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Sample records for human parasite schistosoma

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

    PubMed

    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

    2016-02-16

    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.

  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. Inbreeding within human Schistosoma mansoni: do host-specific factors shape the genetic composition of parasite populations?

    PubMed

    Van den Broeck, F; Meurs, L; Raeymaekers, J A M; Boon, N; Dieye, T N; Volckaert, F A M; Polman, K; Huyse, T

    2014-07-01

    The size, structure and distribution of host populations are key determinants of the genetic composition of parasite populations. Despite the evolutionary and epidemiological merits, there has been little consideration of how host heterogeneities affect the evolutionary trajectories of parasite populations. We assessed the genetic composition of natural populations of the parasite Schistosoma mansoni in northern Senegal. A total of 1346 parasites were collected from 14 snail and 57 human hosts within three villages and individually genotyped using nine microsatellite markers. Human host demographic parameters (age, gender and village of residence) and co-infection with Schistosoma haematobium were documented, and S. mansoni infection intensities were quantified. F-statistics and clustering analyses revealed a random distribution (panmixia) of parasite genetic variation among villages and hosts, confirming the concept of human hosts as 'genetic mixing bowls' for schistosomes. Host gender and village of residence did not show any association with parasite genetics. Host age, however, was significantly correlated with parasite inbreeding and heterozygosity, with children being more infected by related parasites than adults. The patterns may be explained by (1) genotype-dependent 'concomitant immunity' that leads to selective recruitment of genetically unrelated worms with host age, and/or (2) the 'genetic mixing bowl' hypothesis, where older hosts have been exposed to a wider variety of parasite strains than children. The present study suggests that host-specific factors may shape the genetic composition of schistosome populations, revealing important insights into host-parasite interactions within a natural system.

  4. Inbreeding within human Schistosoma mansoni: do host-specific factors shape the genetic composition of parasite populations?

    PubMed Central

    Van den Broeck, F; Meurs, L; Raeymaekers, J A M; Boon, N; Dieye, T N; Volckaert, F A M; Polman, K; Huyse, T

    2014-01-01

    The size, structure and distribution of host populations are key determinants of the genetic composition of parasite populations. Despite the evolutionary and epidemiological merits, there has been little consideration of how host heterogeneities affect the evolutionary trajectories of parasite populations. We assessed the genetic composition of natural populations of the parasite Schistosoma mansoni in northern Senegal. A total of 1346 parasites were collected from 14 snail and 57 human hosts within three villages and individually genotyped using nine microsatellite markers. Human host demographic parameters (age, gender and village of residence) and co-infection with Schistosoma haematobium were documented, and S. mansoni infection intensities were quantified. F-statistics and clustering analyses revealed a random distribution (panmixia) of parasite genetic variation among villages and hosts, confirming the concept of human hosts as ‘genetic mixing bowls' for schistosomes. Host gender and village of residence did not show any association with parasite genetics. Host age, however, was significantly correlated with parasite inbreeding and heterozygosity, with children being more infected by related parasites than adults. The patterns may be explained by (1) genotype-dependent ‘concomitant immunity' that leads to selective recruitment of genetically unrelated worms with host age, and/or (2) the ‘genetic mixing bowl' hypothesis, where older hosts have been exposed to a wider variety of parasite strains than children. The present study suggests that host-specific factors may shape the genetic composition of schistosome populations, revealing important insights into host–parasite interactions within a natural system. PMID:24619176

  5. 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

  6. Successful parasitism of vector snail Biomphalaria glabrata by the human blood fluke (trematode) Schistosoma mansoni: a 2009 assessment

    PubMed Central

    Bayne, Christopher J.

    2009-01-01

    Schistosomiasis, caused by infections by human blood flukes (Trematoda), continues to disrupt the lives of over 200,000,000 people in over 70 countries, inflicting misery and precluding the individuals’ otherwise reasonable expectations of productive lives. Infection requires contact with freshwater in which infected snails (the intermediate hosts of schistosomes) have released cercariae larvae. Habitats suitable for the host snails continue to expand as a consequence of water resource development. No vaccine is available, and the emergence and spread of resistance to the single licensed schistosomicide drug would be devastating. Since human infections would cease if parasite infections in snails were prevented, efforts are being made to discover requirements of intra-molluscan development of these parasites. Wherever blood flukes occur, naturally resistant conspecific snails are present. To understand the mechanisms used by parasites to ensure their survival in immunocompetent hosts, one must comprehend the internal defense mechanisms that are available to the host. For one intermediate host snail (Biomphalaria glabrata) and trematodes for which it serves as vector, molecular genetic and proteomic surveys for genes and proteins influencing the outcomes on infections are yielding lists of candidates. A comparative approach drawing on data from studies in divergent species provides a robust basis for hypothesis generation to drive decisions as to which candidates merit detailed further investigation. For example, reactive oxygen and nitrogen species are known mediators or effectors in battles between infectious agents and their hosts. An approach targeting genes involved in relevant pathways has been fruitful in the Schistosoma mansoni-B. glabrata parasitism, leading to discovery of a functionally relevant gene set (encoding enzymes responsible for the leukocyte respiratory burst) that associates significantly with host resistance phenotype. This review summarizes

  7. Curupira-1 and Curupira-2, two novel Mutator-like DNA transposons from the genomes of human parasites Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma japonicum.

    PubMed

    Jacinto, Daniele S; Muniz, Heloisa Dos Santos; Venancio, Thiago M; Wilson, R Alan; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio; Demarco, Ricardo

    2011-08-01

    Transposons of the Mutator superfamily have been widely described in plants, but only recently have metazoan organisms been shown to harbour them. In this work we describe novel Mutator superfamily transposons from the genomes of the human parasites Schistosoma mansoni and S. japonicum, which we name Curupira-1 and Curupira-2. Curupira elements do not have Terminal Inverted Repeats (TIRs) at their extremities and generate Target Site Duplications (TSDs) of 9 base pairs. Curupira-2 transposons code for a conserved transposase and SWIM zinc finger domains, while Curupira-1 elements comprise these same domains plus a WRKY zinc finger. Alignment of transcript sequences from both elements back to the genomes indicates that they are subject to splicing to produce mature transcripts. Phylogenetic analyses indicate that these transposons represent a new lineage of metazoan Mutator-like elements with characteristics that are distinct from the recently described Phantom elements. Description of these novel schistosome transposons provides new insights in the evolution of transposable elements in schistosomes.

  8. Isolation of cDNA clones for differentially expressed genes of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed Central

    Davis, A H; Blanton, R; Rottman, F; Maurer, R; Mahmoud, A

    1986-01-01

    Little is known about the mechanisms that control transformations during the life cycle of Schistosoma mansoni. To enable isolation of DNA sequences encoding developmentally regulated antigens a cDNA expression library in the vector lambda gt11 amp3 was constructed from adult mRNA and immunologically screened with sera from infected individuals. We report here on the properties of three recombinant clones that derive from developmentally regulated genes. Clone 10-3 encoded a beta-galactosidase fusion protein present in high abundance in infected Escherichia coli. Clones 7-2 and 8-2 also produced immunologically recognized proteins; however, the peptides did not appear to be beta-galactosidase fusion proteins. The expression of mRNAs hybridizing to these cDNAs was examined in the different stages of the parasite life cycle. Messenger RNA corresponding to clone 10-3, approximately equal to 1000 bases in length, was present in higher abundance in male worms than in females but was not detected in schistosome eggs. A 900-base mRNA hybridizing to clone 7-2 was observed in adult worms and eggs. Both clone 10-3 and clone 7-2 hybridized to smaller mRNAs in cercariae and freshly transformed schistosomula than in adult worms. Clone 8-2 contained tandem cDNA inserts. One cDNA hybridized to a 1700-base mRNA present in all stages, while the second hybridized to an 800-base mRNA specific to adult female worms. Images PMID:3461448

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Human lipoprotein binding to schistosomula of schistosoma mansoni. Displacement by polyanions, parasite antigen masking, and persistence in young larvae.

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, C. P.; Caulfield, J. P.

    1989-01-01

    It was previously shown by the authors that the binding of human low-density lipoprotein (LDL) to the surface of schistosomula inhibits the binding of human anti-schistosomal antibodies and is inhibited by suramin. Here, three questions were considered. 1) Are LDLs bound to schistosomula displaced from the membrane by polyanions? 2) Does bound LDL mask or hide antigens recognized by human anti-schistosomal antibodies? 3) Is LDL, binding capability present when the larvae enter the blood stream? The first question was tested by measuring the percentage of the schistosomular surface membrane covered by LDL after exposure to LDL with or without dextran sulfate or suramin. The bound LDL was visualized with polyclonal goat anti-human apolipoprotein B (anti-apo B) antibodies and peroxidase-conjugated secondary antibodies. After overnight culture in 20 micrograms/300 microliters LDL, 84.0% +/- 0.3% of the parasite surface was covered by LDL reaction product. When the polyanions suramin or dextran sulfate were added to the cultures for 30 minutes, only 59.7% +/- 4.9% of the surface was covered by reaction product, demonstrating that the LDL was partially displaced from the membrane by these compounds. The second question was tested by measuring the binding of human and mouse monoclonal anti-schistosomal antibodies before and after exposure to LDL, with or without partial removal of the bound LDL by suramin. LDL partially inhibited antibody binding in a reversible fashion. The LDL clearly masked parasite antigens, most probably by steric hindrance. However, there may be competitive inhibition of antibody binding by the LDL as well, because human anti-schistosomal antibodies inhibited LDL binding to worms and both human anti-schistosomal antibody and LDL binding to schistosomula were inhibited by suramin. Finally, the third question was tested by quantitative immunofluorescence. The LDL binding capability persisted and nearly doubled by 72 hours after transformation from

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. In vitro cultivation of Schistosoma japonicum-parasites and cells.

    PubMed

    Ye, Qing; Dong, Hui-Fen; Grevelding, Christoph G; Hu, Min

    2013-12-01

    Schistosomiasis is a serious parasitic zoonosis caused by blood-dwelling flukes of the genus Schistosoma. Understanding functions of genes and proteins of this parasite is important for uncovering this pathogen's complex biology, which will provide valuable information to design new strategies for schistosomiasis control. Effective applications of molecular tools reported to investigate schistosome gene function, such as inhibitor studies and transgenesis, rely on the developments of in vitro cultivation system of this parasite and cells. Besides the in vitro culture studies dealing with Schistosoma mansoni, there are also numerous excellent studies about the in vitro cultivation of Schistosoma japonicum, which were performed by Chinese researchers and published in Chinese journals. Nearly every stage of the life-cycle of S. japonicum, including miracidia, mother sporocysts, cercariae, schistosomula, and egg-laying adult worms, was employed for developing in vitro cultivation methods, being accompanied by the introduction of several media and supplements that helped to improve culture conditions. It was not only possible to generate mother sporocysts from miracidia in vitro, but also to obtain adult worms from cercariae through in vitro cultivation. The main obstacles to complete the life cycle of S. japonicum in the lab are the transition from mother sporocysts to cercariae, and the production of fertilized and completely developed eggs by adult worms generated in vitro. With regard to cells from S. japonicum, besides established isolation protocols and morphological observations, media optimizations were conducted by using different chemical reagents, biological supplements and physical treatment. Among these, mutagens like N-methyl-N-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine and the addition of extracellular matrix were found to be able to induce mitogenic activities. Although enzyme activities or the level of silver-stained nucleolar region associated protein in cultured cells

  15. 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.

  16. Effect of clinically approved HDAC inhibitors on Plasmodium, Leishmania and Schistosoma parasite growth.

    PubMed

    Chua, Ming Jang; Arnold, Megan S J; Xu, Weijun; Lancelot, Julien; Lamotte, Suzanne; Späth, Gerald F; Prina, Eric; Pierce, Raymond J; Fairlie, David P; Skinner-Adams, Tina S; Andrews, Katherine T

    2017-04-01

    Malaria, schistosomiasis and leishmaniases are among the most prevalent tropical parasitic diseases and each requires new innovative treatments. Targeting essential parasite pathways, such as those that regulate gene expression and cell cycle progression, is a key strategy for discovering new drug leads. In this study, four clinically approved anti-cancer drugs (Vorinostat, Belinostat, Panobinostat and Romidepsin) that target histone/lysine deacetylase enzymes were examined for in vitro activity against Plasmodium knowlesi, Schistosoma mansoni, Leishmania amazonensis and L. donovani parasites and two for in vivo activity in a mouse malaria model. All four compounds were potent inhibitors of P. knowlesi malaria parasites (IC50 9-370 nM), with belinostat, panobinostat and vorinostat having 8-45 fold selectivity for the parasite over human neonatal foreskin fibroblast (NFF) or human embryonic kidney (HEK 293) cells, while romidepsin was not selective. Each of the HDAC inhibitor drugs caused hyperacetylation of P. knowlesi histone H4. None of the drugs was active against Leishmania amastigote or promastigote parasites (IC50 > 20 μM) or S. mansoni schistosomula (IC50 > 10 μM), however romidepsin inhibited S. mansoni adult worm parings and egg production (IC50 ∼10 μM). Modest in vivo activity was observed in P. berghei infected mice dosed orally with vorinostat or panobinostat (25 mg/kg twice daily for four days), with a significant reduction in parasitemia observed on days 4-7 and 4-10 after infection (P < 0.05), respectively.

  17. Metabonomic investigation of human Schistosoma mansoni infection.

    PubMed

    Balog, Crina I A; Meissner, Axel; Göraler, Sibel; Bladergroen, Marco R; Vennervald, Birgitte J; Mayboroda, Oleg A; Deelder, André M

    2011-05-01

    Schistosomiasis is a parasitic infection that is endemic in many developing countries in the tropics and subtropics afflicting more than 207 million people primarily in rural areas. After malaria, it is the second most important parasitic infection in terms of socio-economic and public health. Investigation of the host-parasite interaction at the molecular level and identification of biomarkers of infection and infection-related morbidity would be of value for improved strategies for treatment and morbidity control. To this end, we conducted a nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) based metabonomics study involving a well-characterized cohort of 447 individuals from a rural area in Uganda near Lake Victoria with a high prevalence of Schistosoma mansoni, a species predominantly occurring in Africa including Madagascar and parts of South America. Cohort samples were collected from individuals at five time-points, before and after (one or two times) chemotherapy with praziquantel (PZQ). Using supervised multivariate statistical analysis of the recorded one-dimensional (1D) NMR spectra, we were able to discriminate infected from uninfected individuals in two age groups (children and adults) based on differences in their urinary profiles. The potential molecular markers of S. mansoni infection were found to be primarily linked to changes in gut microflora, energy metabolism and liver function. These findings are in agreement with data from earlier studies on S. mansoni infection in experimental animals and thus provide corroborating evidence for the existence of metabolic response specific for this infection.

  18. Cercarial glycocalyx of Schistosoma mansoni activates human complement.

    PubMed Central

    Samuelson, J C; Caulfield, J P

    1986-01-01

    Human complement activation by cercariae and schistosomula of the human parasite Schistosoma mansoni was studied in vitro. Cercariae are composed of tails which are shed after infection of the host and bodies which transform into the larvae or schistosomula after infection. After incubation in fresh normal human serum (NHS), cercarial tails bound more anti-C3 antibodies than did cercarial bodies (CB), and the tails were rapidly lysed, while the attached CB remained intact. Complement activation by cercariae was dependent on the alternative pathway but was independent of antibody, as shown by C3 deposition by hypogammaglobulinemic human sera. By transmission microscopy, the fibrillar glycocalyx on both CB and tails was stained by NHS but not by heat-inactivated serum (HI-NHS). The glycocalyx was labeled with periodate and tritiated borohydride, and parasites were incubated in NHS and HI-NHS. After solubilization, the labeled glycocalyx on organisms incubated in NHS but not HI-NHS bound anti-C3 antibodies. Of the CB incubated with eserine sulfate to prevent transformation, 78% +/- 10% were dead after culture for 24 h in NHS. In contrast, 21% +/- 12% of the CB were dead after culture in HI-NHS. Schistosomula incubated in NHS bound 37% of the amount of anti-C3 antibodies bound by cercariae but were not killed by NHS. In conclusion, the cercarial glycocalyx activated human complement, and schistosomula were less susceptible to killing than cercariae because they had less glycocalyx and activated less complement. Images PMID:3940995

  19. Chemical Factors in Development and Transmission of Human Parasites.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    PARASITES, *PREVENTIVE MEDICINE, *BIOCIDES, *REPELLENTS, HORMONES, TABLES(DATA), SCHISTOSOMA MANSONI , BRAZIL, PARASITIC DISEASES, DISEASE VECTORS, INSECT REPELLENTS, CHAGAS DISEASE, TRYPANOSOMA CRUZI.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Urinary incontinence due to the presence of necrotic adult Schistosoma haematobium parasite in the bladder following travel to Egypt.

    PubMed

    Papoutsoglou, N; Tappe, D; Demmer, P; Kocot, A; Riedmiller, H

    2012-07-01

    A case of seronegative urinary Schistosomiasis is reported in a 68-year-old Caucasian male presenting with urgency of micturition and incontinence several months after bathing in a chlorinated pool of a first class hotel in Egypt. The symptoms were initiated by a necrotic adult Schistosoma haematobium parasite found in the urinary bladder following a cystoscopic examination. The purpose of this report is to describe this probable and uncommon source of Schistosomiasis, to demonstrate that Schistosoma parasites can also be found in the urinary bladder and to emphasize the importance of travel history.

  3. 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.

  4. Genomic linkage map of the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Criscione, Charles D; Valentim, Claudia LL; Hirai, Hirohisa; LoVerde, Philip T; Anderson, Timothy JC

    2009-01-01

    Background Schistosoma mansoni is a blood fluke that infects approximately 90 million people. The complete life cycle of this parasite can be maintained in the laboratory, making this one of the few experimentally tractable human helminth infections, and a rich literature reveals heritable variation in important biomedical traits such as virulence, host-specificity, transmission and drug resistance. However, there is a current lack of tools needed to study S. mansoni's molecular, quantitative, and population genetics. Our goal was to construct a genetic linkage map for S. mansoni, and thus provide a new resource that will help stimulate research on this neglected pathogen. Results We genotyped grandparents, parents and 88 progeny to construct a 5.6 cM linkage map containing 243 microsatellites positioned on 203 of the largest scaffolds in the genome sequence. The map allows 70% of the estimated 300 Mb genome to be ordered on chromosomes, and highlights where scaffolds have been incorrectly assembled. The markers fall into eight main linkage groups, consistent with seven pairs of autosomes and one pair of sex chromosomes, and we were able to anchor linkage groups to chromosomes using fluorescent in situ hybridization. The genome measures 1,228.6 cM. Marker segregation reveals higher female recombination, confirms ZW inheritance patterns, and identifies recombination hotspots and regions of segregation distortion. Conclusions The genetic linkage map presented here is the first for S. mansoni and the first for a species in the phylum Platyhelminthes. The map provides the critical tool necessary for quantitative genetic analysis, aids genome assembly, and furnishes a framework for comparative flatworm genomics and field-based molecular epidemiological studies. PMID:19566921

  5. 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.

  6. Structural parameters, molecular properties, and biological evaluation of some terpenes targeting Schistosoma mansoni parasite.

    PubMed

    Mafud, Ana C; Silva, Marcos P N; Monteiro, Daniela C; Oliveira, Maria F; Resende, João G; Coelho, Mayara L; de Sousa, Damião P; Mendonça, Ronaldo Z; Pinto, Pedro L S; Freitas, Rivelilson M; Mascarenhas, Yvonne P; de Moraes, Josué

    2016-01-25

    The use of natural products has a long tradition in medicine, and they have proven to be an important source of lead compounds in the development of new drugs. Among the natural compounds, terpenoids present broad-spectrum activity against infective agents such as viruses, bacteria, fungi, protozoan and helminth parasites. In this study, we report a biological screening of 38 chemically characterized terpenes from different classes, which have a hydroxyl group connected by hydrophobic chain or an acceptor site, against the blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni, the parasite responsible for schistosomiasis mansoni. In vitro bioassays revealed that 3,7-dimethyl-1-octanol (dihydrocitronellol) (10) was the most active terpene (IC50 values of 13-52 μM) and, thus, we investigated its antischistosomal activity in greater detail. Confocal laser scanning microscopy revealed that compound 10 induced severe tegumental damage in adult schistosomes and a correlation between viability and tegumental changes was observed. Furthermore, we compared all the inactive compounds with dihydrocitronellol structurally by using shape and charge modeling. Lipophilicity (miLogP) and other molecular properties (e.g. molecular polar surface area, molecular electrostatic potential) were also calculated. From the 38 terpenes studied, compound 10 is the one with the greatest flexibility, with a sufficient apolar region by which it may interact in a hydrophobic active site. In conclusion, the integration of biological and chemical analysis indicates the potential of the terpene dihydrocitronellol as an antiparasitic agent.

  7. 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.

  8. Non-human vertebrate hosts of Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Martins, A. Vianna

    1958-01-01

    The author reviews the results of experimental infections of various species of mammals, other than man, with S. haematobium and S. mansoni, and discusses investigations in Africa and Brazil into the possibility of the natural infection of non-human vertebrates with these two parasites. Only a few species, besides monkeys, could be easily infected with S. haematobium in the laboratory, while—outside man—natural infection with this parasite appears to be practically non-existent. On the other hand, many animals are good experimental hosts for S. mansoni, and at least 21 species of mammals have been found infected with this parasite in Africa and America. It is thus possible to state, provisionally, that man is the only reservoir of S. haematobium, but the question still remains open where S. mansoni is concerned. Further research is suggested in order to assess the importance of non-human reservoirs in the epidemiology of bilharziasis. PMID:13573118

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. Venus Kinase Receptors Control Reproduction in the Platyhelminth Parasite Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Cailliau, Katia; Morel, Marion; Hahnel, Steffen; Leutner, Silke; Beckmann, Svenja; Grevelding, Christoph G.; Dissous, Colette

    2014-01-01

    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

  12. Functional and antigenic similarities between a 94-kD protein of Schistosoma mansoni (SCIP-1) and human CD59

    PubMed Central

    1994-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a parasitic disease affecting approximately 200 million people, primarily in the third world. Schistosoma mansoni, one of the causative agents of this disease, parasitize the human mesenteric and portal blood systems while successfully evading host immune responses. During parasite penetration into the mammalian host and shortly afterwards, the larvae rapidly convert from being sensitive to being resistant to C-mediated killing. Treatment of the C-resistant parasitic forms with trypsin renders the parasite susceptible to C attack, thus indicating the presence of C inhibitory protein(s) on the parasite surface. We describe here an intrinsic schistosome C inhibitory protein (SCIP-1) that exhibits antigenic and functional similarities with the human C-inhibitor CD59. Like CD59, SCIP-1 is capable of inhibiting formation of the C membrane attack complex (MAC), probably by binding to C8 and C9 of the C terminal pathway. In addition, SCIP-1 is apparently also membrane-anchored via glycosyl phosphatidylinositol as it can be specifically released with phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C. Soluble SCIP-1, partially purified from Nonidet P-40 extracts of schistosome tegument is capable of inhibiting hemolysis of sensitized sheep erythrocytes and of rabbit erythrocytes by human C. Anti-human CD59 antibodies block this activity of SCIP-1 and in addition, upon binding to intact parasites, render them vulnerable to killing by human and guinea pig C. SCIP-1 is located on the surface of C-resistant forms of the parasite, i.e., 24-h cultured mechanical schistosomula and in vivo-derived adult worms as revealed by immunofluorescence and immunogold electron microscopy studies. These results identify one of the mechanisms schistosomes use to escape immune attack. PMID:7513011

  13. Immunization with recombinantly expressed glycan antigens from Schistosoma mansoni induces glycan-specific antibodies against the parasite

    PubMed Central

    Prasanphanich, Nina Salinger; Luyai, Anthony E; Song, Xuezheng; Heimburg-Molinaro, Jamie; Mandalasi, Msano; Mickum, Megan; Smith, David F; Nyame, A Kwame; Cummings, Richard D

    2014-01-01

    Schistosomiasis caused by infection with parasitic helminths of Schistosoma spp. is a major global health problem due to inadequate treatment and lack of a vaccine. The immune response to schistosomes includes glycan antigens, which could be valuable diagnostic markers and vaccine targets. However, no precedent exists for how to design vaccines targeting eukaryotic glycoconjugates. The di- and tri-saccharide motifs LacdiNAc (GalNAcβ1,4GlcNAc; LDN) and fucosylated LacdiNAc (GalNAcβ1,4(Fucα1-3)GlcNAc; LDNF) are the basis for several important schistosome glycan antigens. They occur in monomeric form or as repeating units (poly-LDNF) and as part of a variety of different glycoconjugates. Because chemical synthesis and conjugation of such antigens is exceedingly difficult, we sought to develop a recombinant expression system for parasite glycans. We hypothesized that presentation of parasite glycans on the cell surface would induce glycan-specific antibodies. We generated Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) Lec8 cell lines expressing poly-LDN (L8-GT) and poly-LDNF (L8-GTFT) abundantly on their membrane glycoproteins. Sera from Schistosoma mansoni-infected mice were highly cross-reactive with the cells and with cell-surface N-glycans. Immunizing mice with L8-GT and L8-GTFT cells induced glycan-specific antibodies. The L8-GTFT cells induced a sustained booster response, with antibodies that bound to S. mansoni lysates and recapitulated the exquisite specificity of the anti-parasite response for particular presentations of LDNF antigen. In summary, this recombinant expression system promotes successful generation of antibodies to the glycans of S. mansoni, and it can be adapted to study the role of glycan antigens and anti-glycan immune responses in many other infections and pathologies. PMID:24727440

  14. Recent advances in the diagnosis of Schistosoma infection: the detection of parasite DNA.

    PubMed

    Rabello, Ana; Pontes, Luís André; Dias-Neto, Emmanuel

    2002-01-01

    As Schistosoma sp. control programs are chiefly based on treatment of infected population, adequate case finding has a crucial role. The available diagnostic methods are far from ideal, since the search for eggs in stools and the detection of circulating antigens lack sensitivity in low prevalence and post-treatment situations and antibody detection lacks specificity. In most endemic foci, repeated treatment of infected people leaves a number of non-diagnosed and consequently non-treated persons, enough to maintain a persistent residue of 5 to 10% prevalence. In an attempt to surpass these diagnostic limitations we have developed a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the detection of Schistosoma sp. in feces that, in a first population study, has shown to be more sensitive than three-repeated stool Kato-Katz examination. The PCR may constitute a valuable tool for the diagnosis of the Schistosoma sp. infection in special situations, when high sensitivity and specificity are required and infrastructure is available.

  15. Controlled Chaos of Polymorphic Mucins in a Metazoan Parasite (Schistosoma mansoni) Interacting with Its Invertebrate Host (Biomphalaria glabrata)

    PubMed Central

    Roger, Emmanuel; Grunau, Christoph; Pierce, Raymond J.; Hirai, Hirohisa; Gourbal, Benjamin; Galinier, Richard; Emans, Rémi; Cesari, Italo M.; Cosseau, Céline; Mitta, Guillaume

    2008-01-01

    Invertebrates were long thought to possess only a simple, effective and hence non-adaptive defence system against microbial and parasitic attacks. However, recent studies have shown that invertebrate immunity also relies on immune receptors that diversify (e.g. in echinoderms, insects and mollusks (Biomphalaria glabrata)). Apparently, individual or population-based polymorphism-generating mechanisms exists that permit the survival of invertebrate species exposed to parasites. Consequently, the generally accepted arms race hypothesis predicts that molecular diversity and polymorphism also exist in parasites of invertebrates. We investigated the diversity and polymorphism of parasite molecules (Schistosoma mansoni Polymorphic Mucins, SmPoMucs) that are key factors for the compatibility of schistosomes interacting with their host, the mollusc Biomphalaria glabrata. We have elucidated the complex cascade of mechanisms acting both at the genomic level and during expression that confer polymorphism to SmPoMuc. We show that SmPoMuc is coded by a multi-gene family whose members frequently recombine. We show that these genes are transcribed in an individual-specific manner, and that for each gene, multiple splice variants exist. Finally, we reveal the impact of this polymorphism on the SmPoMuc glycosylation status. Our data support the view that S. mansoni has evolved a complex hierarchical system that efficiently generates a high degree of polymorphism—a “controlled chaos”—based on a relatively low number of genes. This contrasts with protozoan parasites that generate antigenic variation from large sets of genes such as Trypanosoma cruzi, Trypanosoma brucei and Plasmodium falciparum. Our data support the view that the interaction between parasites and their invertebrate hosts are far more complex than previously thought. While most studies in this matter have focused on invertebrate host diversification, we clearly show that diversifying mechanisms also exist on

  16. Evolutionary analysis of the cystatin family in three Schistosoma species

    PubMed Central

    Cuesta-Astroz, Yesid; Scholte, Larissa L. S.; Pais, Fabiano Sviatopolk-Mirsky; Oliveira, Guilherme; Nahum, Laila A.

    2014-01-01

    The cystatin family comprises cysteine protease inhibitors distributed in 3 subfamilies (I25A–C). Family members lacking cystatin activity are currently unclassified. Little is known about the evolution of Schistosoma cystatins, their physiological roles, and expression patterns in the parasite life cycle. The present study aimed to identify cystatin homologs in the predicted proteome of three Schistosoma species and other Platyhelminthes. We analyzed the amino acid sequence diversity focused in the identification of protein signatures and to establish evolutionary relationships among Schistosoma and experimentally validated human cystatins. Gene expression patterns were obtained from different developmental stages in Schistosoma mansoni using microarray data. In Schistosoma, only I25A and I25B proteins were identified, reflecting little functional diversification. I25C and unclassified subfamily members were not identified in platyhelminth species here analyzed. The resulting phylogeny placed cystatins in different clades, reflecting their molecular diversity. Our findings suggest that Schistosoma cystatins are very divergent from their human homologs, especially regarding the I25B subfamily. Schistosoma cystatins also differ significantly from other platyhelminth homologs. Finally, transcriptome data publicly available indicated that I25A and I25B genes are constitutively expressed thus could be essential for schistosome life cycle progression. In summary, this study provides insights into the evolution, classification, and functional diversification of cystatins in Schistosoma and other Platyhelminthes, improving our understanding of parasite biology and opening new frontiers in the identification of novel therapeutic targets against helminthiases. PMID:25071834

  17. Human TNF-α induces differential protein phosphorylation in Schistosoma mansoni adult male worms.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Katia C; Carvalho, Mariana L P; Bonatto, José Matheus C; Schechtman, Debora; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio

    2016-02-01

    Schistosoma mansoni and its vertebrate host have a complex and intimate connection in which several molecular stimuli are exchanged and affect both organisms. Human tumor necrosis factor alpha (hTNF-α), a pro-inflammatory cytokine, is known to induce large-scale gene expression changes in the parasite and to affect several parasite biological processes such as metabolism, egg laying, and worm development. Until now, the molecular mechanisms for TNF-α activity in worms are not completely understood. Here, we aimed at exploring the effect of hTNF-α on S. mansoni protein phosphorylation by 2D gel electrophoresis followed by a quantitative analysis of phosphoprotein staining and protein identification by mass spectrometry. We analyzed three biological replicates of adult male worms exposed to hTNF-α and successfully identified 32 protein spots with a statistically significant increase in phosphorylation upon in vitro exposure to hTNF-α. Among the differentially phosphorylated proteins, we found proteins involved in metabolism, such as glycolysis, galactose metabolism, urea cycle, and aldehyde metabolism, as well as proteins related to muscle contraction and to cytoskeleton remodeling. The most differentially phosphorylated protein (30-fold increase in phosphorylation) was 14-3-3, whose function is known to be modulated by phosphorylation, belonging to a signal transduction protein family that regulates a variety of processes in all eukaryotic cells. Further, 75% of the identified proteins are known in mammals to be related to TNF-α signaling, thus suggesting that TNF-α response may be conserved in the parasite. We propose that this work opens new perspectives to be explored in the study of the molecular crosstalk between host and pathogen.

  18. 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

  19. Cloning the genes and DNA binding properties of High Mobility Group B1 (HMGB1) proteins from the human blood flukes Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma japonicum.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira, Francisco Meirelles Bastos; de Abreu da Silva, Isabel Caetano; Rumjanek, Franklin David; Dias-Neto, Emmanuel; Guimarães, Pedro Edson Moreira; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio; Stros, Michal; Fantappié, Marcelo Rosado

    2006-08-01

    The parasitic helminth Schistosoma mansoni contains three HMGB proteins, HMGB1, HMGB2 and HMGB3, of primary amino acid sequences highly similar to vertebrate proteins. In this report we describe the characterization of the HMGB1 proteins and their genes from S. mansoni and Schistosoma japonicum. The deduced amino acid sequences of HMGB1 proteins from both schistosome species are identical, and comprise 176 residues. The proteins contain the two evolutionarily highly conserved HMG-box domains, A and B, exhibiting 60% similarity to mammalian HMGB1. Unlike the human HMGB1 which contains an unbroken run of 30 glutamic or aspartic residues, the SmHMGB1 or SjHMGB1 proteins possess unusually short acidic C-terminal tails (5 acidic residues interrupted by 2 serines). Southern hybridization and DNA sequencing revealed a single copy HMGB1 gene, composed of 3 exons and two introns, in S. mansoni. The exon/intron boundaries are identical to those of the human HMGB1 gene, with the exception that the second exon of the SmHMGB1 gene which is not split into two exons as in the human HMGB1 gene. RNA blot analysis revealed that the SmHMGB1 gene is constitutively expressed in similar levels both in male and female worms. The single-sized mRNA for SmHMGB1 is consistent with the size derived from the cDNA. Although DNA binding properties of SmHMGB1 (or SjHMGB1) protein seem to be similar to those previously reported with human HMGB1, i.e., preferential binding to supercoiled DNA over linear DNA, specific recognition of DNA four-way junctions, DNA-induced supercoiling in the presence of topoisomerase I, and DNA bending, we have observed two important differences relative to those observed with the human HMGB1: (i) the inability of the isolated SmHMGB1 domain A to bend DNA (as revealed by T4 ligase-mediated circularization assay), and (ii) higher DNA supercoiling and bending potential of the SmHMGB1 protein as compared to its human counterpart. The latter finding may indicate that the

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Differential distribution and biochemical characteristics of hydrolases among developmental stages of Schistosoma mansoni may offer new anti-parasite targets.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Delgado, Milagro; Cortez, Jackeline; Sulbarán, Guiden; Matos, César; Incani, Renzo Nino; Ballén, Diana E; Cesari, Italo M

    2017-02-01

    Schistosoma mansoni enzymes play important roles in host-parasite interactions and are potential targets for immunological and/or pharmacological attack. The aim of this study was to comparatively assess the presence of hydrolytic activities (phosphatases, glycosidases, aminopeptidases) in soluble (SF) and membrane (MF) fractions from different S. mansoni developmental stages (schistosomula 0 and 3h, juveniles, and adult worms of 28 and 45days-old, respectively), by using simple enzyme-substrate microassays. Our results show and confirm the prominent presence of alkaline phosphatase (AlP) activity in the MF of all the above parasite stages, highlighting also the relevant presence of MF-associated α-mannosidase (α-MAN) activity in juveniles. A soluble AlP activity, together with β-N-D-acetylglucosaminidase (β-NAG), and α-MAN activities, was detected in SF of schistosomulum 0h. Soluble β-NAG, α-MAN, acid phosphatase (AcP), leucin (LAP) and alanine (AAP) aminopeptidase activities were also seen in the SF of the other different developmental stages. This work shows different soluble and membrane-associated hydrolytic capacities in each S. mansoni developmental stage from schistosomula to adults that might be exploitable as potential new targets for immune and/or chemoprophylactic strategies.

  4. 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.

  5. Effect of different stages of Schistosoma mansoni infection on the parasite burden and immune response to Strongyloides venezuelensis in co-infected mice.

    PubMed

    de Rezende, Michelle Carvalho; Araújo, Emília Souza; Moreira, João Marcelo Peixoto; Rodrigues, Vanessa Fernandes; Rodrigues, Jailza Lima; Pereira, Cíntia A de Jesus; Negrão-Corrêa, Deborah

    2015-12-01

    Multiple schistosome and soil-transmitted nematode infections are frequently reported in human populations living in tropical areas of developing countries. In addition to exposure factors, the host immune response plays an important role in helminth control and morbidity in hosts with multiple infections; however, these aspects are difficult to evaluate in human populations. In the current study, female Swiss mice were simultaneously co-infected with Strongyloides venezuelensis and Schistosoma mansoni or infected with St. venezuelensis at 2, 4, or 14 weeks after Sc. mansoni infection. The simultaneously infected mice showed a similar parasite burden for St. venezuelensis compared with mono-infected mice. In contrast, there was a significant reduction of St. venezuelensis burden (primarily during the migration of the larvae) in mice that were previously infected with Sc. mansoni at the acute or chronic phase. Independent of the stage of Sc. mansoni infection, the St. venezuelensis co-infection was capable of inducing IL-4 production in the small intestine, increasing the IgE concentration in the serum and increasing eosinophilia in the lungs and intestine. This result suggests that the nematode infection stimulates local type 2 immune responses independently of the schistosomiasis stage. Moreover, previous Sc. mansoni infection stimulated early granulocyte infiltration in the lungs and trematode-specific IgM and IgG1 production that recognized antigens from St. venezuelensis infective larvae; these immune responses would act in the early control of St. venezuelensis larvae. Our data suggest that the effect of multiple helminth infections on host susceptibility and morbidity largely depends on the species of parasite and the immune response.

