQ- resistant strain obtained under PZQ drug pressure with a PZQ-susceptible strain. For this, scanning electronic microscopy was used to assess tegumental responsiveness of both strains under PZQ exposure, and optical microscopy allowed the monitoring of worms and eggs in the presence of the drug. Those assays showed that PZQ-susceptible worms exposed to the drug had more severe tegumental damages than the resistant one, which had only minor alterations. Moreover, contrary to what occurred in the susceptible strain, resistant worms were viable after PZQ exposure and gradually regaining full motility after removal of the drug. Eggs from resistant strain parasites are considerably smaller than those from susceptible strain. Our results suggest that there might be a difference in the tegument composition of the resistant strain and that worms are less responsive to PZQ. Changes observed in egg morphology might imply alterations in the biology of schistosomes associated to PZQ-resistance, which could impact on transmission and pathology of the disease. Moreover, we propose a hypothetical scenario where there is a different egg tropism of the S. mansoni resistant strain. This study is the first comparing two strains that only differ in their resistance characteristics, which makes it a relevant step in the search for resistance determinants. PMID:27199925

  19. Morphological Characteristics of Schistosoma mansoni PZQ-Resistant and -Susceptible Strains Are Different in Presence of Praziquantel.

    PubMed

    Pinto-Almeida, António; Mendes, Tiago; de Oliveira, Rosimeire Nunes; Corrêa, Sheila de Andrade Penteado; Allegretti, Silmara Marques; Belo, Silvana; Tomás, Ana; Anibal, Fernanda de Freitas; Carrilho, Emanuel; Afonso, Ana

    2016-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is one of the most common human parasitic diseases whose socioeconomic impact is only surpassed by malaria. Praziquantel (PZQ) is the only drug commercially available for the treatment of all schistosome species causing disease in humans. However, there has been stronger evidences of PZQ-resistance on Schistosoma mansoni and thus it is very important to study the phenotypic characteristics associated with it. The aim of this study was to evaluate morphological alterations in S. mansoni PZQ-resistant adult worms and eggs, by comparing a PZQ- resistant strain obtained under PZQ drug pressure with a PZQ-susceptible strain. For this, scanning electronic microscopy was used to assess tegumental responsiveness of both strains under PZQ exposure, and optical microscopy allowed the monitoring of worms and eggs in the presence of the drug. Those assays showed that PZQ-susceptible worms exposed to the drug had more severe tegumental damages than the resistant one, which had only minor alterations. Moreover, contrary to what occurred in the susceptible strain, resistant worms were viable after PZQ exposure and gradually regaining full motility after removal of the drug. Eggs from resistant strain parasites are considerably smaller than those from susceptible strain. Our results suggest that there might be a difference in the tegument composition of the resistant strain and that worms are less responsive to PZQ. Changes observed in egg morphology might imply alterations in the biology of schistosomes associated to PZQ-resistance, which could impact on transmission and pathology of the disease. Moreover, we propose a hypothetical scenario where there is a different egg tropism of the S. mansoni resistant strain. This study is the first comparing two strains that only differ in their resistance characteristics, which makes it a relevant step in the search for resistance determinants.

  20. The IL-12 Response of Primary Human Dendritic Cells and Monocytes to Toxoplasma gondii Is Stimulated by Phagocytosis of Live Parasites Rather Than Host Cell Invasion.

    PubMed

    Tosh, Kevin W; Mittereder, Lara; Bonne-Annee, Sandra; Hieny, Sara; Nutman, Thomas B; Singer, Steven M; Sher, Alan; Jankovic, Dragana

    2016-01-01

    As a major natural host for Toxoplasma gondii, the mouse is widely used for the study of the immune response to this medically important protozoan parasite. However, murine innate recognition of toxoplasma depends on the interaction of parasite profilin with TLR11 and TLR12, two receptors that are functionally absent in humans. This raises the question of how human cells detect and respond to T. gondii. In this study, we show that primary monocytes and dendritic cells from peripheral blood of healthy donors produce IL-12 and other proinflammatory cytokines when exposed to toxoplasma tachyzoites. Cell fractionation studies determined that IL-12 and TNF-α secretion is limited to CD16(+) monocytes and the CD1c(+) subset of dendritic cells. In direct contrast to their murine counterparts, human myeloid cells fail to respond to soluble tachyzoite extracts and instead require contact with live parasites. Importantly, we found that tachyzoite phagocytosis, but not host cell invasion, is required for cytokine induction. Together these findings identify CD16(+) monocytes and CD1c(+) dendritic cells as the major myeloid subsets in human blood-producing innate cytokines in response to T. gondii and demonstrate an unappreciated requirement for phagocytosis of live parasites in that process. This form of pathogen sensing is distinct from that used by mice, possibly reflecting a direct involvement of rodents and not humans in the parasite life cycle.

  1. Recombinant plasmepsin 1 from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum: Enzymatic characterization, active site inhibitor design, and structural analysis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Peng; Marzahn, Melissa R.; Robbins, Arthur H.; Gutiérrez-de-Terán, Hugo; Rodríguez, David; McClung, Scott; Stevens, Stanley M.; Yowell, Charles A.; Dame, John B.; McKenna, Robert; Dunn, Ben M.

    2009-01-01

    A mutated form of truncated proplasmepsin 1 (proPfPM1) from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, proPfPM1 K110pN, was generated and overexpressed in E. coli. The auto-maturation process was carried out at pH 4.0 and 4.5, and the optimal catalytic pH of the resulting mature PfPM1 was determined to be pH 5.5. This mature PfPM1 showed comparable binding affinity to peptide substrates and inhibitors with the naturally-occurring form isolated from parasites. The S3-S3’ subsite preferences of the recombinant mature PfPM1 were explored using combinatorial chemistry based peptide libraries. Based on the results, a peptidomimetic inhibitor (compound 1) was designed and yielded 5-fold selectivity for binding to PfPM1 versus the homologous human cathepsin D (hcatD). The 2.8 Å structure of the PfPMP2-compound 1 complex is reported. Modeling studies were conducted using a series of peptidomimetic inhibitors (compounds 1–6, Table 3) and three plasmepsins: the crystal structure of PfPM2, and homology derived models of PfPM1 and PfPM4. PMID:19271776

  2. Identification of Host Insulin Binding Sites on Schistosoma japonicum Insulin Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Stephenson, Rachel J.; Toth, Istvan; Liang, Jiening; Mangat, Amanjot; McManus, Donald P.; You, Hong

    2016-01-01

    Schistosoma japonicum insulin receptors (SjIRs) have been identified as encouraging vaccine candidates. Interrupting or blocking the binding between host insulin and the schistosome insulin receptors (IRs) may result in reduced glucose uptake leading to starvation and stunting of worms with a reduction in egg output. To further understand how schistosomes are able to exploit host insulin for development and growth, and whether these parasites and their mammalian hosts compete for the same insulin source, we identified insulin binding sites on the SjIRs. Based on sequence analysis and the predicted antigenic structure of the primary sequences of the SjIRs, we designed nine and eleven peptide analogues from SjIR-1 and SjIR-2, respectively. Using the Octet RED system, we identified analogues derived from SjIR-1 (10) and SjIR-2 (20, 21 and 22) with insulin-binding sequences specific for S. japonicum. Nevertheless, the human insulin receptor (HIR) may compete with the SjIRs in binding human insulin in other positions which are important for HIR binding to insulin. However, no binding occurred between insulin and parasite analogues derived from SjIR-1 (2, 7 and 8) and SjIR-2 (14, 16 and 18) at the same locations as HIR sequences which have been shown to have strong insulin binding affinities. Importantly, we found two analogues (1 and 3), derived from SjIR-1, and two analogues (13 and 15) derived from SjIR-2, were responsible for the major insulin binding affinity in S. japonicum. These peptide analogues were shown to have more than 10 times (in KD value) stronger binding capacity for human insulin compared with peptides derived from the HIR in the same sequence positions. Paradoxically, analogues 1, 3, 13 and 15 do not appear to contain major antigenic determinants which resulted in poor antibody responses to native S. japonicum protein. This argues against their future development as peptide-vaccine candidates. PMID:27441998