  6. Functional Impairment of Human Myeloid Dendritic Cells during Schistosoma haematobium Infection

    PubMed Central

    Everts, Bart; Adegnika, Ayola A.; Kruize, Yvonne C. M.; Smits, Hermelijn H.; Kremsner, Peter G.; Yazdanbakhsh, Maria

    2010-01-01

    Chronic Schistosoma infection is often characterized by a state of T cell hyporesponsiveness of the host. Suppression of dendritic cell (DC) function could be one of the mechanisms underlying this phenomenon, since Schistosoma antigens are potent modulators of dendritic cell function in vitro. Yet, it remains to be established whether DC function is modulated during chronic human Schistosoma infection in vivo. To address this question, the effect of Schistosoma haematobium infection on the function of human blood DC was evaluated. We found that plasmacytoid (pDC) and myeloid DC (mDC) from infected subjects were present at lower frequencies in peripheral blood and that mDC displayed lower expression levels of HLA-DR compared to those from uninfected individuals. Furthermore, mDC from infected subjects, but not pDC, were found to have a reduced capacity to respond to TLR ligands, as determined by MAPK signaling, cytokine production and expression of maturation markers. Moreover, the T cell activating capacity of TLR-matured mDC from infected subjects was lower, likely as a result of reduced HLA-DR expression. Collectively these data show that S. haematobium infection is associated with functional impairment of human DC function in vivo and provide new insights into the underlying mechanisms of T cell hyporesponsiveness during chronic schistosomiasis. PMID:20422029

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Introgressive Hybridization of Schistosoma haematobium Group Species in Senegal: Species Barrier Break Down between Ruminant and Human Schistosomes

    PubMed Central

    Webster, Bonnie L.; Diaw, Oumar T.; Seye, Mohmoudane M.; Webster, Joanne P.; Rollinson, David

    2013-01-01

    Background Schistosomes are dioecious parasitic flatworms, which live in the vasculature of their mammalian definitive hosts. They are the causative agent of schistosomiasis, a disease of considerable medical and veterinary importance in tropical and subtropical regions. Schistosomes undergo a sexual reproductive stage within their mammalian host enabling interactions between different species, which may result in hybridization if the species involved are phylogenetically close. In Senegal, three closely related species in the Schistosoma haematobium group are endemic: S. haematobium, which causes urogenital schistosomiasis in humans, and S. bovis and S. curassoni, which cause intestinal schistosomiasis in cows, sheep and goats. Methodology/Principal Findings Large-scale multi-loci molecular analysis of parasite samples collected from children and domestic livestock across Senegal revealed that interactions and hybridization were taking place between all three species. Evidence of hybridization between S. haematobium/S. curassoni and S. haematobium/S. bovis was commonly found in children from across Senegal, with 88% of the children surveyed in areas of suspected species overlap excreting hybrid miracidia. No S. haematobium worms or hybrids thereof were found in ruminants, although S. bovis and S. curassoni hybrid worms were found in cows. Complementary experimental mixed species infections in laboratory rodents confirmed that males and females of each species readily pair and produce viable hybrid offspring. Conclusions/Significance These data provide indisputable evidence for: the high occurrence of bidirectional hybridization between these Schistosoma species; the first conclusive evidence for the natural hybridisation between S. haematobium and S. curassoni; and demonstrate that the transmission of the different species and their hybrids appears focal. Hybridization between schistosomes has been known to influence the disease epidemiology and enhance phenotypic

  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. A new PCR-based approach for the specific amplification of DNA from different Schistosoma species applicable to human urine samples.

    PubMed

    Sandoval, N; Siles-Lucas, M; Pérez-Arellano, J L; Carranza, C; Puente, S; López-Abán, J; Muro, A

    2006-11-01

    Currently available methods for the diagnosis of human schistosomiasis often lack enough sensitivity and specificity. Recently, several authors have developed more specific and sensitive diagnostic methods, mainly based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique. Nevertheless, these have been only applied for the diagnosis of 1 out of 4 Schistosoma species affecting man (S. mansoni). Additionally, application of specific PCR has been exclusively used for blood or faecal patients' samples. Here, we develop a new, high sensitive PCR approach that allows the genus- and species-specific amplification of the main 4 Schistosoma species causing disease in man plus S. bovis. We further successfully apply this technique for the detection of parasite DNA in easy-to-handle urine samples from patients with schistosomiasis. With these samples, we have found 94.4% sensitivity and 99.9% specificity when applying a genus-specific (Schistosoma spp.) primer pair, and 100% sensitivity and 98.9% specificity in a species-specific (S. mansoni) PCR.

  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. Schistosoma mansoni: assessment of effects of oleic acid, cercarial age and water temperature on parasite-host attraction.

    PubMed

    Lee, Vivien S T; Burgess, Jefferey L; Sterling, Charles R; Lutz, Eric A

    2013-09-01

    Although the lifecycle of Schistosoma spp. and pathophysiology of schistosomiasis have been established, the mechanism by which cercariae find their host is not well understood. Speculatively, host infection by random and accidental host contact is not as biologically plausible as a biochemical mechanism of mammalian attraction. A few studies have indicated that biochemical cues and temperature gradients may play a role in host identification, attraction and attachment triggers. This study aimed to elucidate these mechanisms more specifically through evaluation of biochemical, age and temperature influences leading to Schistosoma mansoni cercariae attraction and attachment behaviors. Oleic acid, a common unsaturated free fatty acid in the outer layer of human skin, was tested for cercariae attraction across biologically relevant concentrations. Influence of media type (beeswax, nail varnish and agar), age-dependent behavior variability and environmentally appropriate temperatures (22 and 30 °C) were also evaluated. Results indicated that oleic acid at concentrations of 0.3, 0.9 and 1.8 g/mL in beeswax significantly increased median attachment to media (median attachment of 7.50%, 4.20% and 3.71%, respectively, P<0.001), compared with plain beeswax, with maximal attachment of 30.30% at 0.3g/mL of oleic acid. In media containing 0.3 g/mL of oleic acid, cercarial attachment was highest for freshly emerged cercariae to 5h post-emergence, with a significant decrease in attachment behavior at 10h post-emergence (P<0.01). Aquatic temperature at which cercariae were exposed to media did not yield significant results (P value >0.05). Biochemical, age and environmental factors influencing cercarial host attraction and attachment behavior have been elucidated by this study. This information will inform further development of devices for environmental surveillance and potentially improve cercarial exposure prevention strategies.

  14. Rapid detection and identification of four major Schistosoma species by high-resolution melt (HRM) analysis.

    PubMed

    Li, Juan; Zhao, Guang-Hui; Lin, RuiQing; Blair, David; Sugiyama, Hiromu; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2015-11-01

    Schistosomiasis, caused by blood flukes belonging to several species of the genus Schistosoma, is a serious and widespread parasitic disease. Accurate and rapid differentiation of these etiological agents of animal and human schistosomiasis to species level can be difficult. We report a real-time PCR assay coupled with a high-resolution melt (HRM) assay targeting a portion of the nuclear 18S rDNA to detect, identify, and distinguish between four major blood fluke species (Schistosoma japonicum, Schistosoma mansoni, Schistosoma haematobium, and Schistosoma mekongi). Using this system, the Schistosoma spp. was accurately identified and could also be distinguished from all other trematode species with which they were compared. As little as 10(-5) ng genomic DNA from a Schistosoma sp. could be detected. This process is inexpensive, easy, and can be completed within 3 h. Examination of 21 representative Schistosoma samples from 15 geographical localities in seven endemic countries validated the value of the HRM detection assay and proved its reliability. The melting curves were characterized by peaks of 83.65 °C for S. japonicum and S. mekongi, 85.65 °C for S. mansoni, and 85.85 °C for S. haematobium. The present study developed a real-time PCR coupled with HRM analysis assay for detection and differential identification of S. mansoni, S. haematobium, S. japonicum, and S. mekongi. This method is rapid, sensitive, and inexpensive. It has important implications for epidemiological studies of Schistosoma.

  15. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

    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.

  17. Efficiency of ginger (Zingbar officinale) against Schistosoma mansoni infection during host-parasite association.

    PubMed

    Aly, Hanan F; Mantawy, Mona M

    2013-08-01

    The possible protective effect of ethanolic extract of ginger against infection with Schistosome mansonii was evaluated in mice. The extract was given daily for 45 days beginning at either 2nd day or 45 days post infection. Oral supplementation of ginger extract to infected animals was effective in reducing worm burden and the egg load in the liver and intestine which coincided with the reduction in granuloma diameters. Ginger extract had also the effect to offset liver fibrosis in response to S. mansoni infection indicated by reduced liver hydroxyproline level and serum alpha-fetoprotein (AFP). The extract reduces some inflammatory mediators that play a crucial role in schistosomal liver fibrosis and its complications. These include liver xanthine oxidase (XO); nitric oxide (NO); tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α); immunoglobins E, G, and M (Ig-E, Ig-G and Ig-M, respectively), and interleukin 4, 10 and 12 (IL-4, IL-10 and IL-12, respectively). Administration of ginger extract ameliorated the infection-induced alterations in serum gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), alanine amintransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP). It was concluded that oral administration of ginger extract to S. mansoni infected mice could minimize the deleterious effects of this parasite on the vital functions of infected animals.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. A late IL-33 response after exposure to Schistosoma haematobium antigen is associated with an up-regulation of IL-13 in human eosinophils

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, S; Jones, F M; Fofana, H K M; Landouré, A; Kimani, G; Mwatha, J K; Sacko, M; Vennervald, B J; Dunne, D W

    2013-01-01

    IL-33, a proposed alarmin, stimulates innate immune cells and Th2 cells to produce IL-13 and is rapidly upregulated upon antigen exposure in murine helminth infection. The human IL-33 response to helminth antigen was analysed in Malians infected with Schistosoma haematobium by disrupting parasite integrity via chemotherapy. Plasma IL-33 was measured pretreatment, and 24 h and 9 weeks post-treatment. At 24 h post-treatment, IL-33 levels were low. Nine week post-treatment IL-33 levels were elevated and were associated with an increase in intracellular IL-13 in eosinophils. Up-regulation of intracellular IL-13 in eosinophils was also associated with eosinophil expression of ST2L, the IL-33 receptor. IL-33 may play an important downstream role in the human response to schistosome adult worm antigen exposure. PMID:23521712

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Parasites as probes for prehistoric human migrations?

    PubMed

    Araujo, Adauto; Reinhard, Karl J; Ferreira, Luiz Fernando; Gardner, Scott L

    2008-03-01

    Host-specific parasites of humans are used to track ancient migrations. Based on archaeoparasitology, it is clear that humans entered the New World at least twice in ancient times. The archaeoparasitology of some intestinal parasites in the New World points to migration routes other than the Bering Land Bridge. Helminths have been found in mummies and coprolites in North and South America. Hookworms (Necator and Ancylostoma), whipworms (Trichuris trichiura) and other helminths require specific conditions for life-cycle completion. They could not survive in the cold climate of the northern region of the Americas. Therefore, humans would have lost some intestinal parasites while crossing Beringia. Evidence is provided here from published data of pre-Columbian sites for the peopling of the Americas through trans-oceanic or costal migrations.

  4. 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.

  5. Specific anti-glycan antibodies are sustained during and after parasite clearance in Schistosoma japonicum-infected rhesus macaques

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Y. Y. Michelle; Li, Xiao Hong; Brzezicka, Katarzyna; Reichardt, Niels-Christian; Wilson, R. Alan; van Diepen, Angela

    2017-01-01

    Background Human immunity to Schistosoma infection requires many years of exposure, and multiple infections and treatments to develop. Unlike humans, rhesus macaques clear an established schistosome infection naturally at the same time acquiring immunity towards re-infection. In macaques, schistosome egg production decreases after 8 weeks post-infection and by week 22, physiological impairment of the worm caused by unclarified antibody-mediated processes is observed. Since strong antibody responses have been observed against schistosome glycan antigens in human and animal infections, we here investigate if anti-glycan antibodies are associated with immunity against schistosome infections in macaques. Methods We used a microarray containing a large repertoire of glycoprotein- and glycolipid-derived glycans from different schistosome life stages to analyse anti-glycan serum IgG and IgM from S. japonicum-infected macaques during the course of infection and self-cure. We also used an in vitro schistosomula assay to investigate whether macaque sera containing anti-glycan antibodies can kill schistosomula. Conclusions/significance Antibody responses towards schistosome glycans at week 4 post-infection were dominated by IgM while IgG was high at week 8. The profound increase in IgG was observed mainly for antibodies towards a large subset of glycans that contain (multi-)fucosylated terminal GalNAcβ1-4GlcNAc (LDN), and Galβ1-4(Fucα1–3)GlcNAc (LeX) motifs. In general, glycans with a higher degree of fucosylation gave rise to stronger antibody responses than non-fucosylated glycans. Interestingly, even though many IgG and IgM responses had declined by week 22 post-infection, IgG towards O-glycans with highly fucosylated LDN motifs remained. When incubating macaque serum with schistosomula in vitro, schistosomula death was positively correlated with the duration of infection of macaques; macaque serum taken 22 weeks post-infection caused most schistosomula to die

  6. Segregation analysis indicates a major gene in the control of interleukine-5 production in humans infected with Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, V; Abel, L; Piper, K; Dessein, A J

    1996-08-01

    The interleukine-5 (IL-5) is a hormone of the immune system that is the main regulator of eosinopoiesis, eosinophil maturation and activation, and immunoglobulin A production. Thus, IL-5 contributes in several ways to human immune defenses against various pathogens, including helminths and infectious agents of the digestive and respiratory tracts. On the other hand, the increase in eosinophil number and the activation of these cells, which both have been related to elevated IL-5 production, are the cause of severe pathological disorders, as in asthma or hypereosinophilic syndromes. Although the immunological pathways leading to IL-5 synthesis have been identified, the reasons for the large variability observed in IL-5 production among subjects exposed to comparable antigenic stimulation are unknown. To investigate the role of genetic factors in this variability, we conducted a segregation analysis in a Brazilian population infected by the helminth parasite Schistosoma mansoni. The analysis was performed on IL-5 levels produced by blood mononuclear cells of these subjects after in vitro restimulation with either parasite extracts (IL-5/schistosomula sonicates [SS] phenotype) or a T-lymphocyte mitogen (IL-5/phytohemagglutin [PHA]). The results provide clear evidence for the segregation of a codominant major gene controlling IL-5/SS and IL-5/PHA production and accounting for 70% and 73% of the phenotypic variance, respectively; the frequency of the allele predisposing to low IL-5 production was approximately .22 for both phenotypes. No significant relationship was found between these genes and the gene controlling infection intensities by S. mansoni detected in a previous study. Linkage studies are ongoing to locate those genes that would help to characterize the genetic factors involved in pathological conditions such as severe helminth infections and allergic diseases.

  7. 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

  8. CA88, a nuclear repetitive DNA sequence identified in Schistosoma mansoni, aids in the genotyping of nine Schistosoma species of medical and veterinary importance.

    PubMed

    Bahia, Diana; Rodrigues, Nilton B; Araújo, Flávio Marcos G; Romanha, Alvaro José; Ruiz, Jerônimo C; Johnston, David A; Oliveira, Guilherme

    2010-07-01

    CA88 is the first long nuclear repetitive DNA sequence identified in the blood fluke, Schistosoma mansoni. The assembled S. mansoni sequence, which contains the CA88 repeat, has 8,887 nucleotides and at least three repeat units of approximately 360 bp. In addition, CA88 also possesses an internal CA microsatellite, identified as SmBr18. Both PCR and BLAST analysis have been used to analyse and confirm the CA88 sequence in other S. mansoni sequences in the public database. PCR-acquired nuclear repetitive DNA sequence profiles from nine Schistosoma species were used to classify this organism into four genotypes. Included among the nine species analysed were five sequences of both African and Asian lineages that are known to infect humans. Within these genotypes, three of them refer to recognised species groups. A panel of four microsatellite loci, including SmBr18 and three previously published loci, has been used to characterise the nine Schistosoma species. Each species has been identified and classified based on its CA88 DNA fingerprint profile. Furthermore, microsatellite sequences and intra-specific variation have also been observed within the nine Schistosoma species sequences. Taken together, these results support the use of these markers in studying the population dynamics of Schistosoma isolates from endemic areas and also provide new methods for investigating the relationships between different populations of parasites. In addition, these data also indicate that Schistosoma magrebowiei is not a sister taxon to Schistosoma mattheei, prompting a new designation to a basal clade.

  9. Genetic Diversity of Schistosoma haematobium Eggs Isolated from Human Urine in Sudan.

    PubMed

    Quan, Juan-Hua; Choi, In-Wook; Ismail, Hassan Ahmed Hassan Ahmed; Mohamed, Abdoelohab Saed; Jeong, Hoo-Gn; Lee, Jin-Su; Hong, Sung-Tae; Yong, Tai-Soon; Cha, Guang-Ho; Lee, Young-Ha

    2015-06-01

    The genetic diversity of Schistosoma haematobium remains largely unstudied in comparison to that of Schistosoma mansoni. To characterize the extent of genetic diversity in S. haematobium among its definitive host (humans), we collected S. haematobium eggs from the urine of 73 infected schoolchildren at 5 primary schools in White Nile State, Sudan, and then performed a randomly amplified polymorphic DNA marker ITS2 by PCR-RFLP analysis. Among 73 S. haematobium egg-positive cases, 13 were selected based on the presence of the S. haematobium satellite markers A4 and B2 in their genomic DNA, and used for RFLP analysis. The 13 samples were subjected to an RFLP analysis of the S. haematobium ITS2 region; however, there was no variation in size among the fragments. Compared to the ITS2 sequences obtained for S. haematobium from Kenya, the nucleotide sequences of the ITS2 regions of S. haematobium from 4 areas in Sudan were consistent with those from Kenya (> 99%). In this study, we demonstrate for the first time that most of the S. haematobium population in Sudan consists of a pan-African S. haematobium genotype; however, we also report the discovery of Kenyan strain inflow into White Nile, Sudan.

  10. Genetic Diversity of Schistosoma haematobium Eggs Isolated from Human Urine in Sudan

    PubMed Central

    Quan, Juan-Hua; Choi, In-Wook; Ismail, Hassan Ahmed Hassan Ahmed; Mohamed, Abdoelohab Saed; Jeong, Hoo-Gn; Lee, Jin-Su; Hong, Sung-Tae; Yong, Tai-Soon; Cha, Guang-Ho; Lee, Young-Ha

    2015-01-01

    The genetic diversity of Schistosoma haematobium remains largely unstudied in comparison to that of Schistosoma mansoni. To characterize the extent of genetic diversity in S. haematobium among its definitive host (humans), we collected S. haematobium eggs from the urine of 73 infected schoolchildren at 5 primary schools in White Nile State, Sudan, and then performed a randomly amplified polymorphic DNA marker ITS2 by PCR-RFLP analysis. Among 73 S. haematobium egg-positive cases, 13 were selected based on the presence of the S. haematobium satellite markers A4 and B2 in their genomic DNA, and used for RFLP analysis. The 13 samples were subjected to an RFLP analysis of the S. haematobium ITS2 region; however, there was no variation in size among the fragments. Compared to the ITS2 sequences obtained for S. haematobium from Kenya, the nucleotide sequences of the ITS2 regions of S. haematobium from 4 areas in Sudan were consistent with those from Kenya (> 99%). In this study, we demonstrate for the first time that most of the S. haematobium population in Sudan consists of a pan-African S. haematobium genotype; however, we also report the discovery of Kenyan strain inflow into White Nile, Sudan. PMID:26174820

  11. Prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections among children under five years of age with emphasis on Schistosoma mansoni in Wonji Shoa Sugar Estate, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    G/hiwot, Yirgalem; Degarege, Abraham; Erko, Berhanu

    2014-01-01

    Intestinal parasite infections are major public health problems of children in developing countries causing undernutrition, anemia, intestinal obstruction and mental and physical growth retardation. This study was conducted to assess the prevalence of intestinal helminthic infections among children under five years of age with emphasis on Schistosoma mansoni in Wonji Shoa Sugar Estate, Ethiopia. A cross-sectional parasitological survey was conducted in under-five children living in Wonji Shoa Sugar Estate Ethiopia, April, 2013. Stool samples were collected and examined for intestinal parasites using single Kato-Katz and single Sodium acetate-acetic acid-formalin (SAF) solution concentration methods. Out of 374 children examined using single Kato-Katz and single SAF-concentration methods, 24.3% were infected with at least one intestinal parasite species. About 10.4%, 8.8%, 4.6%, 2.9%, 1.6% and 0.8% of the children were infected with Hymenolepis nana, Schistosoma mansoni, Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura, Enterobius vermicularis and hookworm, respectively. Prevalence of double, triple and quadruple intestinal helminthic infection was 6.4%, 0.54% and 1.1%, respectively. A significant increase in prevalence of S. mansoni (8.3% versus 3.2%) and T. trichiura (2.7% versus 0.5%) infection was observed when determined via the single Kato-Katz method compared to the prevalence of the parasites determined via the single SAF-concentration method. On the other hand, the single SAF-concentration method (9.1%) revealed a significantly higher prevalence of H. nana infection than the single Kato-Katz (1.6%) does. In conclusion, intestinal helminths infections particularly S. mansoni and H. nana were prevalent in under-five children of Wonji Shoa Sugar Estate. Including praziquantel treatment in the deworming program as per the World Health Organization guidelines would be vital to reduce the burden of these diseases in areas where S. mansoni and H. nana infections are

  12. The genome of a blood fluke associated with human cancer

    PubMed Central

    Mitreva, Makedonka

    2013-01-01

    The sequencing of the genome and transcriptome of Schistosoma haematobium, a highly prevalent blood fluke and human parasite with a proven link to malignant bladder cancer, marks the 160th anniversary of its discovery as the first schistosome known to infect humans. Comparative genomic analyses of S. haematobium and the more prevalent human-schistosomiasis pathogens (Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosoma japonicum) identified both shared and distinct genomic features. PMID:22281765

  13. Major trends in human parasitic diseases in China.

    PubMed

    Li, Ting; He, Shenyi; Zhao, Hong; Zhao, Guanghui; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2010-05-01

    Tremendous progress has been made in the control and prevention of human parasitic diseases in mainland China in the past 30 years because of China's Reform and Opening to the Outside Policies initiated in 1978. However, parasitic diseases remain a major human health problem, with significant morbidity and mortality as well as adverse socioeconomic consequences. Although soil-transmitted parasitic diseases are in the process of being gradually controlled, food-borne parasitic diseases and emerging parasitic diseases are becoming the focus of new campaigns for control and prevention. This article reviews major trends in human parasitic diseases in mainland China, with perspectives for control.

  14. Human U6 promoter drives stronger shRNA activity than its schistosome orthologue in Schistosoma mansoni and human fibrosarcoma cells.

    PubMed

    Duvoisin, Raphaël; Ayuk, Mary A; Rinaldi, Gabriel; Suttiprapa, Sutas; Mann, Victoria H; Lee, Clarence M; Harris, Nicola; Brindley, Paul J

    2012-06-01

    Blood flukes or schistosomes are the causative agents of human schistosomiasis, one of the major neglected tropical diseases. Draft genome sequences have been reported for schistosomes, but functional genomics tools are needed to investigate the role and essentiality of the newly reported genes. Vector based RNA interference can contribute to functional genomics analysis for schistosomes. Using mRNA encoding reporter firefly luciferase as a model target, we compared the performance of a schistosome and a human promoter from the U6 gene in driving shRNA in human fibrosarcoma cells and in cultured schistosomes. Further, both a retroviral [Murine leukemia virus (MLV)] and plasmid (piggyBac, pXL-Bac II) vector were utilized. The schistosome U6 gene promoter was 270 bp in length, the human U6 gene promoter was 264 bp; they shared 41% identity. Following transduction of both HT1080 fibrosarcoma cells and schistosomules of Schistosoma mansoni with pseudotyped MLV virions, stronger knockdown of luciferase activity was seen with the virions encoding the human U6 promoter driven shRNA than the schistosome U6 promoter. A similar trend was seen after transfection of HT1080 cells and schistosomules with the pXL-Bac-II constructs-stronger knockdown of luciferase activity was seen with constructs encoding the human compared to schistosome U6 promoter. The findings indicate that a human U6 gene promoter drives stronger shRNA activity than its schistosome orthologue, not only in a human cancer cell line but also in larval schistosomes. This RNA polymerase III promoter represents a potentially valuable component for vector based RNA interference studies in schistosomes and related platyhelminth parasites.

  15. 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

  16. Parasites

    MedlinePlus

    ... Where to Find Further Information on Parasitic Diseases Public Health Image Library Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Explore Parasites A-Z Index Parasites Glossary Education and Training Healthy Water Travelers Health Laboratory ... Science Parasites About Parasites Animals ...

  17. 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

  18. In Vitro Assessment of Anthelmintic Activities of Rauwolfia vomitoria (Apocynaceae) Stem Bark and Roots against Parasitic Stages of Schistosoma mansoni and Cytotoxic Study

    PubMed Central

    Bosompem, Kwabena Mante; Anyan, William Kofi; Owusu, Kofi Baffour-Awuah; Tettey, Mabel Deladem; Kissi, Felicia Amanfo; Appiah, Alfred Ampomah; Penlap Beng, Veronique; Nyarko, Alexander Kwadwo

    2017-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a Neglected Tropical Diseases which can be prevented with mass deworming chemotherapy. The reliance on a single drug, praziquantel, is a motivation for the search of novel antischistosomal compounds. This study investigated the anthelmintic activity of the stem bark and roots of Rauwolfia vomitoria against two life stages of Schistosoma mansoni. Both plant parts were found to be active against cercariae and adult worms. Within 2 h of exposure all cercariae were killed at a concentration range of 62.5–1000 µg/mL and 250–1000 µg/mL of R. vomitoria stem bark and roots, respectively. The LC50 values determined for the stem bark after 1 and 2 h of exposure were 207.4 and 61.18 µg/mL, respectively. All adult worms exposed to the concentrations range of 250–1000 µg/mL for both plant parts died within 120 h of incubation. The cytotoxic effects against HepG2 and Chang liver cell assessed using MTT assay method indicated that both plant extracts which were inhibitory to the proliferation of cell lines with IC50 > 20 μg/mL appear to be safe. This report provides the first evidence of in vitro schistosomicidal potency of R. vomitoria with the stem bark being moderately, but relatively, more active and selective against schistosome parasites. This suggests the presence of promising medicinal constituent(s). PMID:28348881

  19. Utility of Schistosoma bovis Adult Worm Antigens for Diagnosis of Human Schistosomiasis by Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay and Electroimmunotransfer Blot Techniques

    PubMed Central

    Pardo, J.; Carranza, C.; Turrientes, M. C.; Arellano, J. L. Pérez; Vélez, R. López; Ramajo, V.; Muro, A.

    2004-01-01

    Immunodiagnostic methods based on the detection of antibodies continue to be the most effective and practical methods for the diagnosis of imported schistosomiasis. Schistosoma bovis is a species whose final natural hosts are bovines, ovines, caprines, and small wild ruminants. Different studies have demonstrated the analogies existing between S. bovis and other Schistosoma species which affect humans. The objective of this work was to evaluate the utility of S. bovis adult worm antigens (AWA) for the diagnosis of imported human schistosomiasis by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and electroimmunotransfer blotting (EITB) techniques. By detecting eggs, the ELISA for S. bovis AWA was able to definitively detect imported cases with a sensitivity of 94%. The specificity of the ELISA for S. bovis AWA was 97%. There were no differences between the results of the S. bovis AWA ELISA for patients infected with Schistosoma mansoni and those infected with Schistosoma haematobium. The EITB technique showed bands of 85, 37, and 20 kDa, which are characteristic of infections with Schistosoma spp. Specific bands to indicate infection by different species of Schistosoma have not been detected. The combined use of the ELISA for S. bovis AWA and EITB increased the global sensitivity of the study to 97%. Our findings suggest that the ELISA for S. bovis AWA is a useful test for the immunodiagnosis of imported schistosomiasis and that EITB for detecting S. bovis AWA permits the confirmation of diagnosis when the ELISA for S. bovis AWA is positive. PMID:15539523

  20. Utility of Schistosoma bovis adult worm antigens for diagnosis of human schistosomiasis by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and electroimmunotransfer blot techniques.

    PubMed

    Pardo, J; Carranza, C; Turrientes, M C; Pérez Arellano, J L; López Vélez, R; Ramajo, V; Muro, A

    2004-11-01

    Immunodiagnostic methods based on the detection of antibodies continue to be the most effective and practical methods for the diagnosis of imported schistosomiasis. Schistosoma bovis is a species whose final natural hosts are bovines, ovines, caprines, and small wild ruminants. Different studies have demonstrated the analogies existing between S. bovis and other Schistosoma species which affect humans. The objective of this work was to evaluate the utility of S. bovis adult worm antigens (AWA) for the diagnosis of imported human schistosomiasis by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and electroimmunotransfer blotting (EITB) techniques. By detecting eggs, the ELISA for S. bovis AWA was able to definitively detect imported cases with a sensitivity of 94%. The specificity of the ELISA for S. bovis AWA was 97%. There were no differences between the results of the S. bovis AWA ELISA for patients infected with Schistosoma mansoni and those infected with Schistosoma haematobium. The EITB technique showed bands of 85, 37, and 20 kDa, which are characteristic of infections with Schistosoma spp. Specific bands to indicate infection by different species of Schistosoma have not been detected. The combined use of the ELISA for S. bovis AWA and EITB increased the global sensitivity of the study to 97%. Our findings suggest that the ELISA for S. bovis AWA is a useful test for the immunodiagnosis of imported schistosomiasis and that EITB for detecting S. bovis AWA permits the confirmation of diagnosis when the ELISA for S. bovis AWA is positive.

  1. Immunoaffinity fractionation of Schistosoma mansoni worm antigens using human antibodies and its application for serodiagnosis.

    PubMed Central

    Boctor, F N; Shaheen, H I

    1986-01-01

    A crude Schistosoma mansoni soluble worm antigen preparation (SWAP) was fractionated using an immunoaffinity column consisting of specific human anti-SWAP antibodies obtained from chronic S. mansoni-infected human sera and bound to CNBr-activated Sepharose 4B. The chromatographic separation resulted in three fractions: the unbound material (FW), and the eluted antigens with glycine-HCl (F1) and glycine-HCl-NaCl (F2). Sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) showed that the purified antigens F1 and F2 consisted of several bands when stained with Coomassie blue and silver stain, with molecular weights between 20 X 10(3) and 200 X 10(3). The F1 and F2 fractions in addition to FW and SWAP were used in an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) to measure antibody levels in sera from schistosomiasis patients. Each individual serum assessed with the purified F2 antigen gave 100% positivity and three to four times higher optical density in comparison to SWAP with only 88% positivity. No detectable cross-reactive antibodies against F2 were found when a limited number of sera from filariasis, fascioliasis and trichinellosis patients were screened. Furthermore, F2 was also used and found to be more sensitive generally in detecting anti-adult worm antibodies than SWAP in recently schistosomiasis-infected persons. Thus, F2 appears to be a highly sensitive and specific reagent for the serodiagnosis of schistosomiasis infection. Images Figure 3 Figure 7 PMID:3082749

  2. 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)

  3. Topoisomerase II from Human Malaria Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Mudeppa, Devaraja G.; Kumar, Shiva; Kokkonda, Sreekanth; White, John; Rathod, Pradipsinh K.

    2015-01-01

    Historically, type II topoisomerases have yielded clinically useful drugs for the treatment of bacterial infections and cancer, but the corresponding enzymes from malaria parasites remain understudied. This is due to the general challenges of producing malaria proteins in functional forms in heterologous expression systems. Here, we express full-length Plasmodium falciparum topoisomerase II (PfTopoII) in a wheat germ cell-free transcription-translation system. Functional activity of soluble PfTopoII from the translation lysates was confirmed through both a plasmid relaxation and a DNA decatenation activity that was dependent on magnesium and ATP. To facilitate future drug discovery, a convenient and sensitive fluorescence assay was established to follow DNA decatenation, and a stable, truncated PfTopoII was engineered for high level enzyme production. PfTopoII was purified using a DNA affinity column. Existing TopoII inhibitors previously developed for other non-malaria indications inhibited PfTopoII, as well as malaria parasites in culture at submicromolar concentrations. Even before optimization, inhibitors of bacterial gyrase, GSK299423, ciprofloxacin, and etoposide exhibited 15-, 57-, and 3-fold selectivity for the malarial enzyme over human TopoII. Finally, it was possible to use the purified PfTopoII to dissect the different modes by which these varying classes of TopoII inhibitors could trap partially processed DNA. The present biochemical advancements will allow high throughput chemical screening of compound libraries and lead optimization to develop new lines of antimalarials. PMID:26055707

  4. 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

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

    PubMed

    Suttiprapa, Sutas; Rinaldi, Gabriel; Tsai, Isheng J; Mann, Victoria H; Dubrovsky, Larisa; Yan, Hong-Bin; Holroyd, Nancy; Huckvale, Thomas; Durrant, Caroline; Protasio, Anna V; Pushkarsky, Tatiana; Iordanskiy, Sergey; Berriman, Matthew; Bukrinsky, Michael I; Brindley, Paul J

    2016-10-01

    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.

  6. Intestinal schistosomiasis caused by both Schistosoma intercalatum and Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Tzanetou, Konstantina; Astriti, Myrto; Delis, Vassilios; Moustakas, George; Choreftaki, Theodosia; Papaliodi, Eugenia; Sarri, Katerina; Adamis, George

    2010-05-01

    A case is presented of intestinal schistosomiasis due to both Schistosoma intercalatum and Schistosoma mansoni in a 30-year-old man from Senegal with discussion of diagnostic approach, species identification and determination of the effect of treatment. The patient was admitted to hospital for investigation of renal failure, arterial hypertension and hypereosinophilia. Repeated stool examinations for ova and parasites were negative. Ultrasonography (US) and computed tomography (CT) of the abdomen showed no abnormalities. US of the urinary tract showed kidneys of borderline size with increased echogenicity. Cystoscopy and histopathological examination of bladder biopsy specimens were normal. Flexible colonoscopy revealed numerous nodular lesions in the rectosigmoid region and a few similar lesions in the transverse colon, the histopathological examination of which showed deposition of Schistosoma ova with granuloma formation. Examination of multiple crush biopsy specimens from the rectosigmoid region revealed numerous granulomas formed around Schistosoma eggs which had a terminal spine and were identified as S. intercalatum (longer than Schistosoma haematobium and with a slightly curved terminal spine) and a very few S. mansoni eggs. Crush biopsies from the lesions in the transverse colon showed only S. mansoni eggs. In conclusion, the examination of multiple crush biopsy specimens is a very sensitive and specific technique for species identification of Schistosoma, especially in mixed infections, and for defining the location and extent of the granulomas evoked by each species.

  7. Schistosoma haematobium in Guinea-Bissau: unacknowledged morbidity due to a particularly neglected parasite in a particularly neglected country.

    PubMed

    Botelho, Monica C; Machado, Ana; Carvalho, André; Vilaça, Manuela; Conceição, Orquídea; Rosa, Fernanda; Alves, Helena; Richter, Joachim; Bordalo, Adriano Agostinho

    2016-04-01

    Schistosomiasis is the major neglected tropical helminthic disease worldwide. Current knowledge on the epidemiology of schistosomiasis in Guinea-Bissau is scarce and regarding to the absence of Schistosoma haematobium (S.h.). Therefore, a pilot study was undertaken to assess the prevalence and morbidity due to S.h. infection in randomly selected 90 children and adolescents aged 6 to 15 years. Prevalence of S.h. infection was 20.00 % (18/90). Microhematuria was observed in 61.11 % (11/18) of S.h.-egg-excreting vs. 37.50 % (27/72) of non-S.h.-egg-excreting children p ≤ 0.01. Body mass index (BMI) was less than 15 kg/m(2) in 52/90 (57.78 %) of all children and adolescents, but this proportion increased to 66.67 % (12/18) in S.h.-infected children who were more frequently stunted and wasted than in non-infected children. The mean weight-for-age Z score (WAZ) was reduced in S.h. infected as compared to non-infected children (-1.48 ± 1.08 SD vs. -0.80 ± 1.11 SD; p ≤ 0.01). To our knowledge, this is the first epidemiologic report on S. haematobium infection in Guinea-Bissau since 22 years. Even in this relatively small study sample, it appears that S. haematobium, besides the well-known symptoms such as hematuria, leads to significant, albeit commonly unacknowledged morbidity such as stunting and wasting. These observations underscore the notion that this vulnerable but neglected population urgently needs to be targeted for implementation of measures for treatment and control.

  8. Raccoon Parasite Not as Deadly to Humans as Thought

    MedlinePlus

    ... gov/news/fullstory_164280.html Raccoon Parasite Not as Deadly to Humans as Thought Researchers find confirmed cases of raccoon roundworm ... 24, 2017 FRIDAY, March 24, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A raccoon parasite that can be deadly in humans ...

  9. 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.

  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. Parasite zoonoses and wildlife: One Health, spillover and human activity.

    PubMed

    Thompson, R C Andrew

    2013-11-01

    This review examines parasite zoonoses and wildlife in the context of the One Health triad that encompasses humans, domestic animals, wildlife and the changing ecosystems in which they live. Human (anthropogenic) activities influence the flow of all parasite infections within the One Health triad and the nature and impact of resulting spillover events are examined. Examples of spillover from wildlife to humans and/or domestic animals, and vice versa, are discussed, as well as emerging issues, particularly the need for parasite surveillance of wildlife populations. Emphasis is given to Trypanosoma cruzi and related species in Australian wildlife, Trichinella, Echinococcus, Giardia, Baylisascaris, Toxoplasma and Leishmania.

  12. Evaluation of three extraction methods for molecular detection of Schistosoma mansoni infection in human urine and serum samples.

    PubMed

    Sarhan, Rania M; Kamel, Hanan H; Saad, Ghada A; Ahmed, Ossama A

    2015-09-01

    The diagnostic techniques based on polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the detection of Schistosoma spp. DNA in stool, serum, plasma and urine has shown high sensitivity and specificity solving the problems for the low worm burdens and low transmission rates facing the routine microscopic diagnosis. Since PCR assays require efficient unbiased procedures of extraction and purification of nucleic acids. This study compared the efficiencies of simple, manual and feasible DNA extraction methods; a salting out and resin method, phenol/chloroform method to a commercial extraction kit through PCR analysis of human urine and serum samples spiked with known amounts of adult Schistosoma mansoni DNA confirmed by the application on real samples from patients. In artificially spiked urine gradient, the best mean diagnostic performance was that of salting out and resin then phenol/chloroform and last for the commercial kit. All three methods gave positive results in all tested urine samples which insures comparable high efficiency for DNA detection. In artificially spiked serum gradient, the highest mean diagnostic performance was obtained by the kit then salting out and resin and last by phenol chloroform. In patients' urine samples the phenol/chloroform method showed the highest mean diagnostic performance followed by the resin and then the kit. Using patients' serum samples the resin method showed equal mean diagnostic performance with the phenol/chloroform method which was higher compared to the kit. As regards sensitivity from urine samples the resin and phenol/chloroform showed equal results using artificial gradients and patients' samples. In serum samples the resin and phenol/chloroform showed equal results using artificial gradients while the resin showed better results in patients' samples. It is recommended to extract DNA from urine samples and to use the salting out and resin as a manual DNA extraction method from patients' samples for the molecular diagnosis of

  13. Differential transcriptomic responses of Biomphalaria glabrata (Gastropoda, Mollusca) to bacteria and metazoan parasites, Schistosoma mansoni and Echinostoma paraensei (Digenea, Platyhelminthes)

    PubMed Central

    Adema, Coen M; Hanington, Patrick C.; Lun, Cheng-Man; Rosenberg, George H.; Aragon, Anthony D; Stout, Barbara A; Richard, Mara L. Lennard; Gross, Paul S.; Loker, Eric S

    2009-01-01

    A 70-mer oligonucleotide-based microarray (1152 features) that emphasizes stress and immune responses factors was constructed to study transcriptomic responses of the snail Biomphalaria glabrata to different immune challenges. In addition to sequences with relevant putative ID and Gene Ontology (GO) annotation, the array features non-immune factors and unknown B. glabrata ESTs for functional gene discovery. The transcription profiles of B. glabrata (3 biological replicates, each a pool of 5 snails) were recorded at 12 hours post wounding, exposure to Gram negative or Gram positive bacteria (Escherichia coli and Micrococcus luteus, respectively), or infection with compatible trematode parasites (S. mansoni or E. paraensei, 20 miracidia/snail), relative to controls, using universal reference RNA. The data were subjected to Significance Analysis for Microarrays (SAM), with a false positive rate (FPR) ≤10%. Wounding yielded a modest differential expression profile (27 up/21 down) with affected features mostly dissimilar from other treatments. Partially overlapping, yet distinct expression profiles were recorded from snails challenged with E. coli (83 up/20 down) or M. luteus (120 up/42 down), mostly showing up-regulation of defense and stress-related features. Significantly altered expression of selected immune features indicates that B. glabrata detects and responds differently to compatible trematodes. Echinostoma paraensei infection was associated mostly with down regulation of many (immune-) transcripts (42 up/68 down), whereas S. mansoni exposure yielded a preponderance of up-regulated features (140 up/23 down), with only few known immune genes affected. These observations may reflect the divergent strategies developed by trematodes during their evolution as specialized pathogens of snails to negate host defense responses. Clearly, the immune defenses of B. glabrata distinguish and respond differently to various immune challenges. PMID:19962194

  14. 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

  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. Phylogeography helps with investigating the building of human parasite communities.

    PubMed

    Morand, Serge

    2012-12-01

    Phylogeography of parasites and microbes is a recent field. Phylogeographic studies have been performed mostly to test three major hypotheses that are not mutually exclusive on the origins and distributions of human parasites and microbes: (1) the "out of Africa" pattern where parasites are supposed to have followed the dispersal and expansion of modern humans in and out of Africa, (2) the "domestication" pattern where parasites were captured in the domestication centres and dispersed through them and (3) the "globalization" pattern, in relation to historical and more recent trade routes. With some exceptions, such studies of human protozoans, helminths and ectoparasites are quite limited. The conclusion emphasizes the need to acquire more phylogeographic data in non-Occidental countries, and particularly in Asia where all the animal domestications took place.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. The binding of human low-density lipoproteins to the surface of schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni is inhibited by polyanions and reduces the binding of anti-schistosomal antibodies.

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, C. P.; Caulfield, J. P.

    1989-01-01

    Host molecules such as serum lipoproteins, blood group glycolipids, and histocompatibility antigens may bind to schistosomes and thereby prevent immune recognition of the parasite. This study examines the kinetics of lipoprotein binding, the ability of polyanions to inhibit lipoprotein binding, the binding of anti-schistosomal antibodies to worms that have previously bound low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and the distribution of lipoproteins bound to the parasites. Lipoproteins in human serum (HS) and purified LDL, very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL), and apolipoprotein B (apo B) in defined media were demonstrated on the surface of schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni by fluorescence and immunoelectron microscopy using a polyclonal goat anti-human apolipoprotein B antibody (anti-apo B). By fluorophotometric microscopy, lipoprotein binding began within 15 minutes and was largely completed within 3 hours of exposure. Lipoprotein binding saturated at 10% HS or 20 micrograms protein/300 microliters of purified LDL. Suramin inhibited LDL binding by 59% in a dose-dependent fashion. In the absence of LDL in the medium, 2 mM suramin dissociated 41% of bound LDL from the worm surface within 15 minutes and 10 mg/ml heparin dissociated 36%. The binding of human anti-schistosomal antibodies to schistosomula was inhibited by bound LDL. By fluorescence microscopy, serum or purified lipoproteins were distributed over the entire surface of the parasite with focal areas of high intensity. Ultrastructurally, reaction product was seen on the outer leaflet of the outer tegumental membrane and in aggregates and surrounding vesicular structures varying in diameter from 13 to 83 nm. These studies demonstrate that lipoproteins bind to the surface of schistosomula. The binding of lipoproteins is partially inhibited by polyanions, reduces the binding of human anti-schistosomal antibodies, and may help the parasite escape the immune response. Images Figure 1 Figure 9 Figure 10 PMID:2719071

  1. Interactions between parasites and microbial communities in the human gut

    PubMed Central

    Berrilli, Federica; Di Cave, David; Cavallero, Serena; D'Amelio, Stefano

    2012-01-01

    The interactions between intestinal microbiota, immune system, and pathogens describe the human gut as a complex ecosystem, where all components play a relevant role in modulating each other and in the maintenance of homeostasis. The balance among the gut microbiota and the human body appear to be crucial for health maintenance. Intestinal parasites, both protozoans and helminths, interact with the microbial community modifying the balance between host and commensal microbiota. On the other hand, gut microbiota represents a relevant factor that may strongly interfere with the pathophysiology of the infections. In addition to the function that gut commensal microbiota may have in the processes that determine the survival and the outcome of many parasitic infections, including the production of nutritive macromolecules, also probiotics can play an important role in reducing the pathogenicity of many parasites. On these bases, there is a growing interest in explaining the rationale on the possible interactions between the microbiota, immune response, inflammatory processes, and intestinal parasites. PMID:23162802

  2. Pork as a source of human parasitic infection.

    PubMed

    Djurković-Djaković, O; Bobić, B; Nikolić, A; Klun, I; Dupouy-Camet, J

    2013-07-01

    Foodborne zoonoses have been estimated to annually affect 10% of the global population, among which zoonotic parasites constitute an important class of aetiological agents. The major meatborne parasites include the protozoa Toxoplasma gondii and Sarcocystis spp., and the helminths Trichinella spp. and Taenia spp., all of which may be transmitted by pork. The significance of zoonotic parasites transmitted by pork consumption is emphasized by the prediction by the Food and Agriculture Organization of an 18.5% increase in world pork production over the next 10 years. Of all the porkborne parasites, the three 'T' parasites have been responsible for most porkborne illness throughout history; they are still endemic, and therefore are important public-health concerns, in developing countries. Although the risk of porkborne parasites, particularly helminths, may currently be considered insignificant in developed countries, the modern trend of consuming raw meat favours their re-emergence. This paper overviews the main parasites transmitted to humans by pork, and outlines the main lines of prevention.

  3. 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

  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. Ancient Human Parasites in Ethnic Chinese Populations

    PubMed Central

    Yeh, Hui-Yuan; Mitchell, Piers D.

    2016-01-01

    Whilst archaeological evidence for many aspects of life in ancient China is well studied, there has been much less interest in ancient infectious diseases, such as intestinal parasites in past Chinese populations. Here, we bring together evidence from mummies, ancient latrines, and pelvic soil from burials, dating from the Neolithic Period to the Qing Dynasty, in order to better understand the health of the past inhabitants of China and the diseases endemic in the region. Seven species of intestinal parasite have been identified, namely roundworm, whipworm, Chinese liver fluke, oriental schistosome, pinworm, Taenia sp. tapeworm, and the intestinal fluke Fasciolopsis buski. It was found that in the past, roundworm, whipworm, and Chinese liver fluke appear to have been much more common than the other species. While roundworm and whipworm remained common into the late 20th century, Chinese liver fluke seems to have undergone a marked decline in its prevalence over time. The iconic transport route known as the Silk Road has been shown to have acted as a vector for the transmission of ancient diseases, highlighted by the discovery of Chinese liver fluke in a 2,000 year-old relay station in northwest China, 1,500 km outside its endemic range. PMID:27853113

  6. IgG and IgE circulating immune complexes, total serum IgE and parasite related IgE in patients with mono- or mixed infection with Schistosoma mansoni and/or S. haematobium. Influence of therapy.

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, W J; Feldmeir, H; Bridts, C H; Daffalla, A A

    1983-01-01

    IgG and IgE containing circulating immune complexes (CIC), total serum IgE and parasite related IgE were determined in monoinfected patients with Schistosoma mansoni or S.haematobium and in patients with a mixed infection. IgE- and IgG-CIC and total serum IgE were significantly higher in the mixed infection group. There is considerable cross-reactivity between the crude S.haematobium and S.mansoni antigen preparations. The level of IgE-CIC is correlated to the levels of total serum IgE and parasite related IgE respectively. Furthermore IgE-CIC levels were related to the intensity of infection. Twelve out of 21 patients suffering from a monoinfection were reinvestigated 1-4 months after specific chemotherapy. Parasitological cure is followed by a significant decrease of total serum IgE and IgE-CIC, whereas parasite related IgE did not change significantly. The importance of the disappearance of IgE-CIC is discussed. PMID:6861371

  7. Evidence That Both Normal and Immune Elimination of Schistosoma mansoni Take Place at the Lung Stage of Migration Prior to Parasite Death

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1992-01-01

    AD-A265 56 \\1 PUBLICATION REPORT 1740 18/93 EVIDENCE THAT BOTH NORMAL AND IMMUNE ELIMINATION OFSCHISTOSOMA MANSONI TAKE PLACE AT THE LUNG STAGE OF...Anct,•,n Society Md T•pical Mcld•dm &W I1,lit EVIDENCE THAT BOTH NORMAL AND IMMUNE ELIMINATION OF SCIIISTOSOMA MANSONI TAKE PLACE AT THE LUNG STAGE OF...distribution of autoradiographic foci observed in this and previous studies following percutaneous infection with 1$Se-labeled Schistosoma mansoni

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Non-equilibrium plasma prevention of Schistosoma japonicum transmission.

    PubMed

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

    2016-10-14

    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.

  11. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-24

    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.

  13. Having a pair: the key to immune evasion for the diploid pathogen Schistosoma japonicum

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Xindong; Sun, Jun; Zhang, Jingjing; Wellems, Dianne; Qing, Xiaoxing; McCutchan, Thomas; Pan, Weiqing

    2012-01-01

    Schistosomes, unlike malaria parasites, are in their diploid stage when targeted by the human immune system. Diploids can be either homozygous or heterozygous. The difference has profound significance for developing immunity and yet has not previously been addressed. We examined the implications of zygosity on immunity to a diploid pathogen, Schistosoma japonicum and showed that the diploid state, and its associated heterozygous advantage, significantly affects the outcome of attack by the immune system and the accumulation of antigenic diversity in the parasite population. We demonstrate here that diploidy provides a novel means of immune evasion for diploid pathogens. PMID:22468230

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Molecular detection of Rickettsia amblyommii in Amblyomma americanum parasitizing humans.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ju; Yarina, Tamasin; Miller, Melissa K; Stromdahl, Ellen Y; Richards, Allen L

    2010-05-01

    A quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction assay to detect and quantify a portion of the outer membrane protein B gene (ompB) of Rickettsia amblyommii was employed to assess the threat of R. amblyommii exposure to humans parasitized by Amblyomma americanum (the lone star tick). A total of 72 pools of lone star ticks removed from humans were acquired from two collections and used in this study: 44 pools of A. americanum submitted to the Department of Defense Human Tick Test Kit Program in 2003 collected from 220 individuals from 14 states, and 28 pools of A. americanum representing 120 ticks obtained from boy scouts and adult leaders at the Boy Scouts of America National Jamboree held at Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia, in 2005. Of the 72 lone star tick pools representing 340 lone star ticks, 58 pools (80.5%) were positive for R. amblyommii. In addition, individual A. americanum ticks parasitizing humans collected as part of the Department of Defense Human Tick Test Kit Program in 2002 and 2003 from 17 states were evaluated. It was found that 244 of 367 (66.5%) individual A. americanum ticks tested positive for the presence of R. amblyommii DNA. These results clearly show that lone star ticks parasitizing humans are highly infected with R. amblyommii, which may potentiate rickettsial infection of and possibly disease in humans.

  18. Fungal, Viral, and Parasitic Pneumonias Associated with Human Immunodeficiency Virus.

    PubMed

    Skalski, Joseph H; Limper, Andrew H

    2016-04-01

    Respiratory illness is an important cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The spectrum of pulmonary disease that can affect patients with HIV is wide and includes opportunistic infection with many fungal, viral, and parasitic organisms. This article reviews the clinical presentation; approach to diagnosis; and management of fungal, viral, and parasitic pneumonias that can develop in patients with HIV including respiratory disease caused by Aspergillus, Cryptococcus, Histoplasma, Coccidioides, Cytomegalovirus, Toxoplasma, and Strongyloides. Because clinical symptoms and radiographic patterns are often insensitive at distinguishing these pulmonary infections, this review particularly focuses on specific host risk factors and diagnostic testing to consider when approaching HIV patients with respiratory illness.

  19. Mechanical transmission of human protozoan parasites by insects.

    PubMed

    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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Cloning, expression, and partial characterization of FBPA from Schistosoma japonicum, a molecule on that the fluke may develop nutrition competition and immune evasion from human.

    PubMed

    Hu, Qiping; Xie, Huiqiong; Zhu, Shuyu; Liao, Dejun; Zhan, Tingzheng; Liu, Dengyu

    2015-09-01

    Carbohydrate metabolism is the most important physiological process for Schistosoma japonicum which resides in host. However, as a key glycolytic enzyme in carbohydrate metabolism, fructose-1,6-bisphosphate aldolase (FBPA), there is no study on its enzymatic kinetics and antigenic peptides. Here, we report the gene cloning, expression, purification, and kinetics of the FBPA from S. japonicum (sjFBPA). After cloning, sjFBPA gene was introduced into pET-28a and transformed BL21, and a soluble His6-sjFBPA was expressed and purified successfully at the expected molecular mass of ~45 kDa. We first reported that the diversities in IGS regions and the features of residues position 346 and 357-362 of sjFBPA may be conferred either through conformational changes influencing easily the active site from a distance and/or causing the C-terminal region to interact directly with the active site, which lead His6-sjFBPA to exhibit a higher specific activity of 197.43 units/mg and degrades FBP with a typical substrate inhibition model and a higher efficiency of k cat  = 6261.3/s and K m  = 0.061 μM than human aldolases, which might be the strategy that S. japonicum gaining energy and surviving in its environment with low concentration of carbohydrate, and benefitting to get more metabolic substances for parasites in nutrition competition with their host. sjFBPA exhibits a high similarity of 81.46 % with that of hosts, especially in antigenic peptide regions, and 14 of 15 antigenic peptides of sjFBPA were conserved to those of human aldolase A, B, and/or C with high identity (17, 16, or 16 antigenic peptides, respectively), which may result in a molecular mimicry of FBPA with that of host, and an immune evasion from their hosts. This work would supply an experimental base for using FBPA to prevent the schistosomiasis in the future.

  6. Recent Advances in Human Protozoan Parasites of Gastrointestinal Tract

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-02-01

    frequency of oral-anal sexual contacts. No relation was seen between the presence or chance of gastrointestinal symptoms and infection with E...Lancet May 14: 1103. SPENCER MJ., CHAPIN M.R. & GARCIA L.S. 1962. Dientamoeba fragilis: A gastrointestinal protozoan infection in adults. American...ULIC EIL& p .( RECENT ADVANCES IN HUMAN PROTOZOAN PARASITES OF GASTROINTESTINAL TRACT J.H. Cross REPORT NO. CS -142 AD-A 182 878 ,ji.. ELECTE JULS j

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Haem uptake is essential for egg production in the haematophagous blood fluke of humans, Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Toh, Shu Qin; Gobert, Geoffrey N; Malagón Martínez, David; Jones, Malcolm K

    2015-09-01

    Schistosomes ingest host erythrocytes, liberating large quantities of haem. Despite its toxicity, haem is an essential factor for numerous biological reactions, and may be an important iron source for these helminths. We used a fluorescence haem analogue, palladium mesoporphyrin, to investigate pathways of haem acquisition, and showed that palladium mesoporphyrin accumulates in the vitellaria (eggshell precursor glands) and ovary of female Schistosoma mansoni. Furthermore, incubation of adult females in 10-100 μm cyclosporin A (IC50 = 2.3 μm) inhibits the uptake of palladium mesoporphyrin to these tissues, with tenfold reductions in fluorescence intensity of the ovary. In vitro exposure to cyclosporin A resulted in significant perturbation of egg production, reducing egg output from 34 eggs per female to 5.7 eggs per female over the incubation period, and retardation of egg development. We characterized a S. mansoni homologue of the haem-responsive genes of Caenorhabditis elegans. The gene (Smhrg-1) encodes a protein with a molecular weight of approximately 17 kDa. SmHRG-1 was able to rescue growth in haem transport-deficient HEM1Δ yeast. Transcriptional suppression of Smhrg-1 in adult S. mansoni worms resulted in significant delay in egg maturation, with 47% of eggs from transcriptionally suppressed worms being identified as immature compared with only 27% of eggs laid by control worms treated with firefly luciferase. Our findings indicate the presence of transmembrane haem transporters in schistosomes, with a high abundance of these molecules being present in tissues involved in oogenesis.

  10. Molecular identification of Schistosoma mattheei from feces of Kinda (Papio cynocephalus kindae) and grayfoot baboons (Papio ursinus griseipes) in Zambia.

    PubMed

    Weyher, Anna H; Phillips-Conroy, Jane E; Fischer, Kerstin; Weil, Gary J; Chansa, Wilbroad; Fischer, Peter U

    2010-02-01

    Terminal-spined Schistosoma sp. eggs were detected in several groups of baboons living in Kafue National Park in central Zambia. A total of 166 fecal samples was screened; egg prevalence overall ranged between 7% and 10%, while infection intensities were low. Formalin-fixed eggs had an average length of 144.5 microm and a breadth of 48.3 microm, but the schistosome species could not be unambiguously identified by size or morphology. We used molecular methods to definitively identify the parasite species. Parasite DNA was amplified from stools by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Sequence analysis of fragments of the first internal transcribed spacer (ITS-1), mitochondrial 12S rDNA, NADH dehydrogenase subunit 6 (nad6), and cytochrome C oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) from 3 egg-positive samples revealed the presence of S. mattheei in these samples. This is the first molecular identification of S. mattheei from free-ranging baboons. Schistosoma mattheei is typically a parasite of bovids, but it can also infect humans. Schistosoma mattheei in baboons in Zambia may affect other wildlife species and humans that live in close proximity to baboons.

  11. Ape parasite origins of human malaria virulence genes

    PubMed Central

    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

  12. Genome sequence of the stramenopile Blastocystis, a human anaerobic parasite

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Blastocystis is a highly prevalent anaerobic eukaryotic parasite of humans and animals that is associated with various gastrointestinal and extraintestinal disorders. Epidemiological studies have identified different subtypes but no one subtype has been definitively correlated with disease. Results Here we report the 18.8 Mb genome sequence of a Blastocystis subtype 7 isolate, which is the smallest stramenopile genome sequenced to date. The genome is highly compact and contains intriguing rearrangements. Comparisons with other available stramenopile genomes (plant pathogenic oomycete and diatom genomes) revealed effector proteins potentially involved in the adaptation to the intestinal environment, which were likely acquired via horizontal gene transfer. Moreover, Blastocystis living in anaerobic conditions harbors mitochondria-like organelles. An incomplete oxidative phosphorylation chain, a partial Krebs cycle, amino acid and fatty acid metabolisms and an iron-sulfur cluster assembly are all predicted to occur in these organelles. Predicted secretory proteins possess putative activities that may alter host physiology, such as proteases, protease-inhibitors, immunophilins and glycosyltransferases. This parasite also possesses the enzymatic machinery to tolerate oxidative bursts resulting from its own metabolism or induced by the host immune system. Conclusions This study provides insights into the genome architecture of this unusual stramenopile. It also proposes candidate genes with which to study the physiopathology of this parasite and thus may lead to further investigations into Blastocystis-host interactions. PMID:21439036

  13. Heritability of the Human Infectious Reservoir of Malaria Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Marrama, Laurence; Konate, Lassana; Phimpraphi, Waraphon; Sokhna, Cheikh; Tall, Adama; Diène Sarr, Fatoumata; Peerapittayamongkol, Chayanon; Louicharoen, Chalisa; Schneider, Bradley S.; Levescot, Anaïs; Talman, Arthur; Casademont, Isabelle; Menard, Didier; Trape, Jean-François; Rogier, Christophe; Kaewkunwal, Jaranit; Sura, Thanyachai; Nuchprayoon, Issarang; Ariey, Frederic; Baril, Laurence; Singhasivanon, Pratap; Mercereau-Puijalon, Odile; Paul, Rick

    2010-01-01

    Background Studies on human genetic factors associated with malaria have hitherto concentrated on their role in susceptibility to and protection from disease. In contrast, virtually no attention has been paid to the role of human genetics in eliciting the production of parasite transmission stages, the gametocytes, and thus enhancing the spread of disease. Methods and Findings We analysed four longitudinal family-based cohort studies from Senegal and Thailand followed for 2–8 years and evaluated the relative impact of the human genetic and non-genetic factors on gametocyte production in infections of Plasmodium falciparum or P. vivax. Prevalence and density of gametocyte carriage were evaluated in asymptomatic and symptomatic infections by examination of Giemsa-stained blood smears and/or RT-PCR (for falciparum in one site). A significant human genetic contribution was found to be associated with gametocyte prevalence in asymptomatic P. falciparum infections. By contrast, there was no heritability associated with the production of gametocytes for P. falciparum or P. vivax symptomatic infections. Sickle cell mutation, HbS, was associated with increased gametocyte prevalence but its contribution was small. Conclusions The existence of a significant human genetic contribution to gametocyte prevalence in asymptomatic infections suggests that candidate gene and genome wide association approaches may be usefully applied to explore the underlying human genetics. Prospective epidemiological studies will provide an opportunity to generate novel and perhaps more epidemiologically pertinent gametocyte data with which similar analyses can be performed and the role of human genetics in parasite transmission ascertained. PMID:20613877

  14. 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.

  15. Tissue Degeneration following Loss of Schistosoma mansoni cbp1 Is Associated with Increased Stem Cell Proliferation and Parasite Death In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Collins, Julie N. R.; Collins, James J.

    2016-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is second only to malaria in terms of the global impact among diseases caused by parasites. A striking feature of schistosomes are their ability to thrive in their hosts for decades. We have previously demonstrated that stem cells, called neoblasts, promote homeostatic tissue maintenance in adult schistosomes and suggested these cells likely contribute to parasite longevity. Whether these schistosome neoblasts have functions independent of homeostatic tissue maintenance, for example in processes such as tissue regeneration following injury, remains unexplored. Here we characterize the schistosome CBP/p300 homolog, Sm-cbp1. We found that depleting cbp1 transcript levels with RNA interference (RNAi) resulted in increased neoblast proliferation and cell death, eventually leading to organ degeneration. Based on these observations we speculated this increased rate of neoblast proliferation may be a response to mitigate tissue damage due to increased cell death. Therefore, we tested if mechanical injury was sufficient to stimulate neoblast proliferation. We found that mechanical injury induced both cell death and neoblast proliferation at wound sites, suggesting that schistosome neoblasts are capable of mounting proliferative responses to injury. Furthermore, we observed that the health of cbp1(RNAi) parasites progressively declined during the course of our in vitro experiments. To determine the fate of cbp1(RNAi) parasites in the context of a mammalian host, we coupled RNAi with an established technique to transplant schistosomes into the mesenteric veins of uninfected mice. We found transplanted cbp1(RNAi) parasites were cleared from vasculature of recipient mice and were incapable of inducing measurable pathology in their recipient hosts. Together our data suggest that injury is sufficient to induce neoblast proliferation and that cbp1 is essential for parasite survival in vivo. These studies present a new methodology to study schistosome gene function

  16. An In-Depth Analysis of a Piece of Shit: Distribution of Schistosoma mansoni and Hookworm Eggs in Human Stool

    PubMed Central

    Krauth, Stefanie J.; Coulibaly, Jean T.; Knopp, Stefanie; Traoré, Mahamadou; N'Goran, Eliézer K.; Utzinger, Jürg

    2012-01-01

    Background An accurate diagnosis of helminth infection is important to improve patient management. However, there is considerable intra- and inter-specimen variation of helminth egg counts in human feces. Homogenization of stool samples has been suggested to improve diagnostic accuracy, but there are no detailed investigations. Rapid disintegration of hookworm eggs constitutes another problem in epidemiological surveys. We studied the spatial distribution of Schistosoma mansoni and hookworm eggs in stool samples, the effect of homogenization, and determined egg counts over time in stool samples stored under different conditions. Methodology Whole-stool samples were collected from 222 individuals in a rural part of south Côte d'Ivoire. Samples were cut into four pieces and helminth egg locations from the front to the back and from the center to the surface were analyzed. Some samples were homogenized and fecal egg counts (FECs) compared before and after homogenization. The effect of stool storing methods on FECs was investigated over time, comparing stool storage on ice, covering stool samples with a water-soaked tissue, or keeping stool samples in the shade. Principal Findings We found no clear spatial pattern of S. mansoni and hookworm eggs in fecal samples. Homogenization decreased S. mansoni FECs (p = 0.026), while no effect was observed for hookworm and other soil-transmitted helminths. Hookworm FECs decreased over time. Storing stool samples on ice or covered with a moist tissue slowed down hookworm egg decay (p<0.005). Conclusions/Significance Our findings have important implications for helminth diagnosis at the individual patient level and for epidemiological surveys, anthelmintic drug efficacy studies and monitoring of control programs. Specifically, homogenization of fecal samples is recommended for an accurate detection of S. mansoni eggs, while keeping collected stool samples cool and moist delayed the disintegration of hookworm eggs. PMID:23285307

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-05-01

    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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Mosquitoes as Potential Bridge Vectors of Malaria Parasites from Non-Human Primates to Humans

    PubMed Central

    Verhulst, Niels O.; Smallegange, Renate C.; Takken, Willem

    2012-01-01

    Malaria is caused by Plasmodium parasites which are transmitted by mosquitoes. Until recently, human malaria was considered to be caused by human-specific Plasmodium species. Studies on Plasmodium parasites in non-human primates (NHPs), however, have identified parasite species in gorillas and chimpanzees that are closely related to human Plasmodium species. Moreover, P. knowlesi, long known as a parasite of monkeys, frequently infects humans. The requirements for such a cross-species exchange and especially the role of mosquitoes in this process are discussed, as the latter may act as bridge vectors of Plasmodium species between different primates. Little is known about the mosquito species that would bite both humans and NHPs and if so, whether humans and NHPs share the same Plasmodium vectors. To understand the vector-host interactions that can lead to an increased Plasmodium transmission between species, studies are required that reveal the nature of these interactions. Studying the potential role of NHPs as a Plasmodium reservoir for humans will contribute to the ongoing efforts of human malaria elimination, and will help to focus on critical areas that should be considered in achieving this goal. PMID:22701434

  1. Migration and survival of gamma-irradiated Schistosoma mansoni larvae and the duration of host-parasite contact in relation to the induction of resistance in mice

    SciTech Connect

    Mangold, B.L.; Dean, D.A.

    1984-01-01

    The migration in mice of 20-, 50-, and 90-krad /sup 60/Co-irradiated Schistosoma mansoni larvae, biosynthetically radioisotope labeled with /sup 75/Se-selenomethionine, was evaluated by autoradiography of compressed tissues and compared to the migration of non-irradiated 75 Se-labeled larvae. By day 8 over 90% of both non-irradiated and 20 krad-irradiated organisms were located in the lungs. In contrast to non-irradiated organisms, however, only a small proportion of 20-krad organisms migrated to the liver. The delay in migration between skin and lungs was more pronounced with 50-krad-irradiated schistosomula. No more than an occasional 50-krad-irradiated organism was ever detected in the liver. In three experiments, over 85% of the 90-krad-irradiated organisms were retained in the skin; in a fourth experiment about half of the 90-krad-irradiated organisms migrated as far as the lungs. Only an occasional 90-krad organism was ever detected in the liver. In three experiments, over 85% of the 90 Krad.-irradiated organisms were retained in the skin, in a fourth experiment about half of the 90 Krad.-irradiated organisms migrated as far as the lungs. Only an occasional 90 Krad. organism was ever detected in the liver. Removal of the skin exposure site within the first 4 days of immunization with either 50- or 90-krad-irradiated cercariae completely blocked the induction of resistance. Removal between the 4th and the 6th days gave variable results.

  2. Susceptibility of Iraqi fresh water snails to infection with Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni Egyptian strains.

    PubMed

    Wajdi, N A; Hussain, W I; El-Hawary, M F

    1979-01-01

    A great number of Egyptian workers and farmers are seeking settlement in Iraq and some of them proved to have either Schistosoma Haematobium (S.h.) or Schistosoma mansoni (S.m) or even mixed infection. Besides, there is the possibility that some of the Iraqi fresh water snails may prove to be susceptible to infection by one or both of the Schistosoma Egyptian strains. The present study deals with investigations on the susceptibility of Iraqi B. truncatus, Gyranaulus ehrenbergi, Physa c.f. fontinalis, Lymnea lagetis, Melanoides tuberculata and Melanopsis nodes by these parasites. Egyptian S. haematobium but not Egyptian S. mansoni infect Iraqi B. truncatus and both proved to be unable to infect any of the other snails included in the study. Yet, the number of cercariae shedded by B. truncatus snails infected with the Egyptian S. haematobium strain, was much less that the number of cercariae shedded by these snails when infected with the Iraqi S. Haematobium strain.

  3. Schistosoma mansoni cercariae swim efficiently by exploiting an elastohydrodynamic coupling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krishnamurthy, Deepak; Katsikis, Georgios; Bhargava, Arjun; Prakash, Manu

    2016-10-01

    The motility of many parasites is critical for infecting their host, as exemplified in the transmission cycle of the parasite Schistosoma mansoni. In its human infectious stage, submillimetre-scale forms of the parasite known as cercariae swim in freshwater and infect humans by penetrating the skin. This infection causes schistosomiasis, a disease comparable to malaria in global socio-economic impact. Given that cercariae do not feed and hence have a lifetime of around 12 hours, efficient motility is crucial for schistosomiasis transmission. Despite this, a first-principles understanding of how cercariae swim is lacking. Combining biological experiments, a novel theoretical model and its robotic realization, we show that cercariae use their forked tail to swim against gravity using a novel swimming gait, described here as a `T-swimmer gait'. During this gait, cercariae beat their tail periodically while maintaining an increased flexibility near their posterior and anterior ends. This flexibility allows an interaction between fluid drag and bending resistance--an elastohydrodynamic coupling, to naturally break time-reversal symmetry and enable locomotion at small length scales. Finally, we find that cercariae maintain this flexibility at an optimal regime for efficient swimming. We anticipate that our work sets the ground for linking the swimming of cercariae to disease transmission, and could potentially enable explorations of novel strategies for schistosomiasis control and prevention.

  4. High genetic variability of Schistosoma haematobium in Mali and Nigeria.

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-01

    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.

  5. 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.

  6. Proteomic Study of Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium Vivax Liver Stages for Development of Vaccines and Drugs

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-10-02

    Proteomic Study of Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium Vivax Liver Stages for Development of Vaccines and Drugs PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Dr...AND SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Proteomic Study of Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium Vivax 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-07-2-0090 Liver Stages...3. Production of sporozoite and preparation for transcriptome and proteomic analysis: Sporozoites harvested from salivary gland, haemolymph

  7. 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...

  8. Schistosoma mansoni Infection of Mice, Rats and Humans Elicits a Strong Antibody Response to a Limited Number of Reduction-Sensitive Epitopes on Five Major Tegumental Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Tremblay, Jacqueline M.; Oliveira, Sergio C.; Da’dara, Akram A.; Skelly, Patrick J.

    2017-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a major disease of the developing world for which no vaccine has been successfully commercialized. While numerous Schistosoma mansoni worm antigens have been identified that elicit antibody responses during natural infections, little is known as to the identities of the schistosome antigens that are most prominently recognized by antibodies generated through natural infection. Non-reducing western blots probed with serum from schistosome-infected mice, rats and humans on total extracts of larval or adult schistosomes revealed that a small number of antigen bands predominate in all cases. Recognition of each of these major bands was lost when the blots were run under reducing condition. We expressed a rationally selected group of schistosome tegumental membrane antigens in insect host cells, and used the membrane extracts of these cells to unambiguously identify the major antigens recognized by S. mansoni infected mouse, rat and human serum. These results revealed that a limited number of dominant, reduction-sensitive conformational epitopes on five major tegumental surface membrane proteins: SmTsp2, Sm23, Sm29, SmLy6B and SmLy6F, are primary targets of mouse, rat and human S. mansoni infection sera antibodies. We conclude that, Schistosoma mansoni infection of both permissive (mouse) and non-permissive (rat) rodent models, as well as humans, elicit a dominant antibody response recognizing a limited number of conformational epitopes on the same five tegumental membrane proteins. Thus it appears that neither infecting schistosomula nor mature adult schistosomes are substantively impacted by the robust circulating anti-tegumental antibody response they elicit to these antigens. Importantly, our data suggest a need to re-evaluate host immune responses to many schistosome antigens and has important implications regarding schistosome immune evasion mechanisms and schistosomiasis vaccine development. PMID:28095417

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Genetic diversity and population structure of Schistosoma mansoni within human infra-populations in Mwea, central Kenya assessed by microsatellite markers

    PubMed Central

    Agola, L. E.; Steinauer, M. L.; Mburu, D. N.; Mungai, B.N.; Mwangi, I.N.; Magoma, G.N.; Loker, E. S.; Mkoji, G. M.

    2009-01-01

    A recently developed high-throughput technique that allows multi-locus microsatellite analysis of individual miracidia of Schistosoma mansoni was used to assess the levels of genetic diversity and population structure in 12 infrapopulations of the parasite, each infrapopulation derived from an infected school child from the Mwea area, central Kenya. The mean number of alleles per locus was in the range 8.22 – 10.22, expected heterozygosity in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium was 0.68 – 0.70, and pair wise FST values ranged from 0.16 −3.98% for the 12 infrapopulations. Although the genetic diversity within each infrapopulation of S. mansoni in this area was generally high, low levels of genetic structure were observed, suggestive of high levels of gene flow among infrapopulations. Private alleles were found in 8 of the 12 infrapopulation, the highest number of private alleles recorded per infrapopulation was 3. Our data suggest that the level of gene flow among infrapopulations of S. mansoni in Mwea is extremely high thus, providing opportunity for spread of rare alleles, including those that may confer character traits such as drug resistance and virulence. PMID:19427295

  12. Trace elements in the human scalp hair and finger nails as affected by infection with Schistosoma mansoni

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Khatib, Ahmed M.; Bahnassy, Ahmed A.; Denton, M.

    1995-01-01

    The concentration of 13 elements has been determined in finger nail and scalp hair of 4 groups representing normal and infected Schistosoma mansoni subjects. Samples were irradiated by thermal neutrons from a Triga Mark III Reactor, for 10 min. Measurements were made using a HPGe detector coupled with ADC and PDP {11}/{34} data processing equipment. The results showed significant increases of Al, Cl, I and Br in both finger nails and scalp hair of bilharzial patients above those of normal subjects while Mg, Ca, V, Mn, Cu, Sr, K, S and Na showed significant decreases. Most of the elements showed a higher concentration in finger nails than in hair.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

    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

    2015-05-01

    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 are endemic for

  16. HOW HUMAN HISTORY HAS INFLUENCED GEOGRAPHY AND GENETICS OF PARASITE POPULATIONS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Human beings have radically altered agricultural landscapes, establishing a limited repertoire of plants and animals over vast expanses. Here, I consider what impact such a history may have had on the distribution and diversity of animal parasite, hypothesizing that certain parasites may have been '...

  17. Microsatellite markers for the human nematode parasite Ascaris lumbricoides: development and assessment of utility.

    PubMed

    Criscione, Charles D; Anderson, Joel D; Raby, Kyle; Sudimack, Dan; Subedi, Janardan; Rai, Dev R; Upadhayay, Ram P; Jha, Bharat; Williams-Blangero, Sarah; Anderson, Timothy J C

    2007-06-01

    We describe 35 microsatellite markers from the human parasitic nematode Ascaris lumbricoides. We found 7 sex-linked markers and demonstrate that 26 autosomal loci can be scored reliably. These markers have high genetic variability and provide the tools to address multiple questions concerning the epidemiology, fine-scale genetic structure, host specificity, and mating systems of this parasite.

  18. Lactate retards the development of erythrocytic stages of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Hikosaka, Kenji; Hirai, Makoto; Komatsuya, Keisuke; Ono, Yasuo; Kita, Kiyoshi

    2015-06-01

    The intraerythrocytic form of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum relies on glycolysis for its energy requirements. In glycolysis, lactate is an end product. It is therefore known that lactate accumulates in in vitro culture; however, its influence on parasite growth remains unknown. Here we investigated the effect of lactate on the development of P. falciparum during in vitro culture under lactate supplementation in detail. Results revealed that lactate retarded parasite development and reduced the number of merozoites in the schizont stage. These findings suggest that lactate has the potential to affect parasite development.

  19. 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

  20. Of men in mice: the success and promise of humanized mouse models for human malaria parasite infections

    PubMed Central

    Kaushansky, Alexis; Mikolajczak, Sebastian A.; Vignali, Marissa; Kappe, Stefan H.I.

    2014-01-01

    Forty percent of people worldwide are at risk of malaria infection, and despite control efforts it remains the most deadly parasitic disease. Unfortunately, rapid discovery and development of new interventions for malaria are hindered by the lack of small animal models that support the complex life cycles of the main parasite species infecting humans. Such tools must accommodate human parasite tropism for human tissue. Mouse models with human tissue developed to date have already enhanced our knowledge of human parasites, and are useful tools for assessing anti-parasitic interventions. Although these systems are imperfect, their continued refinement will likely broaden their utility. Some of the malaria parasite’s interactions with human hepatocytes and human erythrocytes can already be modeled with available humanized mouse systems. However, interactions with other relevant human tissues such as the skin and immune system, as well as most transitions between life cycle stages in vivo will require refinement of existing humanized mouse models. Here, we review the recent successes achieved in modeling human malaria parasite biology in humanized mice, and discuss how these models have potential to become an valuable part of the toolbox used for understanding the biology of, and development of interventions to, malaria. PMID:24506682

  1. Human intestinal parasites in primary school children in Kampala, Uganda.

    PubMed

    Kabatereine, N B; Kemijumbi, J; Kazibwe, F; Onapa, A W

    1997-05-01

    A cross sectional survey on intestinal parasite infections was carried out in 5,313 pupils between the ages of ten and fifteen years in 98 primary schools in Kampala. The aim was to identify the types and distribution of intestinal parasites and to estimate the prevalence in school children. Trichuris trichiura (28%), Ascaris lumbricoides (17%) and hookworms (12.9%) were common infections among the children. Other less commonly found parasites were S.mansoni, Strongyloides stercolaris, Taenia sp, Enterobius vermicularis, Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba coli and E. histolytica. Refuse dumps are probably a significant source of transmission of intestinal helminthic infections in Kampala.