  3. Praziquantel: physiological evidence for its site(s) of action in magnesium-paralysed Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Blair, K L; Bennett, J L; Pax, R A

    1992-02-01

    The mechanism whereby praziquantel produces a contraction and subsequent flaccid paralysis (a loss of sensitivity to subsequent stimuli) of Schistosoma mansoni in a medium containing an elevated Mg2+:Ca2+ ratio was investigated. In RPMI, praziquantel produced a concentration-dependent tonic contraction of the parasite with an EC50 of 200 nM. Magnesium inhibited the contraction in such a manner as to convert the tonic contraction to a phasic one without altering the peak force generated. The Mg(2+)-dependent block was non-competitive with praziquantel but was competitive with extracellular Ca2+, ratios of 7.5:1;Mg2+:Ca2+ being needed to inhibit the tonic contraction and to induce flaccid paralysis. Flaccid paralysis was associated with a reduced ability of the parasite to take up 45Ca2+ from the bath compared to parasites that had not entered into flaccid paralysis and flaccid paralysis was reversible. Recovery from flaccid paralysis was accelerated by treatments that are expected to increase Ca2+ uptake by the parasite. At a concentration of 500 nM, praziquantel produced 2 distinct phasic contractions in intact parasites incubated in an elevated [Mg2+] medium but only 1 phasic contraction in parasites lacking their surface tegumental membranes. In zero Ca2+ I-RPMI, 10 microM praziquantel produced a phasic contraction of intact parasites but did not stimulate contraction of detegumented parasites until Ca2+ was reintroduced into the bath. These results indicate that praziquantel interacts with specific Ca(2+)-permeable sites in the tegumental and sarcoplasmic membranes of the parasite and that under these conditions of elevated Mg2+:Ca2+ ratios, these sites become blocked by Mg2+, leading to flaccid paralysis of the parasite. PMID:1614741

  4. Differences in the gene expression profiles of haemocytes from schistosome-susceptible and -resistant biomphalaria glabrata exposed to Schistosoma mansoni excretory-secretory products.

    PubMed

    Zahoor, Zahida; Lockyer, Anne E; Davies, Angela J; Kirk, Ruth S; Emery, Aidan M; Rollinson, David; Jones, Catherine S; Noble, Leslie R; Walker, Anthony J

    2014-01-01

    During its life cycle, the helminth parasite Schistosoma mansoni uses the freshwater snail Biomphalaria glabrata as an intermediate host to reproduce asexually generating cercariae for infection of the human definitive host. Following invasion of the snail, the parasite develops from a miracidium to a mother sporocyst and releases excretory-secretory products (ESPs) that likely influence the outcome of host infection. To better understand molecular interactions between these ESPs and the host snail defence system, we determined gene expression profiles of haemocytes from S. mansoni-resistant or -susceptible strains of B. glabrata exposed in vitro to S. mansoni ESPs (20 μg/ml) for 1 h, using a 5K B. glabrata cDNA microarray. Ninety-eight genes were found differentially expressed between haemocytes from the two snail strains, 57 resistant specific and 41 susceptible specific, 60 of which had no known homologue in GenBank. Known differentially expressed resistant-snail genes included the nuclear factor kappa B subunit Relish, elongation factor 1α, 40S ribosomal protein S9, and matrilin; known susceptible-snail specific genes included cathepsins D and L, and theromacin. Comparative analysis with other gene expression studies revealed 38 of the 98 identified genes to be uniquely differentially expressed in haemocytes in the presence of ESPs, thus identifying for the first time schistosome ESPs as important molecules that influence global snail host-defence cell gene expression profiles. Such immunomodulation may benefit the schistosome, enabling its survival and successful development in the snail host.

  5. Interaction of Plasmodium vivax Tryptophan-rich Antigen PvTRAg38 with Band 3 on Human Erythrocyte Surface Facilitates Parasite Growth*

    PubMed Central

    Alam, Mohd. Shoeb; Choudhary, Vandana; Zeeshan, Mohammad; Tyagi, Rupesh K.; Rathore, Sumit; Sharma, Yagya D.

    2015-01-01

    Plasmodium tryptophan-rich proteins are involved in host-parasite interaction and thus potential drug/vaccine targets. Recently, we have described several P. vivax tryptophan-rich antigens (PvTRAgs), including merozoite expressed PvTRAg38, from this noncultivable human malaria parasite. PvTRAg38 is highly immunogenic in humans and binds to host erythrocytes, and this binding is inhibited by the patient sera. This binding is also affected if host erythrocytes were pretreated with chymotrypsin. Here, Band 3 has been identified as the chymotrypsin-sensitive erythrocyte receptor for this parasite protein. Interaction of PvTRAg38 with Band 3 has been mapped to its three different ectodomains (loops 1, 3, and 6) exposed at the surface of the erythrocyte. The binding region of PvTRAg38 to Band3 has been mapped to its sequence, KWVQWKNDKIRSWLSSEW, present at amino acid positions 197–214. The recombinant PvTRAg38 was able to inhibit the parasite growth in in vitro Plasmodium falciparum culture probably by competing with the ligand(s) of this heterologous parasite for the erythrocyte Band 3 receptor. In conclusion, the host-parasite interaction at the molecular level is much more complicated than known so far and should be considered during the development of anti-malarial therapeutics. PMID:26149684

  6. Human infection by acanthocephalan parasites belonging to the genus Corynosoma found from small bowel endoscopy.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Tomoki; Waga, Eriko; Kitaoka, Keisuke; Imagawa, Takayuki; Komatsu, Yuuya; Takanashi, Kunihiro; Anbo, Fumie; Anbo, Tomonori; Katuki, Shinichi; Ichihara, Shin; Fujimori, Shunji; Yamasaki, Hiroshi; Morishima, Yasuyuki; Sugiyama, Hiromu; Katahira, Hirotaka

    2016-10-01

    A 73-year-old man with a suspected ileus in January 2013 and subsequently suffered melena in February 2014 was endoscopically examined. As a result of the examinations, unidentified species of Corynosoma sp. and Corynosoma villosum were recovered from the small intestine, further endoscopic diagnosis suggested relevance between abdominal pain and the present infections in the small intestine. The recovered worms were composed of gravid females with developed eggs, suggesting that these parasites can survive for a long time in the intestine after infection. In this case, the short interval between infections appears to be due to the individual's eating habits which consist of regularly consuming uncooked seafood. PMID:27396515

  7. Human cysticercosis and intestinal parasitism amongst the Ekari people of Irian Jaya.

    PubMed

    Muller, R; Lillywhite, J; Bending, J J; Catford, J C

    1987-12-01

    A random sample of 242 people showed that 42 had palpable cysts of Taenia solium. Faecal examination recovered eggs of T. solium in seven (3%), while Trichuris (83%), Ascaris (83%), hookworms (76%), Strongyloides stercoralis (10%) and Strongyloides sp. (29%), Entamoeba histolytica (14%), Entamoeba coli (22%), Entamoeba hartmanni (7%), Entamoeba polecki (7%), Balantidium coli (9%) and Dientamoeba fragilis (21%) were the most common other intestinal parasites encountered. ELISA tests, using antigens prepared from adults and eggs of T. solium and from cysticerci of T. saginata were not very sensitive, the last diagnosing less than half of known positives while still retaining good specificity. PMID:3430662

  8. Newly incriminated anopheline vectors of human malaria parasites in Junin Department, Peru.

    PubMed

    Hayes, J; Calderon, G; Falcon, R; Zambrano, V

    1987-09-01

    Sporozoite data from salivary gland dissections are presented that clearly incriminate Anopheles trinkae, An. pseudopunctipennis, An. sp. near fluminensis, An. oswaldoi, An. nuneztovari and An. rangeli as vectors of malaria parasites in the Rio Ene Valley, a hyperendemic malarious area in Junin Department, eastern Peru. Anopheles trinkae is considered the most important vector based on dissections, abundance and man-vector contact. Other notes are presented on the relative abundance, bionomics and previous records of these species in Peru and in the study sites.

  9. The proteasome-ubiquitin pathway in the Schistosoma mansoni egg has development- and morphology-specific characteristics.