  2. 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

  3. Unexpected urinary Schistosoma infection in a Belgian travel group returning from Malawi.

    PubMed

    Oyaert, M; Lagrange, W; Smet, G; De Feyter, K; Laffut, W

    2013-01-01

    Urinary schistosomiasis, caused by Schistosoma haematobium, is a prevalent parasitic infection in certain areas of Africa and the Middle East. Humans can be infected by cercariae when they are in contact with contaminated freshwater. The adult worms reside in the veins of the vesical and pelvis plexuses. The urinary bladder, the seminal vesicles and the lower ends of the ureters are the most commonly affected organs. In this case report, we describe an unrecognised case of urinary schistosomiasis in a woman who was part of a Belgian travel group; two other patients out of eight were also infected. In Belgium, the number of reported cases of S. haematobium infection is limited. The aim of this report is to emphasize this parasitic infection should be suspected in patients who travel to endemic areas.

  4. 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

  5. The role of insects in mechanical transmission of zoonotic human parasites.

    PubMed

    El-Sherbini, Gehad T; Khalil, Hazem H M

    2010-12-01

    Arthropods can be found on human or animals as ecto-parasites as well as endo-parasites. The ecto-parasites or vectors can contaminate stored foods and transmit illness, or introduced diseases in new area. Pet species facilitating infestations, and different risk factors related to infestation were identified. Insect prevention and control is necessary to prevent the transmission of pathogens that could affect animal and human health and the maintenance of good hygiene. We conclude that although biological control looks promising, more research should be done concerning its side effects. Currently, optimal monitoring and prevention seem to offer the best solution.

  6. Analysis of cDNA encoding the hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HGPRTase) of Schistosoma mansoni; a putative target for chemotherapy.

    PubMed Central

    Craig, S P; McKerrow, J H; Newport, G R; Wang, C C

    1988-01-01

    Because of the lack of de novo purine biosynthesis, hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HGPRTase) is a critical enzyme in the purine metabolic pathway of the human parasite, Schistosoma mansoni. Using a cDNA clone encoding mouse HGPRTase and subsequently a synthetic oligonucleotide derived from sequencing a clone of genomic DNA, two clones were isolated from an adult schistosome cDNA library. One clone is 1.374 Kilobases (Kb) long and has an open reading frame of 693 bases. The deduced 231 amino acid sequence has 47.9% identity in a 217 amino acid overlap with human HGPRTase. Northern blot analysis indicates that the full length of mRNA for the S. mansoni HGPRTase is 1.45-1.6 Kb. Analysis of the primary structures of the putative active site for human and parasite enzymes reveal specific differences which may eventually be exploitable in the design of drugs for the treatment of schistosomiasis. Images PMID:3136439

  7. 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

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

    2015-04-01

    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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Proteomics of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Sims, Paul F G; Hyde, John E

    2006-02-01

    The lethal species of malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, continues to exact a huge toll of mortality and morbidity, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Completion of the genome sequence of this organism and advances in proteomics and mass spectrometry have opened up unprecedented opportunities for understanding the complex biology of this parasite and how it responds to drug challenge and other interventions. This review describes recent progress that has been made in applying proteomics technology to this important pathogen and provides a look forward to likely future developments.

  12. Excretion/secretion products from Schistosoma mansoni adults, eggs and schistosomula have unique peptidase specificity profiles

    PubMed Central

    Dvořák, Jan; Fajtová, Pavla; Ulrychová, Lenka; Leontovyč, Adrian; Rojo-Arreola, Liliana; Suzuki, Brian M.; Horn, Martin; Mareš, Michael; Craik, Charles S.; Caffrey, Conor R.; O’Donoghue, Anthony J.

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is one of a number of chronic helminth diseases of poverty that severely impact personal and societal well-being and productivity. Peptidases (proteases) are vital to successful parasitism, and can modulate host physiology and immunology. Interference of peptidase action by specific drugs or vaccines can be therapeutically beneficial. To date, research on peptidases in the schistosome parasite has focused on either the functional characterization of individual peptidases or their annotation as part of global genome or transcriptome studies. We were interested in functionally characterizing the complexity of peptidase activity operating at the host-parasite interface, therefore the excretory-secretory products of key developmental stages of Schistosoma mansoni that parasitize the human were examined. Using class specific peptidase inhibitors in combination with a multiplex substrate profiling assay, a number of unique activities derived from endo- and exo-peptidases were revealed in the excretory-secretory products of schistosomula (larval migratory worms), adults and eggs. The data highlight the complexity of the functional degradome for each developmental stage of this parasite and facilitate further enquiry to establish peptidase identity, physiological and immunological function, and utility as drug or vaccine candidates. PMID:26409899

  13. Excretion/secretion products from Schistosoma mansoni adults, eggs and schistosomula have unique peptidase specificity profiles.

    PubMed

    Dvořák, Jan; Fajtová, Pavla; Ulrychová, Lenka; Leontovyč, Adrian; Rojo-Arreola, Liliana; Suzuki, Brian M; Horn, Martin; Mareš, Michael; Craik, Charles S; Caffrey, Conor R; O'Donoghue, Anthony J

    2016-03-01

    Schistosomiasis is one of a number of chronic helminth diseases of poverty that severely impact personal and societal well-being and productivity. Peptidases (proteases) are vital to successful parasitism, and can modulate host physiology and immunology. Interference of peptidase action by specific drugs or vaccines can be therapeutically beneficial. To date, research on peptidases in the schistosome parasite has focused on either the functional characterization of individual peptidases or their annotation as part of global genome or transcriptome studies. We were interested in functionally characterizing the complexity of peptidase activity operating at the host-parasite interface, therefore the excretory-secretory products of key developmental stages of Schistosoma mansoni that parasitize the human were examined. Using class specific peptidase inhibitors in combination with a multiplex substrate profiling assay, a number of unique activities derived from endo- and exo-peptidases were revealed in the excretory-secretory products of schistosomula (larval migratory worms), adults and eggs. The data highlight the complexity of the functional degradome for each developmental stage of this parasite and facilitate further enquiry to establish peptidase identity, physiological and immunological function, and utility as drug or vaccine candidates.

  14. 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

  15. 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).

  16. Crystal Structure of Schistosoma mansoni Adenosine Phosphorylase/5’-Methylthioadenosine Phosphorylase and Its Importance on Adenosine Salvage Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Torini, Juliana Roberta; Brandão-Neto, José; DeMarco, Ricardo; Pereira, Humberto D'Muniz

    2016-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni do not have de novo purine pathways and rely on purine salvage for their purine supply. It has been demonstrated that, unlike humans, the S. mansoni is able to produce adenine directly from adenosine, although the enzyme responsible for this activity was unknown. In the present work we show that S. mansoni 5´-deoxy-5´-methylthioadenosine phosphorylase (MTAP, E.C. 2.4.2.28) is capable of use adenosine as a substrate to the production of adenine. Through kinetics assays, we show that the Schistosoma mansoni MTAP (SmMTAP), unlike the mammalian MTAP, uses adenosine substrate with the same efficiency as MTA phosphorolysis, which suggests that this enzyme is part of the purine pathway salvage in S. mansoni and could be a promising target for anti-schistosoma therapies. Here, we present 13 SmMTAP structures from the wild type (WT), including three single and one double mutant, and generate a solid structural framework for structure description. These crystal structures of SmMTAP reveal that the active site contains three substitutions within and near the active site when compared to it mammalian counterpart, thus opening up the possibility of developing specific inhibitors to the parasite MTAP. The structural and kinetic data for 5 substrates reveal the structural basis for this interaction, providing substract for inteligent design of new compounds for block this enzyme activity. PMID:27935959

  17. Genome sequencing of chimpanzee malaria parasites reveals possible pathways of adaptation to human hosts.

    PubMed

    Otto, Thomas D; Rayner, Julian C; Böhme, Ulrike; Pain, Arnab; Spottiswoode, Natasha; Sanders, Mandy; Quail, Michael; Ollomo, Benjamin; Renaud, François; Thomas, Alan W; Prugnolle, Franck; Conway, David J; Newbold, Chris; Berriman, Matthew

    2014-09-09

    Plasmodium falciparum causes most human malaria deaths, having prehistorically evolved from parasites of African Great Apes. Here we explore the genomic basis of P. falciparum adaptation to human hosts by fully sequencing the genome of the closely related chimpanzee parasite species P. reichenowi, and obtaining partial sequence data from a more distantly related chimpanzee parasite (P. gaboni). The close relationship between P. reichenowi and P. falciparum is emphasized by almost complete conservation of genomic synteny, but against this strikingly conserved background we observe major differences at loci involved in erythrocyte invasion. The organization of most virulence-associated multigene families, including the hypervariable var genes, is broadly conserved, but P. falciparum has a smaller subset of rif and stevor genes whose products are expressed on the infected erythrocyte surface. Genome-wide analysis identifies other loci under recent positive selection, but a limited number of changes at the host-parasite interface may have mediated host switching.

  18. Human intestinal parasites in non-biting synanthropic flies in Ogun State, Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Adenusi, Adedotun Adesegun; Adewoga, Thomas O Sunday

    2013-01-01

    Filth-feeding and breeding, non-biting synanthropic flies have been incriminated in the dissemination of human enteropathogens in the environment. This study determined the species of non-biting synanthropic flies associated with four filthy sites in Ilishan, Ogun State, southwest Nigeria, and assessed their potentials for mechanical transmission of human intestinal parasites. 7190 flies identified as Musca domestica (33.94%), Chrysomya megacephala (26.01%), Musca sorbens (23.23%), Lucilia cuprina (8.76%), Calliphora vicina (4.59%), Sarcophaga sp. (2.78%) and Fannia scalaris (0.70%) were examined for human intestinal parasites by the formol-ether concentration and modified Ziehl-Neelsen techniques. Eggs of the following parasites: Ascaris lumbricoides (34.08%), Trichuris trichiura (25.87%), hookworms (20.45%), Taenia sp. (2.36%), Hymenolepis nana (1.11%), Enterobius vermicularis (0.56%), Strongyloides stercoralis (larvae; 3.89%) and cysts of Entamoeba histolytica/dispar (27.26%), Entamoeba coli (22.67%), Giardia lamblia (3.34%) and Cryptosporidium sp. (1.81%) were isolated from the body surfaces and or gut contents of 75.24% of 719 pooled fly batches. The helminths A. lumbricoides and T. trichiura and the protozoans, E. histolytica/dispar and E. coli were the dominant parasites detected, both on body surfaces and in the gut contents of flies. C. megacephala was the highest carrier of parasites (diversity and number). More parasites were isolated from the gut than from body surfaces (P < 0.05). Flies from soiled ground often carried more parasites than those from abattoir, garbage or open-air market. Synanthropic fly species identified in this study can be of potential epidemiological importance as mechanical transmitters of human intestinal parasites acquired naturally from filth and carried on their body surfaces and or in the gut, because of their vagility and feeding mechanisms.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Thermostability of heterophile antibodies from human sera infected with Schistosoma mansoni and geo-helminths. An immuno-metric statistical analysis.

    PubMed

    Chamone, Munir; Atuncar, Gregorio S; Coelho, Paulo Marcos Zech

    2006-01-01

    Antibody in human sera that induces lysis of sheep erythrocytes in hemolytic assay was investigated. The present study showed that the presence in serum of the thermostable cytolytic anti-sheep red blood cells antibodies is dependent on the Schistosoma mansoni infection, and this is more frequent in adults than in children. The thermostable characteristic of hemolysins in normal sera was not dependent on the presence of Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura or hookworm geo-helminths. Further, thermostable complement-activating heterophile antibodies were noticed in children in association with massive number of S. mansoni eggs. The results were obtained by using the z- and the chi-square tests. The z-test allows us to formulate a one-sided alternative, i.e., a tendency of one of the attributes. On the other hand, the chi-square test analyzes the independence between attributes by using a contingency table. Besides the obtained results being interesting in the field of schistosomiasis mansoni, they can provide a new insight into the use of statistics in medical science.

  2. Molecular diagnosis of infections and resistance in veterinary and human parasites.

    PubMed

    Hunt, Peter W

    2011-08-04

    demonstrated, then qualities such as drug resistance, strain divergence, virulence, and origin of isolates could be inferred by DNA-based tests. No such tests are in clinical or commercial use in parasitology and few tests are available for other organisms. Why have DNA-based tests not had a bigger impact in veterinary and human medicine? To explore this question, technological, biological, economic and sociological factors must be considered. Additionally, a realistic expectation of research progress is needed. DNA-based tests could enhance parasite management in many ways, but patience, persistence and dedication will be needed to achieve this goal.

  3. 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

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

    PubMed

    Dantas-Torres, Filipe; Otranto, Domenico

    2014-01-14

    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.

  5. Construction and characterization of a Schistosoma mansoni bacterial artificial chromosome library.

    PubMed

    Le Paslier, M C; Pierce, R J; Merlin, F; Hirai, H; Wu, W; Williams, D L; Johnston, D; LoVerde, P T; Le Paslier, D

    2000-04-15

    A bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library has been established from genomic DNA isolated from the trematode parasite of human, Schistosoma mansoni. This library consists of more than 21,000 recombinant clones carrying inserts in the pBeloBAC11 vector. The mean insert size was 100 kb, representing an approximate 7.95-fold genome coverage. Library screening with eight chromosome-specific or single-copy gene probes yielded between 1 and 9 positive clones, and none of those tested was absent from the library. End sequences were obtained for 93 randomly selected clones, and 37 showed sequence identity to S. mansoni sequences (ESTs, genes, or repetitive sequences). A preliminary analysis by fluorescence in situ hybridization localized 8 clones on schistosome chromosomes 1 (2 clones), 2, 3, 5, Z, and W (3 clones). This library provides a new resource for the physical mapping and sequencing of the genome of this important human pathogen.

  6. Genetic determinism of parasitic circadian periodicity and subperiodicity in human lymphatic filariasis.

    PubMed

    Pichon, Gaston; Treuil, Jean-Pierre

    2004-12-01

    The larval parasites of the pantropical lymphatic filariasis exhibit two types of circadian behaviour. Typically, they only appear in the human bloodstream at nighttime, synchronised with their mosquito vectors. In Polynesia and parts of Southeast Asia, free of nocturnal vectors, they are found at all hours, and each population biorhythm differs. Through a geometrical approach, we explain this circadian diversity by a single, dominant mutation: the clocks of individual parasites are set at midnight (ubiquitous) or at 2 p.m. Compared to other circadian genes, this mutation must be very old, as it is shared by four biologically remote genera of parasites. This seniority sheds new light on several theoretical and practical aspects of vector-parasite temporal relations.

  7. Prenyltransferase Inhibitors: Treating Human Ailments from Cancer to Parasitic Infections

    PubMed Central

    Ochocki, Joshua D.; Distefano, Mark D.

    2014-01-01

    The posttranslational modification of protein prenylation is a covalent lipid modification on the C-terminus of substrate proteins that serves to enhance membrane affinity. Oncogenic proteins such as Ras have this modification and significant effort has been placed into developing inhibitors of the prenyltransferase enzymes for clinical therapy. In addition to cancer therapy, prenyltransferase inhibitors have begun to find important therapeutic uses in other diseases, including progeria, hepatitis C and D, parasitic infections, and other maladies. This review will trace the evolution of prenyltransferase inhibitors from their initial use as cancer therapeutics to their expanded applications for other diseases. PMID:25530833

  8. Prenyltransferase Inhibitors: Treating Human Ailments from Cancer to Parasitic Infections.

    PubMed

    Ochocki, Joshua D; Distefano, Mark D

    2013-03-01

    The posttranslational modification of protein prenylation is a covalent lipid modification on the C-terminus of substrate proteins that serves to enhance membrane affinity. Oncogenic proteins such as Ras have this modification and significant effort has been placed into developing inhibitors of the prenyltransferase enzymes for clinical therapy. In addition to cancer therapy, prenyltransferase inhibitors have begun to find important therapeutic uses in other diseases, including progeria, hepatitis C and D, parasitic infections, and other maladies. This review will trace the evolution of prenyltransferase inhibitors from their initial use as cancer therapeutics to their expanded applications for other diseases.

  9. Pathogenicity Determinants of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum Have Ancient Origins

    PubMed Central

    Brazier, Andrew J.; Avril, Marion; Bernabeu, Maria; Benjamin, Maxwell

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Plasmodium falciparum, the most deadly of the human malaria parasites, is a member of the Laverania subgenus that also infects African Great Apes. The virulence of P. falciparum is related to cytoadhesion of infected erythrocytes in microvasculature, but the origin of dangerous parasite adhesion traits is poorly understood. To investigate the evolutionary history of the P. falciparum cytoadhesion pathogenicity determinant, we studied adhesion domains from the chimpanzee malaria parasite P. reichenowi. We demonstrate that the P. reichenowi var gene repertoire encodes cysteine-rich interdomain region (CIDR) domains which bind human CD36 and endothelial protein C receptor (EPCR) with the same levels of affinity and at binding sites similar to those bound by P. falciparum. Moreover, P. reichenowi domains interfere with the protective function of the activated protein C-EPCR pathway on endothelial cells, a presumptive virulence trait in humans. These findings provide evidence for ancient evolutionary origins of two key cytoadhesion properties of P. falciparum that contribute to human infection and pathogenicity. IMPORTANCE Cytoadhesion of P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes in the microcirculation is a major virulence determinant. P. falciparum is descended from a subgenus of parasites that also infect chimpanzees and gorillas and exhibits strict host species specificity. Despite their high genetic similarity to P. falciparum, it is unknown whether ape parasites encode adhesion properties similar to those of P. falciparum or are as virulent in their natural hosts. Consequently, it has been unclear when virulent adhesion traits arose in P. falciparum and how long they have been present in the parasite population. It is also unknown whether cytoadhesive interactions pose a barrier to cross-species transmission. We show that parasite domains from the chimpanzee malaria parasite P. reichenowi bind human receptors with specificity similar to that of P

  10. Human contact influences the foraging behaviour and parasite community in long-tailed macaques.

    PubMed

    Wenz-Mücke, Alexandra; Sithithaworn, Paiboon; Petney, Trevor N; Taraschewski, Horst

    2013-05-01

    Human–wildlife interactions have reached unprecedented levels, and humans are influencing the earth’s ecosystems more rapidly and extensively than ever before. This situation is cause for serious concern, especially since disease interactions between wildlife and humans have been recognized as major conservation threats. In this study, long-tailed macaques, Macaca fascicularis, from 2 forest parks located in north-eastern Thailand were investigated to determine the influence of habitat modification by humans on helminth parasite associations in non-human primates. Macaque populations with contact to anthropogenically modified environments were compared with sylvatic groups in nearby natural environments. In order to test for human–non-human primate transmission of parasites, the local human populations were also examined. Humans were infected with a number of potentially pathogenic parasites, including Opisthorchis viverrini and Strongyloides stercoralis. However, eggs of these helminths were not detected in macaque feces. Thus, no direct parasite transfer from humans to non-human primates could be confirmed. However, macaque groups with more frequent contact with human modified habitats, and a higher portion of human-provided food in their diet, had significantly higher prevalences and intensities of Strongyloides fuelleborni and of an intestinal fluke (probably Haplorchis sp.) than sylvatic groups. Positive correlations were found between the time foraging on the ground and infection with S. fuelleborni, and the amount of human-provided food and intestinal fluke infection. Human alteration of habitat and associated modifications in nonhuman primate behaviour are likely to play a role in determining the occurrence, prevalence and intensity of zoonotic helminth infection of wild non-human primates.

  11. 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.

  12. The role of the immunological background of mice in the genetic variability of Schistosoma mansoni as detected by random amplification of polymorphic DNA.

    PubMed

    Cossa-Moiane, I L; Mendes, T; Ferreira, T M; Mauricio, I; Calado, M; Afonso, A; Belo, S

    2015-11-01

    Schistosomiasis is a parasitic disease caused by flatworms of the genus Schistosoma. Among the Schistosoma species known to infect humans, S. mansoni is the most frequent cause of intestinal schistosomiasis in sub-Saharan Africa and South America: the World Health Organization estimates that about 200,000 deaths per year result from schistosomiasis in sub-Saharan Africa alone. The Schistosoma life cycle requires two different hosts: a snail as intermediate host and a mammal as definitive host. People become infected when they come into contact with water contaminated with free-living larvae (e.g. when swimming, fishing, washing). Although S. mansoni has mechanisms for escaping the host immune system, only a minority of infecting larvae develop into adults, suggesting that strain selection occurs at the host level. To test this hypothesis, we compared the Belo Horizonte (BH) strain of S. mansoni recovered from definitive hosts with different immunological backgrounds using random amplification of polymorphic DNA-polymerase chain reaction (RAPD-PCR). Schistosoma mansoni DNA profiles of worms obtained from wild-type (CD1 and C57BL/6J) and mutant (Jα18- / - and TGFβRIIdn) mice were analysed. Four primers produced polymorphic profiles, which can therefore potentially be used as reference biomarkers. All male worms were genetically distinct from females isolated from the same host, with female worms showing more specific fragments than males. Of the four host-derived schistosome populations, female and male adults recovered from TGFβRIIdn mice showed RAPD-PCR profiles that were most similar to each other. Altogether, these data indicate that host immunological backgrounds can influence the genetic diversity of parasite populations.

  13. The influence of human settlements on the parasite community in two species of Peruvian tamarin.

    PubMed

    Wenz, A; Heymann, E W; Petney, T N; Taraschewski, H F

    2010-04-01

    Although there is a growing recognition that the transfer of diseases between humans and non-human primates can be of great significance for conservation biology, there have been only a few studies focusing on parasites. In this study, saddleback (Saguinus fuscicollis) and moustached tamarin (Saguinus mystax) from the rainforest of the Peruvian lowlands were used as models to determine helminth parasite associations between canopy-dwelling primate species and a nearby human settlement. The human population showed high prevalences of infestation with a number of nematodes, including Ascaris lumbricoides (88.9%), Trichuris trichiura (37%) and hookworms (55.6%). However, the ova of these geohelminths were not detectable in tamarin faeces. Thus, no direct parasite transfer from humans to non-human primates could be documented. However, tamarin groups with more frequent contact to humans and their facilities had significantly higher prevalences and egg output of Prosthenorchis elegans, an important primate pathogen, than a forest group. In contrast, a cestode was significantly more common with more egg output in sylvatic than in human-associated groups. Human alteration of the habitat is likely to play a major role in determining the occurrence, prevalence and intensity of helminth infestation of wild non-human primates.

  14. 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.

  15. Thioredoxin Glutathione Reductase as a Novel Drug Target: Evidence from Schistosoma japonicum

    PubMed Central

    Xie, ShuYing; Qian, ChunYan; Wang, Jie; Zhang, Wei; Yin, XuRen; Hua, ZiChun; Yu, ChuanXin

    2012-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis remains a major public health concern affecting billions of people around the world. Currently, praziquantel is the only drug of choice for treatment of human schistosomiasis. The emergence of drug resistance to praziquantel in schistosomes makes the development of novel drugs an urgent task. Thioredoxin glutathione reductase (TGR) enzymes in Schistosoma mansoni and some other platyhelminths have been identified as alternative targets. The present study was designed to confirm the existense and the potential value of TGR as a target for development of novel antischistosomal agents in Schistosoma japonicum, a platyhelminth endemic in Asia. Methods and Findings After cloning the S. japonicum TGR (SjTGR) gene, the recombinant SjTGR selenoprotein was purified and characterized in enzymatic assays as a multifunctional enzyme with thioredoxin reductase (TrxR), glutathione reductase (GR) and glutaredoxin (Grx) activities. Immunological and bioinformatic analyses confirmed that instead of having separate TrxR and GR proteins in mammalian, S. japonicum only encodes TGR, which performs the functions of both enzymes and plays a critical role in maintaining the redox balance in this parasite. These results were in good agreement with previous findings in Schistosoma mansoni and some other platyhelminths. Auranofin, a known inhibitor against TGR, caused fatal toxicity in S. japonicum adult worms in vitro and reduced worm and egg burdens in S. japonicum infected mice. Conclusions Collectively, our study confirms that a multifunctional enzyme SjTGR selenoprotein, instead of separate TrxR and GR enzymes, exists in S. japonicum. Furthermore, TGR may be a potential target for development of novel agents against schistosomes. This assumption is strengthened by our demonstration that the SjTGR is an essential enzyme for maintaining the thiol-disulfide redox homeostasis of S. japonicum. PMID:22384025

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  17. The major parasite surface antigen associated with human resistance to schistosomiasis is a 37-kD glyceraldehyde-3P-dehydrogenase

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    Schistosomiasis, due to Schistosoma mansoni, is a major health problem in many subtropical countries, and major efforts are being made to define a vaccine. In this regard, we have reported that sera from subjects with low susceptibility to infection by S. mansoni react with a major larval surface antigen (P-37), having an apparent molecular mass of 37 kD, against which sera of susceptible individuals show little reactivity. We have now cloned the cDNA for this antigen by screening a schistosome cDNA expression library with antibodies against the purified protein. The selected cDNAs encode a protein that is specifically identified by immune human sera containing antibodies against P-37, while sera exhibiting low or no reactivity toward P-37 fail to recognize the recombinant protein. The cloned cDNAs hybridize with a 1.2-kb RNA that is the transcript of a single copy gene. This RNA directs the synthesis of a 36.5-kD polypeptide that is precipitated by sera from the most resistant subjects. The amino acid sequence of the encoded polypeptide shows homology with the glycolytic enzyme Glyceraldehyde-3P-dehydrogenase (72.5% of positional identity with human Glyceraldehyde-3P-dehydrogenase). Antibodies against the recombinant protein identified P-37 on the larva. These findings, together with other reports, indicate that a number of conserved proteins may be major targets of host-protective immunity against S. mansoni. The hypothesis is discussed that genetic restriction of the immune response to these antigens may occur in heterogeneous human populations because of the limited number of T cell epitopes carried by these host-like proteins. Such genetic effects might allow parasite transmission through nonresponder (susceptible) individuals. This hypothesis and the protective properties of P-37 can now be tested using the recombinant protein and synthetic peptides derived from selected regions of the polypeptide chain. PMID:2584935

  18. 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

  19. 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...

  20. Centrality in primate–parasite networks reveals the potential for the transmission of emerging infectious diseases to humans

    PubMed Central

    Gómez, José María; Nunn, Charles L.; Verdú, Miguel

    2013-01-01

    Most emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) in humans have arisen from animals. Identifying high-risk hosts is therefore vital for the control and surveillance of these diseases. Viewing hosts as connected through the parasites they share, we use network tools to investigate predictors of parasitism and sources of future EIDs. We generated host–parasite networks that link hosts when they share a parasite, using nonhuman primates as a model system because—owing to their phylogenetic proximity and ecological overlap with humans—they are an important source of EIDs to humans. We then tested whether centrality in the network of host species—a measurement of the importance of a given node (i.e., host species) in the network—is associated with that host serving as a potential EID source. We found that centrality covaries with key predictors of parasitism, such as population density and geographic range size. Importantly, we also found that primate species having higher values of centrality in the primate–parasite network harbored more parasites identified as EIDs in humans and had parasite communities more similar to those found in humans. These relationships were robust to the use of different centrality metrics and to multiple ways of controlling for variation in how well each species has been studied (i.e., sampling effort). Centrality may therefore estimate the role of a host as a source of EIDs to humans in other multispecific host–parasite networks. PMID:23610389

  1. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

    2016-04-04

    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.

  3. 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

  4. [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.

  5. [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.

  6. Stability and function of a putative microtubule organizing center in the human parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Leung, Jacqueline M; He, Yudou; Zhang, Fangliang; Hwang, Yu-Chen; Nagayasu, Eiji; Liu, Jun; Murray, John M; Hu, Ke

    2017-03-22

    The organization of the microtubule cytoskeleton is dictated by microtubule nucleators or organizing centers.  Toxoplasma gondii, an important human parasite, has an array of 22 regularly spaced cortical microtubules stemming from a hypothesized organizing center, the apical polar ring. Here, we examine the functions of the apical polar ring by characterizing two of its components, KinesinA and APR1, and discovered that its putative role in templating can be separated from its mechanical stability. Parasites that lack both KinesinA and APR1 (ΔkinesinAΔapr1) are capable of generating 22 cortical microtubules. However, the apical polar ring is fragmented in live ΔkinesinAΔapr1 parasites, and is undetectable by electron microscopy after detergent extraction. Disintegration of the apical polar ring results in the detachment of groups of microtubules from the apical end of the parasite. These structural defects are linked to a diminished ability of the parasite to move and to invade host cells, as well as decreased secretion of effectors important for these processes. Together, the findings demonstrate the importance of the structural integrity of the apical polar ring and the microtubule array in the Toxoplasma lytic cycle, which is responsible for massive tissue destruction in acute toxoplasmosis.

  7. Schistosoma mansoni experimental infection in Mus spretus (SPRET/EiJ strain) mice

    PubMed Central

    Pérez del Villar, Luis; Vicente, Belén; Galindo-Villardón, Purificación; Castellanos, Andrés; Pérez-Losada, Jesús; Muro, Antonio

    2013-01-01

    Most Schistosoma mansoni experimental infections are developed in several inbred strains of Mus musculus as definitive host. In contrast, Mus spretus is unexplored in Schistosoma infection studies. Mus spretus provides a high variation of immunological phenotypes being an invaluable tool for genetic studies and gene mapping. The aim of this study is to characterize hematological and immunological responses against Schistosoma mansoni infection in Mus spretus (SPRET/EiJ strain) vs. Mus musculus (CD1 strain) mice. Nine weeks after cercarial exposure, animals were perfused and the parasite burden was assessed. The parasitological data suggests that SPRET/EiJ mice tolerate higher parasite loads compared to CD1 strain. In addition, hematological parameters measured in Mus spretus group showed a significant increase in granulocytes population in early stages of infection compared to the CD1 cohort. Meanwhile, CD1 presented higher levels of lymphocytes and IgG1 in the late stages of S. mansoni experimental infection. PMID:23985166

  8. Epitopes rationally selected through computational analyses induce T-cell proliferation in mice and are recognized by serum from individuals infected with Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Marcelo D; Oliveira, Flávio M; Coelho, Ivan E V; Passos, Maria J F; Alves, Clarice C; Taranto, Alex G; Júnior, Moacyr C; Santos, Luciana L; Fonseca, Cristina T; Villar, José A F P; Lopes, Débora O

    2017-04-03

    Schistosomiasis is the second leading cause of death due to parasitic diseases in the world. Seeking an alternative for the control of disease, the World Health Organization funded the genome sequencing of the major species related to schistosomiasis to identify potential vaccines and therapeutic targets. Therefore, the aim of this work was to select T and B-cell epitopes from Schistosoma mansoni through computational analyses and evaluate the immunological potential of epitopes in vitro. Extracellular regions of membrane proteins from the Schistosoma mansoni were used to predict promiscuous epitopes with affinity to different human Major Histocompatibility Class II (MHCII) molecules by bioinformatics analysis. The three-dimensional structure of selected epitopes was constructed and used in molecular docking to verify the interaction with murine MHCII H2-IA(b) . In this process, four epitopes were selected and synthesized to assess their ability to stimulate proliferation of CD4(+) T lymphocytes in mice splenocyte cultures. The results showed that Sm041370 and Sm168240 epitopes induced significant cell proliferation. Additionally, the four epitopes were used as antigens in the Indirect Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) to assess the recognition by serum from individuals infected with Schistosoma mansoni. Sm140560, Sm168240 and Sm041370 epitopes were recognized by infected individuals IgG antibodies. Therefore, Sm041370 and Sm168240 epitopes that stood out in in silico and in vitro analyses could be promising antigens in schistosomiasis vaccine development or diagnostic kits. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  9. Molecular Paleoparasitological Hybridization Approach as Effective Tool for Diagnosing Human Intestinal Parasites from Scarce Archaeological Remains

    PubMed Central

    Jaeger, Lauren Hubert; Iñiguez, Alena Mayo

    2014-01-01

    Paleoparasitology is the science that uses parasitological techniques for diagnosing parasitic diseases in the past. Advances in molecular biology brought new insights into this field allowing the study of archaeological material. However, due to technical limitations a proper diagnosis and confirmation of the presence of parasites is not always possible, especially in scarce and degraded archaeological remains. In this study, we developed a Molecular Paleoparasitological Hybridization (MPH) approach using ancient DNA (aDNA) hybridization to confirm and complement paleoparasitological diagnosis. Eight molecular targets from four helminth parasites were included: Ascaris sp., Trichuris trichiura, Enterobius vermicularis, and Strongyloides stercoralis. The MPH analysis using 18th century human remains from Praça XV cemetery (CPXV), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, revealed for the first time the presence E. vermicularis aDNA (50%) in archaeological sites of Brazil. Besides, the results confirmed T. trichiura and Ascaris sp. infections. The prevalence of infection by Ascaris sp. and E. vermicularis increased considerably when MPH was applied. However, a lower aDNA detection of T. trichiura (40%) was observed when compared to the diagnosis by paleoparasitological analysis (70%). Therefore, based on these data, we suggest a combination of Paleoparasitological and MPH approaches to verify the real panorama of intestinal parasite infection in human archeological samples. PMID:25162694

  10. 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

  11. Sensitive and accurate quantification of human malaria parasites using droplet digital PCR (ddPCR)

    PubMed Central

    Koepfli, Cristian; Nguitragool, Wang; Hofmann, Natalie E.; Robinson, Leanne J.; Ome-Kaius, Maria; Sattabongkot, Jetsumon; Felger, Ingrid; Mueller, Ivo

    2016-01-01

    Accurate quantification of parasite density in the human host is essential for understanding the biology and pathology of malaria. Semi-quantitative molecular methods are widely applied, but the need for an external standard curve makes it difficult to compare parasite density estimates across studies. Droplet digital PCR (ddPCR) allows direct quantification without the need for a standard curve. ddPCR was used to diagnose and quantify P. falciparum and P. vivax in clinical patients as well as in asymptomatic samples. ddPCR yielded highly reproducible measurements across the range of parasite densities observed in humans, and showed higher sensitivity than qPCR to diagnose P. falciparum, and equal sensitivity for P. vivax. Correspondence in quantification was very high (>0.95) between qPCR and ddPCR. Quantification between technical replicates by ddPCR differed 1.5–1.7-fold, compared to 2.4–6.2-fold by qPCR. ddPCR facilitates parasite quantification for studies where absolute densities are required, and will increase comparability of results reported from different laboratories. PMID:27982132

  12. 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

  13. Diagnosis of human African trypanosomiasis and visceral leishmaniasis based on the detection of anti-parasite-enzyme antibodies.

    PubMed

    Borowy, N K; Schell, D; Schäfer, C; Overath, P

    1991-08-01

    A sensitive diagnostic assay for parasitic infections based on the detection of anti-enzyme antibodies is presented. All serum antibodies produced in response to parasite antigens are immobilized via their Fc domain on matrix-bound protein G. Incubation of the immobilized antibodies with saturating amounts of parasite extract results in the binding of all recognized antigens, including those directed against a specific and readily measurable enzyme. The amount of bound enzyme is proportional to the anti-enzyme antibody concentration in the serum. The application of this principle is demonstrated for the diagnosis of both human African trypanosomiasis and visceral leishmaniasis by the detection of antibodies against parasite acid phosphatases.

  14. Ligand tunnels in T. brucei and human CYP51: Insights for parasite-specific drug design

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaofeng; Nandekar, Prajwal; Mustafa, Ghulam; Cojocaru, Vlad; Lepesheva, Galina I.; Wade, Rebecca C.

    2015-01-01

    Background Cytochrome P450 sterol 14α-demethylase (CYP51) is an essential enzyme for sterol biosynthesis and a target for anti-parasitic drug design. However, the design of parasite-specific drugs that inhibit parasitic CYP51 without severe side effects remains challenging. The active site of CYP51 is situated in the interior of the protein. Here, we characterize the potential ligand egress routes and mechanisms in Trypanosoma brucei and human CYP51 enzymes. Methods We performed Random Acceleration Molecular Dynamics simulations of the egress of four different ligands from the active site of models of soluble and membrane-bound T. brucei CYP51 and of soluble human CYP51. Results In the simulations, tunnel 2 f, which leads to the membrane, was found to be the predominant ligand egress tunnel for all the ligands studied. Tunnels S, 1 and W, which lead to the cytosol, were also used in T. brucei CYP51, whereas tunnel 1 was the only other tunnel used significantly in human CYP51. The common tunnels found previously in other CYPs were barely used. The ligand egress times were shorter for human than T. brucei CYP51, suggesting lower barriers to ligand passage. Two gating residues, F105 and M460, in T. brucei CYP51 that modulate the opening of tunnels 2 f and S were identified. Conclusions Although the main egress tunnel was the same, differences in the tunnel-lining residues, ligand passage and tunnel usage were found between T. brucei and human CYP51s. General Significance The results provide a basis for the design of selective anti-parasitic agents targeting the ligand tunnels. PMID:26493722

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Crystal structure of Schistosoma mansoni arginase, a potential drug target for the treatment of schistosomiasis.

    PubMed

    Hai, Yang; Edwards, Jennifer E; Van Zandt, Michael C; Hoffmann, Karl F; Christianson, David W

    2014-07-22

    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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Human Parasitic Meningitis Caused by Angiostrongylus cantonensis Infection in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yao-Shen; Yen, Chuan-Min

    2013-01-01

    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 eosinophlic 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. PMID:23901378

  1. 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.

  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. Cytometric quantification of singlet oxygen in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Butzloff, Sabine; Groves, Matthew R; Wrenger, Carsten; Müller, Ingrid B

    2012-08-01

    The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum proliferates within human erythrocytes and is thereby exposed to a variety of reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl radical, superoxide anion, and highly reactive singlet oxygen ((1)O(2)). While most ROS are already well studied in the malaria parasite, singlet oxygen has been neglected to date. In this study we visualized the generation of (1)O(2) by live cell fluorescence microscopy using 3-(p-aminophenyl) fluorescein as an indicator dye. While (1) O(2) is found restrictively in the parasite, its amount varies during erythrocytic schizogony. Since the photosensitizer cercosporin generates defined amounts of (1)O(2) we have established a new cytometric method that allows the stage specific quantification of (1)O(2). Therefore, the parasites were first classified into three main stages according to their respective pixel-area of 200-600 pixels for rings, 700-1,200 pixels for trophozoites and 1,400-2,500 pixels for schizonts. Interestingly the highest mean concentration of endogenous (1)O(2) of 0.34 nM is found in the trophozoites stage, followed by 0.20 nM (ring stage) and 0.10 nM (schizont stage) suggesting that (1)O(2) derives predominantly from the digestion of hemoglobin.

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

    PubMed

    Li, Xin-Xu; Zhou, Xiao-Nong

    2013-03-22

    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.

  5. 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

    2014-05-07

    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.

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

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Schistosoma spp. serological reagents. 866.3600 Section 866.3600 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL DEVICES IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES Serological Reagents § 866.3600...

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

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Schistosoma spp. serological reagents. 866.3600 Section 866.3600 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL DEVICES IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES Serological Reagents § 866.3600...

  8. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Schistosoma spp. serological reagents. 866.3600 Section 866.3600 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL DEVICES IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES Serological Reagents § 866.3600...

  9. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Schistosoma spp. serological reagents. 866.3600 Section 866.3600 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL DEVICES IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES Serological Reagents § 866.3600...

  10. 21 CFR 866.3600 - Schistosoma spp. serological reagents.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Schistosoma spp. serological reagents. 866.3600 Section 866.3600 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) MEDICAL DEVICES IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES Serological Reagents § 866.3600...

  11. Schistosoma co-infection protects against brain pathology but does not prevent severe disease and death in a murine model of cerebral malaria.

    PubMed

    Bucher, Kirsten; Dietz, Klaus; Lackner, Peter; Pasche, Bastian; Fendel, Rolf; Mordmüller, Benjamin; Ben-Smith, Anne; Hoffmann, Wolfgang H

    2011-01-01

    Co-infections of helminths and malaria parasites are common in human populations in most endemic areas. It has been suggested that concomitant helminth infections inhibit the control of malaria parasitemia but down-modulate severe malarial disease. We tested this hypothesis using a murine co-infection model of schistosomiasis and cerebral malaria. C57BL/6 mice were infected with Schistosoma mansoni and 8-9 weeks later, when Schistosoma infection was patent, mice were co-infected with Plasmodium berghei ANKA strain. We found that a concomitant Schistosoma infection increased parasitemia at the beginning of the P. berghei infection. It did not protect against P. berghei-induced weight loss and hypothermia, and P. berghei-mono-infected as well as S. mansoni-P. berghei-co-infected animals showed a high case fatality between days 6 and 8 of malarial infection. However, co-infection significantly reduced P. berghei-induced brain pathology. Over 40% of the S. mansoni-P. berghei-co-infected animals that died during this period were completely protected against haemorrhaging, plugging of blood vessels and infiltration, indicating that mortality in these animals was not related to cerebral disease. Schistosoma mansoni-P. berghei-co-infected mice had elevated plasma concentrations of IL-5 and IL-13 and on day 6 lower levels of IFN-γ, IL-10, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) and monokine induced by IFN-γ (MIG) than P. berghei-mono-infected mice. We conclude that in P. berghei infections, disease and early death are caused by distinct pathogenic mechanisms, which develop in parallel and are differentially influenced by the immune response to S. mansoni. This might explain why, in co-infected mice, death could be induced in the absence of brain pathology.

  12. Prevalence of intestinal parasitic and bacterial pathogens in diarrhoeal and non-diarroeal human stools from Vhembe district, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Samie, A; Guerrant, R L; Barrett, L; Bessong, P O; Igumbor, E O; Obi, C L

    2009-12-01

    In the present study, a cross-sectional survey of intestinal parasitic and bacterial infections in relation to diarrhoea in Vhembe district and the antimicrobial susceptibility profiles of isolated bacterial pathogens was conducted. Stool samples were collected from 528 patients attending major public hospitals and 295 children attending two public primary schools and were analyzed by standard microbiological and parasitological techniques. Entamoeba histolytica/E. dispar (34.2%) and Cryptosporidium spp. (25.5%) were the most common parasitic causes of diarrhoea among the hospital attendees while Giardia lamblia (12.8%) was the most common cause of diarrhoea among the primary school children (p < 0.05). Schistosoma mansoni (14.4%) was more common in non-diarrhoeal samples at both hospitals (16.9%) and schools (17.6%). Campylobacter spp. (24.9%), Aeromonas spp. (20.8%), and Shigella spp. (8.5%) were the most common bacterial causes of diarrhoea among the hospital attendees while Campylobacter (12.8%) and Aeromonas spp. (12.8%) were most common in diarrhoeal samples from school children. Vibrio spp. was less common (3% in the hospitals) and were all associated with diarrhoea. Antimicrobial resistance was common among the bacterial isolates but ceftriaxone (91%) and ciprofloxacin (88.6%) showed stronger activities against all the organisms. The present study has demonstrated that E. histolytica/dispar, Cryptosporidium, Giardia, and Cyclospora are common parasitic causes of diarrhoea in Vhembe district while Campylobacter spp. and Aeromonas are the most common bacterial causes of diarrhoea in Vhembe district of South Africa.

  13. Effects of tropism and virulence of Leishmania parasites on cytokine production by infected human monocytes

    PubMed Central

    Meddeb-Garnaoui, A; Zrelli, H; Dellagi, K

    2009-01-01

    The nature of early interactions between Leishmania and macrophages which determine the outcome of infection can be related directly to parasite biological properties. Here we compared the capacity of L. major (Lm) strains, reported to be high (LmHV) and low virulent and (LmLV) in the mouse model and L. infantum (Li) strains, dermotropic (LiD) and viscerotropic (LiV), to infect and modulate cytokine production in human peripheral blood derived monocytes. Monocytes were infected with metacyclic promastigotes for 24, 48 and 72 h. Parasite burden was significantly higher in Lm- than in Li-infected monocytes. LmHV and LiD induced a significantly higher parasite burden than LmLV and LiV respectively. Cytokine production was evaluated in monocytes infected for 24 h. Contrary to interleukin (IL)-12p70, monocyte chemotactic protein-1 and transforming growth factor-β production was increased significantly in infected monocytes with no differences between strains. Lm isolates induced significantly higher quantities of tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α than Li isolates. Low levels of IL-10 were induced by all Leishmania strains and, interestingly, co-stimulation with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) was accompanied by a dramatic increase in IL-10 production by infected monocytes. In conclusion, Lm isolates displaying different levels of virulence in mice exhibited significant differences in parasite burden but similar abilities to modulate cytokine production in human monocytes. Li strains showed weaker infectivity and TNF-α inducing-capacity compared with Lm strains. The dramatic increase of IL-10 production in infected monocytes co-stimulated by LPS may play a role in disease progression considering the presence of LPS during bacterial superinfections observed during human leishmaniasis. PMID:19040614

  14. 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

    2007-11-07

    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.

  15. Host cell deformability is linked to transmission in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    Aingaran, Mythili; Zhang, Rou; Law, Sue KaYee; Peng, Zhangli; Undisz, Andreas; Meyer, Evan; Diez-Silva, Monica; Burke, Thomas A.; Spielmann, Tobias; Lim, Chwee Teck; Suresh, Subra; Dao, Ming; Marti, Matthias

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY Gametocyte maturation in Plasmodium falciparum is a critical step in the transmission of malaria. While the majority of parasites proliferate asexually in red blood cells, a small fraction of parasites undergo sexual conversion and mature over two weeks to become competent for transmission to a mosquito vector. Immature gametocytes sequester in deep tissues while mature stages must be able to circulate, pass the spleen and present themselves to the mosquito vector in order to complete transmission. Sequestration of asexual red blood cell stage parasites has been investigated in great detail. These studies have demonstrated that induction of cytoadherence properties through specific receptor-ligand interactions coincides with a significant increase in host cell stiffness. In contrast, the adherence and biophysical properties of gametocyte-infected red blood cells have not been studied systematically. Utilizing a transgenic line for 3D live imaging, in vitro capillary assays and 3D finite element whole cell modeling, we studied the role of cellular deformability in determining the circulatory characteristics of gametocytes. Our analysis shows that the red blood cell deformability of immature gametocytes displays an overall decrease followed by rapid restoration in mature gametocytes. Intriguingly, simulations suggest that along with deformability variations, the morphological changes of the parasite may play an important role in tissue distribution in vivo. Taken together we present a model, which suggests that mature but not immature gametocytes circulate in the peripheral blood for uptake in the mosquito blood meal and transmission to another human host thus ensuring long term survival of the parasite. PMID:22417683

  16. Schistosoma mansoni soluble egg antigens are internalized by human dendritic cells through multiple C-type lectins and suppress TLR-induced dendritic cell activation.

    PubMed

    van Liempt, Ellis; van Vliet, Sandra J; Engering, Anneke; García Vallejo, Juan Jesus; Bank, Christine M C; Sanchez-Hernandez, Marta; van Kooyk, Yvette; van Die, Irma

    2007-04-01

    In schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease caused by helminths, the parasite eggs induce a T helper 2 cell (T(H)2) response in the host. Here, the specific role of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells (DCs) in initiation and polarization of the egg-specific T cell responses was examined. We demonstrate that immature DCs (iDCs) pulsed with schistosome soluble egg antigens (SEA) do not show an increase in expression of co-stimulatory molecules or cytokines, indicating that no conventional maturation was induced. The ability of SEA to affect the Toll-like receptor (TLR) induced maturation of iDCs was examined by copulsing the DCs with SEA and TLR-ligands. SEA suppressed both the maturation of iDCs induced by poly-I:C and LPS, as indicated by a decrease in co-stimulatory molecule expression and production of IL-12, IL-6 and TNF-alpha. In addition, SEA suppressed T(H)1 responses induced by the poly-I:C-pulsed DCs, and skewed the LPS-induced mixed response towards a T(H)2 response. Immature DCs rapidly internalized SEA through the C-type lectins DC-SIGN, MGL and the mannose receptor and the antigens were targeted to MHC class II-positive lysosomal compartments. The internalization of SEA by multiple C-type lectins may be important to regulate the response of the iDCs to TLR-induced signals.

  17. Integrated multi-omic analyses in Biomphalaria-Schistosoma dialogue reveal the immunobiological significance of FREP-SmPoMuc interaction.

    PubMed

    Portet, Anaïs; Pinaud, Silvain; Tetreau, Guillaume; Galinier, Richard; Cosseau, Céline; Duval, David; Grunau, Christoph; Mitta, Guillaume; Gourbal, Benjamin

    2017-02-28

    The fresh water snail Biomphalaria glabrata is one of the vectors of the trematode pathogen Schistosoma mansoni, which is one of the agents responsible of human schistosomiasis. In this host-parasite interaction, co-evolutionary dynamic results into an infectivity mosaic known as compatibility polymorphism. Integrative approaches including large scale molecular approaches have been conducted in recent years to improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying compatibility. This review presents the combination of integrated Multi-Omic approaches leading to the discovery of two repertoires of polymorphic and/or diversified interacting molecules: the parasite antigens S. mansoni polymorphic mucins (SmPoMucs) and the B. glabrata immune receptors fibrinogen-related proteins (FREPs). We argue that their interactions may be major components for defining the compatible/incompatible status of a specific snail/schistosome combination.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Structural and functional characterization of a putative polysaccharide deacetylase of the human parasite Encephalitozoon cuniculi.

    PubMed

    Urch, Jonathan E; Hurtado-Guerrero, Ramon; Brosson, Damien; Liu, Zhanliang; Eijsink, Vincent G H; Texier, Catherine; van Aalten, Daan M F

    2009-06-01

    The microsporidian Encephalitozoon cuniculi is an intracellular eukaryotic parasite considered to be an emerging opportunistic human pathogen. The infectious stage of this parasite is a unicellular spore that is surrounded by a chitin containing endospore layer and an external proteinaceous exospore. A putative chitin deacetylase (ECU11_0510) localizes to the interface between the plasma membrane and the endospore. Chitin deacetylases are family 4 carbohydrate esterases in the CAZY classification, and several bacterial members of this family are involved in evading lysis by host glycosidases, through partial de-N-acetylation of cell wall peptidoglycan. Similarly, ECU11_0510 could be important for E. cuniculi survival in the host, by protecting the chitin layer from hydrolysis by human chitinases. Here, we describe the biochemical, structural, and glycan binding properties of the protein. Enzymatic analyses showed that the putative deacetylase is unable to deacetylate chitooligosaccharides or crystalline beta-chitin. Furthermore, carbohydrate microarray analysis revealed that the protein bound neither chitooligosaccharides nor any of a wide range of other glycans or chitin. The high resolution crystal structure revealed dramatic rearrangements in the positions of catalytic and substrate binding residues, which explain the loss of deacetylase activity, adding to the unusual structural plasticity observed in other members of this esterase family. Thus, it appears that the ECU11_0510 protein is not a carbohydrate deacetylase and may fulfill an as yet undiscovered role in the E. cuniculi parasite.

  2. Polymerase chain reaction detection of human host preference and Plasmodium parasite infections in field collected potential malaria vectors.

    PubMed

    Dhiman, Sunil; Bhola, Rakesh Kumar; Goswami, Diganta; Rabha, Bipul; Kumar, Dinesh; Baruah, Indra; Singh, Lokendra

    2012-07-01

    This study was carried out to determine the human host preference and presence of Plasmodium parasite in field collected Anopheles mosquitoes among four villages around a military cantonment located in malaria endemic Sonitpur district of Assam, India. Encountered malaria vector mosquitoes were identified and tested for host preference and Plasmodium presence using PCR method. Human host preference was detected using simple PCR, whereas vectorial status for Plasmodium parasite was confirmed using first round PCR with genus specific primers and thereafter nested PCR with three Plasmodium species specific primers. Out of 1874 blood fed vector mosquitoes collected, 187 (10%) were processed for PCR, which revealed that 40·6% had fed on human blood; 9·2% of human blood fed mosquito were harbouring Plasmodium parasites, 71·4% of which were confirmed to Plasmodium falciparum. In addition to An. minimus, An. annularis and An. culicifacies were also found positive for malaria parasites. The present study exhibits the human feeding tendency of Anopheles vectors highlighting their malaria parasite transmission potential. The present study may serve as a model for understanding the human host preference of malaria vectors and detection of malaria parasite inside the anopheline vector mosquitoes in order to update their vectorial status for estimating the possible role of these mosquitoes in malaria transmission. The study has used PCR method and suggests that PCR-based method should be used in this entire malarious region to correctly report the vectorial position of different malaria vectors.

  3. 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

  4. Proteasome stress responses in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    de Paula, Renato Graciano; de Magalhães Ornelas, Alice Maria; Morais, Enyara Rezende; de Souza Gomes, Matheus; de Paula Aguiar, Daniela; Magalhães, Lizandra Guidi; Rodrigues, Vanderlei

    2015-05-01

    The proteasome proteolytic system is the major ATP-dependent protease in eukaryotic cells responsible for intracellular protein turnover. Schistosoma mansoni has been reported to contain an ubiquitin-proteasome proteolytic pathway, and many studies have suggested a biological role of proteasomes in the development of this parasite. Additionally, evidence has suggested diversity in proteasome composition under several cellular conditions, and this might contribute to the regulation of its function in this parasite. The proteasomal system has been considered important to support the protein homeostasis during cellular stress. In this study, we described in vitro effects of oxidative stress, heat shock, and chemical stress on S. mansoni adults. Our findings showed that chemical stress induced with curcumin, IBMX, and MG132 modified the gene expression of the proteasomal enzymes SmHul5 and SmUbp6. Likewise, the expression of these genes was upregulated during oxidative stress and heat shock. Analyses of the S. mansoni life cycle showed differential gene expression in sporocysts, schistosomulae, and miracidia. These results suggested that proteasome accessory proteins participate in stress response during the parasite development. The expression level of SmHul5 and SmUbp6 was decreased by 16-fold and 9-fold, respectively, by the chemical stress induced with IBMX, which suggests proteasome disassembly. On the other hand, curcumin, MG132, oxidative stress, and heat shock increased the expression of these genes. Furthermore, the gene expression of maturation proteasome protein (SmPOMP) was increased in stress conditions induced by curcumin, MG132, and H₂O₂, which could be related to the synthesis of new proteasomes. S. mansoni adult worms were found to utilize similar mechanisms to respond to different conditions of stress. Our results demonstrated that oxidative stress, heat shock, and chemical stress modified the expression profile of genes related to the ubiquitin

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Mechanism of interaction of Salmonella and Schistosoma species.

    PubMed Central

    Melhem, R F; LoVerde, P T

    1984-01-01

    In endemic areas where Salmonella and Schistosoma species co-occur, several lines of evidence suggest a synergistic bacteria-parasite interaction that results in a protracted course for the salmonella infection that has proven difficult to diagnose and therapeutically remedy. In an in vitro system using a pilus-negative and a pilus-producing transductant strain of Salmonella typhimurium we show that pili are the ligands for bacterial adherence to the schistosome surface tegument. Antipili antibodies produced in rabbits against purified pili, purified and digested to monovalent (Fab) fragments, blocked the association of Salmonella sp. to the surface tegument of Schistosoma sp., further demonstrating that pili are the appendages necessary for bacteria-parasite surface interaction. The use of carbohydrates, lectins, and enzymes demonstrated that the bacteria-parasite surface interaction was specific, mediated by pili that specifically recognize and bind to mannose-like receptors, probably glycolipids, on the surface of the worms. We suggest that prolonged salmonellosis in schistosome-infected patients is due to an association of Salmonella sp. with the schistosome worms themselves and further that the schistosome worms provide a multiplication focus for these bacteria in the portal mesenteric system, with a persisting bacteremia following. PMID:6143728

  11. [Metacaspases and their role in the life cycle of human protozoan parasites].

    PubMed

    González, Iveth J

    2009-09-01

    Metacaspases are caspase-related cysteine-proteases that are present in organisms devoid of caspases such as plants, yeast, and protozoan parasites. Since caspases are important effector molecules in mammalian apoptosis, the possible role of metacaspases in programmed cell death has been evaluated in the organisms where they are expressed. In some species of the human protozoan parasites Trypanosoma spp. and Leishmania spp., metacaspases have been involved in programmed cell death, although a role of metacaspases in recycling processes in T. brucei has also been suggested. Metacaspases are also expressed in Plasmodium spp., however their role in these organisms is still unknown. More than one metacaspase gene is present in some of these parasites, which suggests that these proteins are physiologically redundant or have different functions depending on their localization and protein interactions. The catalytic activity of metacaspases is different from that of caspases-again noting that metacaspase genes are absent in mammals. These characteristics make metacaspases and their activating mechanisms interesting subjects of research in the development of new drug targets for the treatment of trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis, and malaria. A summary of the literature on metacaspases is provided, and Latin American researchers are encouraged to more actively explore the metacaspase potential.

  12. 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.

  13. Human water contacts patterns in Schistosoma mansoni epidemic foci in northern Senegal change according to age, sex and place of residence, but are not related to intensity of infection.

    PubMed

    Scott, J T; Diakhaté, M; Vereecken, K; Fall, A; Diop, M; Ly, A; De Clercq, D; de Vlas, S J; Berkvens, D; Kestens, L; Gryseels, B

    2003-02-01

    In an epidemic focus in northern Senegal, adults had lower intensities of infection than adolescents, a phenomenon that could not be attributed to immunity acquired over the previous 10-15 years of exposure to the parasite because all age groups had had the same number of years' experience of the worm. This article considers whether this pattern could have been because of higher levels of exposure to the parasite in younger age groups. Personal contact with infected water was recorded using a questionnaire in Schistosoma mansoni foci not more than 3 years old and in another, 10-year-old focus. Many aspects of contact (e.g. frequency, duration or time of day of contact) may contribute to the number of encounters with infective cercariae (true exposure), so various assumptions regarding the relationship between water contact and true exposure were tested resulting in a range of exposure indices. People reported a mean of 4.4 separate contacts, and spent a median of 57 min per day in water. Patterns of water contact differed depending on the exposure index used, e.g. considering duration, males spent a longer time in water than females (P < 0.001). But using frequency, females had more contacts with water than males in most villages (P < 0.001). Generally, exposure levels dropped as people become aged (P < 0.001) and residents of the older focus were more exposed than residents of other foci (P < 0.002). Intensity of (re)infection was not related to exposure either alone or in models incorporating age, sex and/or village irrespective of the index used. There is therefore evidence that age, sex and place of residence determine exposure but none to suggest that exposure had an influence on the relationship between these factors and intensity of infection. We propose therefore that in this population other factors have principal importance in determining intensity of infection.

  14. DNA 'barcoding' of Schistosoma mansoni across sub-Saharan Africa supports substantial within locality diversity and geographical separation of genotypes.

    PubMed

    Webster, Bonnie L; Webster, Joanne P; Gouvras, Anouk N; Garba, Amadou; Lamine, Mariama S; Diaw, Oumar T; Seye, Mohmoudane M; Tchuem Tchuenté, Louis-Albert; Simoonga, Christopher; Mubila, Likezo; Mwanga, Joseph R; Lwambo, Nicholas J S; Kabatereine, Narcis B; Lange, Charles N; Kariuki, Curtis; Mkoji, Gerald M; Rollinson, David; Stothard, J Russell

    2013-11-01

    Schistosoma mansoni is a widespread human helminth and causes intestinal schistosomiasis in 54 countries, mainly across Africa but also in Madagascar, the Arabian Peninsula and the neotropics. The geographical range of this parasite relies on the distribution of certain species of freshwater pulmonate snails of the genus Biomphalaria. Whilst S. mansoni is known to exhibit high population diversity the true extent of this diversity is still to be fully elucidated as sampling of this taxon progressively accrues. Here a DNA 'barcoding' approach is taken using sequence analysis of a 450bp region within the mitochondrial cox1 gene to assess the genetic diversity within a large number of S. mansoni larval stages collected from their natural human hosts across sub-Saharan Africa. Five hundred and sixty one individual parasite samples were examined from 22 localities and 14 countries. Considerable within-species diversity was found with 120 unique haplotypes splitting geographically into five discrete lineages. The highest diversity was found in East Africa with samples forming three of the five lineages. Less diversity was found in the Far and Central Western regions of Africa with haplotypes from the New World showing a close affinity to the Far Western African S. mansoni populations supporting the hypothesis of a colonisation of South America via the West African slave trade. The data are discussed in relation to parasite diversity and disease epidemiology.

  15. Functional characterization of peroxiredoxins from the human protozoan parasite Giardia intestinalis.

    PubMed

    Mastronicola, Daniela; Falabella, Micol; Testa, Fabrizio; Pucillo, Leopoldo Paolo; Teixeira, Miguel; Sarti, Paolo; Saraiva, Lígia M; Giuffrè, Alessandro

    2014-01-01

    The microaerophilic protozoan parasite Giardia intestinalis, causative of one of the most common human intestinal diseases worldwide, infects the mucosa of the proximal small intestine, where it has to cope with O2 and nitric oxide (NO). Elucidating the antioxidant defense system of this pathogen lacking catalase and other conventional antioxidant enzymes is thus important to unveil novel potential drug targets. Enzymes metabolizing O2, NO and superoxide anion (O2 (-•)) have been recently reported for Giardia, but it is yet unknown how the parasite copes with H2O2 and peroxynitrite (ONOO(-)). Giardia encodes two yet uncharacterized 2-cys peroxiredoxins (Prxs), GiPrx1a and GiPrx1b. Peroxiredoxins are peroxidases implicated in virulence and drug resistance in several parasitic protozoa, able to protect from nitroxidative stress and repair oxidatively damaged molecules. GiPrx1a and a truncated form of GiPrx1b (deltaGiPrx1b) were expressed in Escherichia coli, purified and functionally characterized. Both Prxs effectively metabolize H2O2 and alkyl-hydroperoxides (cumyl- and tert-butyl-hydroperoxide) in the presence of NADPH and E. coli thioredoxin reductase/thioredoxin as the reducing system. Stopped-flow experiments show that both proteins in the reduced state react with ONOO(-) rapidly (k = 4×10(5) M(-1) s(-1) and 2×10(5) M(-1) s(-1) at 4°C, for GiPrx1a and deltaGiPrx1b, respectively). Consistent with a protective role against oxidative stress, expression of GiPrx1a (but not deltaGiPrx1b) is induced in parasitic cells exposed to air O2 for 24 h. Based on these results, GiPrx1a and deltaGiPrx1b are suggested to play an important role in the antioxidant defense of Giardia, possibly contributing to pathogenesis.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Molecular cloning of Schistosoma mansoni calcineurin subunits and immunolocalization to the excretory system.

    PubMed

    Mecozzi, B; Rossi, A; Lazzaretti, P; Kady, M; Kaiser, S; Valle, C; Cioli, D; Klinkert, M Q

    2000-10-01

    In order to explain the schistosomicidal effect of cyclosporin A, the hypothesis was advanced that the drug, complexed with cyclophilin, inhibits the phosphatase activity of parasite calcineurin (CN), with mechanisms similar to those operating in its immunosuppressive action. As a preparatory step to the testing of this hypothesis, we report the molecular cloning of both CN subunits in Schistosoma mansoni. The catalytic (A) subunit has a predicted sequence of 607 amino acids and shows substantial similarity to other cloned CNs, except for the carboxy-terminal end that is highly divergent. The regulatory (B) subunit consists of 169 amino acids that are 86% identical to those of the human counterpart and, from its anomalous electrophoretic mobility, it appears to be myristoylated. The results of Southern blotting experiments are compatible with the existence of multiple genes for CNA and a single gene for CNB. Western blots showed that both subunits are present at all stages of the parasite life cycle and can be detected both in the soluble and in the membrane fraction. Immunofluorescence confocal microscopy revealed a striking concentration of the anti-CNA reactivity in 6-8 discrete spots in the schistosomula and in distinct spots along the body of the adult parasite, corresponding to the expected localization of flame cells. Both patterns were confirmed by a perfect co-localization of the anti-CNA signal with that of a previously characterized anti-flame cell monoclonal antibody. The preferential confinement of schistosome CN to the protonephridial system suggests that the enzyme in the parasite may fulfil similar functions to those performed in mammalian kidneys.

  19. A Meta-Analysis of Experimental Studies of Attenuated Schistosoma mansoni Vaccines in the Mouse Model

    PubMed Central

    Fukushige, Mizuho; Mitchell, Kate M.; Bourke, Claire D.; Woolhouse, Mark E. J.; Mutapi, Francisca

    2015-01-01

    Schistosomiasis is a water-borne, parasitic disease of major public health importance. There has been considerable effort for several decades toward the development of a vaccine against the disease. Numerous mouse experimental studies using attenuated Schistosoma mansoni parasites for vaccination have been published since 1960s. However, to date, there has been no systematic review or meta-analysis of these data. The aim of this study is to identify measurable experimental conditions that affect the level of protection against re-infection with S. mansoni in mice vaccinated with radiation attenuated cercariae. Following a systematic review, a total of 755 observations were extracted from 105 articles (published 1963–2007) meeting the searching criteria. Random effects meta-regression models were used to identify the influential predictors. Three predictors were found to have statistically significant effects on the level of protection from vaccination: increasing numbers of immunizing parasites had a positive effect on fraction of protection whereas increasing radiation dose and time to challenge infection had negative effects. Models showed that the irradiated cercariae vaccine has the potential to achieve protection as high as 78% with a single dose vaccination. This declines slowly over time but remains high for at least 8 months after the last immunization. These findings provide insights into the optimal delivery of attenuated parasite vaccination and into the nature and development of protective vaccine induced immunity against schistosomiasis, which may inform the formulation of human vaccines and the predicted duration of protection and thus frequency of booster vaccines. PMID:25774157

  20. 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.

  1. The cercarial glycocalyx of Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    1985-01-01

    Cercariae, the freshwater stage of Schistosoma mansoni infectious to man, are covered by a single unit membrane and an immunogenic glycocalyx. When cercariae penetrate the host skin, they transform to schistosomula by shedding tails, secreting mucous and enzymes, and forming microvilli over their surface. Here the loss of the glycocalyx from cercariae transforming in vitro was studied morphologically and biochemically. By scanning electron microscopy, the glycocalyx was a dense mesh composed of 15-30 nm fibrils that obscured spines on the cercarial surface. The glycocalyx was absent on organisms fixed without osmium and was partially lost when parasites aggregated in their own secretions before fixation. By transmission electron microscopy, a 1-2 microns thick mesh of 8-15-nm fibrils was seen on parasites incubated with anti-schistosomal antibodies or fixed in aldehydes containing tannic acid or ruthenium red. Cercariae transformed to schistosomula when tails were removed mechanically and parasites were incubated in saline. Within 5 min of transformation, organisms synchronously formed microvilli which elongated to 3-5 microns by 20 min and then were shed. However, considerable fibrillar material remained adherent to the double unit membrane surface of schistosomula. For biochemical labeling, parasites were treated with eserine sulfate, which blocked cercarial swimming, secretion, infectivity, and transformation to schistosomula. Material labeled by periodate oxidation and NaB3H4 was on the surface as shown by autoradiography and had an apparent molecular weight of greater than 10(6) by chromatography. Periodate- NaB3H4 glycocalyx had an isoelectric point of 5.0 +/- 0.4 and was precipitable with anti-schistosomal antibodies. More than 60% of the radiolabeled glycocalyx was released into the medium by transforming parasites in 3 h and was recovered as high molecular weight material. Parasites labeled with periodate and fluorescein-thiosemicarbazide and then

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Epidemiology of infections with intestinal parasites and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) among sugar-estate residents in Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Fontanet, A L; Sahlu, T; Rinke de Wit, T; Messele, T; Masho, W; Woldemichael, T; Yeneneh, H; Coutinho, R A

    2000-04-01

    Intestinal parasitic infections could play an important role in the progression of infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), by further disturbing the immune system whilst it is already engaged in the fight against HIV. HIV and intestinal parasitic infections were investigated in 1239, randomly selected individuals, aged 15-54 years, living on a sugar estate in central Ethiopia. Intestinal parasites were identified in faecal samples (one/subject) using direct, concentration, and (for Strongyloides stercoralis larvae) Baermann methods. HIV serological status was determined using ELISA, with ELISA-positive samples confirmed as positive by western blotting. Most (70.1%) of the subjects were infected with at least one intestinal parasite and 3.1% were seropositive (but asymptomatic) for HIV. The intestinal parasites identified in the study population were amoebic parasites (Entamoeba histolytica/Enta. dispar) (24.6%), hookworms (23.8%), Ascaris lumbricoides (22.2%), Trichuris trichiura (19.5%), S. stercoralis (13.0%), Taenia saginata (4.5%), Giardia lamblia (3.0%), and Enterobius vermicularis (1.3%). Overall, the HIV-positives were no more or less likely to carry intestinal parasites than the HIV-negatives (76.2% v. 69.9%; P > 0.05). However, when each parasite was considered separately, amoebic parasites were found to be more common in the HIV-positives than the HIV-negatives (43.7% v. 24.0%; P < 0.05). This difference remained significant in a multivariate analysis, after controlling for the socio-demographic characteristics of the study participants. In conclusion, there was moderate interaction between intestinal parasites and HIV at the asymptomatic stage of HIV infection. The observed association between amoebic and HIV infections requires confirmation in a prospective study, allowing for the analysis of biological mechanisms involved in the association.

  5. 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

  6. Cell death of gamma interferon-stimulated human fibroblasts upon Toxoplasma gondii infection induces early parasite egress and limits parasite replication.

    PubMed

    Niedelman, Wendy; Sprokholt, Joris K; Clough, Barbara; Frickel, Eva-Maria; Saeij, Jeroen P J

    2013-12-01

    The intracellular protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii is a major food-borne illness and opportunistic infection for the immunosuppressed. Resistance to Toxoplasma is dependent on gamma interferon (IFN-γ) activation of both hematopoietic and nonhematopoietic cells. Although IFN-γ-induced innate immunity in nonhematopoietic cells has been extensively studied in mice, it remains unclear what resistance mechanisms are relied on in nonhematopoietic human cells. Here, we report an IFN-γ-induced mechanism of resistance to Toxoplasma in primary human foreskin fibroblasts (HFFs) that does not depend on the deprivation of tryptophan or iron. In addition, infection is still controlled in HFFs deficient in the p65 guanylate binding proteins GBP1 or GBP2 and the autophagic protein ATG5. Resistance is coincident with host cell death that is not dependent on the necroptosis mediator RIPK3 or caspases and is correlated with early egress of the parasite before replication. This IFN-γ-induced cell death and early egress limits replication in HFFs and could promote clearance of the parasite by immune cells.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Cockroaches as carriers of human intestinal parasites in two localities in Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kinfu, Addisu; Erko, Berhanu

    2008-11-01

    A study was undertaken to assess the role of cockroaches as potential carriers of human intestinal parasites in Addis Ababa and Ziway, Ethiopia. A total of 6480 cockroaches were trapped from the two localities from October 2006 to March 2007. All the cockroaches trapped in Addis Ababa (n=2240) and almost 50% (2100/4240) of those trapped in Ziway were identified as Blattella germanica. The rest of the cockroaches trapped in Ziway were identified as Periplaneta brunnea (24.52%), Pycnoscelus surinamensis (16.03%) and Supella longipalpa (9.90%). Microscopic examination of the external body washes of pooled cockroaches and individual gut contents revealed that cockroaches are carriers of Entamoeba coli and Entamoeba histolytica/dispar cysts as well as Enterobius vermicularis, Trichuris trichiura, Taenia spp. and Ascaris lumbricoides ova. Besides their role as a nuisance, the present study further confirms that cockroaches serve as carriers of human intestinal parasites. The possible association of cockroaches with allergic conditions such as asthma is also discussed. Hence, appropriate control measures should be taken particularly to make hotels and residential areas free of cockroaches as they represent a health risk.

  10. Structural and kinetic analysis of Schistosoma mansoni Adenylosuccinate Lyase (SmADSL).

    PubMed

    Romanello, Larissa; Serrão, Vitor Hugo Balasco; de Souza, Juliana Roberta Torini; Bird, Louise E; Nettleship, Joanne E; Rada, Heather; Reddivari, Yamini; Owens, Ray J; de Marco, Ricardo; Brandão-Neto, José; Pereira, Humberto D'Muniz

    2017-03-24

    Schistosoma mansoni is the parasite responsible for schistosomiasis, a disease that affects about 218 million people worldwide. Currently, both direct treatment and disease control initiatives rely on chemotherapy using a single drug, praziquantel. Concerns over the possibility of resistance developing to praziquantel, have stimulated efforts to develop new drugs for the treatment of schistosomiasis. Schistosomes do not have the de novo purine biosynthetic pathway, and instead depend entirely on the purine salvage pathway to supply its need for purines. The purine salvage pathway has been reported as a potential target for developing new drugs against schistosomiasis. Adenylosuccinate lyase (SmADSL) is an enzyme in this pathway, which cleaves adenylosuccinate (ADS) into adenosine 5'-monophosphate (AMP) and fumarate. SmADSL kinetic characterization was performed by isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) using both ADS and SAICAR as substrates. Structures of SmADSL in Apo form and in complex with AMP were elucidated by x-ray crystallography revealing a highly conserved tetrameric structure required for their function since the active sites is formed from residues of three different subunits. The active sites are also highly conserved between species and it is difficult to identify a potent species-specific inhibitor for the development of new therapeutic agents. In contrast, several mutagenesis studies have demonstrated the importance of dimeric interface residues in the stability of the quaternary structure of the enzyme. The lower conservation of these residues between SmADSL and human ADSL could be used to lead the development of anti-schistosomiasis drugs based on disruption of subunit interfaces. These structures and kinetics data add another layer of information to Schistosoma mansoni purine salvage pathway.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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%.

  14. 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

  15. Functional genomic technologies applied to the control of the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Carucci, D J

    2001-05-01

    Infection with any of the four species of Plasmodium single cell parasites that infects humans causes the clinical disease, malaria. Of these, it is Plasmodium falciparum that is responsible for the majority of the 1.5-2.3 million deaths due to this disease each year. Worldwide there are between 300-500 million cases of malaria annually. To date there is no licensed vaccine and resistance to most of the available drugs used to prevent and/or treat malaria is spreading. There is therefore an urgent need to develop new and effective drugs and vaccines against this devastating parasite. We have outlined a strategy using a combination of DNA-based vaccines and the data derived from the soon-to-be completed P. falciparum genome and the genomes of other species of Plasmodium to develop new vaccines against malaria. Much of the technology that we are developing for vaccine target identification is directly applicable to the identification of potential targets for drug discovery. The publicly available genome sequence data also provides a means for researchers whose focus may not be primarily malaria to leverage their research on cancer, yeast biology and other research areas to the biological problems of malaria.

  16. 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.

  17. A novel mouse model of Schistosoma haematobium egg-induced immunopathology.

    PubMed

    Fu, Chi-Ling; Odegaard, Justin I; Herbert, De'Broski R; Hsieh, Michael H

    2012-01-01

    Schistosoma haematobium is the etiologic agent for urogenital schistosomiasis, a major source of morbidity and mortality for more than 112 million people worldwide. Infection with S. haematobium results in a variety of immunopathologic sequelae caused by parasite oviposition within the urinary tract, which drives inflammation, hematuria, fibrosis, bladder dysfunction, and increased susceptibility to urothelial carcinoma. While humans readily develop urogenital schistosomiasis, the lack of an experimentally-tractable model has greatly impaired our understanding of the mechanisms that underlie this important disease. We have developed an improved mouse model of S. haematobium urinary tract infection that recapitulates several aspects of human urogenital schistosomiasis. Following microinjection of purified S. haematobium eggs into the bladder wall, mice consistently develop macrophage-rich granulomata that persist for at least 3 months and pass eggs in their urine. Importantly, egg-injected mice also develop urinary tract fibrosis, bladder dysfunction, and various urothelial changes morphologically reminiscent of human urogenital schistosomiasis. As expected, S. haematobium egg-induced immune responses in the immediate microenvironment, draining lymph nodes, and systemic circulation are associated with a Type 2-dominant inflammatory response, characterized by high levels of interleukin-4, eosinophils, and IgE. Taken together, our novel mouse model may help facilitate a better understanding of the unique pathophysiological mechanisms of epithelial dysfunction, tissue fibrosis, and oncogenesis associated with urogenital schistosomiasis.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Automatic segmentation and classification of human intestinal parasites from microscopy images.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Celso T N; Gomes, Jancarlo F; Falcão, Alexandre X; Papa, João P; Hoshino-Shimizu, Sumie

    2013-03-01

    Human intestinal parasites constitute a problem in most tropical countries, causing death or physical and mental disorders. Their diagnosis usually relies on the visual analysis of microscopy images, with error rates that may range from moderate to high. The problem has been addressed via computational image analysis, but only for a few species and images free of fecal impurities. In routine, fecal impurities are a real challenge for automatic image analysis. We have circumvented this problem by a method that can segment and classify, from bright field microscopy images with fecal impurities, the 15 most common species of protozoan cysts, helminth eggs, and larvae in Brazil. Our approach exploits ellipse matching and image foresting transform for image segmentation, multiple object descriptors and their optimum combination by genetic programming for object representation, and the optimum-path forest classifier for object recognition. The results indicate that our method is a promising approach toward the fully automation of the enteroparasitosis diagnosis.

  2. 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.