    PubMed

    Mathieson, William; Castro-Borges, William; Wilson, R Alan

    2011-02-01

    Schistosoma mansoni eggs, consisting of an ovum surrounded by nutritive vitelline cells packaged in a tanned protein shell, are produced by paired worms residing in the mesenteric veins of the human host. The vitelline cells are degraded as the larval miracidium matures, the fully developed egg either crossing the gut wall to escape the host or becoming lodged in the host's tissues where it dies and disintegrates, inducing a potentially pathological immune response. Thus, the egg is central to both the transmission of the parasite and the aetiology of the disease. Here we present the first study investigating protein turnover in the egg. We establish that the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway (UPP) changes with egg development and furthermore, that the morphological components of the fully developed egg (the miracidium and the subshell envelope) also exhibit different proteasome subunit expression profiles. We conclude that the UPP is responsible not only for degrading the vitelline cells but is also more highly developed in the envelope than in the miracidium. The envelope is involved in the defence of the miracidium and produces the proteins that the egg secretes, presumably to facilitate its escape from the host, so the UPP probably has a multi-faceted role in the egg's biology. PMID:20970460

  10. Protein Kinase C and Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase Regulate Movement, Attachment, Pairing and Egg Release in Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Ressurreição, Margarida; De Saram, Paulu; Kirk, Ruth S.; Rollinson, David; Emery, Aidan M.; Page, Nigel M.; Davies, Angela J.; Walker, Anthony J.

    2014-01-01

    Protein kinases C (PKCs) and extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs) are evolutionary conserved cell signalling enzymes that coordinate cell function. Here we have employed biochemical approaches using ‘smart’ antibodies and functional screening to unravel the importance of these enzymes to Schistosoma mansoni physiology. Various PKC and ERK isotypes were detected, and were differentially phosphorylated (activated) throughout the various S. mansoni life stages, suggesting isotype-specific roles and differences in signalling complexity during parasite development. Functional kinase mapping in adult worms revealed that activated PKC and ERK were particularly associated with the adult male tegument, musculature and oesophagus and occasionally with the oesophageal gland; other structures possessing detectable activated PKC and/or ERK included the Mehlis' gland, ootype, lumen of the vitellaria, seminal receptacle and excretory ducts. Pharmacological modulation of PKC and ERK activity in adult worms using GF109203X, U0126, or PMA, resulted in significant physiological disturbance commensurate with these proteins occupying a central position in signalling pathways associated with schistosome muscular activity, neuromuscular coordination, reproductive function, attachment and pairing. Increased activation of ERK and PKC was also detected in worms following praziquantel treatment, with increased signalling associated with the tegument and excretory system and activated ERK localizing to previously unseen structures, including the cephalic ganglia. These findings support roles for PKC and ERK in S. mansoni homeostasis, and identify these kinase groups as potential targets for chemotherapeutic treatments against human schistosomiasis, a neglected tropical disease of enormous public health significance. PMID:24921927

  11. Efficient trans-cleavage by the Schistosoma mansoni SMα1 hammerhead ribozyme in the extreme thermophile Thermus thermophilus

    PubMed Central

    Vazquez-Tello, Alejandro; Castán, Pablo; Moreno, Renata; Smith, James M.; Berenguer, José; Cedergren, Robert

    2002-01-01

    The catalytic hammerhead structure has been found in association with repetitive DNA from several animals, including salamanders, crickets and schistosomes, and functions to process in cis the long multimer transcripts into monomer RNA in vivo. The cellular role of these repetitive elements and their transcripts is unknown. Moreover, none of these natural hammerheads have been shown to trans-cleave a host mRNA in vivo. We analyzed the cis- and trans-cleavage properties of the hammerhead ribozyme associated with the SMα DNA family from the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni. The efficiency of trans-cleavage of a target RNA in vitro was affected mainly by both the temperature-dependent chemical step and the ribozyme–product dissociation step. The optimal temperature for trans-cleavage was 70°C. This result was confirmed when both the SMα1 ribozyme and the target RNA were expressed in the extreme thermophile Thermus thermophilus. Moreover, SMα1 RNA showed a remarkable thermostability, equal or superior to that of the most stable RNAs in this species, suggesting that SMα1 RNA has been selected for stability. Computer analysis predicts that the monomer and multimer transcripts fold into highly compact secondary structures, which may explain their exceptional stability in vivo. PMID:11917021

  12. Experimental control of Biomphalaria pfeifferi, the intermediate host of Schistosoma mansoni, by the ampullariid snail Lanistes varicus.

    PubMed

    Anto, F; Bosompem, K; Kpikpi, J; Adjuik, M; Edoh, D

    2005-03-01

    The biological control of the snail hosts of the trematodes that cause human schistosomiasis appears to be a promising method for achieving sustainable reductions in the transmission of the parasites. The possibility of using the Ghanaian strain of an ampullariid snail, Lanistes varicus, for the biological control of the main snail host of Schistosoma mansoni , Biomphalaria pfeifferi, has now been investigated in laboratory-based experiments. Adult and 2-week-old L. varicus were found to feed voraciously on the egg masses and juveniles of B. pfeifferi (from the Tono irrigation canals in northern Ghana). When single L. varicus were exposed to 20-200 egg masses, they consumed all of the masses over 24 h (if adult) or about 50% of them over 4 days (if 2-week-old juveniles). The effect of the secretions of the ampullariid on the reproduction, growth and mortality of B. pfeifferi was also investigated, by maintaining the two snail species in the same aquarium but separated by nylon netting. The presence of L. varicus in the same aquarium reduced the number of egg masses produced by each B. pfeifferi, although, curiously, the presence of a single L. varicus in the aquarium appeared to have more of an impact, on the egg-mass deposition by 20 B. pfeifferi, than the presence of five or more of the ampullariids. It appears that, under laboratory conditions at least, the Ghanaian stain of L. varicus has the potential to limit populations of B. pfeifferi.

  13. Ionotropic Receptors Identified within the Tentacle of the Freshwater Snail Biomphalaria glabrata, an Intermediate Host of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Liang, Di; Wang, Tianfang; Rotgans, Bronwyn A; McManus, Donald P; Cummins, Scott F

    2016-01-01

    Biomphalaria glabrata (B. glabrata) is an air-breathing aquatic mollusc found in freshwater habitats across the Western Hemisphere. It is most well-known for its recognized capacity to act as a major intermediate host for Schistosoma mansoni, the human blood fluke parasite. Ionotropic receptors (IRs), a variant family of the ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluR), have an evolutionary ancient function in detecting odors to initiate chemosensory signaling. In this study, we applied an array of methods towards the goal of identifying IR-like family members in B. glabrata, ultimately revealing two types, the iGluR and IR. Sequence alignment showed that three ligand-binding residues are conserved in most Biomphalaria iGluR sequences, while the IRs did exhibit a variable pattern, lacking some or all known glutamate-interactingresidues, supporting their distinct classification from the iGluRs. We show that B. glabrata contains 7 putative IRs, some of which are expressed within its chemosensory organs. To further investigate a role for the more ancient IR25a type in chemoreception, we tested its spatial distribution pattern within the snail cephalic tentacle by in situ hybridization. The presence of IR25a within presumptive sensory neurons supports a role for this receptor in olfactory processing, contributing to our understanding of the molecular pathways that are involved in Biomphalaria olfactory processing. PMID:27253696

  14. Serum albumin and α-1 acid glycoprotein impede the killing of Schistosoma mansoni by the tyrosine kinase inhibitor Imatinib

    PubMed Central

    Beckmann, Svenja; Long, Thavy; Scheld, Christina; Geyer, Rudolf; Caffrey, Conor R.; Grevelding, Christoph G.