  3. Inhibition of malaria parasite invasion of human erythrocytes by a lymphocyte membrane polypeptide.

    PubMed

    Benzaquen-Geffin, R; Milner, Y; Ginsburg, H

    1987-02-01

    Extraction by boiling of the buffy coat of human blood yields a protein solution which inhibits the propagation of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in culture with a 50% inhibitory dose of 105 micrograms of protein per ml. The inhibitory activity is associated exclusively with the lymphocytes and affects solely the invasion of erythrocytes by free merozoites. Boiled extracts of isolated lymphocytes had a 50% inhibitory dose of 22 micrograms/ml. Fractionation of surface-labeled or pronase-treated lymphocytes revealed that the antimalarial lymphocyte factor is associated with the intracellular aspect of the membrane fraction and is probably not involved in the host defense system against malaria. Further purification by salt extraction, ion-exchange chromatography, molecular gel filtration, and electroelution from lithium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gels resulted in 300- to 550-fold purification, i.e., a 50% inhibitory dose of 40 to 70 ng/ml. All inhibitory fractions contained a 48-kilodalton polypeptide which eluted from a gel filtration column as a 400-kilodalton species, implying multimeric association. Some 6,000 molecules of the 48-kilodalton polypeptide bind with high affinity to one merozoite, the free form of the parasite. The Kd of 0.1 to 0.5 nM for the binding of the 48-kilodalton polypeptide correlated well with the 50% inhibitory dose of 0.3 to 0.4 nM obtained with purified active antimalarial lymphocyte factor. We therefore suggest that the 48-kilodalton polypeptide partially purified from lymphocyte membranes is the antimalarial lymphocyte factor and that it exerts its inhibitory activity by binding to merozoites, thereby preventing their invasion into erythrocytes. The antimalarial lymphocyte factor or a polypeptide sequence thereof could serve for further probing of invasion at the molecular level.

  4. 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.

  5. Inhibition of malaria parasite invasion of human erythrocytes by a lymphocyte membrane polypeptide.

    PubMed Central

    Benzaquen-Geffin, R; Milner, Y; Ginsburg, H

    1987-01-01

    Extraction by boiling of the buffy coat of human blood yields a protein solution which inhibits the propagation of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum in culture with a 50% inhibitory dose of 105 micrograms of protein per ml. The inhibitory activity is associated exclusively with the lymphocytes and affects solely the invasion of erythrocytes by free merozoites. Boiled extracts of isolated lymphocytes had a 50% inhibitory dose of 22 micrograms/ml. Fractionation of surface-labeled or pronase-treated lymphocytes revealed that the antimalarial lymphocyte factor is associated with the intracellular aspect of the membrane fraction and is probably not involved in the host defense system against malaria. Further purification by salt extraction, ion-exchange chromatography, molecular gel filtration, and electroelution from lithium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gels resulted in 300- to 550-fold purification, i.e., a 50% inhibitory dose of 40 to 70 ng/ml. All inhibitory fractions contained a 48-kilodalton polypeptide which eluted from a gel filtration column as a 400-kilodalton species, implying multimeric association. Some 6,000 molecules of the 48-kilodalton polypeptide bind with high affinity to one merozoite, the free form of the parasite. The Kd of 0.1 to 0.5 nM for the binding of the 48-kilodalton polypeptide correlated well with the 50% inhibitory dose of 0.3 to 0.4 nM obtained with purified active antimalarial lymphocyte factor. We therefore suggest that the 48-kilodalton polypeptide partially purified from lymphocyte membranes is the antimalarial lymphocyte factor and that it exerts its inhibitory activity by binding to merozoites, thereby preventing their invasion into erythrocytes. The antimalarial lymphocyte factor or a polypeptide sequence thereof could serve for further probing of invasion at the molecular level. Images PMID:3542831

  6. The health impact of polyparasitism in humans: are we under-estimating the burden of parasitic diseases?

    PubMed

    Pullan, R; Brooker, S

    2008-06-01

    Parasitic infections are widespread throughout the tropics and sub-tropics, and infection with multiple parasite species is the norm rather than the exception. Despite the ubiquity of polyparasitism, its public health significance has been inadequately studied. Here we review available studies investigating the nutritional and pathological consequences of multiple infections with Plasmodium and helminth infection and, in doing so, encourage a reassessment of the disease burden caused by polyparasitism. The available evidence is conspicuously sparse but is suggestive that multiple human parasite species may have an additive and/or multiplicative impact on nutrition and organ pathology. Existing studies suffer from a number of methodological limitations and adequately designed studies are clearly necessary. Current methods of estimating the potential global morbidity due to parasitic diseases underestimate the health impact of polyparasitism, and possible reasons for this are presented. As international strategies to control multiple parasite species are rolled-out, there is a number of options to investigate the complexity of polyparasitism, and it is hoped that that the parasitological research community will grasp the opportunity to understand better the health of polyparasitism in humans.

  7. Sequence and diversity of DRB genes of Aotus nancymaae, a primate model for human malaria parasites.

    PubMed

    Nino-Vasquez, J J; Vogel, D; Rodriguez, R; Moreno, A; Patarroyo, M E; Pluschke, G; Daubenberger, C A

    2000-03-01

    The New World primate Aotus nancymaae is susceptible to infection with the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax and has therefore been recommended by the World Health Organization as a model for evaluation of malaria vaccine candidates. We present here a first step in the molecular characterization of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II DRB genes of Aotus nancymaae (owl monkey or night monkey) by nucleotide sequence analysis of the polymorphic exon 2 segments. In a group of 15 nonrelated animals captivated in the wild, 34 MHC DRB alleles could be identified. Six allelic lineages were detected, two of them having human counterparts, while two other lineages have not been described in any other New World monkey species studied. As in the common marmoset, the diversity of DRB alleles appears to have arisen largely by point mutations in the beta-pleated sheets and by frequent exchange of fixed sequence motifs in the alpha-helical portion. Pairs of alleles differing only at amino acid position b86 by an exchange of valine to glycine are present in Aotus, as in humans. Essential amino acid residues contributing to MHC DR peptide binding pockets number 1 and 4 are conserved or semiconserved between HLA-DR and Aona-DRB molecules, indicating a capacity to bind similar peptide repertoires. These results support fully our using Aotus monkeys as an animal model for evaluation of future subunit vaccine candidates.

  8. Parasites as Drivers and Passengers of Human-Mediated Biological Invasions.

    PubMed

    Blackburn, Tim M; Ewen, John G

    2017-03-01

    We provide an overview of the current state of knowledge of parasites in biological invasions by alien species. Parasites have frequently been invoked as drivers of invasions, but have received less attention as invasion passengers. The evidence to date that parasites drive invasions by hosts is weak: while there is abundant evidence that parasites have effects in the context of alien invasions, there is little evidence to suggest that parasites have differential effects on alien species that succeed versus fail in the invasion process. Particular case studies are suggestive but not yet informative about general effects. What evidence there is for parasites as aliens suggests that the same kind of factors determine their success as for non-parasites. Thus, availability is likely to be an important determinant of the probability of translocation. Establishment and spread are likely to depend on propagule pressure and on the environment being suitable (all necessary hosts and vectors are present); the likelihood of both of these dependencies being favourable will be affected by traits relating to parasite life history and demography. The added complication for the success of parasites as aliens is that often this will depend on the success of their hosts. We discuss how these conclusions help us to understand the likely effects of parasites on the success of establishing host populations (alien or native).

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. Evidence for the presence of two (Ca(2+)-Mg2+) ATPases with different sensitivities to thapsigargin and cyclopiazonic acid in the human flatworm Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Cunha, V M; Reis, J M; Noël, F

    1996-06-01

    The subcellular localization of the (Ca(2+)-Mg2+)ATPase activities present in heterogeneous (P1), nuclear (P2), mitochondrial (P3) and microsomal (P4) fractions obtained by differential centrifugation of Schistosoma mansoni homogenate was investigated. In the microsomal fraction (P4), the (Ca(2+)-Mg2+)ATPase activity was completely blocked by 3 microM thapsigargin, whereas in the more heterogeneous fraction (P1), about 20-30% of this activity was resistant to the drug. The same pattern of inhibition was observed using 20 microM cyclopiazonic acid. The distribution pattern of (Ca(2+)-Mg2+)ATPase activity among the four subcellular fractions (P1 > P4 > > P3 > P2) was completely different from that of [3H]-ouabain binding sites (P1 > or = P4 = P2 > or = P3). These results indicate that the (Ca(2+)-Mg2+)ATPase in S. mansoni is predominantly of the SERCA type (localized in the endoplasmic reticulum). However, there is another enzyme, present in lower proportion that could have a plasma membrane origin (PMCA type), because it is resistant to thapsigargin and cyclopiazonic acid and its inhibition by tamoxifen is antagonized by calmodulin.

  12. 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.

  13. A Genome Wide Comparison to Identify Markers to Differentiate the Sex of Larval Stages of Schistosoma haematobium, Schistosoma bovis and their Respective Hybrids

    PubMed Central

    Kincaid-Smith, Julien; Boissier, Jérôme; Allienne, Jean-François; Oleaga, Ana; Djuikwo-Teukeng, Félicité; Toulza, Eve

    2016-01-01

    For scientists working on gonochoric organisms, determining sex can be crucial for many biological questions and experimental studies, such as crossbreeding, but it can also be a challenging task, particularly when no sexual dimorphism is visible or cannot be directly observed. In metazoan parasites of the genus Schistosoma responsible for schistosomiasis, sex is genetically determined in the zygote with a female heterogametic ZW/ZZ system. Adult flukes have a pronounced sexual dimorphism, whereas the sexes of the larval stages are morphologically indistinguishable but can be distinguished uniquely by using molecular methods. Therefore, reliable methods are needed to identify the sex of larvae individuals. Here, we present an endpoint PCR-based assay using female-specific sequences identified using a genome-wide comparative analysis between males and females. This work allowed us to identify sex-markers for Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma bovis but also the hybrid between both species that has recently emerged in Corsica (France). Five molecular sex-markers were identified and are female-specific in S. haematobium and the hybrid parasite, whereas three of them are also female-specific in S. bovis. These molecular markers will be useful to conduct studies, such as experimental crosses on these disease-causing blood flukes, which are still largely neglected but no longer restricted to tropical areas. PMID:27861520

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. The O2-scavenging flavodiiron protein in the human parasite Giardia intestinalis.

    PubMed

    Di Matteo, Adele; Scandurra, Francesca Maria; Testa, Fabrizio; Forte, Elena; Sarti, Paolo; Brunori, Maurizio; Giuffrè, Alessandro

    2008-02-15

    The flavodiiron proteins (FDP) are widespread among strict or facultative anaerobic prokaryotes, where they are involved in the response to nitrosative and/or oxidative stress. Unexpectedly, FDPs were fairly recently identified in a restricted group of microaerobic protozoa, including Giardia intestinalis, the causative agent of the human infectious disease giardiasis. The FDP from Giardia was expressed, purified, and extensively characterized by x-ray crystallography, stopped-flow spectroscopy, respirometry, and NO amperometry. Contrary to flavorubredoxin, the FDP from Escherichia coli, the enzyme from Giardia has high O(2)-reductase activity (>40 s(-1)), but very low NO-reductase activity (approximately 0.2 s(-1)); O(2) reacts with the reduced protein quite rapidly (milliseconds) and with high affinity (K(m) < or = 2 microM), producing H(2)O. The three-dimensional structure of the oxidized protein determined at 1.9A resolution shows remarkable similarities with prokaryotic FDPs. Consistent with HPLC analysis, the enzyme is a dimer of dimers with FMN and the non-heme di-iron site topologically close at the monomer-monomer interface. Unlike the FDP from Desulfovibrio gigas, the residue His-90 is a ligand of the di-iron site, in contrast with the proposal that ligation of this histidine is crucial for a preferential specificity for NO. We propose that in G. intestinalis the primary function of FDP is to efficiently scavenge O(2), allowing this microaerobic parasite to survive in the human small intestine, thus promoting its pathogenicity.

  17. The Interaction of Classical Complement Component C1 with Parasite and Host Calreticulin Mediates Trypanosoma cruzi Infection of Human Placenta

    PubMed Central

    Castillo, Christian; Ramírez, Galia; Valck, Carolina; Aguilar, Lorena; Maldonado, Ismael; Rosas, Carlos; Galanti, Norbel; Kemmerling, Ulrike; Ferreira, Arturo

    2013-01-01

    Background 9 million people are infected with Trypanosoma cruzi in Latin America, plus more than 300,000 in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, and Japan. Approximately 30% of infected individuals develop circulatory or digestive pathology. While in underdeveloped countries transmission is mainly through hematophagous arthropods, transplacental infection prevails in developed ones. Methodology/Principal Findings During infection, T. cruzi calreticulin (TcCRT) translocates from the endoplasmic reticulum to the area of flagellum emergence. There, TcCRT acts as virulence factor since it binds maternal classical complement component C1q that recognizes human calreticulin (HuCRT) in placenta, with increased parasite infectivity. As measured ex vivo by quantitative PCR in human placenta chorionic villi explants (HPCVE) (the closest available correlate of human congenital T. cruzi infection), C1q mediated up to a 3–5-fold increase in parasite load. Because anti-TcCRT and anti-HuCRT F(ab′)2 antibody fragments are devoid of their Fc-dependent capacity to recruit C1q, they reverted the C1q-mediated increase in parasite load by respectively preventing its interaction with cell-bound CRTs from both parasite and HPCVE origins. The use of competing fluid-phase recombinant HuCRT and F(ab′)2 antibody fragments anti-TcCRT corroborated this. These results are consistent with a high expression of fetal CRT on placental free chorionic villi. Increased C1q-mediated infection is paralleled by placental tissue damage, as evidenced by histopathology, a damage that is ameliorated by anti-TcCRT F(ab′)2 antibody fragments or fluid-phase HuCRT. Conclusions/Significance T. cruzi infection of HPCVE is importantly mediated by human and parasite CRTs and C1q. Most likely, C1q bridges CRT on the parasite surface with its receptor orthologue on human placental cells, thus facilitating the first encounter between the parasite and the fetal derived placental tissue. The results

  18. Identification of Thioredoxin Glutathione Reductase Inhibitors That Kill Cestode and Trematode Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Ross, Fabiana; Hernández, Paola; Porcal, Williams; López, Gloria V.; Cerecetto, Hugo; González, Mercedes; Basika, Tatiana; Carmona, Carlos; Fló, Martín; Maggioli, Gabriela; Bonilla, Mariana; Gladyshev, Vadim N.; Boiani, Mariana; Salinas, Gustavo

    2012-01-01

    Parasitic flatworms are responsible for serious infectious diseases that affect humans as well as livestock animals in vast regions of the world. Yet, the drug armamentarium available for treatment of these infections is limited: praziquantel is the single drug currently available for 200 million people infected with Schistosoma spp. and there is justified concern about emergence of drug resistance. Thioredoxin glutathione reductase (TGR) is an essential core enzyme for redox homeostasis in flatworm parasites. In this work, we searched for flatworm TGR inhibitors testing compounds belonging to various families known to inhibit thioredoxin reductase or TGR and also additional electrophilic compounds. Several furoxans and one thiadiazole potently inhibited TGRs from both classes of parasitic flatworms: cestoda (tapeworms) and trematoda (flukes), while several benzofuroxans and a quinoxaline moderately inhibited TGRs. Remarkably, five active compounds from diverse families possessed a phenylsulfonyl group, strongly suggesting that this moiety is a new pharmacophore. The most active inhibitors were further characterized and displayed slow and nearly irreversible binding to TGR. These compounds efficiently killed Echinococcus granulosus larval worms and Fasciola hepatica newly excysted juveniles in vitro at a 20 µM concentration. Our results support the concept that the redox metabolism of flatworm parasites is precarious and particularly susceptible to destabilization, show that furoxans can be used to target both flukes and tapeworms, and identified phenylsulfonyl as a new drug-hit moiety for both classes of flatworm parasites. PMID:22536349

  19. Identification of thioredoxin glutathione reductase inhibitors that kill cestode and trematode parasites.

    PubMed

    Ross, Fabiana; Hernández, Paola; Porcal, Williams; López, Gloria V; Cerecetto, Hugo; González, Mercedes; Basika, Tatiana; Carmona, Carlos; Fló, Martín; Maggioli, Gabriela; Bonilla, Mariana; Gladyshev, Vadim N; Boiani, Mariana; Salinas, Gustavo

    2012-01-01

    Parasitic flatworms are responsible for serious infectious diseases that affect humans as well as livestock animals in vast regions of the world. Yet, the drug armamentarium available for treatment of these infections is limited: praziquantel is the single drug currently available for 200 million people infected with Schistosoma spp. and there is justified concern about emergence of drug resistance. Thioredoxin glutathione reductase (TGR) is an essential core enzyme for redox homeostasis in flatworm parasites. In this work, we searched for flatworm TGR inhibitors testing compounds belonging to various families known to inhibit thioredoxin reductase or TGR and also additional electrophilic compounds. Several furoxans and one thiadiazole potently inhibited TGRs from both classes of parasitic flatworms: cestoda (tapeworms) and trematoda (flukes), while several benzofuroxans and a quinoxaline moderately inhibited TGRs. Remarkably, five active compounds from diverse families possessed a phenylsulfonyl group, strongly suggesting that this moiety is a new pharmacophore. The most active inhibitors were further characterized and displayed slow and nearly irreversible binding to TGR. These compounds efficiently killed Echinococcus granulosus larval worms and Fasciola hepatica newly excysted juveniles in vitro at a 20 µM concentration. Our results support the concept that the redox metabolism of flatworm parasites is precarious and particularly susceptible to destabilization, show that furoxans can be used to target both flukes and tapeworms, and identified phenylsulfonyl as a new drug-hit moiety for both classes of flatworm parasites.

  20. Transmission dynamics of two strains of Schistosoma mansoni utilizing novel intermediate and definitive hosts.

    PubMed

    Jones-Nelson, Omari; Thiele, Elizabeth A; Minchella, Dennis J

    2011-09-01

    The intimate host-parasite relationship mandates adaptation to the genetic and phenotypic variability of their counterparts. Here, inbred and outcrossed strains of Schistosoma mansoni were challenged with "local" and "novel" intermediate and definitive hosts to examine effects of genetic variability and novelty on infection success and dynamics. Genetically distinct lines of Biomphalaria glabrata intermediate hosts exposed to inbred and outcrossed S. mansoni larvae were assessed for differences in both snail and parasite life-history parameters. Cercariae from each parasite-snail treatment were used to infect "local" and "novel" Mus musculus definitive hosts to assess parasite infectivity and fitness. Outcrossed parasites significantly reduced snail growth, were more productive, and induced greater host mortality than inbred parasites. Mouse strain did not influence parasite infectivity or reproduction, but parasite and snail host genetic background did, affecting both sex-specific infectivity and parasite productivity. Overall, genetic background of S. mansoni and its intermediate snail host altered life history traits and transmission dynamics of the parasite throughout its life cycle.

  1. The immunologically reactive O-linked polysaccharide chains derived from circulating cathodic antigen isolated from the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni have Lewis x as repeating unit.

    PubMed

    Van Dam, G J; Bergwerff, A A; Thomas-Oates, J E; Rotmans, J P; Kamerling, J P; Vliegenthart, J F; Deelder, A M

    1994-10-01

    The gut-associated excretory antigen circulating cathodic antigen (CCA) was isolated by immunoaffinity chromatography from adult Schistosoma mansoni worms, which were collected from infected golden hamsters. This antigen is probably involved in protection of the schistosome gut and is increasingly used in highly sensitive and specific immunodiagnostic assays. Amino acid analysis before and after alkaline borohydride treatment of CCA and monosaccharide analysis indicated that CCA is O-glycosylated mostly via GalNAc-Thr. After reductive alkaline treatment, the O-linked carbohydrate chains were fractionated by gel-permeation chromatography, followed by normal-phase HPLC on LiChrosorb-NH2. Carbohydrate-positive fractions were investigated by one-dimensional and two-dimensional 1H-NMR spectroscopy, fast atom bombardment mass spectrometry and collision-induced-dissociation tandem mass spectrometry. The analyses showed that the low-molecular-mass O-linked oligosaccharide alditols (the minor fraction) consist of disaccharides to hexasaccharides having the Gal beta (1-3)GalNAc-OL core in common. The major carbohydrate fraction comprises a population of polysaccharides, containing Lewis x repeating units (-3)Gal beta (1-4)[Fuc alpha (1-3)]GlcNAc beta (1-). CCA-specific monoclonal antibodies and IgM antibodies in patient sera recognized the fucosylated O-linked carbohydrate antigenic structures. Since CCA evokes a strong IgM antibody response and carbohydrate structures containing repeating Lewis x units are found on circulating neutrophils, it is proposed that the antigenic poly-Lewis x polysaccharide of CCA is involved in the induction of auto-immunity against granulocytes, resulting in the mild to moderate neutropenia observed during schistosome infection.

  2. Human factors facilitating the spread of a parasitic honey bee in South Africa.

    PubMed

    Dietemann, Vincent; Lubbe, Annelize; Crewe, Robin M

    2006-02-01

    Workers of the honey bee subspecies Apis mellifera capensis (Eschscholtz) produce female offspring by thelytokous parthenogenesis and can parasitize colonies of other subspecies. In 1990, translocation of 400 colonies of A. m. capensis into the distribution area of A. m. scutellata by a commercial beekeeper triggered a dramatic parasitic phenomenon. Parasitized colonies died within a few months of infestation, and this resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of colonies by commercial beekeepers in the A. m. scutellata range in South Africa. To deal with the problem and to identify methods that would limit the impact of the social parasite, we investigated the link between beekeeping management and severity of parasitic infestations in terms of colony mortality and productivity. We demonstrate that colonies from apiaries subjected to migrations are very susceptible to infestation and consequently show dramatic mortality. Their productivity is also inferior to sedentary colonies and those in isolated apiaries in terms of honey yield and brood quantity. Furthermore, by concentrating hives in small areas and often in the vicinity of other beekeepers, cross-infestations can easily occur. This can undermine previously parasite-free beekeeping businesses. As a result of our surveys, we propose beekeeping practices based on locally trapped bees, reduced migration, and better control of parasite spread, thus promoting the conservation of these pollinators. If followed by all the South African beekeepers, these measures should limit the spread of the parasite until it is eliminated within a few years, after which full migratory beekeeping practices could resume.

  3. [Advances in research of dihydroartemisinin against parasitic diseases].

    PubMed

    Li, Hong-Jun; Wang, Wei; Liang, You-Sheng

    2011-08-01

    Dihydroartemisinin, the main metabolite of artemisinin and two artemisinin derivatives, artemether and artesunate, is a broad-spectrum anti-parasitic drug. The present paper systematically reviews the advances in research of dihydroartemisinin against Plasmodium, Schistosoma, Pneumocystis, Toxoplasma, Trichomonas vaginalis, Leishmania, Giardia lamblia.

  4. 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; ...

    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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Chronic Schistosoma japonicum Infection Reduces Immune Response to Vaccine against Hepatitis B in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Lin; Liu, Wen-qi; Lei, Jia-hui; Guan, Fei; Li, Man-jun; Song, Wen-jian; Li, Yong-long; Wang, Ting

    2012-01-01

    Background Hepatitis B and schistosomiasis are most prevalent in Africa and Asia, and co-infections of both are frequent in these areas. The immunomodulation reported to be induced by schistosome infections might restrict immune control of hepatitis B virus (HBV) leading to more severe viral infection. Vaccination is the most effective measure to control and prevent HBV infection, but there is evidence for a reduced immune response to the vaccine in patients with chronic schistosomiasis japonica. Methodology/Principal Findings In this paper, we demonstrate in a mouse model that a chronic Schistosoma japonicum infection can inhibit the immune response to hepatitis B vaccine (HBV vaccine) and lead to lower production of anti-HBs antibodies, interferon-γ (IFN-γ) and interleukin-2 (IL-2). After deworming with Praziquantel (PZQ), the level of anti-HBs antibodies gradually increased and the Th2-biased profile slowly tapered. At 16 weeks after deworming, the levels of anti-HBs antibodies and Th1/Th2 cytokines returned to the normal levels. Conclusions/Significance The results suggest that the preexisting Th2-dominated immune profile in the host infected with the parasite may down–regulate levels of anti-HBs antibodies and Th1 cytokines. To improve the efficacy of HBV vaccination in schistosome infected humans it may be valuable to treat them with praziquantel (PZQ) some time prior to HBV vaccination. PMID:23272112

  10. The identification, expression profile, and preliminary characterization of Tsunagi protein from Schistosoma japonicum.

    PubMed

    Liu, Miao; Wang, Xiaonan; Lei, Li; Zhao, Zhirong; Shen, Jijia

    2010-08-01

    Tsunagi is an evolutionarily conserved protein, which is required for germ line differentiation during the development of Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans. In this paper, we describe a homologue of the Tsunagi protein from Schistosoma japonicum (SjTsunagi). The gene for this protein was isolated from S. japonicum using degenerate and anchored polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and the deduced protein has sequence homology and similarity to Tsunagi protein of other species, including C. elegans, D. melanogaster, Xenopus laevis, Mus musculus, and human. Amino acid sequence analysis showed the presence of a conserved RNA recognition motif. The predicted protein encoded by SjTsunagi gene is 177 amino acids in length with an estimated molecular mass of 20 kD. Immunoblot and reverse transcription-PCR analysis confirms SjTsunagi protein is expressed in eggs, cercariae, schistosomula, and adult female and adult male parasites. Pull-down and co-immunoprecipitation assay confirms that protein of SjTsunagi can interact with SjMago nashi in vitro. Taken together, this is the first report of the expression and preliminary characterization analysis of the SjTsunagi gene from S. japonicum.

  11. 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.

  12. Flavohemoglobin and nitric oxide detoxification in the human protozoan parasite Giardia intestinalis.

    PubMed

    Mastronicola, Daniela; Testa, Fabrizio; Forte, Elena; Bordi, Eugenio; Pucillo, Leopoldo Paolo; Sarti, Paolo; Giuffrè, Alessandro

    2010-09-03

    Flavohemoglobins (flavoHbs), commonly found in bacteria and fungi, afford protection from nitrosative stress by degrading nitric oxide (NO) to nitrate. Giardia intestinalis, a microaerophilic parasite causing one of the most common intestinal human infectious diseases worldwide, is the only pathogenic protozoon as yet identified coding for a flavoHb. By NO amperometry we show that, in the presence of NADH, the recombinant Giardia flavoHb metabolizes NO with high efficacy under aerobic conditions (TN=116+/-10s(-1) at 1microM NO, T=37 degrees C). The activity is [O(2)]-dependent and characterized by an apparent K(M,O2)=22+/-7microM. Immunoblotting analysis shows that the protein is expressed at low levels in the vegetative trophozoites of Giardia; accordingly, these cells aerobically metabolize NO with low efficacy. Interestingly, in response to nitrosative stress (24-h incubation with 5mM nitrite) flavoHb expression is enhanced and the trophozoites thereby become able to metabolize NO efficiently, the activity being sensitive to both cyanide and carbon monoxide. The NO-donors S-nitrosoglutathione (GSNO) and DETA-NONOate mimicked the effect of nitrite on flavoHb expression. We propose that physiologically flavoHb contributes to NO detoxification in G. intestinalis.

  13. Clinical heterogeneity of human neurocysticercosis results from complex interactions among parasite, host and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Fleury, Agnès; Escobar, Alfonso; Fragoso, Gladis; Sciutto, Edda; Larralde, Carlos

    2010-04-01

    Human neurocysticercosis (NC) is endemic in most countries of Latin America, Asia and Africa and is re-emerging in some industrialized nations. Both within and among endemic countries, NC is very variable in its clinical and radiological features, as well as in the intensity of the immuno-inflammatory reactions of the hosts. This review, focusing on the Mexican experience, describes and interprets the heterogeneity of NC as the result of different combinations among factors associated with the parasite, host and environment. The review may serve to foster similar descriptive efforts in other endemic areas of the world in order to facilitate the identification of the distinct factors that participate in the complex pathogenesis and diverse clinical outcomes of NC. In particular, it is necessary to understand the precise physiopathology of the inflammatory reaction associated with NC, as inflammation is one of the characteristics of those NC cases that are clinically more severe and less responsive to current treatments. Devising new medical interventions through the use of molecular regulators of the innate and adaptive immune responses of the host is a largely unexplored approach that could improve the existing forms of treatment.

  14. Glycosylation of the major polar tube protein of Encephalitozoon hellem, a microsporidian parasite that infects humans.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yanji; Takvorian, Peter M; Cali, Ann; Orr, George; Weiss, Louis M

    2004-11-01

    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.

  15. Functional Analysis of Protein Kinase CK2 of the Human Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Holland, Zoë; Prudent, Renaud; Reiser, Jean-Baptiste; Cochet, Claude; Doerig, Christian

    2009-01-01

    Protein kinase CK2 (casein kinase 2) is a eukaryotic serine/threonine protein kinase with multiple substrates and roles in diverse cellular processes, including differentiation, proliferation, and translation. The mammalian holoenzyme consists of two catalytic alpha or alpha′ subunits and two regulatory beta subunits. We report the identification and characterization of a Plasmodium falciparum CK2α orthologue, PfCK2α, and two PfCK2β orthologues, PfCK2β1 and PfCK2β2. Recombinant PfCK2α possesses protein kinase activity, exhibits similar substrate and cosubstrate preferences to those of CK2α subunits from other organisms, and interacts with both of the PfCK2β subunits in vitro. Gene disruption experiments show that the presence of PfCK2α is crucial to asexual blood stage parasites and thereby validate the enzyme as a possible drug target. PfCK2α is amenable to inhibitor screening, and we report differential susceptibility between the human and P. falciparum CK2α enzymes to a small molecule inhibitor. Taken together, our data identify PfCK2α as a potential target for antimalarial chemotherapeutic intervention. PMID:19114502

  16. Seroprevalence of five parasitic pathogens in pregnant women in ten Caribbean countries.

    PubMed

    Guo, Fengguang; Forde, Martin S; Werre, Stephen R; Krecek, Rosina C; Zhu, Guan

    2017-01-01

    To date, published epidemiological studies of parasitic infections in humans in the Caribbean region are very limited. Here, we report the seroprevalence of five parasitic pathogens, including Ascaris lumbricoides, Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia, Schistosoma mansoni, and Toxocara canis in 435 serum samples collected between 2008 and 2011 from pregnant women in ten Caribbean islands. We tested the serum samples for IgG antibodies against the five parasites by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Among them, 66.2 % were serologically positive for at least one parasite. The most prevalent parasite was G. lamblia (40.5 %), followed by A. lumbricoides (37.9 %), T. canis (14.5 %), E. histolytica (6.7 %), and S. mansoni (3.0 %). Evidence of infections of G. lamblia and A. lumbricoides were detected in all ten Caribbean countries. Seroprevalence estimates significantly differed between countries for A. lumbricoides, E. histolytica, and T. canis (p values <0.001). For S. mansoni, significance was observed by Fisher's exact test (p = 0.013) but not by multiple comparisons. The prevalence of G. lamblia was not significantly different between countries (p = 0.089). A significant negative correlation between the gross domestic product (GDP) per capita and overall seroprevalence by country was also observed (Pearson's r = -0.9202, p = 0.0002). The data strongly indicates that neglected parasitic infections remain a significant health burden on people in these countries. Thus, justification has been provided to regional health planners to enhance existing public health surveillance programs on parasitic diseases and to heighten the public's awareness through education and outreach programs on how they can minimize the occurrence of parasitic infections.

  17. 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

  18. Human schistosomiasis.

    PubMed

    Colley, Daniel G; Bustinduy, Amaya L; Secor, W Evan; King, Charles H

    2014-06-28

    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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Plasmodium falciparum-like parasites infecting wild apes in southern Cameroon do not represent a recurrent source of human malaria.

    PubMed

    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

    2013-04-23

    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.

  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

  3. Sex steroids effects on the molting process of the helminth human parasite Trichinella spiralis.

    PubMed

    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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Identification of a molecular marker for genotyping human lymphatic filarial nematode parasite Wuchereria bancrofti.

    PubMed

    Patra, K P; Ramu, Thangadurai; Hoti, S L; Pragasam, G Siva; Das, P K

    2007-05-01

    In India, Mass Drug Administration is on going towards elimination of lymphatic filariasis in many areas, which might lead to intense selection pressure on the parasite populations and their genetic restructuring. This calls for molecular finger printing of Wuchereria bancrofti parasite populations at national level and monitoring genetic changes in the future. For this purpose a reliable, less expensive, rapid, and reproducible molecular tool is necessary, which is not available for W. bancrofti at this time. We identified robust molecular markers based on the comparison of random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) profiles and the genetic data generated from parasite populations collected from areas in Northern (Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh state), Southern (Kozhikode, Kerala State) and Central regions (Jagdalpur, Chattisgarh state) of India, where lymphatic filariasis is endemic for many decades. RAPD profiles for these parasite populations were generated using three different primers and the dendrograms constructed using the profiles were all different. In order to identify appropriate RAPD primer(s), we compared the results of RAPD with the fingerprint profile and genetic data obtained by the more reliable AFLP technique, using the parasite populations from the same areas. RAPD marker (OP8) primer produced phylogenetic data almost similar to that of AFLP analysis. The marker was able to reveal variations between the parasite populations collected from Varanasi, Kozhikode, and Jagdalpur. Most importantly, RAPD primer OP8 produced reproducible results, when tested in three different trials. In view of the limited availability of W. bancrofti parasite DNA, along with a lower cost and ease of performance, RAPD appears to be more suitable compared to AFLP at the present juncture, since complete genome information of this parasite is still not available. Thus, RAPD primer OP8 can be a very useful molecular maker for DNA

  7. Aspects of human parasites in which surgical intervention may be important.

    PubMed

    Mayer, David A; Fried, Bernard

    2002-01-01

    Until recently, physicians and surgeons in developed countries only occasionally encountered patients with parasitic protozoan and helminthic infections. High-speed travel, immigration and the popularity of the tropics as vacation areas have increased the number of people at risk for parasitic disease. This chapter examines the significant literature on a select number of protozoan and helminthic parasites for which surgical intervention is important in the diagnosis, treatment or cure of the disease. Although traditional surgical approaches are covered, emphasis is placed on recent advances in the areas of transplantation and minimally invasive surgery. Combining the disciplines of parasitology and surgery, this chapter covers three protozoan and seven helminthic parasites for which surgery is a valid treatment option based on the frequency of cases reported in the literature. Following coverage of the selected parasites, a table is included listing additional helminths for which surgery contributes to patient management. Physicians in the USA, UK, and Europe need to be more aware of the presentation and treatment of parasitic infections. It is our sincere hope that this review accomplishes that goal, and ultimately benefits the patients we serve.

  8. 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.

  9. Expression Profile of the Schistosoma japonicum Degradome Reveals Differential Protease Expression Patterns and Potential Anti-schistosomal Intervention Targets

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Shuai; Cai, Pengfei; Piao, Xianyu; Hou, Nan; Zhou, Xiaosu; Wu, Chuang; Wang, Heng; Chen, Qijun

    2014-01-01

    Blood fluke proteases play pivotal roles in the processes of invasion, nutrition acquisition, immune evasion, and other host-parasite interactions. Hundreds of genes encoding putative proteases have been identified in the recently published schistosome genomes. However, the expression profiles of these proteases in Schistosoma species have not yet been systematically analyzed. We retrieved and culled the redundant protease sequences of Schistosoma japonicum, Schistosoma mansoni, Echinococcus multilocularis, and Clonorchis sinensis from public databases utilizing bioinformatic approaches. The degradomes of the four parasitic organisms and Homo sapiens were then comparatively analyzed. A total of 262 S. japonicum protease sequences were obtained and the expression profiles generated using whole-genome microarray. Four main clusters of protease genes with different expression patterns were identified: proteases up-regulated in hepatic schistosomula and adult worms, egg-specific or predominantly expressed proteases, cercaria-specific or predominantly expressed proteases, and constantly expressed proteases. A subset of protease genes with different expression patterns were further validated using real-time quantitative PCR. The present study represents the most comprehensive analysis of a degradome in Schistosoma species to date. These results provide a firm foundation for future research on the specific function(s) of individual proteases and may help to refine anti-proteolytic strategies in blood flukes. PMID:25275570

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Modelling the time course of antimalarial parasite killing: a tour of animal and human models, translation and challenges.

    PubMed

    Patel, Kashyap; Simpson, Julie A; Batty, Kevin T; Zaloumis, Sophie; Kirkpatrick, Carl M

    2015-01-01

    Malaria remains a global public health concern and current treatment options are suboptimal in some clinical settings. For effective chemotherapy, antimalarial drug concentrations must be sufficient to remove completely all of the parasites in the infected host. Optimized dosing therefore requires a detailed understanding of the time course of antimalarial response, whilst simultaneously considering the parasite life cycle and host immune elimination. Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the development of mathematical models for understanding better antimalarial drug resistance and management. Other international groups have also suggested that mechanistic pharmacokinetic (PK) and pharmacodynamic (PD) models can support the rationalization of antimalarial dosing strategies. At present, artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) is recommended as first line treatment of falciparum malaria for all patient groups. This review summarizes the PK-PD characterization of artemisinin derivatives and other partner drugs from both preclinical studies and human clinical trials. We outline the continuous and discrete time models that have been proposed to describe antimalarial activity on specific stages of the parasite life cycle. The translation of PK-PD predictions from animals to humans is considered, because preclinical studies can provide rich data for detailed mechanism-based modelling. While similar sampling techniques are limited in clinical studies, PK-PD models can be used to optimize the design of experiments to improve estimation of the parameters of interest. Ultimately, we propose that fully developed mechanistic models can simulate and rationalize ACT or other treatment strategies in antimalarial chemotherapy.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Mutagenicity evaluation of Schistosoma spp. extracts by the umu-test and V79/HGPRT gene mutation assay.

    PubMed

    Osada, Yoshio; Kumagai, Takashi; Masuda, Kyoko; Suzuki, Tomoyuki; Kanazawa, Tamotsu

    2005-03-01

    Schistosomiasis has been suspected of being a risk factor for various types of cancers for sometime, e.g., bladder cancer, colorectal cancer and hepatic cancer. Among them, the etiological relationship between urinary schistosomiasis and bladder cancer is now widely accepted. However, mechanisms of the carcinogenesis are still unclear. Here, we tested the mutagenicity of the parasite extracts by the umu-test and hypoxanthine guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HGPRT) gene mutation assay, which both overcome disadvantages of the Ames plate assay. Adult worm extracts and egg extracts of Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni were tested. Under our experimental conditions, neither worm nor egg extracts were shown to have any mutagenicity in both tests even in the presence of S9 mix. Our results suggest that there is very little possibility of immediate gene mutation due to the parasite-derived substances in schistosomiasis-related carcinogenesis.