    2014-01-01

    In the search for new drugs and drug targets to treat the flatworm disease schistosomiasis, protein kinases (PKs) have come under particular scrutiny because of their essential roles in developmental and physiological processes in schistosome parasites. In this context the application of the anti-cancer Abl tyrosine kinase (TK) inhibitor Imatinib (Gleevec/Glivec; STI-571) to adult Schistosoma mansoni in vitro has indicated negative effects on diverse physiological processes including survival. Motivated by these in vitro findings, we performed in vivo experiments in rodent models of S. mansoni infection. Unexpectedly, Imatinib had no effect on worm burden or egg-production. We found that the blood components serum albumin (SA) and alpha-1 acid glycoprotein (AGP or orosomucoid) negated Imatinib’s deleterious effects on adult S. mansoni and schistosomula (post-infective larvae) in vitro. This negative effect was partially reversed by erythromycin. AGP synthesis can increase as a consequence of inflammatory processes or infection; in addition upon infection AGP levels are 6–8 times higher in mice compared to humans. Therefore, mice and probably other rodents are poor infection models for measuring the effects of Imatinib in vivo. Accordingly, we suggest the routine evaluation of the ability of AGP and SA to block in vitro anti-schistosomal effects of small molecules like Imatinib prior to laborious and expensive animal experiments. PMID:25516839

  15. Ionotropic Receptors Identified within the Tentacle of the Freshwater Snail Biomphalaria glabrata, an Intermediate Host of Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Di; Wang, Tianfang; Rotgans, Bronwyn A.; McManus, Donald P.; Cummins, Scott F.

    2016-01-01

    Biomphalaria glabrata (B. glabrata) is an air-breathing aquatic mollusc found in freshwater habitats across the Western Hemisphere. It is most well-known for its recognized capacity to act as a major intermediate host for Schistosoma mansoni, the human blood fluke parasite. Ionotropic receptors (IRs), a variant family of the ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluR), have an evolutionary ancient function in detecting odors to initiate chemosensory signaling. In this study, we applied an array of methods towards the goal of identifying IR-like family members in B. glabrata, ultimately revealing two types, the iGluR and IR. Sequence alignment showed that three ligand-binding residues are conserved in most Biomphalaria iGluR sequences, while the IRs did exhibit a variable pattern, lacking some or all known glutamate-interactingresidues, supporting their distinct classification from the iGluRs. We show that B. glabrata contains 7 putative IRs, some of which are expressed within its chemosensory organs. To further investigate a role for the more ancient IR25a type in chemoreception, we tested its spatial distribution pattern within the snail cephalic tentacle by in situ hybridization. The presence of IR25a within presumptive sensory neurons supports a role for this receptor in olfactory processing, contributing to our understanding of the molecular pathways that are involved in Biomphalaria olfactory processing. PMID:27253696

  16. The Clp Chaperones and Proteases of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    SciTech Connect

    M El Bakkouri; A Pow; A Mulichak; K Cheung; J Artz; M Amani; S Fell; T de Koning-Ward; C Goodman; et al.

    2011-12-31

    The Clpchaperones and proteases play an important role in protein homeostasis in the cell. They are highly conserved across prokaryotes and found also in the mitochondria of eukaryotes and the chloroplasts of plants. They function mainly in the disaggregation, unfolding and degradation of native as well as misfolded proteins. Here, we provide a comprehensive analysis of the Clpchaperones and proteases in the humanmalariaparasitePlasmodiumfalciparum. The parasite contains four Clp ATPases, which we term PfClpB1, PfClpB2, PfClpC and PfClpM. One PfClpP, the proteolytic subunit, and one PfClpR, which is an inactive version of the protease, were also identified. Expression of all Clpchaperones and proteases was confirmed in blood-stage parasites. The proteins were localized to the apicoplast, a non-photosynthetic organelle that accommodates several important metabolic pathways in P. falciparum, with the exception of PfClpB2 (also known as Hsp101), which was found in the parasitophorous vacuole. Both PfClpP and PfClpR form mostly homoheptameric rings as observed by size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation and electron microscopy. The X-ray structure of PfClpP showed the protein as a compacted tetradecamer similar to that observed for Streptococcus pneumoniae and Mycobacterium tuberculosis ClpPs. Our data suggest the presence of a ClpCRP complex in the apicoplast of P. falciparum.

  17. The Plasmodium PHIST and RESA-Like Protein Families of Human and Rodent Malaria Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Moreira, Cristina K.; Naissant, Bernina; Coppi, Alida; Bennett, Brandy L.; Aime, Elena; Franke-Fayard, Blandine; Janse, Chris J.; Coppens, Isabelle; Sinnis, Photini; Templeton, Thomas J.

    2016-01-01

    The phist gene family has members identified across the Plasmodium genus, defined by the presence of a domain of roughly 150 amino acids having conserved aromatic residues and an all alpha-helical structure. The family is highly amplified in P. falciparum, with 65 predicted genes in the genome of the 3D7 isolate. In contrast, in the rodent malaria parasite P. berghei 3 genes are identified, one of which is an apparent pseudogene. Transcripts of the P. berghei phist genes are predominant in schizonts, whereas in P. falciparum transcript profiles span different asexual blood stages and gametocytes. We pursued targeted disruption of P. berghei phist genes in order to characterize a simplistic model for the expanded phist gene repertoire in P. falciparum. Unsuccessful attempts to disrupt P. berghei PBANKA_114540 suggest that this phist gene is essential, while knockout of phist PBANKA_122900 shows an apparent normal progression and non-essential function throughout the life cycle. Epitope-tagging of P. falciparum and P. berghei phist genes confirmed protein export to the erythrocyte cytoplasm and localization with a punctate pattern. Three P. berghei PEXEL/HT-positive exported proteins exhibit at least partial co-localization, in support of a common vesicular compartment in the cytoplasm of erythrocytes infected with rodent malaria parasites. PMID:27022937

  18. DEAD/DExH-Box RNA Helicases in Selected Human Parasites.

    PubMed

    Marchat, Laurence A; Arzola-Rodríguez, Silvia I; Hernandez-de la Cruz, Olga; Lopez-Rosas, Itzel; Lopez-Camarillo, Cesar

    2015-10-01

    DEAD/DExH-box RNA helicases catalyze the folding and remodeling of RNA molecules in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, as well as in many viruses. They are characterized by the presence of the helicase domain with conserved motifs that are essential for ATP binding and hydrolysis, RNA interaction, and unwinding activities. Large families of DEAD/DExH-box proteins have been described in different organisms, and their role in all molecular processes involving RNA, from transcriptional regulation to mRNA decay, have been described. This review aims to summarize the current knowledge about DEAD/DExH-box proteins in selected protozoan and nematode parasites of medical importance worldwide, such as Plasmodium falciparum, Leishmania spp., Trypanosoma spp., Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica, and Brugia malayi. We discuss the functional characterization of several proteins in an attempt to understand better the molecular mechanisms involving RNA in these pathogens. The current data also highlight that DEAD/DExH-box RNA helicases might represent feasible drug targets due to their vital role in parasite growth and development.

  19. Within-host competition and drug resistance in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Bushman, Mary; Morton, Lindsay; Duah, Nancy; Quashie, Neils; Abuaku, Benjamin; Koram, Kwadwo A; Dimbu, Pedro Rafael; Plucinski, Mateusz; Gutman, Julie; Lyaruu, Peter; Kachur, S Patrick; de Roode, Jacobus C; Udhayakumar, Venkatachalam

    2016-03-16

    Infections with the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum typically comprise multiple strains, especially in high-transmission areas where infectious mosquito bites occur frequently. However, little is known about the dynamics of mixed-strain infections, particularly whether strains sharing a host compete or grow independently. Competition between drug-sensitive and drug-resistant strains, if it occurs, could be a crucial determinant of the spread of resistance. We analysed 1341 P. falciparum infections in children from Angola, Ghana and Tanzania and found compelling evidence for competition in mixed-strain infections: overall parasite density did not increase with additional strains, and densities of individual chloroquine-sensitive (CQS) and chloroquine-resistant (CQR) strains were reduced in the presence of competitors. We also found that CQR strains exhibited low densities compared with CQS strains (in the absence of chloroquine), which may underlie observed declines of chloroquine resistance in many countries following retirement of chloroquine as a first-line therapy. Our observations support a key role for within-host competition in the evolution of drug-resistant malaria. Malaria control and resistance-management efforts in high-transmission regions may be significantly aided or hindered by the effects of competition in mixed-strain infections. Consideration of within-host dynamics may spur development of novel strategies to minimize resistance while maximizing the benefits of control measures.