  16. Schistosoma mansoni Mucin Gene (SmPoMuc) Expression: Epigenetic Control to Shape Adaptation to a New Host

    PubMed Central

    Perrin, Cecile; Lepesant, Julie M. J.; Roger, Emmanuel; Duval, David; Fneich, Sara; Thuillier, Virginie; Alliene, Jean-Francois; Mitta, Guillaume; Grunau, Christoph; Cosseau, Celine

    2013-01-01

    The digenetic trematode Schistosoma mansoni is a human parasite that uses the mollusc Biomphalaria glabrata as intermediate host. Specific S. mansoni strains can infect efficiently only certain B. glabrata strains (compatible strain) while others are incompatible. Strain-specific differences in transcription of a conserved family of polymorphic mucins (SmPoMucs) in S. mansoni are the principle determinants for this compatibility. In the present study, we investigated the bases of the control of SmPoMuc expression that evolved to evade B. glabrata diversified antigen recognition molecules. We compared the DNA sequences and chromatin structure of SmPoMuc promoters of two S. mansoni strains that are either compatible (C) or incompatible (IC) with a reference snail host. We reveal that although sequence differences are observed between active promoter regions of SmPoMuc genes, the sequences of the promoters are not diverse and are conserved between IC and C strains, suggesting that genetics alone cannot explain the evolution of compatibility polymorphism. In contrast, promoters carry epigenetic marks that are significantly different between the C and IC strains. Moreover, we show that modifications of the structure of the chromatin of the parasite modify transcription of SmPoMuc in the IC strain compared to the C strain and correlate with the presence of additional combinations of SmPoMuc transcripts only observed in the IC phenotype. Our results indicate that transcription polymorphism of a gene family that is responsible for an important adaptive trait of the parasite is epigenetically encoded. These strain-specific epigenetic marks are heritable, but can change while the underlying genetic information remains stable. This suggests that epigenetic changes may be important for the early steps in the adaptation of pathogens to new hosts, and might be an initial step in adaptive evolution in general. PMID:24009504

  17. Molecular and functional characterization of a putative PA28γ proteasome activator orthologue in Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    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

    2013-05-01

    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 753bp 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

  18. Detailed characterization of a cyclophilin from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed Central

    Berriman, M; Fairlamb, A H

    1998-01-01

    Cyclosporin (Cs) A has pronounced antimalarial activity in vitro and in vivo. In other organisms, the drug is thought to exert its effects either by inhibiting the peptidylprolyl cis/trans isomerase activity of cyclophilin (CyP) or by forming a CyP-CsA complex that inhibits the phosphatase activity of calcineurin. We have cloned and overexpressed in Escherichia coli a gene encoding a CyP from Plasmodium falciparum (PfCyP19) that is located on chromosome 3. The sequence of PfCyP19 shows remarkable sequence identity with human CyPA and, unlike the two previously identified CyPs from P. falciparum, PfCyP19 has no signal peptide or N-terminal sequence extension, suggesting a cytosolic localization. All the residues implicated in the recognition of the synthetic substrate N-succinyl-Ala-Ala-Pro-Phe-p-nitroanilide are conserved, resulting in characteristically high Michaelis-Menten and specificity constants (Km>>120 microM, kcat/Km=1.2x10(7) M-1.s-1 respectively). As the first line in the functional characterization of this enzyme, we have assessed its binding affinity for CsA. In accordance with its tryptophan-containing CsA-binding domain, PfCyP19 binds CsA with high affinity (Kd=13 nM, Ki=6.9 nM). Twelve CsA analogues were also found to possess Ki values similar to CsA, with the notable exceptions of Val2-Cs (Ki=218 nM) and Thr2-Cs (Ki=690 nM). The immunosuppressants rapamycin and FK506 were inactive as inhibitors, consistent with other members of the CyP family of rotamases. The CsA analogues were also assessed as inhibitors of P. falciparum growth in vitro. Although their antimalarial activity did not correlate with inhibition of enzyme activity, residues 3 and 4 of CsA appeared to be important for inhibition of parasite growth and residues 1 and 2 for PfCyP19 inhibition. We propose that a malarial CyP-CsA complex presents residues 3 and 4 as part of an 'effector surface' for recognition by a downstream target, similar to the proposed mechanism for T

  19. [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.

  20. 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.

  1. Schistosoma mansoni: a diagnostic approach to detect acute schistosomiasis infection in a murine model by PCR.

    PubMed

    Sandoval, Nidia; Siles-Lucas, Mar; Lopez Aban, Julio; Pérez-Arellano, José Luis; Gárate, Teresa; Muro, Antonio

    2006-10-01

    Schistosomiasis represents an increasing problem in non-endemic areas, due to the growing number of immigrants and to tourists contracting this disease in "off-the-beaten-track" tourism. Acute schistosomiasis is not diagnosed early due to the lack of diagnostic tools that are sufficiently sensitive enough to detect the parasite during the first weeks of infection. We have developed a diagnostic approach based on the detection of parasite DNA by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in urine, comparing the performance of this new approach with the two currently used schistosomiasis diagnostic tools (Kato-Katz and ELISA) and the PCR in stool samples. This comparison was done in a Schistosoma mansoni murine experimental model, which permits follow up of the parasite from the acute to the chronic stage of infection. Our results suggest that this new PCR-based approach could be useful for the detection of acute schistosomiasis in easy-to-handle clinical samples such the urine.

  2. Effects of Snail Density on Growth, Reproduction and Survival of Biomphalaria alexandrina Exposed to Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Mangal, T. D.; Paterson, S.; Fenton, A.

    2010-01-01

    The effects of snail density on Biomphalaria alexandrina parasitized with Schistosoma mansoni were investigated. Laboratory experiments were used to quantify the impact of high density on snail growth, fecundity, and survival. Density-dependent birth rates of snails were determined to inform mathematical models, which, until now, have assumed a linear relationship between density and fecundity. The experiments show that the rate of egg-laying followed a negative exponential distribution with increasing density and this was significantly affected by exposure to parasitic infection. High density also affected the weight of snails and survival to a greater degree than exposure to parasitic infection. Although snail growth rates were initially constrained by high density, they retained the potential for growth suggesting a reversible density-dependent mechanism. These experimental data can be used to parameterise models and confirm that snail populations are regulated by nonlinear density-dependent mechanisms. PMID:20700427

  3. Molluscicidal activity of the plant Eupatorium adenophorum against Oncomelania hupensis, the intermediate host snail of Schistosoma japonicum.

    PubMed

    Zou, F C; Duan, G; Xie, Y J; Zhou, Y; Dong, G D; Lin, R Q; Zhu, X Q

    2009-09-01

    The potential molluscicidal activities of aqueous extracts of Eupatorium adenophorum have recently been evaluated against Oncomelania hupensis, the intermediate host snail of Schistosoma japonicum. The snails were continuously exposed to extracts of the leaves, roots or stems [each at concentrations of 0.27%, 0.50% and 0.86% (w/v)], with survival recorded 6, 12, 24, 30, 36, 48, 52, 58, 70, 76, 82 and 96 h after the start of the exposure. Even at the lowest concentration tested (0.27%), the leaf extract caused mortality in excess of 50% after 58 h and 100% mortality after 82 h. This extract was significantly more effective against O. hupensis than the stem or root extract (P<0.05) but there was no statistically significant difference between the root and stem extracts in their molluscicidal effects (P>0.05). These preliminary results indicate that E. adenophorum may potentially provide a new molluscicide that could give effective and environmentally-friendly control of schistosomiasis in humans and livestock. The toxicity of E. adenophorum extracts, or molluscicidal compounds isolated from such extracts, to other snail hosts of human parasites and to non-target species of aquatic life will be investigated.

  4. Multiple stiffening effects of nanoscale knobs on human red blood cells infected with Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yao; Huang, Changjin; Kim, Sangtae; Golkaram, Mahdi; Dixon, Matthew W A; Tilley, Leann; Li, Ju; Zhang, Sulin; Suresh, Subra

    2015-05-12

    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.

  5. Comparison of modeling methods to determine liver-to-blood inocula and parasite multiplication rates during controlled human malaria infection.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Alexander D; Edwards, Nick J; Duncan, Christopher J A; Thompson, Fiona M; Sheehy, Susanne H; O'Hara, Geraldine A; Anagnostou, Nicholas; Walther, Michael; Webster, Daniel P; Dunachie, Susanna J; Porter, David W; Andrews, Laura; Gilbert, Sarah C; Draper, Simon J; Hill, Adrian V S; Bejon, Philip

    2013-07-15

    Controlled human malaria infection is used to measure efficacy of candidate malaria vaccines before field studies are undertaken. Mathematical modeling using data from quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) parasitemia monitoring can discriminate between vaccine effects on the parasite's liver and blood stages. Uncertainty regarding the most appropriate modeling method hinders interpretation of such trials. We used qPCR data from 267 Plasmodium falciparum infections to compare linear, sine-wave, and normal-cumulative-density-function models. We find that the parameters estimated by these models are closely correlated, and their predictive accuracy for omitted data points was similar. We propose that future studies include the linear model.

  6. A Global Comparison of the Human and T. brucei Degradomes Gives Insights about Possible Parasite Drug Targets

    PubMed Central

    Mashiyama, Susan T.; Koupparis, Kyriacos; Caffrey, Conor R.; McKerrow, James H.; Babbitt, Patricia C.

    2012-01-01

    We performed a genome-level computational study of sequence and structure similarity, the latter using crystal structures and models, of the proteases of Homo sapiens and the human parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Using sequence and structure similarity networks to summarize the results, we constructed global views that show visually the relative abundance and variety of proteases in the degradome landscapes of these two species, and provide insights into evolutionary relationships between proteases. The results also indicate how broadly these sequence sets are covered by three-dimensional structures. These views facilitate cross-species comparisons and offer clues for drug design from knowledge about the sequences and structures of potential drug targets and their homologs. Two protease groups (“M32” and “C51”) that are very different in sequence from human proteases are examined in structural detail, illustrating the application of this global approach in mining new pathogen genomes for potential drug targets. Based on our analyses, a human ACE2 inhibitor was selected for experimental testing on one of these parasite proteases, TbM32, and was shown to inhibit it. These sequence and structure data, along with interactive versions of the protein similarity networks generated in this study, are available at http://babbittlab.ucsf.edu/resources.html. PMID:23236535

  7. A global comparison of the human and T. brucei degradomes gives insights about possible parasite drug targets.

    PubMed

    Mashiyama, Susan T; Koupparis, Kyriacos; Caffrey, Conor R; McKerrow, James H; Babbitt, Patricia C

    2012-01-01

    We performed a genome-level computational study of sequence and structure similarity, the latter using crystal structures and models, of the proteases of Homo sapiens and the human parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Using sequence and structure similarity networks to summarize the results, we constructed global views that show visually the relative abundance and variety of proteases in the degradome landscapes of these two species, and provide insights into evolutionary relationships between proteases. The results also indicate how broadly these sequence sets are covered by three-dimensional structures. These views facilitate cross-species comparisons and offer clues for drug design from knowledge about the sequences and structures of potential drug targets and their homologs. Two protease groups ("M32" and "C51") that are very different in sequence from human proteases are examined in structural detail, illustrating the application of this global approach in mining new pathogen genomes for potential drug targets. Based on our analyses, a human ACE2 inhibitor was selected for experimental testing on one of these parasite proteases, TbM32, and was shown to inhibit it. These sequence and structure data, along with interactive versions of the protein similarity networks generated in this study, are available at http://babbittlab.ucsf.edu/resources.html.

  8. Development and characterization of a specific IgG monoclonal antibody toward the Lewis x antigen using splenocytes of Schistosoma mansoni-infected mice

    PubMed Central

    Mandalasi, Msano; Dorabawila, Nelum; Smith, David F; Heimburg-Molinaro, Jamie; Cummings, Richard D; Nyame, A Kwame

    2013-01-01

    The parasitic blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni synthesizes immunogenic glycans containing the human Lewis x antigen (Lex; Galactose-β1-4(Fucα1-3)N-acetylglucosamine-β-R, also called CD15), but the biological role(s) of this antigen in the parasites and in humans is poorly understood. To develop IgG-based monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) specific for Lex, we harvested splenocytes from S. mansoni-infected Swiss Webster mice at Week 10 postinfection, when peak IgG responses to glycan antigens occur, and generated a panel of hybridomas secreting anti-glycan IgG that recognize periodate-sensitive epitopes in soluble egg antigens of the parasites, and also recognizes a neoglycoprotein containing a pentasaccharide with the Lex sequence. One murine mAb, an IgG3 designated F8A1.1, bound to glycoproteins and glycolipids from schistosome adults and human promyelocytic leukemic HL-60 cells that express Lex antigens, as assessed by a wide variety of approaches including immunofluorescence staining, confocal microscopy, flow cytometry and western blotting, as well as overlay assays of glycolipids after thin-layer chromatography. In contrast, F8A1.1 bound weakly to cercariae, 3-h schistosomula and human Jurkat cells. We also directly compared the glycan specificity of F8A1.1 with commercially available anti-CD15 IgG1 (clone W6D3) using a defined glycan microarray. The results demonstrated that F8A1.1 recognized glycans expressing Lex epitopes in a terminal nonreducing position, whereas anti-CD15 bound to glycans with multiple repeats of Lex epitopes, but not to glycans with a single, terminal Lex epitope. Our results show that F8A1.1 recognizes terminal Lex epitopes and can be used for identification, immunolocalization, immunoprecipitation and purification of Lex-containing glycoconjugates from schistosomes and mammalian cells. PMID:23542315

  9. Basophil depletion downregulates Schistosoma mansoni egg-induced granuloma formation.

    PubMed

    Anyan, William K; Seki, Takenori; Kumagai, Takashi; Obata-Ninomiya, Kazushige; Furushima-Shimogawara, Rieko; Kwansa-Bentum, Bethel; Akao, Nobuaki; Bosompem, Kwabena M; Boakye, Daniel A; Wilson, Michael D; Karasuyama, Hajime; Ohta, Nobuo

    2013-12-01

    Granuloma formation around parasite eggs during schistosomal infection is considered to be controlled by Th2 cytokines. However, it is still controversial which cell populations are responsible for the host Th2 cytokine-dependent granuloma formation. Basophils have recently attracted attention because of their ability to produce large amounts of IL-4. Therefore, we investigated whether basophils play an essential role in the induction of granuloma formation induced by Schistosoma mansoni eggs. Together with our previous observation that basophil numbers increased markedly in the spleen at 7 weeks postinfection, immunohistochemical staining using anti-mMCP8 monoclonal antibody (mAb) showed basophil infiltration in the granulomatous lesions formed around parasite eggs. To examine the roles of basophils more directly, we treated mice with anti-CD200R3 mAb to deplete basophils. Depletion of basophils resulted in a reduction of basophil number with concomitant downregulation of egg granuloma formation at 7 weeks postinfection. Moreover, we observed a significant reduction in the size of egg granulomas formed in basophil-depleted mice in the pulmonary granuloma model. Taken together, these findings indicated that basophils are essential for S. mansoni egg-induced granuloma formation, and this may serve as a novel therapeutic target in ameliorating the pathology of schistosomiasis.

  10. 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

  11. Structure and kinetics assays of recombinant Schistosoma mansoni dihydrofolate reductase.

    PubMed

    Serrão, Vitor Hugo Balasco; Romanello, Larissa; Cassago, Alexandre; de Souza, Juliana Roberta Torini; Cheleski, Juliana; DeMarco, Ricardo; Brandão-Neto, José; Pereira, Humberto D'Muniz

    2017-03-11

    The parasite Schistosoma mansoni possesses all pathways for pyrimidine biosynthesis, in which dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR), thymidylate cycle participants, is essential for nucleotide metabolism to obtain energy and structural nucleic acids. Thus, DHFRs have been widely suggested as therapeutic targets for the treatment of infectious diseases. In this study, we expressed recombinant SmDHFR in a heterologous manner to obtain structural, biochemical and kinetic information. X-ray diffraction of recombinant SmDHFR at 1.95Å resolution showed that the structure exhibited the canonical DHFR fold. Isothermal titration calorimetry was used to determine the kinetic constants for NADP(+) and dihydrofolate. Moreover, inhibition assays were performed using the commercial folate analogs methotrexate and aminopterin; these analogs are recognized as folate competitors and are used as chemotherapeutic agents in cancer and autoimmune diseases. This study provides information that may prove useful for the future discovery of novel drugs and for understanding these metabolic steps from this pathway of S. mansoni, thus aiding in our understanding of the function of these essential pathways for parasite metabolism.

  12. Molecular targets of 5-fluoroorotate in the human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed Central

    Rathod, P K; Leffers, N P; Young, R D

    1992-01-01

    5-Fluoroorotate is known to have potent antimalarial activity against chloroquine-susceptible as well as chloroquine-resistant clones of Plasmodium falciparum. It was hypothesized that this activity was mediated through synthesis of 5-fluoro-2'-deoxyuridylate, an inactivator of thymidylate synthase, or through incorporation of 5-fluoropyrimidine residues into nucleic acids. Treatment of P. falciparum in culture with 100 nM 5-fluoroorotate resulted in rapid inactivation of malarial thymidylate synthase activity. A 50% loss of thymidylate synthase activity as well as a 50% decrease in parasite proliferation were seen with 5 nM 5-fluoroorotate. Dihydrofolate reductase activity, which resides on the same bifunctional protein as thymidylate synthase, was not affected by 5-fluoroorotate treatment. Incubation of malarial parasites with 3 to 10 microM radioactive 5-fluoroorotic acid for 48 h resulted in significant incorporation of radioactivity into the RNA fraction of P. falciparum; approximately 9% of the uridine residues were substituted with 5-fluorouridine. However, compared with the 50% inhibitory concentrations of 5-fluoroorotate, a 1,000-fold higher concentration of the pyrimidine analog was required to see significant modification of RNA molecules. Results of these studies are consistent with the hypothesis that thymidylate synthase is the primary target of 5-fluoroorotate in malarial parasites. PMID:1503432

  13. Microsatellite polymorphism in the sexually transmitted human pathogen Trichomonas vaginalis indicates a genetically diverse parasite

    PubMed Central

    Conrad, Melissa; Zubacova, Zuzana; Dunn, Linda A.; Upcroft, Jacqui; Sullivan, Steven A.; Tachezy, Jan; Carlton, Jane M.

    2010-01-01

    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 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

  14. Ultrastructural and physiological changes induced by different stress conditions on the human parasite Trypanosoma cruzi.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Morales, Deyanira; Hernández, Karla Daniela Rodríguez; Martínez, Ignacio; Agredano-Moreno, Lourdes Teresa; Jiménez-García, Luis Felipe; Espinoza, Bertha

    2017-01-01

    Trypanosoma cruzi is the etiological agent of Chagas disease. The life cycle of this protozoan parasite is digenetic because it alternates its different developmental forms through two hosts, a vector insect and a vertebrate host. As a result, the parasites are exposed to sudden and drastic environmental changes causing cellular stress. The stress response to some types of stress has been studied in T. cruzi, mainly at the molecular level; however, data about ultrastructure and physiological state of the cells in stress conditions are scarce or null. In this work, we analyzed the morphological, ultrastructural, and physiological changes produced on T. cruzi epimastigotes when they were exposed to acid, nutritional, heat, and oxidative stress. Clear morphological changes were observed, but the physiological conditions varied depending on the type of stress. The maintenance of the physiological state was severely affected by heat shock, acidic, nutritional, and oxidative stress. According to the surprising observed growth recovery after damage by stress alterations, different adaptations from the parasite to these harsh conditions were suggested. Particular cellular death pathways are discussed.

  15. 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.

  16. Human parasites in the Roman World: health consequences of conquering an empire.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Piers D

    2017-01-01

    The archaeological evidence for parasites in the Roman era is presented in order to demonstrate the species present at that time, and highlight the health consequences for people living under Roman rule. Despite their large multi-seat public latrines with washing facilities, sewer systems, sanitation legislation, fountains and piped drinking water from aqueducts, we see the widespread presence of whipworm (Trichuris trichiura), roundworm (Ascaris lumbricoides) and Entamoeba histolytica that causes dysentery. This would suggest that the public sanitation measures were insufficient to protect the population from parasites spread by fecal contamination. Ectoparasites such as fleas, head lice, body lice, pubic lice and bed bugs were also present, and delousing combs have been found. The evidence fails to demonstrate that the Roman culture of regular bathing in the public baths reduced the prevalence of these parasites. Fish tapeworm was noted to be widely present, and was more common than in Bronze and Iron Age Europe. It is possible that the Roman enthusiasm for fermented, uncooked fish sauce (garum) may have facilitated the spread of this helminth. Roman medical practitioners such as Galen were aware of intestinal worms, explaining their existence and planning treatment using the humoural theory of the period.

  17. Construction of a human functional single-chain variable fragment (scFv) antibody recognizing the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Wajanarogana, Sumet; Prasomrothanakul, Teerawat; Udomsangpetch, Rachanee; Tungpradabkul, Sumalee

    2006-04-01

    Falciparum malaria is one of the most deadly and profound human health problems around the tropical world. Antimalarial drugs are now considered to be a powerful treatment; however, there are drugs currently being used that are resistant to Plasmodium falciparum parasites spreading in different parts of the world. Although the protective immune response against intraerythrocytic stages of the falciparum malaria parasite is still not fully understood, immune antibodies have been shown to be associated with reduced parasite prevalence. Therefore antibodies of the right specificity present in adequate concentrations and affinity are reasonably effective in providing protection. In the present study, VH (variable domain of heavy chain) and VL (variable domain of light chain) were isolated from human blood lymphocytes of P. falciparum in one person who had high serum titre to RESA (ring-infected erythrocyte surface antigen). Equal amounts of VH and VL were assembled together with universal linker (G4S)3 to generate scFvs (single-chain variable fragments). The scFv antibodies were expressed with a phage system for the selection process. Exclusively, an expressed scFv against asynchronous culture of P. falciparum-infected erythrocytes was selected and characterized. Sequence analysis of selected scFv revealed that this clone could be classified into a VH family-derived germline gene (VH1) and Vkappa family segment (Vkappa1). Using an indirect immunofluorescence assay, we could show that soluble expressed scFv reacted with falciparum-infected erythrocytes. The results encourage the further study of scFvs for development as a potential immunotherapeutic agent.

  18. Endogenous growth factor stimulation of hemocyte proliferation induces resistance to Schistosoma mansoni challenge in the snail host.

    PubMed

    Pila, Emmanuel A; Gordy, Michelle A; Phillips, Valerie K; Kabore, Alethe L; Rudko, Sydney P; Hanington, Patrick C

    2016-05-10

    Digenean trematodes are a large, complex group of parasitic flatworms that infect an incredible diversity of organisms, including humans. Larval development of most digeneans takes place within a snail (Gastropoda). Compatibility between snails and digeneans is often very specific, such that suitable snail hosts define the geographical ranges of diseases caused by these worms. The immune cells (hemocytes) of a snail are sentinels that act as a crucial barrier to infection by larval digeneans. Hemocytes coordinate a robust and specific immunological response, participating directly in parasite killing by encapsulating and clearing the infection. Hemocyte proliferation and differentiation are influenced by unknown digenean-specific exogenous factors. However, we know nothing about the endogenous control of hemocyte development in any gastropod model. Here, we identify and functionally characterize a progranulin [Biomphalaria glabrata granulin (BgGRN)] from the snail B. glabrata, a natural host for the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni Granulins are growth factors that drive proliferation of immune cells in organisms, spanning the animal kingdom. We demonstrate that BgGRN induces proliferation of B. glabrata hemocytes, and specifically drives the production of an adherent hemocyte subset that participates centrally in the anti-digenean defense response. Additionally, we demonstrate that susceptible B. glabrata snails can be made resistant to infection with S. mansoni by first inducing hemocyte proliferation with BgGRN. This marks the functional characterization of an endogenous growth factor of a gastropod mollusc, and provides direct evidence of gain of resistance in a snail-digenean infection model using a defined factor to induce snail resistance to infection.

  19. Endogenous growth factor stimulation of hemocyte proliferation induces resistance to Schistosoma mansoni challenge in the snail host

    PubMed Central

    Pila, Emmanuel A.; Gordy, Michelle A.; Phillips, Valerie K.; Kabore, Alethe L.; Rudko, Sydney P.; Hanington, Patrick C.

    2016-01-01

    Digenean trematodes are a large, complex group of parasitic flatworms that infect an incredible diversity of organisms, including humans. Larval development of most digeneans takes place within a snail (Gastropoda). Compatibility between snails and digeneans is often very specific, such that suitable snail hosts define the geographical ranges of diseases caused by these worms. The immune cells (hemocytes) of a snail are sentinels that act as a crucial barrier to infection by larval digeneans. Hemocytes coordinate a robust and specific immunological response, participating directly in parasite killing by encapsulating and clearing the infection. Hemocyte proliferation and differentiation are influenced by unknown digenean-specific exogenous factors. However, we know nothing about the endogenous control of hemocyte development in any gastropod model. Here, we identify and functionally characterize a progranulin [Biomphalaria glabrata granulin (BgGRN)] from the snail B. glabrata, a natural host for the human blood fluke Schistosoma mansoni. Granulins are growth factors that drive proliferation of immune cells in organisms, spanning the animal kingdom. We demonstrate that BgGRN induces proliferation of B. glabrata hemocytes, and specifically drives the production of an adherent hemocyte subset that participates centrally in the anti-digenean defense response. Additionally, we demonstrate that susceptible B. glabrata snails can be made resistant to infection with S. mansoni by first inducing hemocyte proliferation with BgGRN. This marks the functional characterization of an endogenous growth factor of a gastropod mollusc, and provides direct evidence of gain of resistance in a snail-digenean infection model using a defined factor to induce snail resistance to infection. PMID:27114544

  20. 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

  1. Malaria parasites co-opt human factor H to prevent complement-mediated lysis in the mosquito midgut.

    PubMed

    Simon, Nina; Lasonder, Edwin; Scheuermayer, Matthias; Kuehn, Andrea; Tews, Sabrina; Fischer, Rainer; Zipfel, Peter F; Skerka, Christine; Pradel, Gabriele

    2013-01-16

    Human complement is a first line defense against infection in which circulating proteins initiate an enzyme cascade on the microbial surface that leads to phagocytosis and lysis. Various pathogens evade complement recognition by binding to regulator proteins that protect host cells from complement activation. We show that emerging gametes of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum bind the host complement regulator factor H (FH) following transmission to the mosquito to protect from complement-mediated lysis by the blood meal. Human complement is active in the mosquito midgut for approximately 1 hr postfeeding. During this period, the gamete surface protein PfGAP50 binds to FH and uses surface-bound FH to inactivate the complement protein C3b. Loss of FH-mediated protection, either through neutralization of FH or blockade of PfGAP50, significantly impairs gametogenesis and inhibits parasite transmission to the mosquito. Thus, Plasmodium co-opts the protective host protein FH to evade complement-mediated lysis within the mosquito midgut.

  2. 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

  3. Interaction of Plasmodium vivax Tryptophan-rich Antigen PvTRAg38 with Band 3 on Human Erythrocyte Surface Facilitates Parasite Growth.

    PubMed

    Alam, Mohd Shoeb; Choudhary, Vandana; Zeeshan, Mohammad; Tyagi, Rupesh K; Rathore, Sumit; Sharma, Yagya D

    2015-08-14

    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.

  4. Probability of Transmission of Malaria from Mosquito to Human Is Regulated by Mosquito Parasite Density in Naïve and Vaccinated Hosts

    PubMed Central

    Sinden, Robert E.; Poulton, Ian D.; Griffin, Jamie T.; Upton, Leanna M.; Sala, Katarzyna A.; Angrisano, Fiona; Hill, Adrian V. S.; Blagborough, Andrew M.

    2017-01-01

    Over a century since Ronald Ross discovered that malaria is caused by the bite of an infectious mosquito it is still unclear how the number of parasites injected influences disease transmission. Currently it is assumed that all mosquitoes with salivary gland sporozoites are equally infectious irrespective of the number of parasites they harbour, though this has never been rigorously tested. Here we analyse >1000 experimental infections of humans and mice and demonstrate a dose-dependency for probability of infection and the length of the host pre-patent period. Mosquitoes with a higher numbers of sporozoites in their salivary glands following blood-feeding are more likely to have caused infection (and have done so quicker) than mosquitoes with fewer parasites. A similar dose response for the probability of infection was seen for humans given a pre-erythrocytic vaccine candidate targeting circumsporozoite protein (CSP), and in mice with and without transfusion of anti-CSP antibodies. These interventions prevented infection more efficiently from bites made by mosquitoes with fewer parasites. The importance of parasite number has widespread implications across malariology, ranging from our basic understanding of the parasite, how vaccines are evaluated and the way in which transmission should be measured in the field. It also provides direct evidence for why the only registered malaria vaccine RTS,S was partially effective in recent clinical trials. PMID:28081253

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Efficient trans-cleavage by the Schistosoma mansoni SMalpha1 hammerhead ribozyme in the extreme thermophile Thermus thermophilus.

    PubMed

    Vazquez-Tello, Alejandro; Castán, Pablo; Moreno, Renata; Smith, James M; Berenguer, José; Cedergren, Robert

    2002-04-01

    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 SMalpha 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 degrees C. This result was confirmed when both the SMalpha1 ribozyme and the target RNA were expressed in the extreme thermophile Thermus thermophilus. Moreover, SMalpha1 RNA showed a remarkable thermostability, equal or superior to that of the most stable RNAs in this species, suggesting that SMalpha1 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.

  8. Subdominant/Cryptic CD8 T Cell Epitopes Contribute to Resistance against Experimental Infection with a Human Protozoan Parasite

    PubMed Central

    Dominguez, Mariana R.; Silveira, Eduardo L. V.; de Vasconcelos, José Ronnie C.; de Alencar, Bruna C. G.; Machado, Alexandre V.; Bruna-Romero, Oscar; Gazzinelli, Ricardo T.; Rodrigues, Mauricio M.

    2011-01-01

    During adaptive immune response, pathogen-specific CD8+ T cells recognize preferentially a small number of epitopes, a phenomenon known as immunodominance. Its biological implications during natural or vaccine-induced immune responses are still unclear. Earlier, we have shown that during experimental infection, the human intracellular pathogen Trypanosoma cruzi restricts the repertoire of CD8+ T cells generating strong immunodominance. We hypothesized that this phenomenon could be a mechanism used by the parasite to reduce the breath and magnitude of the immune response, favoring parasitism, and thus that artificially broadening the T cell repertoire could favor the host. Here, we confirmed our previous observation by showing that CD8+ T cells of H-2a infected mice recognized a single epitope of an immunodominant antigen of the trans-sialidase super-family. In sharp contrast, CD8+ T cells from mice immunized with recombinant genetic vaccines (plasmid DNA and adenovirus) expressing this same T. cruzi antigen recognized, in addition to the immunodominant epitope, two other subdominant epitopes. This unexpected observation allowed us to test the protective role of the immune response to subdominant epitopes. This was accomplished by genetic vaccination of mice with mutated genes that did not express a functional immunodominant epitope. We found that these mice developed immune responses directed solely to the subdominant/cryptic CD8 T cell epitopes and a significant degree of protective immunity against infection mediated by CD8+ T cells. We concluded that artificially broadening the T cell repertoire contributes to host resistance against infection, a finding that has implications for the host-parasite relationship and vaccine development. PMID:21779365

  9. Ocular pathological changes in hamsters experimentally infected with Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Ismail, H I H; Ashour, D S; Abou Rayia, D M; Ali, A L

    2016-11-01

    Ocular lesions have been reported in patients with schistosomiasis; however, the problem with studying schistosomal infection of the human eye is that biopsies are almost impossible to take, and histopathological examination of suspicious lesions can only be undertaken post-mortem or after enucleation. This work aimed to study the possible effects and pathogenesis of schistosomiasis on the eye. This study involved 55 hamsters; five hamsters remained non-infected and the remaining 50 hamsters were infected with Schistosoma mansoni cercariae. Infected hamsters were sacrificed on weeks 8, 12, 16 and 20 post-infection (pi). Eye sections were prepared and stained for histopathological and immunohistochemical studies. Histopathological changes detected in hamsters infected after 16 and 20 weeks included looseness and oedema of the innermost retinal layers together with hyperplastic polypoid growth. Neither eggs nor granulomata were detected in eye sections throughout the experimental period. Deposition of S. mansoni antigen was revealed in 35% of infected hamsters. Later, on weeks 16 and 20 pi, moderate subepithelial conjuctival deposits and marked subchoroidal and scleral deposition were detected. In conclusion, the deposition of schistosomal antigen and immune complexes may play a pivotal role in the ocular changes that occur in schistosomiasis, even in the absence of detectable Schistosoma eggs. Schistosomiasis should be suspected in cases with unexplained ophthalmological findings, especially in endemic areas.

  10. 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.

  11. Genome-wide regulatory dynamics of G-quadruplexes in human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Bhartiya, Deeksha; Chawla, Vandna; Ghosh, Sourav; Shankar, Ravi; Kumar, Niti

    2016-12-01

    The AT-rich genome of P. falciparum has uniquely localized G-rich stretches that have propensity to form G-quadruplexes. However, their global occurrence and potential biological roles in the parasite are poorly explored. Our genome-wide analysis revealed unique enrichment of quadruplexes in P. falciparum genome which was remarkably different from other Plasmodium species. A distinct predominance of quadruplexes was observed in nuclear and organellar genes that participate in antigenic variation, pathogenesis, DNA/RNA regulation, metabolic and protein quality control processes. Data also suggested association of quadruplexes with SNPs and DNA methylation. Furthermore, analysis of steady state mRNA (RNA-seq) and polysome-associated mRNA (Ribosome profiling) data revealed stage-specific differences in translational efficiency of quadruplex harboring genes. Taken together, our findings hint towards existence of regulatory dynamics associated with quadruplexes that may modulate translational efficiency of quadruplex harboring genes to provide survival advantage to the parasite against host immune response and antimalarial drug pressure.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Parasites: Water

    MedlinePlus

    ... Tropical Diseases Laboratory Diagnostic Assistance [DPDx] Parasites Home Water Language: English Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Parasites can live in natural water sources. When outdoors, treat your water before drinking ...

  15. Antiparasitic activity of menadione (vitamin K3) against Schistosoma mansoni in BABL/c mice.

    PubMed

    Kapadia, Govind J; Soares, Ingrid A O; Rao, G Subba; Badoco, Fernanda R; Furtado, Ricardo A; Correa, Mariana B; Tavares, Denise C; Cunha, Wilson R; Magalhães, Lizandra G

    2017-03-01

    Schistosomiasis is one of the neglected tropical diseases affecting nearly quarter of a billion people in economically challenged tropical and subtropical countries of the world. Praziquantel (PZQ) is the only drug currently available to treat this parasitic disease in spite being ineffective against juvenile worms and concerns about developing resistance to treat reinfections. Our earlier in vitro viability studies demonstrated significant antiparasitic activity of menadione (MEN) (vitamin K3) against Schistosoma mansoni adult worms. To gain insight into plausible mechanism of antischistosomal activity of MEN, its effect on superoxide anion levels in adult worms were studied in vitro which showed significant increases in both female and male worms. Further confirmation of the deleterious morphological changes in their teguments and organelles were obtained by ultrastructural analysis. Genotoxic and cytotoxic studies in male Swiss mice indicated that MEN was well tolerated at the oral dose of 500mg/kg using the criteria of MNPCE frequency and PCE/RBC ratio in the bone marrow of infected animals. The in vivo antiparasitic activity of MEN was conducted in female BALB/c mice infected with S. mansoni and significant reductions (P<0.001) in total worm burden were observed at single oral doses of 40 and 400mg/kg (48.57 and 61.90%, respectively). Additionally, MEN significantly reduced (P<0.001) the number of eggs in the liver of infected mice by 53.57 and 58.76%, respectively. Similarly, histological analysis of the livers showed a significant reduction (P<0.001) in the diameter of the granulomas. Since MEN is already in use globally as an over-the-counter drug for a variety of common ailments and a dietary supplement with a safety record in par with similar products when used in recommended doses, the above antiparasitic results which compare reasonably well with PZQ, make a compelling case for considering MEN to treat S. mansoni infection in humans.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. Highly Differentiated Human Airway Epithelial Cells: a Model to Study Host cell-parasite Interactions in Pertussis

    PubMed Central

    Guevara, Claudia; Zhang, Chengxian; Gaddy, Jennifer A.; Iqbal, Junaid; Guerra, Julio; Greenberg, David P.; Decker, Michael D.; Carbonetti, Nicholas; Starner, Timothy D.; McCray, Paul B.; Mooi, Frits R.

    2017-01-01

    Background Bordetella pertussis colonizes the human respiratory mucosa. Most studies on B. pertussis adherence have relied on cultured mammalian cells that lack key features present in differentiated human airway cells or on animal models that are not natural hosts of B. pertussis. The objectives of this work are to evaluate B. pertussis infection on highly differentiated human airway cells in vitro and to show the role of B. pertussis fimbriae in cell adherence. Methods Primary human airway epithelial (PHAE) cells from human bronchi and a human bronchial epithelial (HBE) cell line were grown in vitro under air-liquid interface conditions. Results PHAE and HBE cells infected with B. pertussis wild type strain revealed bacterial adherence to cell’s apical surface and bacterial induced cytoskeleton changes and cell detachment. Mutations in the major fimbrial subunits Fim2/3 or in the minor fimbrial adhesin subunit FimD affected B. pertussis adherence to predominantly HBE cells. This cell model recapitulates the morphologic features of the human airway infected by B. pertussis and confirms the role of fimbriae in B. pertussis adherence. Furthemore, HBE cells show that fimbrial subunits, and specifically FimD adhesin, are critical in B. pertussis adherence to airway cells. Conclusions The relevance of this model to study host-parasite interaction in pertussis lies in the striking physiologic and morphologic similarity between the PHAE and HBE cells and the human airway ciliated and goblet cells in vivo. These cells can proliferate in vitro, differentiate, and express the same genetic profile as human respiratory cells in vivo. PMID:26492208

  20. 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

    2015-01-06

    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.

  1. 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

  2. The Redox Biology of Schistosome Parasites and Applications for Drug Development

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Hsin-Hung; Rigouin, Coraline; Williams, David L.

    2013-01-01

    Schistosomiasis caused by Schistosoma spp. is a serious public health concern, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Praziquantel is the only drug currently administrated to treat this disease. However, praziquantel-resistant parasites have been identified in endemic areas and can be generated in the laboratory. Therefore, it is essential to find new therapeutics. Antioxidants are appealing drug targets. In order to survive in their hosts, schistosomes are challenged by reactive oxygen species from intrinsic and extrinsic sources. Schistosome antioxidant enzymes have been identified as essential proteins and novel drug targets and inhibition of the antioxidant response can lead to parasite death. Because the organization of the redox network in schistosomes is significantly different form that in humans, new drugs are being developed targeting schistosome antioxidants. In this paper the redox biology of schistosomes is discussed and their potential use as drug targets is reviewed. It is hoped that compounds targeting parasite antioxidant responses will become clinically relevant drugs in the near future. PMID:22607149

  3. Genome sequences of the human body louse and its primary endosymbiont provide insights into the permanent parasitic lifestyle

    PubMed Central

    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; 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.; Collins, Frank H.; Zdobnov, Evgeny M.; Pittendrigh, Barry R.

    2010-01-01

    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. PMID:20566863

  4. 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})

  5. 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

  6. The PCR-based detection and identification of the parasites causing human cutaneous leishmaniasis in the Iranian city of Ahvaz.