  20. The Plasmodium PHIST and RESA-Like Protein Families of Human and Rodent Malaria Parasites.

    PubMed

    Moreira, Cristina K; Naissant, Bernina; Coppi, Alida; Bennett, Brandy L; Aime, Elena; Franke-Fayard, Blandine; Janse, Chris J; Coppens, Isabelle; Sinnis, Photini; Templeton, Thomas J

    2016-01-01

    The phist gene family has members identified across the Plasmodium genus, defined by the presence of a domain of roughly 150 amino acids having conserved aromatic residues and an all alpha-helical structure. The family is highly amplified in P. falciparum, with 65 predicted genes in the genome of the 3D7 isolate. In contrast, in the rodent malaria parasite P. berghei 3 genes are identified, one of which is an apparent pseudogene. Transcripts of the P. berghei phist genes are predominant in schizonts, whereas in P. falciparum transcript profiles span different asexual blood stages and gametocytes. We pursued targeted disruption of P. berghei phist genes in order to characterize a simplistic model for the expanded phist gene repertoire in P. falciparum. Unsuccessful attempts to disrupt P. berghei PBANKA_114540 suggest that this phist gene is essential, while knockout of phist PBANKA_122900 shows an apparent normal progression and non-essential function throughout the life cycle. Epitope-tagging of P. falciparum and P. berghei phist genes confirmed protein export to the erythrocyte cytoplasm and localization with a punctate pattern. Three P. berghei PEXEL/HT-positive exported proteins exhibit at least partial co-localization, in support of a common vesicular compartment in the cytoplasm of erythrocytes infected with rodent malaria parasites.

  1. DEAD/DExH-Box RNA Helicases in Selected Human Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Marchat, Laurence A.; Arzola-Rodríguez, Silvia I.; Hernandez-de la Cruz, Olga; Lopez-Rosas, Itzel; Lopez-Camarillo, Cesar

    2015-01-01

    DEAD/DExH-box RNA helicases catalyze the folding and remodeling of RNA molecules in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, as well as in many viruses. They are characterized by the presence of the helicase domain with conserved motifs that are essential for ATP binding and hydrolysis, RNA interaction, and unwinding activities. Large families of DEAD/DExH-box proteins have been described in different organisms, and their role in all molecular processes involving RNA, from transcriptional regulation to mRNA decay, have been described. This review aims to summarize the current knowledge about DEAD/DExH-box proteins in selected protozoan and nematode parasites of medical importance worldwide, such as Plasmodium falciparum, Leishmania spp., Trypanosoma spp., Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica, and Brugia malayi. We discuss the functional characterization of several proteins in an attempt to understand better the molecular mechanisms involving RNA in these pathogens. The current data also highlight that DEAD/DExH-box RNA helicases might represent feasible drug targets due to their vital role in parasite growth and development. PMID:26537038

  2. Within-host competition and drug resistance in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Bushman, Mary; Morton, Lindsay; Duah, Nancy; Quashie, Neils; Abuaku, Benjamin; Koram, Kwadwo A; Dimbu, Pedro Rafael; Plucinski, Mateusz; Gutman, Julie; Lyaruu, Peter; Kachur, S Patrick; de Roode, Jacobus C; Udhayakumar, Venkatachalam

    2016-03-16

    Infections with the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum typically comprise multiple strains, especially in high-transmission areas where infectious mosquito bites occur frequently. However, little is known about the dynamics of mixed-strain infections, particularly whether strains sharing a host compete or grow independently. Competition between drug-sensitive and drug-resistant strains, if it occurs, could be a crucial determinant of the spread of resistance. We analysed 1341 P. falciparum infections in children from Angola, Ghana and Tanzania and found compelling evidence for competition in mixed-strain infections: overall parasite density did not increase with additional strains, and densities of individual chloroquine-sensitive (CQS) and chloroquine-resistant (CQR) strains were reduced in the presence of competitors. We also found that CQR strains exhibited low densities compared with CQS strains (in the absence of chloroquine), which may underlie observed declines of chloroquine resistance in many countries following retirement of chloroquine as a first-line therapy. Our observations support a key role for within-host competition in the evolution of drug-resistant malaria. Malaria control and resistance-management efforts in high-transmission regions may be significantly aided or hindered by the effects of competition in mixed-strain infections. Consideration of within-host dynamics may spur development of novel strategies to minimize resistance while maximizing the benefits of control measures. PMID:26984625

  3. Repeated Schistosoma japonicum Infection Following Treatment in Two Cohorts: Evidence for Host Susceptibility to Helminthiasis?

    PubMed Central

    Carlton, Elizabeth J.; Hubbard, Alan; Wang, Shuo; Spear, Robert C.

    2013-01-01

    Background In light of multinational efforts to reduce helminthiasis, we evaluated whether there exist high-risk subpopulations for helminth infection. Such individuals are not only at risk of morbidity, but may be important parasite reservoirs and appropriate targets for disease control interventions. Methods/Principal Findings We followed two longitudinal cohorts in Sichuan, China to determine whether there exist persistent human reservoirs for the water-borne helminth, Schistosoma japonicum, in areas where treatment is ongoing. Participants were tested for S. japonicum infection at enrollment and two follow-up points. All infections were promptly treated with praziquantel. We estimated the ratio of the observed to expected proportion of the population with two consecutive infections at follow-up. The expected proportion was estimated using a prevalence-based model and, as highly exposed individuals may be most likely to be repeatedly infected, a second model that accounted for exposure using a data adaptive, machine learning algorithm. Using the prevalence-based model, there were 1.5 and 5.8 times more individuals with two consecutive infections than expected in cohorts 1 and 2, respectively (p<0.001 in both cohorts). When we accounted for exposure, the ratio was 1.3 (p = 0.013) and 2.1 (p<0.001) in cohorts 1 and 2, respectively. Conclusions/Significance We found clustering of infections within a limited number of hosts that was not fully explained by host exposure. This suggests some hosts may be particularly susceptible to S. japonicum infection, or that uncured infections persist despite treatment. We propose an explanatory model that suggests that as cercarial exposure declines, so too does the size of the vulnerable subpopulation. In low-prevalence settings, interventions targeting individuals with a history of S. japonicum infection may efficiently advance disease control efforts. PMID:23505589

  4. Biomphalaria glabrata peroxiredoxin: effect of Schistosoma mansoni infection on differential gene regulation

    PubMed Central

    Knight, Matty; Raghavan, Nithya; Goodall, Cheri; Cousin, Carolyn; Ittiprasert, Wannaporn; Sayed, Ahmed; Miller, Andre; Williams, David L; Bayne, Christopher J

    2009-01-01

    To identify gene(s) that may be associated with resistance/susceptibility in the intermediate snail host Biomphalaria glabrata to Schistosoma mansoni infection, a snail albumen gland cDNA library was differentially screened and a partial cDNA encoding an antioxidant enzyme thioredoxin peroxidase (Tpx), or peroxiredoxin (Prx), was identified. The 753 bp full-length, single-copy, constitutively expressed gene now referred to as BgPrx4 was later isolated. BgPrx4 is a 2-Cys peroxiredoxin containing the conserved peroxidatic cysteine (CP) in the N-terminus and the resolving cysteine (CR) in the C-terminus. Sequence analysis of BgPrx4 from both resistant and susceptible snails revealed the presence of several (at least 7) Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs). Phylogenetic analysis indicated BgPrx4 to resemble a homolog of human peroxiredoxin, PRDX4. Northern analysis of hepatopancreas RNA from both resistant and susceptible snails showed that upon parasite exposure there were qualitative changes in gene expression. Quantitative real-time RT-PCR analysis showed differences in the levels of BgPrx4 transcript induction following infection, with the transcript up-regulated in resistant snails during the early phase (5 h) of infection compared to susceptible snails in which it was down-regulated within the early time period. While there was an increase in transcription in susceptible snails later (48 h) post- infection, this never reached the levels detected in resistant snails. A similar trend - higher, earlier up-regulation in the resistant snails but lower, slower protein expression in susceptible snails - was observed by Western blot analysis. Enzymatic analysis of the purified, recombinant BgPrx4 revealed the snail sequence to function as Prx but with an unusual ability to use both thioredoxin and glutathione as substrates. PMID:19439374

  5. Quantitative High-Throughput Screen Identifies Inhibitors of the Schistosoma mansoni Redox Cascade

    PubMed Central

    Simeonov, Anton; Jadhav, Ajit; Sayed, Ahmed A.; Wang, Yuhong; Nelson, Michael E.; Thomas, Craig J.; Inglese, James; Williams, David L.; Austin, Christopher P.

    2008-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a tropical disease associated with high morbidity and mortality, currently affecting over 200 million people worldwide. Praziquantel is the only drug used to treat the disease, and with its increased use the probability of developing drug resistance has grown significantly. The Schistosoma parasites can survive for up to decades in the human host due in part to a unique set of antioxidant enzymes that continuously degrade the reactive oxygen species produced by the host's innate immune response. Two principal components of this defense system have been recently identified in S. mansoni as thioredoxin/glutathione reductase (TGR) and peroxiredoxin (Prx) and as such these enzymes present attractive new targets for anti-schistosomiasis drug development. Inhibition of TGR/Prx activity was screened in a dual-enzyme format with reducing equivalents being transferred from NADPH to glutathione via a TGR-catalyzed reaction and then to hydrogen peroxide via a Prx-catalyzed step. A fully automated quantitative high-throughput (qHTS) experiment was performed against a collection of 71,028 compounds tested as 7- to 15-point concentration series at 5 µL reaction volume in 1536-well plate format. In order to generate a robust data set and to minimize the effect of compound autofluorescence, apparent reaction rates derived from a kinetic read were utilized instead of end-point measurements. Actives identified from the screen, along with previously untested analogues, were subjected to confirmatory experiments using the screening assay and subsequently against the individual targets in secondary assays. Several novel active series were identified which inhibited TGR at a range of potencies, with IC50s ranging from micromolar to the assay response limit (∼25 nM). This is, to our knowledge, the first report of a large-scale HTS to identify lead compounds for a helminthic disease, and provides a paradigm that can be used to jump-start development of novel

  6. Synergy of Omeprazole and Praziquantel In Vitro Treatment against Schistosoma mansoni Adult Worms

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Leticia; Venancio, Thiago M.; Nakaya, Helder I.; Miyasato, Patrícia A.; Rofatto, Henrique K.; Zerlotini, Adhemar; Nakano, Eliana; Oliveira, Guilherme; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    Background Treatment and morbidity control of schistosomiasis relies on a single drug, praziquantel (PZQ), and the selection of resistant worms under repeated treatment is a concern. Therefore, there is a pressing need to understand the molecular effects of PZQ on schistosomes and to investigate alternative or synergistic drugs against schistosomiasis. Methodology We used a custom-designed Schistosoma mansoni expression microarray to explore the effects of sublethal doses of PZQ on large-scale gene expression of adult paired males and females and unpaired mature females. We also assessed the efficacy of PZQ, omeprazole (OMP) or their combination against S. mansoni adult worms with a survival in vitro assay. Principal Findings We identified sets of genes that were affected by PZQ in paired and unpaired mature females, however with opposite gene expression patterns (up-regulated in paired and down-regulated in unpaired mature females), indicating that PZQ effects are heavily influenced by the mating status. We also identified genes that were similarly affected by PZQ in males and females. Functional analyses of gene interaction networks were performed with parasite genes that were differentially expressed upon PZQ treatment, searching for proteins encoded by these genes whose human homologs are targets of different drugs used for other diseases. Based on these results, OMP, a widely prescribed proton pump inhibitor known to target the ATP1A2 gene product, was chosen and tested. Sublethal doses of PZQ combined with OMP significantly increased worm mortality in vitro when compared with PZQ or OMP alone, thus evidencing a synergistic effect. Conclusions Functional analysis of gene interaction networks is an important approach that can point to possible novel synergistic drug candidates. We demonstrated the potential of this strategy by showing that PZQ in combination with OMP displayed increased efficiency against S. mansoni adult worms in vitro when compared with

  7. Serine protease inhibitors of parasitic helminths.

    PubMed

    Molehin, Adebayo J; Gobert, Geoffrey N; McManus, Donald P

    2012-05-01

    Serine protease inhibitors (serpins) are a superfamily of structurally conserved proteins that inhibit serine proteases and play key physiological roles in numerous biological systems such as blood coagulation, complement activation and inflammation. A number of serpins have now been identified in parasitic helminths with putative involvement in immune regulation and in parasite survival through interference with the host immune response. This review describes the serpins and smapins (small serine protease inhibitors) that have been identified in Ascaris spp., Brugia malayi, Ancylostoma caninum Onchocerca volvulus, Haemonchus contortus, Trichinella spiralis, Trichostrongylus vitrinus, Anisakis simplex, Trichuris suis, Schistosoma spp., Clonorchis sinensis, Paragonimus westermani and Echinococcus spp. and discusses their possible biological functions, including roles in host-parasite interplay and their evolutionary relationships. PMID:22310379

  8. Cultivation of a human-associated TM7 phylotype reveals a reduced genome and epibiotic parasitic lifestyle

    PubMed Central

    He, Xuesong; McLean, Jeffrey S.; Edlund, Anna; Yooseph, Shibu; Hall, Adam P.; Liu, Su-Yang; Dorrestein, Pieter C.; Esquenazi, Eduardo; Hunter, Ryan C.; Cheng, Genhong; Nelson, Karen E.; Lux, Renate; Shi, Wenyuan

    2015-01-01

    The candidate phylum TM7 is globally distributed and often associated with human inflammatory mucosal diseases. Despite its prevalence, the TM7 phylum remains recalcitrant to cultivation, making it one of the most enigmatic phyla known. In this study, we cultivated a TM7 phylotype (TM7x) from the human oral cavity. This extremely small coccus (200–300 nm) has a distinctive lifestyle not previously observed in human-associated microbes. It is an obligate epibiont of an Actinomyces odontolyticus strain (XH001) yet also has a parasitic phase, thereby killing its host. This first completed genome (705 kb) for a human-associated TM7 phylotype revealed a complete lack of amino acid biosynthetic capacity. Comparative genomics analyses with uncultivated environmental TM7 assemblies show remarkable conserved gene synteny and only minimal gene loss/gain that may have occurred as TM7x adapted to conditions within the human host. Transcriptomic and metabolomic profiles provided the first indications, to our knowledge, that there is signaling interaction between TM7x and XH001. Furthermore, the induction of TNF-α production in macrophages by XH001 was repressed in the presence of TM7x, suggesting its potential immune suppression ability. Overall, our data provide intriguing insights into the uncultivability, pathogenicity, and unique lifestyle of this previously uncharacterized oral TM7 phylotype. PMID:25535390

  9. Cultivation of a human-associated TM7 phylotype reveals a reduced genome and epibiotic parasitic lifestyle.

    PubMed

    He, Xuesong; McLean, Jeffrey S; Edlund, Anna; Yooseph, Shibu; Hall, Adam P; Liu, Su-Yang; Dorrestein, Pieter C; Esquenazi, Eduardo; Hunter, Ryan C; Cheng, Genhong; Nelson, Karen E; Lux, Renate; Shi, Wenyuan

    2015-01-01

    The candidate phylum TM7 is globally distributed and often associated with human inflammatory mucosal diseases. Despite its prevalence, the TM7 phylum remains recalcitrant to cultivation, making it one of the most enigmatic phyla known. In this study, we cultivated a TM7 phylotype (TM7x) from the human oral cavity. This extremely small coccus (200-300 nm) has a distinctive lifestyle not previously observed in human-associated microbes. It is an obligate epibiont of an Actinomyces odontolyticus strain (XH001) yet also has a parasitic phase, thereby killing its host. This first completed genome (705 kb) for a human-associated TM7 phylotype revealed a complete lack of amino acid biosynthetic capacity. Comparative genomics analyses with uncultivated environmental TM7 assemblies show remarkable conserved gene synteny and only minimal gene loss/gain that may have occurred as TM7x adapted to conditions within the human host. Transcriptomic and metabolomic profiles provided the first indications, to our knowledge, that there is signaling interaction between TM7x and XH001. Furthermore, the induction of TNF-α production in macrophages by XH001 was repressed in the presence of TM7x, suggesting its potential immune suppression ability. Overall, our data provide intriguing insights into the uncultivability, pathogenicity, and unique lifestyle of this previously uncharacterized oral TM7 phylotype.

  10. Parasites: Water

    MedlinePlus

    ... Tropical Diseases Laboratory Diagnostic Assistance [DPDx] Parasites Home Water Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Parasites can live in natural water sources. When outdoors, treat your water before drinking ...

  11. Genome sequences of the human body louse and its primary endosymbiont provide insights into the permanent parasitic lifestyle.

    PubMed

    Kirkness, Ewen F; Haas, Brian J; Sun, Weilin; Braig, Henk R; Perotti, M Alejandra; Clark, John M; Lee, Si Hyeock; Robertson, Hugh M; Kennedy, Ryan C; Elhaik, Eran; Gerlach, Daniel; Kriventseva, Evgenia V; Elsik, Christine G; Graur, Dan; Hill, Catherine A; Veenstra, Jan A; Walenz, Brian; Tubío, José Manuel C; Ribeiro, José M C; Rozas, Julio; Johnston, J Spencer; Reese, Justin T; Popadic, Aleksandar; Tojo, Marta; Raoult, Didier; Reed, David L; Tomoyasu, Yoshinori; Kraus, Emily; Krause, Emily; Mittapalli, Omprakash; Margam, Venu M; Li, Hong-Mei; Meyer, Jason M; Johnson, Reed M; Romero-Severson, Jeanne; Vanzee, Janice Pagel; Alvarez-Ponce, David; Vieira, Filipe G; Aguadé, Montserrat; Guirao-Rico, Sara; Anzola, Juan M; Yoon, Kyong S; Strycharz, Joseph P; Unger, Maria F; Christley, Scott; Lobo, Neil F; Seufferheld, Manfredo J; Wang, Naikuan; Dasch, Gregory A; Struchiner, Claudio J; Madey, Greg; Hannick, Linda I; Bidwell, Shelby; Joardar, Vinita; Caler, Elisabet; Shao, Renfu; Barker, Stephen C; Cameron, Stephen; Bruggner, Robert V; Regier, Allison; Johnson, Justin; Viswanathan, Lakshmi; Utterback, Terry R; Sutton, Granger G; Lawson, Daniel; Waterhouse, Robert M; Venter, J Craig; Strausberg, Robert L; Berenbaum, May R; Collins, Frank H; Zdobnov, Evgeny M; Pittendrigh, Barry R

    2010-07-01

    As an obligatory parasite of humans, the body louse (Pediculus humanus humanus) is an important vector for human diseases, including epidemic typhus, relapsing fever, and trench fever. Here, we present genome sequences of the body louse and its primary bacterial endosymbiont Candidatus Riesia pediculicola. The body louse has the smallest known insect genome, spanning 108 Mb. Despite its status as an obligate parasite, it retains a remarkably complete basal insect repertoire of 10,773 protein-coding genes and 57 microRNAs. Representing hemimetabolous insects, the genome of the body louse thus provides a reference for studies of holometabolous insects. Compared with other insect genomes, the body louse genome contains significantly fewer genes associated with environmental sensing and response, including odorant and gustatory receptors and detoxifying enzymes. The unique architecture of the 18 minicircular mitochondrial chromosomes of the body louse may be linked to the loss of the gene encoding the mitochondrial single-stranded DNA binding protein. The genome of the obligatory louse endosymbiont Candidatus Riesia pediculicola encodes less than 600 genes on a short, linear chromosome and a circular plasmid. The plasmid harbors a unique arrangement of genes required for the synthesis of pantothenate, an essential vitamin deficient in the louse diet. The human body louse, its primary endosymbiont, and the bacterial pathogens that it vectors all possess genomes reduced in size compared with their free-living close relatives. Thus, the body louse genome project offers unique information and tools to use in advancing understanding of coevolution among vectors, symbionts, and pathogens.

  12. Hidden Plasmodium falciparum parasites in human infections: different genotype distribution in the peripheral circulation and in the placenta.

    PubMed

    Schleiermacher, Dietlind; Le Hesran, Jean-Yves; Ndiaye, Jean-Louis; Perraut, Ronald; Gaye, Alioune; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile

    2002-12-01

    Sequestration of the mature Plasmodium falciparum forms complicates detection, quantification and molecular analysis of human infections. Whether the circulating parasites represent all or only a subset of co-infecting genotypes is unclear. We have investigated this issue and compared placenta and peripheral blood msp1 and msp2 genotypes in 58 women delivering with an ICT-positive placenta in Guediawaye, Senegal. Most placenta (91%) and blood samples (98%) were multiply infected. Multiplicity of infection was positively correlated in both tissues. However, the placental and circulating genotype profiles differed markedly. Only 10% of matched peripheral blood/placenta samples had identical genotypes, whereas 74% had only partially concordant genotypes, with some alleles detected in both tissues, together with additional allele(s) detected in one tissue only. Eight women (14%) had totally discordant placental and peripheral blood genotypes. Thus, in the vast majority of cases, some sequestered genotypes remain hidden, undetected in the peripheral circulation, indicating that analysis of peripheral parasites generates a partial picture of a P. falciparum infection.

  13. Human Immunodeficiency Virus Co-Infection Increases Placental Parasite Density and Transplacental Malaria Transmission in Western Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Perrault, Steven D.; Hajek, Jan; Zhong, Kathleen; Owino, Simon O.; Sichangi, Moses; Smith, Geoffrey; Shi, Ya Ping; Moore, Julie M.; Kain, Kevin C.

    2009-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum malaria and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-1 adversely interact in the context of pregnancy, however little is known regarding the influence of co-infection on the risk of congenital malaria. We aimed to determine the prevalence of placental and congenital malaria and impact of HIV co-infection on transplacental malaria transmission in 157 parturient women and their infants by microscopy and by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in western Kenya. The prevalence of placental and cord blood infections were 17.2% and 0% by microscopy, and 33.1% and 10.8% by PCR. HIV co-infection w as associated with a significant increase in placental parasite density (P < 0.05). Cord blood malaria prevalence was increased in co-infected women (odds ratio [OR] = 5.42; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.90–15.47) and correlated with placental parasite density (OR = 2.57; 95% CI = 1.80–3.67). A 1-log increase in placental monocyte count was associated with increased risk of congenital infection (P = 0.001) (OR = 48.15; 95% CI = 4.59–505.50). The HIV co-infected women have a significantly increased burden of placental malaria that increases the risk of congenital infection. PMID:19141849

  14. Crystallization and preliminary crystallographic analysis of orotidine 5′-monophosphate decarboxylase from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    SciTech Connect

    Krungkrai, Sudaratana R.; Tokuoka, Keiji; Kusakari, Yukiko; Inoue, Tsuyoshi; Adachi, Hiroaki; Matsumura, Hiroyoshi; Takano, Kazufumi; Murakami, Satoshi; Mori, Yusuke; Kai, Yasushi; Krungkrai, Jerapan; Horii, Toshihiro

    2006-06-01

    Orotidine 5′-monophosphate decarboxylase of human malaria parasite P. falciparum was crystallized by the seeding method in a hanging drop using PEG 3000 as a precipitant. A complete set of diffraction data from a native crystal was collected to 2.7 Å resolution at 100 K using synchrotron radiation. Orotidine 5′-monophosphate (OMP) decarboxylase (OMPDC; EC 4.1.1.23) catalyzes the final step in the de novo synthesis of uridine 5′-monophosphate (UMP) and defects in the enzyme are lethal in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Active recombinant P. falciparum OMPDC (PfOMPDC) was crystallized by the seeding method in a hanging drop using PEG 3000 as a precipitant. A complete set of diffraction data from a native crystal was collected to 2.7 Å resolution at 100 K using synchrotron radiation at the Swiss Light Source. The crystal exhibits trigonal symmetry (space group R3), with hexagonal unit-cell parameters a = b = 201.81, c = 44.03 Å. With a dimer in the asymmetric unit, the solvent content is 46% (V{sub M} = 2.3 Å{sup 3} Da{sup −1})

  15. The Streamlined Genome of Phytomonas spp. Relative to Human Pathogenic Kinetoplastids Reveals a Parasite Tailored for Plants

    PubMed Central

    Porcel, Betina M.; Denoeud, France; Opperdoes, Fred; Noel, Benjamin; Madoui, Mohammed-Amine; Hammarton, Tansy C.; Field, Mark C.; Da Silva, Corinne; Couloux, Arnaud; Poulain, Julie; Katinka, Michael; Jabbari, Kamel; Aury, Jean-Marc; Campbell, David A.; Cintron, Roxana; Dickens, Nicholas J.; Docampo, Roberto; Sturm, Nancy R.; Koumandou, V. Lila; Fabre, Sandrine; Flegontov, Pavel; Lukeš, Julius; Michaeli, Shulamit; Mottram, Jeremy C.; Szöőr, Balázs; Zilberstein, Dan; Bringaud, Frédéric; Wincker, Patrick; Dollet, Michel

    2014-01-01

    Members of the family Trypanosomatidae infect many organisms, including animals, plants and humans. Plant-infecting trypanosomes are grouped under the single genus Phytomonas, failing to reflect the wide biological and pathological diversity of these protists. While some Phytomonas spp. multiply in the latex of plants, or in fruit or seeds without apparent pathogenicity, others colonize the phloem sap and afflict plants of substantial economic value, including the coffee tree, coconut and oil palms. Plant trypanosomes have not been studied extensively at the genome level, a major gap in understanding and controlling pathogenesis. We describe the genome sequences of two plant trypanosomatids, one pathogenic isolate from a Guianan coconut and one non-symptomatic isolate from Euphorbia collected in France. Although these parasites have extremely distinct pathogenic impacts, very few genes are unique to either, with the vast majority of genes shared by both isolates. Significantly, both Phytomonas spp. genomes consist essentially of single copy genes for the bulk of their metabolic enzymes, whereas other trypanosomatids e.g. Leishmania and Trypanosoma possess multiple paralogous genes or families. Indeed, comparison with other trypanosomatid genomes revealed a highly streamlined genome, encoding for a minimized metabolic system while conserving the major pathways, and with retention of a full complement of endomembrane organelles, but with no evidence for functional complexity. Identification of the metabolic genes of Phytomonas provides opportunities for establishing in vitro culturing of these fastidious parasites and new tools for the control of agricultural plant disease. PMID:24516393

  16. Stable transfection of the human parasite Leishmania major delineates a 30-kilobase region sufficient for extrachromosomal replication and expression.

    PubMed Central

    Kapler, G M; Coburn, C M; Beverley, S M

    1990-01-01

    To delineate segments of the genome of the human protozoan parasite Leishmania major necessary for replication and expression, we developed a vector (pR-NEO) which can be reproducibly introduced into L. major. This DNA was derived from a 30-kilobase extrachromosomal amplified DNA bearing the dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase gene, with the coding region for neomycin phosphotransferase substituted for that of dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase and a bacterial origin of replication and selectable marker added. G418-resistant lines were obtained at high efficiency by electroporation of pR-NEO (approaching 10(-4) per cell), while constructs bearing an inverted neo gene or lacking Leishmania sequences did not confer resistance. pR-NEO replicated in L. major and gave rise to correctly processed transcripts bearing the trans-spliced miniexon. Molecular karyotype analysis showed that in some lines pR-NEO DNA exists exclusively as an extrachromosomal circle, a finding supported by the rescue of intact pR-NEO after transformation of Escherichia coli. These data genetically localize all elements required in cis for DNA replication, transcription, and trans splicing to the Leishmania DNA contained within pR-NEO DNA and signal the advent of stable transfection methodology for addressing molecular phenomena in trypanosomatid parasites. Images PMID:2304458

  17. The streamlined genome of Phytomonas spp. relative to human pathogenic kinetoplastids reveals a parasite tailored for plants.

    PubMed

    Porcel, Betina M; Denoeud, France; Opperdoes, Fred; Noel, Benjamin; Madoui, Mohammed-Amine; Hammarton, Tansy C; Field, Mark C; Da Silva, Corinne; Couloux, Arnaud; Poulain, Julie; Katinka, Michael; Jabbari, Kamel; Aury, Jean-Marc; Campbell, David A; Cintron, Roxana; Dickens, Nicholas J; Docampo, Roberto; Sturm, Nancy R; Koumandou, V Lila; Fabre, Sandrine; Flegontov, Pavel; Lukeš, Julius; Michaeli, Shulamit; Mottram, Jeremy C; Szöőr, Balázs; Zilberstein, Dan; Bringaud, Frédéric; Wincker, Patrick; Dollet, Michel

    2014-02-01

    Members of the family Trypanosomatidae infect many organisms, including animals, plants and humans. Plant-infecting trypanosomes are grouped under the single genus Phytomonas, failing to reflect the wide biological and pathological diversity of these protists. While some Phytomonas spp. multiply in the latex of plants, or in fruit or seeds without apparent pathogenicity, others colonize the phloem sap and afflict plants of substantial economic value, including the coffee tree, coconut and oil palms. Plant trypanosomes have not been studied extensively at the genome level, a major gap in understanding and controlling pathogenesis. We describe the genome sequences of two plant trypanosomatids, one pathogenic isolate from a Guianan coconut and one non-symptomatic isolate from Euphorbia collected in France. Although these parasites have extremely distinct pathogenic impacts, very few genes are unique to either, with the vast majority of genes shared by both isolates. Significantly, both Phytomonas spp. genomes consist essentially of single copy genes for the bulk of their metabolic enzymes, whereas other trypanosomatids e.g. Leishmania and Trypanosoma possess multiple paralogous genes or families. Indeed, comparison with other trypanosomatid genomes revealed a highly streamlined genome, encoding for a minimized metabolic system while conserving the major pathways, and with retention of a full complement of endomembrane organelles, but with no evidence for functional complexity. Identification of the metabolic genes of Phytomonas provides opportunities for establishing in vitro culturing of these fastidious parasites and new tools for the control of agricultural plant disease.

  18. Structure-Bioactivity Relationship for Benzimidazole Thiophene Inhibitors of Polo-Like Kinase 1 (PLK1), a Potential Drug Target in Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Long, Thavy; Neitz, R. Jeffrey; Beasley, Rachel; Kalyanaraman, Chakrapani; Suzuki, Brian M.; Jacobson, Matthew P.; Dissous, Colette; McKerrow, James H.; Drewry, David H.; Zuercher, William J.; Singh, Rahul; Caffrey, Conor R.

    2016-01-01

    Background Schistosoma flatworm parasites cause schistosomiasis, a chronic and debilitating disease of poverty in developing countries. Praziquantel is employed for treatment and disease control. However, its efficacy spectrum is incomplete (less active or inactive against immature stages of the parasite) and there is a concern of drug resistance. Thus, there is a need to identify new drugs and drug targets. Methodology/Principal Findings We show that RNA interference (RNAi) of the Schistosoma mansoni ortholog of human polo-like kinase (huPLK)1 elicits a deleterious phenotypic alteration in post-infective larvae (schistosomula or somules). Phenotypic screening and analysis of schistosomula and adult S. mansoni with small molecule inhibitors of huPLK1 identified a number of potent anti-schistosomals. Among these was a GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) benzimidazole thiophene inhibitor that has completed Phase I clinical trials for treatment of solid tumor malignancies. We then obtained GSKs Published Kinase Inhibitor Sets (PKIS) 1 and 2, and phenotypically screened an expanded series of 38 benzimidazole thiophene PLK1 inhibitors. Computational analysis of controls and PLK1 inhibitor-treated populations of somules demonstrated a distinctive phenotype distribution. Using principal component analysis (PCA), the phenotypes exhibited by these populations were mapped, visualized and analyzed through projection to a low-dimensional space. The phenotype distribution was found to have a distinct shape and topology, which could be elicited using cluster analysis. A structure-activity relationship (SAR) was identified for the benzimidazole thiophenes that held for both somules and adult parasites. The most potent inhibitors produced marked phenotypic alterations at 1–2 μM within 1 h. Among these were compounds previously characterized as potent inhibitors of huPLK1 in cell assays. Conclusions/Significance The reverse genetic and chemical SAR data support a continued investigation of Sm

  19. Immunopathology of Schistosoma mansoni infection.

    PubMed Central

    Boros, D L

    1989-01-01

    Schistosomiasis mansoni is a chronic helminthic disease that affects about 100 million people in the tropics. The worms have a life span of 5 to 10 years, and they live in the mesenteric vei