    PubMed

    Ghasemian, M; Maraghi, S; Samarbafzadeh, A R; Jelowdar, A; Kalantari, M

    2011-04-01

    In Iran, Leishmania major or L. tropica cause almost all of the human cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL). Unfortunately, the detection methods frequently used for CL (the microscopical examination of direct smears or the culture of biopsies) are not very sensitive and the Leishmania species causing each case of CL in Iran is usually only tentatively identified from extrinsic factors, such as the case's clinical manifestations and region of residence. Recently, however, a nested PCR that targets the parasites' kinetoplast DNA has been used in the city of Ahvaz (the capital of the province of Khouzestan, in south-western Iran) to confirm the microscopical diagnosis of CL and to identify the causative parasites, to species level. Smears from the lesions on 100 suspected cases of CL were fixed, stained with Wright's eosin-methylene blue, and checked for amastigotes under a light microscope. Scrapings from the same smears were then tested for leishmanial DNA, using a nested PCR that allows the DNA from L. tropica to be identified and distinguished from that of L. major. The 100 smears investigated were all found amastigote-positive by microscopy and PCR-positive for either L. major DNA (97 smears) or L. tropica DNA (three smears). The predominant species causing CL in Ahvaz is therefore L. major.

  7. Malaria parasite sequences from chimpanzee support the co-speciation hypothesis for the origin of virulent human malaria (Plasmodium falciparum).

    PubMed

    Hughes, Austin L; Verra, Federica

    2010-10-01

    Phylogenetic analyses of the mitochondrial cytochrome b (cytb), apicoplast caseinolytic protease C (clpC), and 18S rRNA sequences of Plasmodium isolates from chimpanzees along with those of the virulent human malaria parasite P. falciparum showed that the common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) malaria parasites, assigned by Rich et al. (2009) to P. reichenowi, constitute a paraphyletic assemblage. The assumption that P. falciparum diverged from P. reichenowi as recently as 5000-50,000 years ago would require a rate of synonymous substitution/site/year in cytb and clpC on the order of 10(-5)-10(-6), several orders of magnitude higher than any known from eukaryotic organelle genomes, and would imply an unrealistically recent timing of the most recent common ancestor of P. falciparum mitochondrial genomes. The available data are thus most consistent with the hypothesis that P. reichenowi (in the strict sense) and P. falciparum co-speciated with their hosts about 5-7 million years ago.

  8. 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

  9. Dysfunctions at human intestinal barrier by water-borne protozoan parasites: lessons from cultured human fully differentiated colon cancer cell lines.

    PubMed

    Liévin-Le Moal, Vanessa

    2013-06-01

    Some water-borne protozoan parasites induce diseases through their membrane-associated functional structures and virulence factors that hijack the host cellular molecules and signalling pathways leading to structural and functional lesions in the intestinal barrier. In this Microreview we analyse the insights on the mechanisms of pathogenesis of Entamoeba intestinalis, Giardia and Cryptosporidium observed in the human colon carcinoma fully differentiated colon cancer cell lines, cell subpopulations and clones expressing the structural and functional characteristics of highly specialized fully differentiated epithelial cells lining the intestinal epithelium and mimicking structurally and functionally an intestinal barrier.

  10. Development and Validation of a Quantitative, High-Throughput, Fluorescent-Based Bioassay to Detect Schistosoma Viability

    PubMed Central

    Peak, Emily; Chalmers, Iain W.; Hoffmann, Karl F.

    2010-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis, caused by infection with the blood fluke Schistosoma, is responsible for greater than 200,000 human deaths per annum. Objective high-throughput screens for detecting novel anti-schistosomal targets will drive ‘genome to drug’ lead translational science at an unprecedented rate. Current methods for detecting schistosome viability rely on qualitative microscopic criteria, which require an understanding of parasite morphology, and most importantly, must be subjectively interpreted. These limitations, in the current state of the art, have significantly impeded progress into whole schistosome screening for next generation chemotherapies. Methodology/Principal Findings We present here a microtiter plate-based method for reproducibly detecting schistosomula viability that takes advantage of the differential uptake of fluorophores (propidium iodide and fluorescein diacetate) by living organisms. We validate this high-throughput system in detecting schistosomula viability using auranofin (a known inhibitor of thioredoxin glutathione reductase), praziquantel and a range of small compounds with previously-described (gambogic acid, sodium salinomycin, ethinyl estradiol, fluoxetidine hydrochloride, miconazole nitrate, chlorpromazine hydrochloride, amphotericin b, niclosamide) or suggested (bepridil, ciclopirox, rescinnamine, flucytosine, vinblastine and carbidopa) anti-schistosomal activities. This developed method is sensitive (200 schistosomula/well can be assayed), relevant to industrial (384-well microtiter plate compatibility) and academic (96-well microtiter plate compatibility) settings, translatable to functional genomics screens and drug assays, does not require a priori knowledge of schistosome biology and is quantitative. Conclusions/Significance The wide-scale application of this fluorescence-based bioassay will greatly accelerate the objective identification of novel therapeutic lead targets/compounds to combat schistosomiasis

  11. Ultrastructure of the attack of eosinophils stimulated by blood mononuclear cell products on schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed Central

    Caulfield, J. P.; Lenzi, H. L.; Elsas, P.; Dessein, A. J.

    1985-01-01

    Purified human eosinophils were treated with peripheral blood mononuclear cell supernatants containing eosinophil cytotoxic enhancing activity (ECEA). Schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni which had been coated either with antibody (Ab) from the sera of infected patients or with the lectin concanavalin A (Con A) were incubated with ECEA-treated and untreated cells for 2 minutes to 12 hours and examined ultrastructurally. Killing was assayed at 18 hours. ECEA caused an increase in the killing of Ab-coated worms, but Con-A-coated worms were not killed by either ECEA-treated or untreated cells. Eosinophils began to degranulate on Ab-coated worms within 2 minutes and continued to degranulate, so that by 12 hours about half of the parasites had greater than 50% of their surface covered by discharge material. The ECEA-treated cells degranulated more than the untreated cells. There was much less discharge material on Con-A-coated worms than on Ab-coated worms. Eosinophils adhered to discharge material on the surface of both Ab- and Con-A-coated parasites. At 3 and 12 hours, lysed cells and cell fragments were also seen adhering to discharge material. In the absence of discharge material the cells adhered to residual glycocalyx or to the tegumental outer membrane. These studies suggest that eosinophils kill schistosomula by progressively degranulating onto their surface over many hours and that the increased toxicity caused by ECEA is due to an increase in discharge. Images Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 PMID:4037065

  12. Aldose reductase from Schistosoma japonicum: crystallization and structure-based inhibitor screening for discovering antischistosomal lead compounds

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis is a neglected tropical disease with high morbidity and mortality in the world. Currently, the treatment of this disease depends almost exclusively on praziquantel (PZQ); however, the emergence of drug resistance to PZQ in schistosomes makes the development of novel drugs an urgent task. Aldose reductase (AR), an important component that may be involved in the schistosome antioxidant defense system, is predicted as a potential drug target. Methods The tertiary structure of Schistosoma japonicum AR (SjAR) was obtained through X-ray diffraction method and then its potential inhibitors were identified from the Maybridge HitFinder library by virtual screening based on this structural model. The effects of these identified compounds on cultured adult worms were evaluated by observing mobility, morphological changes and mortality. To verify that SjAR was indeed the target of these identified compounds, their effects on recombinant SjAR (rSjAR) enzymatic activity were assessed. The cytotoxicity analysis was performed with three types of human cell lines using a Cell Counting Kit-8. Results We firstly resolved the SjAR structure and identified 10 potential inhibitors based on this structural model. Further in vitro experiments showed that one of the compounds, renamed as AR9, exhibited significant inhibition in the activity of cultured worms as well as inhibition of enzymatic activity of rSjAR protein. Cytotoxicity analysis revealed that AR9 had relatively low toxicity towards host cells. Conclusions The work presented here bridges the gap between virtual screening and experimental validation, providing an effective and economical strategy for the development of new anti-parasitic drugs. Additionally, this study also found that AR9 may become a new potential lead compound for developing novel antischistosomal drugs against parasite AR. PMID:23734964

  13. Human cysticercosis and taeniasis: molecular approaches for specific diagnosis and parasite identification.

    PubMed

    McManus, D P; Garcia-Zepeda, E; Reid, A; Rishi, A K; Flisser, A

    1989-01-01

    The construction and antibody screening of Taenia solium cDNA libraries, generated in the Escherichia coli bacteriophage lambda gt11, with the identification of clones putatively expressing antigen B, T. solium-specific and other antigens is described. Lysogens were produced from a number of selected clones and beta-galactosidase fusion peptides ranging in Mr of approximately 135,000-150,000 were demonstrated. These proteins were shown by immunoblotting to be reactive with a pool of sera from cysticercotic patients originally used in the cDNA library screening. We report a method whereby Taenia (T. saginata and T. pisiformis) eggs can be detected with high sensitivity in a specific DNA dot-blot hybridisation assay using total parasite DNA as probe. We show also that intra-specific DNA variability occurs in T. solium isolates obtained from different geographical areas and discuss the potential significance of this heterogeneity.

  14. Defining the protein interaction network of human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Ramaprasad, Abhinay; Pain, Arnab; Ravasi, Timothy

    2012-02-01

    Malaria, caused by the protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum, affects around 225 million people yearly and a huge international effort is directed towards combating this grave threat to world health and economic development. Considerable advances have been made in malaria research triggered by the sequencing of its genome in 2002, followed by several high-throughput studies defining the malaria transcriptome and proteome. A protein-protein interaction (PPI) network seeks to trace the dynamic interactions between proteins, thereby elucidating their local and global functional relationships. Experimentally derived PPI network from high-throughput methods such as yeast two hybrid (Y2H) screens are inherently noisy, but combining these independent datasets by computational methods tends to give a greater accuracy and coverage. This review aims to discuss the computational approaches used till date to construct a malaria protein interaction network and to catalog the functional predictions and biological inferences made from analysis of the PPI network.

  15. Identification and biochemical characterization of macrophage migration inhibitory factor-2 (MIF-2) homologue of human lymphatic filarial parasite, Wuchereria bancrofti.

    PubMed

    Chauhan, Nikhil; Sharma, Rohit; Hoti, S L

    2015-02-01

    Homologues of human macrophage migration inhibitory factor (hMIF) have been reported from vertebrates, invertebrates and prokaryotes, as well as plants. Filarial parasites produce two homologues of hMIF viz., MIF-1 and MIF-2, which play important role in the host immune modulation. Earlier, we have characterized MIF-1 (Wba-mif-1) from Wuchereria bancrofti, the major causal organism of human lymphatic filariasis. Here, we are reporting the molecular and biochemical characterization of MIF-2 from this parasite (Wba-mif-2). The complete Wba-mif-2 gene and its cDNA were amplified, cloned and sequenced. The size of Wba-mif-2 gene and cDNA were found to be 4.275 kb and 363 bp, respectively. The gene annotation revealed the presence of a large intron of 3.912 kb interspersed with two exons of 183 bp and 180 bp. The alignment of derived amino acid sequences of Wba-MIF-2 with Wba-MIF-1 showed 44% homology. The conserved CXXC oxido-reductase catalytic site present in Wba-mif-1 was found absent in Wba-mif-2 coding sequence. The amplified Wba-mif-2 cDNA was cloned into an expression vector pRSET-B and transformed into salt inducible Escherichia coli strain GJ1158. The expressed recombinant Wba-MIF-2 protein showed tautomerase activity against L-dopachrome methyl ester and the specific activity was determined to be 18.57±0.77 μmol/mg/min. Three known inhibitors of hMIF tautomerase activity significantly inhibited the tautomerase activity of recombinant Wba-MIF-2. Although the conserved CXXC oxido-reductase motif is absent in Wba-mif-2, the recombinant protein showed significant oxido-reductase activity in the insulin reduction assay, possibly because of the presence of vicinal cysteine residues.

  16. The growth and development of Schistosoma mansoni in mice exposed to sublethal doses of radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Aitken, R.; Wilson, R.A. )

    1989-12-01

    The maturation of Schistosoma mansoni was studied in mice exposed to various sublethal doses of radiation. Although the treatment of mice with 500 rads of radiation prior to infection did not alter parasite maturation, doses in excess of 500 rads led to a reduction in worm burden. This could not be attributed to a delay in the arrival of parasites in the hepatic portal system. Worms developing in mice treated with 800 rads commenced egg-laying about 1 wk later than worms in intact mice, and the rate of egg deposition appeared to be lower in irradiated hosts. The data demonstrate that exposure of C57BL/6 mice to doses of radiation in excess of 500 rads impairs their ability to carry infections of S. mansoni. The findings do not support the hypothesis that primary worm burdens in the mouse are controlled by a host immune response.

  17. New praziquantel derivatives containing NO-donor furoxans and related furazans as active agents against Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Guglielmo, Stefano; Cortese, Daniela; Vottero, Francesca; Rolando, Barbara; Kommer, Valerie P; Williams, David L; Fruttero, Roberta; Gasco, Alberto

    2014-09-12

    A series of NO-donor praziquantel hybrid compounds was obtained by combining praziquantel (PZQ) and furoxan moieties in a single entity. NO-donor properties of the furoxan derivatives were evaluated by detecting nitrite after incubation of the products in 7.4 pH buffered solution in the presence of L-cysteine. Structurally-related furazans, devoid of NO release capacity, were also synthesized for control purposes. All products were studied for their ability to inhibit recombinant Schistosoma mansoni thioredoxin glutathione reductase (TGR). Mobility and death of adult Schistosoma mansoni worms cultured in the presence of the products were evaluated versus PZQ. Analysis of the results showed that some products were endowed with both PZQ and NO-dependent antiparasitic properties. Compounds 6, 7, 18, and 24 emerged as the most interesting balanced hybrids, worthy of additional study on PZQ-resistant parasites.

  18. Differential Evolutionary Selection and Natural Evolvability Observed in ALT Proteins of Human Filarial Parasites.

    PubMed

    Devoe, Neil C; Corbett, Ian J; Barker, Linsey; Chang, Robert; Gudis, Polyxeni; Mullen, Nathan; Perez, Kailey; Raposo, Hugo; Scholz, John; May, Meghan

    2016-01-01

    The abundant larval transcript (ALT-2) protein is present in all members of the Filarioidea, and has been reported as a potential candidate antigen for a subunit vaccine against lymphatic filariasis. To assess the potential for vaccine escape or heterologous protection, we examined the evolutionary selection acting on ALT-2. The ratios of nonsynonymous (K(a)) to synonymous (K(s)) mutation frequencies (ω) were calculated for the alt-2 genes of the lymphatic filariasis agents Brugia malayi and Wuchereria bancrofti and the agents of river blindness and African eyeworm disease Onchocerca volvulus and Loa loa. Two distinct Bayesian models of sequence evolution showed that ALT-2 of W. bancrofti and L. loa were under significant (P<0.05; P < 0.001) diversifying selection, while ALT-2 of B. malayi and O. volvulus were under neutral to stabilizing selection. Diversifying selection as measured by ω values was notably strongest on the region of ALT-2 encoding the signal peptide of L. loa and was elevated in the variable acidic domain of L. loa and W. bancrofti. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the ALT-2 consensus sequences formed three clades: the first consisting of B. malayi, the second consisting of W. bancrofti, and the third containing both O. volvulus and L. loa. ALT-2 selection was therefore not predictable by phylogeny or pathology, as the two species parasitizing the eye were selected differently, as were the two species parasitizing the lymphatic system. The most immunogenic regions of L. loa and W. bancrofti ALT-2 sequence as modeled by antigenicity prediction analysis did not correspond with elevated levels of diversifying selection, and were not selected differently than predicted antigenic epitopes in B. malayi and O. volvulus. Measurements of ALT-2 evolvability made by χ2 analysis between alleles that were stable (O. volvulus and B. malayi) and those that were under diversifying selection (W. bancrofti and L. loa) indicated significant (P<0

  19. Differential Evolutionary Selection and Natural Evolvability Observed in ALT Proteins of Human Filarial Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Devoe, Neil C.; Corbett, Ian J.; Barker, Linsey; Chang, Robert; Gudis, Polyxeni; Mullen, Nathan; Perez, Kailey; Raposo, Hugo; Scholz, John; May, Meghan

    2016-01-01

    The abundant larval transcript (ALT-2) protein is present in all members of the Filarioidea, and has been reported as a potential candidate antigen for a subunit vaccine against lymphatic filariasis. To assess the potential for vaccine escape or heterologous protection, we examined the evolutionary selection acting on ALT-2. The ratios of nonsynonymous (K(a)) to synonymous (K(s)) mutation frequencies (ω) were calculated for the alt-2 genes of the lymphatic filariasis agents Brugia malayi and Wuchereria bancrofti and the agents of river blindness and African eyeworm disease Onchocerca volvulus and Loa loa. Two distinct Bayesian models of sequence evolution showed that ALT-2 of W. bancrofti and L. loa were under significant (P<0.05; P < 0.001) diversifying selection, while ALT-2 of B. malayi and O. volvulus were under neutral to stabilizing selection. Diversifying selection as measured by ω values was notably strongest on the region of ALT-2 encoding the signal peptide of L. loa and was elevated in the variable acidic domain of L. loa and W. bancrofti. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the ALT-2 consensus sequences formed three clades: the first consisting of B. malayi, the second consisting of W. bancrofti, and the third containing both O. volvulus and L. loa. ALT-2 selection was therefore not predictable by phylogeny or pathology, as the two species parasitizing the eye were selected differently, as were the two species parasitizing the lymphatic system. The most immunogenic regions of L. loa and W. bancrofti ALT-2 sequence as modeled by antigenicity prediction analysis did not correspond with elevated levels of diversifying selection, and were not selected differently than predicted antigenic epitopes in B. malayi and O. volvulus. Measurements of ALT-2 evolvability made by χ2 analysis between alleles that were stable (O. volvulus and B. malayi) and those that were under diversifying selection (W. bancrofti and L. loa) indicated significant (P<0

  20. Discovery and Confirmation of Ligand Binding Specificities of the Schistosoma japonicum Polarity Protein Scribble

    PubMed Central

    Piao, Xianyu; Hou, Nan; Liu, Shuai; Gao, Youhe; Wang, Heng; Chen, Qijun

    2014-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis is a chronic debilitating parasitic disease that afflicts more than 200 million individuals worldwide. Long-term administration of chemotherapy with the single available drug, praziquantel, has led to growing concerns about drug resistance. The PSD-95/Dlg/ZO-1 (PDZ) domain is an important module found in many scaffolding proteins, which has been recognized as promising targets for the development of novel drugs. However, the parasite-derived PDZ domains and their associated functions are still largely unknown. Methodology/Principal Findings The gene encoding the Schistosoma japonicum Scribble protein (SjScrib) was identified by homologous search with the S. mansoni Scrib sequence. By screening an arbitrary peptide library in yeast two-hybrid (Y2H) assays, we identified and confirmed the ligand binding specificity for each of the four PDZ domains of SjScrib. Both SjScrib-PDZ1 and SjScrib-PDZ3 recognize type I C-terminal PDZ-domain binding motifs (PBMs), which can be deduced as consensus sequences of -[Φ][x][E][TS][x][ILF] and -[x][RKx][ETS][T][WΦ][ILV], respectively. SjScrib-PDZ2 prefers stringent type II C-terminal PBMs, which significantly differs from that of its human ortholog. SjScrib-PDZ4 binds to typical II C-terminal PBMs with a consensus sequence -[x][FW][x][LI][x][LIV], in which the aromatic residue Phe is predominantly selected at position -4. The irregular and unconventional internal ligand binding specificities for the PDZ domains of SjScrib were confirmed by point mutations of the key amino acids within the ligand binding motifs. We also compared the differences in ligand specificities between SjScrib-PDZs and hScrib-PDZs, and explored the structural basis for the ligand binding properties of SjScrib-PDZs. Conclusions/Significance In this study, we characterized and confirmed the ligand binding specificities of all four PDZ domains of SjScrib for the first time. We denoted the differential ligand binding specificities

  1. Development of a Multiplex PCR-Ligase Detection Reaction Assay for Diagnosis of Infection by the Four Parasite Species Causing Malaria in Humans

    PubMed Central

    McNamara, David T.; Thomson, Jodi M.; Kasehagen, Laurin J.; Zimmerman, Peter A.

    2004-01-01

    The diagnosis of infections caused by Plasmodium species is critical for understanding the nature of malarial disease, treatment efficacy, malaria control, and public health. The demands of field-based epidemiological studies of malaria will require faster and more sensitive diagnostic methods as new antimalarial drugs and vaccines are explored. We have developed a multiplex PCR-ligase detection reaction (LDR) assay that allows the simultaneous diagnosis of infection by all four parasite species causing malaria in humans. This assay exhibits sensitivity and specificity equal to those of other PCR-based assays, identifying all four human malaria parasite species at levels of parasitemias equal to 1 parasitized erythrocyte/μl of blood. The multiplex PCR-LDR assay goes beyond other PCR-based assays by reducing technical procedures and by detecting intraindividual differences in species-specific levels of parasitemia. Application of the multiplex PCR-LDR assay will provide the sensitivity and specificity expected of PCR-based diagnostic assays and will contribute new insight regarding relationships between the human malaria parasite species and the human host in future epidemiological studies. PMID:15184411

  2. Development of a multiplex PCR-ligase detection reaction assay for diagnosis of infection by the four parasite species causing malaria in humans.

    PubMed

    McNamara, David T; Thomson, Jodi M; Kasehagen, Laurin J; Zimmerman, Peter A

    2004-06-01

    The diagnosis of infections caused by Plasmodium species is critical for understanding the nature of malarial disease, treatment efficacy, malaria control, and public health. The demands of field-based epidemiological studies of malaria will require faster and more sensitive diagnostic methods as new antimalarial drugs and vaccines are explored. We have developed a multiplex PCR-ligase detection reaction (LDR) assay that allows the simultaneous diagnosis of infection by all four parasite species causing malaria in humans. This assay exhibits sensitivity and specificity equal to those of other PCR-based assays, identifying all four human malaria parasite species at levels of parasitemias equal to 1 parasitized erythrocyte/microl of blood. The multiplex PCR-LDR assay goes beyond other PCR-based assays by reducing technical procedures and by detecting intraindividual differences in species-specific levels of parasitemia. Application of the multiplex PCR-LDR assay will provide the sensitivity and specificity expected of PCR-based diagnostic assays and will contribute new insight regarding relationships between the human malaria parasite species and the human host in future epidemiological studies.

  3. Acute Small-Bowel Obstruction From Intestinal Anisakiasis After the Ingestion of Raw Clams; Documenting a New Method of Marine-to-Human Parasitic Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Shweiki, Ehyal; Rittenhouse, David W.; Ochoa, Joana E.; Punja, Viren P.; Zubair, Muhammad H.; Baliff, Jeffrey P.

    2014-01-01

    Enteric anisakiasis is a known parasitic infection. To date, human infection has been reported as resulting from the inadvertent ingestion of the anisakis larvae when eating raw/undercooked fish, squid, or eel. We present a first reported case of intestinal obstruction caused by anisakiasis, after the ingestion of raw clams. PMID:25734153

  4. M17 leucine aminopeptidase of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jung-Yub; Song, Su-Min; Seok, Ji-Woong; Jha, Bijay Kumar; Han, Eun-Taek; Song, Hyun-Ouk; Yu, Hak-Sun; Hong, Yeonchul; Kong, Hyun-Hee; Chung, Dong-Il

    2010-03-01

    Amino acids derived from hemoglobin are essential to protein synthesis required for growth and development of the Plasmodium vivax malaria parasite. M17 leucine aminopeptidase (LAP) is a cytosolic metallo-exopeptidase that catalyzes the removal of amino acids from the peptide generated in the process of hemoglobin degradation. Inhibitors of the enzyme have shown promise as drugs against Plasmodium infections, implicating aminopeptidases as a novel potential anti-malarial chemotherapy target. In this study, we isolated a cDNA encoding a 68kDa P. vivax LAP (PvLAP). Deduced amino acid sequence of PvLAP exhibited significant sequence homology with LAP from Plasmodium falciparum. Biochemical analysis of the recombinant PvLAP protein produced in Escherichia coli demonstrated preferential substrate specificity for the fluorogenic peptide Leu-7-amido-4-methylcoumarin hydroxide and inhibition by EDTA, 1,10-phenanthroline, and bestatin, which are conserved characteristics of the M17 family of LAP. PvLAP was optimally active at slightly alkaline pH and its activity was dependent on divalent metal ions. Based on the biochemical properties and immunofluorescence localization, PvLAP is concluded to represent a LAP in P. vivax. The enzyme is most likely responsible for the catabolism of host hemoglobin and, hence, represents a potential target of both P. falciparum and P. vivax chemotherapy.

  5. Mitochondrial dynamics in the mouse liver infected by Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Chen, Tina Tu-Wen; Wu, Lawrence Shih Hsin; Hsu, Paul Wei-Che; Pang, Cheng-Yoong; Lee, Kin-Mu; Cheng, Po-Ching; Peng, Shih-Yi

    2015-08-01

    Mitochondrial dynamics is crucial for regulation of cell homeostasis. Schistosoma mansoni is one of the most common parasites known to cause liver disease. Mice infected by S. mansoni show acute symptoms of schistosomiasis after 8 weeks. Hence, in this study, we attempted to assess the direct effects of S. mansoni infection on mice liver, and to explore the expression of mitochondrial morphology, dynamics, and function. Our recent findings show that S. mansoni infection changes mitochondrial morphology and affects mitochondrial functions, which attenuates mitochondrial membrane potential and ATP generation. S. mansoni-infected mice increases mitochondrial numbers by upregulating of genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis, including peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor c co-activator 1α (PGC1α) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (Tfam). This may promote mitochondria generation for accelerating the recovery of mitochondrial functions. Moreover, S. mansoni would disrupt mitochondrial dynamics including induced mitochondrial fission and promoted mitochondrial fragmentation in mice liver. More importantly, S. mansoni further stimulated upregulation both extrinsic and intrinsic apoptosis pathway in infected mice liver. The intrinsic pathway was triggered by cytochrome c release. Additionally, NFκB (nuclear factor-kappa B, p65) could play a protective role to inhibit apoptosis through reducing active caspase-3 expression. Therefore, our results confirmed the liver damage mechanism of experimental schistosomiasis in mice model.

  6. Evaluating the risk of Schistosoma mansoni transmission in mainland China.

    PubMed

    Qu, Guoli; Wang, Wei; Lu, Xiaomin; Dai, Jianrong; Li, Xiaoheng; Liang, Yousheng

    2016-12-01

    Biomphalaria straminea, an intermediate host of Schistosoma mansoni, is predominantly distributed in the South Americas and Caribbean; however, this snail, as an invasive species, was introduced to Shenzhen, southern China, in 1981, and recent epidemiologic surveys demonstrate that the distribution of B. straminea has expanded across the Zhujiang River Basin, South China. In the presence of continuous importation of S. mansoni-infected cases, there is a growing concern about the transmission of S. mansoni in China. To evaluate the risk of S. mansoni transmission in China, we tested the compatibility of B. straminea captured from the snail habitats in southern China with S. mansoni in laboratory. We detected no S. mansoni infections in B. straminea following exposure to the parasite larvae at snail/miracidium ratios of 1:5, 1:10, 1:20, 1:40, and 1:80, while 6.7 to 66.7 % infections occurred in the control Biomphalaria glabrata depending on the ratio. The results of the present study demonstrate that the invasive B. straminea snails seem to be incompatible with S. mansoni, suggesting a low risk of S. mansoni transmission in mainland China.

  7. CHARACTERIZATION OF THE METHIONINE SULFOXIDE REDUCTASES OF SCHISTOSOMA MANSONI

    PubMed Central

    Oke, Tolulope T.; Moskovitz, Jackob; Williams, David L.

    2013-01-01

    Schistosomiasis, also known as Bilharzia, is an infectious disease caused by several species of Schistosoma. Twenty million individuals suffer severe symptoms and 200,000 people die annually from the disease. The host responds to the presence of S. mansoni by producing reactive oxygen species that cause oxidative stress. We hypothesized that schistosomes produce antioxidants in response to oxidative stress. A known antioxidant protein is methionine sulfoxide reductase (Msr). Methionine residues can be oxidized to methionine sulfoxide in the presence of oxidizing agents, which is readily reversed by the action of the Msr system. Two S. mansoni MsrB genes (MsrB1 and MsrB2) were cloned and the recombinant proteins expressed in bacteria and purified. The S. mansoni MsrB proteins contained the common conserved catalytic and zinc coordinating cysteines. Analysis of the proteins showed that both proteins promote the reduction of both free methionine sulfoxide (Met[O]) and dabsyl-Met(O) to free methionine (Met) and dabsyl-Met, respectively, while exhibiting differences in their specific activities towards these substrates. Using real-time PCR, both proteins were found to be expressed in all stages of the parasite’s life cycle with the highest level of expression of both proteins in the egg stage. This is the first description of MsrB proteins from a parasite. PMID:19604033

  8. Excretory/secretory proteome of 14-day schistosomula, Schistosoma japonicum.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xiaodan; Fu, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Min; Han, Yanhui; Han, Qian; Lu, Ke; Li, Hao; Zhu, Chuangang; Hong, Yang; Lin, Jiaojiao

    2016-01-01

    Schistosomiasis remains a serious public health problem, with 200 million people infected and 779 million people at risk worldwide. The schistosomulum is the early stage of the complex lifecycle of Schistosoma japonicum in their vertebrate hosts, and is the main target of vaccine-induced protective immunity. Excretory/secretory (ES) proteins play a major role in host-parasite interactions and ES protein compositions of schistosomula of S. japonicum have not been characterized to date. In the present study, the proteome of ES proteins from 14 day schistosomula of S. japonicum was analyzed by liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry and 713 unique proteins were finally identified. Gene ontology and pathway analysis revealed that identified proteins were mainly involved in carbohydrate metabolism, degradation, response to stimulus, oxidation-reduction, biological regulation and binding. Flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that thioredoxin peroxidase identified in this study had the effect on inhibiting MHCII and CD86 expression on LPS-activated macrophages. The present study provides insight into the growth and development of the schistosome in the final host and valuable information for screening vaccine candidates for schistosomiasis.

  9. Characterization of a GABAergic neurotransmission in adult Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Mendonça-Silva, D L; Gardino, P F; Kubrusly, R C C; De Mello, F G; Noël, F

    2004-08-01

    The neuromuscular systems of parasitic helminths are targets that are particularly amenable for anthelmintics. In this study, we describe a GABAergic neurotransmission in adult Schistosoma mansoni, the trematode responsible for high levels of morbidity in people living in developing countries. GABA immunoreactivity (GABA-IR) was detected in nerve cells and fibres of the cerebral ganglia and longitudinal nerve cords and the nerve plexuses ramifying throughout the parenchyma of male adult worms. In addition, strong GABA-IR was also found associated with the oral and ventral suckers as well as in testes indicating a role for GABA in fixation to the host vascular wall and spermatogenesis. The capacity to synthesize GABA from glutamate was confirmed by measurement of a glutamate decarboxylase (GAD) activity. Supporting these data, a single band with an apparent molecular weight of about 67 kDa was detected using an antibody raised against mammalian GAD. In vivo studies revealed that picrotoxin, a non-competitive antagonist of the GABAA receptor, produced a modification of the motility and locomotory behaviour of adult worms, suggesting that GABAergic signalling pathway may play a physiological role in the motonervous system of S. mansoni and could be considered as a potential target for the development of new drugs.

  10. Parasitic Colitis

    PubMed Central

    Hechenbleikner, Elizabeth M.; McQuade, Jennifer A.

    2015-01-01

    Over one billion people worldwide harbor intestinal parasites. Parasitic intestinal infections have a predilection for developing countries due to overcrowding and poor sanitation but are also found in developed nations, such as the United States, particularly in immigrants or in the setting of sporadic outbreaks. Although the majority of people are asymptomatically colonized with parasites, the clinical presentation can range from mild abdominal discomfort or diarrhea to serious complications, such as perforation or bleeding. Protozoa and helminths (worms) are the two major classes of intestinal parasites. Protozoal intestinal infections include cryptosporidiosis, cystoisosporiasis, cyclosporiasis, balantidiasis, giardiasis, amebiasis, and Chagas disease, while helminth infections include ascariasis, trichuriasis, strongyloidiasis, enterobiasis, and schistosomiasis. Intestinal parasites are predominantly small intestine pathogens but the large intestine is also frequently involved. This article highlights important aspects of parasitic infections of the colon including epidemiology, transmission, symptoms, and diagnostic methods as well as appropriate medical and surgical treatment. PMID:26034403

  11. Private Selective Sweeps Identified from Next-Generation Pool-Sequencing Reveal Convergent Pathways under Selection in Two Inbred Schistosoma mansoni Strains

    PubMed Central

    Clément, Julie A. J.; Toulza, Eve; Gautier, Mathieu; Parrinello, Hugues; Roquis, David; Boissier, Jérôme; Rognon, Anne; Moné, Hélène; Mouahid, Gabriel; Buard, Jérôme; Mitta, Guillaume; Grunau, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    Background The trematode flatworms of the genus Schistosoma, the causative agents of schistosomiasis, are among the most prevalent parasites in humans, affecting more than 200 million people worldwide. In this study, we focused on two well-characterized strains of S. mansoni, to explore signatures of selection. Both strains are highly inbred and exhibit differences in life history traits, in particular in their compatibility with the intermediate host Biomphalaria glabrata. Methodology/Principal Findings We performed high throughput sequencing of DNA from pools of individuals of each strain using Illumina technology and identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) and copy number variations (CNV). In total, 708,898 SNPs were identified and roughly 2,000 CNVs. The SNPs revealed low nucleotide diversity (π = 2×10−4) within each strain and a high differentiation level (Fst = 0.73) between them. Based on a recently developed in-silico approach, we further detected 12 and 19 private (i.e. specific non-overlapping) selective sweeps among the 121 and 151 sweeps found in total for each strain. Conclusions/Significance Functional annotation of transcripts lying in the private selective sweeps revealed specific selection for functions related to parasitic interaction (e.g. cell-cell adhesion or redox reactions). Despite high differentiation between strains, we identified evolutionary convergence of genes related to proteolysis, known as a key virulence factor and a potential target of drug and vaccine development. Our data show that pool-sequencing can be used for the detection of selective sweeps in parasite populations and enables one to identify biological functions under selection. PMID:24349597

  12. The magnitude and risk factors of intestinal parasitic infection in relation to Human Immunodeficiency Virus infection and immune status, at ALERT Hospital, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Taye, Biruhalem; Desta, Kassu; Ejigu, Selamawit; Dori, Geme Urge

    2014-06-01

    Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and intestinal parasitic infections are among the main health problems in developing countries like Ethiopia. Particularly, co-infections of these diseases would worsen the progression of HIV to Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). The purpose of this study was to determine the magnitude and risk factors for intestinal parasites in relation to HIV infection and immune status. The study was conducted in (1) HIV positive on antiretroviral therapy (ART) and (2) ART naïve HIV positive patients, and (3) HIV-negative individuals, at All African Leprosy and Tuberculosis (TB) Eradication and Rehabilitation Training Center (ALERT) hospital in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Study participants were interviewed using structured questionnaires to obtain socio-demographic characteristics and assess risk factors associated with intestinal parasitic infection. Intestinal parasites were identified from fecal samples by direct wet mount, formol ether concentration, and modified Ziehl-Neelsen staining techniques. The immune status was assessed by measuring whole blood CD4 T-cell count. The overall magnitude of intestinal parasite was 35.08%. This proportion was different among study groups with 39.2% (69/176), 38.83% (40/103) and 27.14% (38/140) in ART naïve HIV positives patients, in HIV negatives, and in HIV positive on ART patients respectively. HIV positive patients on ART had significantly lower magnitude of intestinal parasitic infection compared to HIV negative individuals. Intestinal helminths were significantly lower in HIV positive on ART and ART naïve patients than HIV negatives. Low monthly income, and being married, divorced or widowed were among the socio-demographic characteristics associated with intestinal parasitic infection. No association was observed between the magnitude of intestinal parasites and CD4 T-cell count. However, Cryptosporidium parvum, and Isospora belli were exclusively identified in individuals with CD4 T

  13. Comparison of two Egyptian strains of Schistosoma mansoni in hamsters.

    PubMed

    Soliman, G N; el Assal, F M; Mansour, N S; Garo, K

    1986-01-01

    In human infection with Schistosoma mansoni from Beni-Suef, the eggs were encountered more frequently in the urine of patients than in infection with S. mansoni from Giza, where eggs were passed into the stool. A comparative study of the two strains of S. mansoni from Beni-Suef and Giza has been carried out in golden hamster. Consistent strain differences were observed. The Beni-Suef strain proved to have lower worm recovery and different egg distribution patterns in tissues of infected hamsters. Worms of both sexes of this strain were larger in size and required a longer period to reach maturity. Hence, the prepatent period was prolonged. Significant differences between the two strains were also noted in the number of eggs per worm. A lower mortality rate and a longer survival time were encountered in hamsters infected with the Beni-Suef strain.

  14. Prevalence and seasonal variation of human intestinal parasites in patients attending hospital with abdominal symptoms in northern Jordan.

    PubMed

    Jaran, A S

    2017-01-23

    This study was carried out to determine the prevalence of intestinal parasites and their seasonal variation in northern Jordan. A total of 21 906 stool samples were collected over a period of 4 years (2009- 2013) from 5 government hospitals in 3 cities. Samples were processed and examined microscopically and by concentration methods. Parasitic infection was found in 9611 samples (44%). Giardia lamblia was the most prevalent parasite (41%) followed by Entamoeba histolytica (31%) and Ent. coli (13%); the least prevalent parasites were Ascaris lumbricoides (1%), Hymenolepis nana, Taenia sp., and Chilomastix mesnili (all < 1%). The prevalence of different parasites varied according to season, on average the summer months showed the highest incidence of parasitic infection (62%) compared with the winter months (16%). Giardia lamblia and Ent. histolytica were most prevalent in the summer months.

  15. Laminin on Toxoplasma gondii mediates parasite binding to the beta 1 integrin receptor alpha 6 beta 1 on human foreskin fibroblasts and Chinese hamster ovary cells.

    PubMed

    Furtado, G C; Cao, Y; Joiner, K A

    1992-11-01

    We investigated the role of parasite-bound laminin and the host cell beta 1 integrin receptors for this extracellular matrix protein in Toxoplasma gondii binding to fibroblasts. Laminin but not fibronectin was detected on extracellular tachyzoites by immunofluorescence and immunoblotting. Binding of parasites to CHO cells was inhibited by polyclonal antibodies to laminin and by a monoclonal antibody directed against the globular carboxyl-terminal portion of the long arm of laminin (at or near the suggested ligand-binding sites for alpha 3 beta 1 and alpha 6 beta 1), but not by a monoclonal antibody directed against the lateral short arms of laminin near the cross region of the molecule. Antibodies to the alpha 6 but not the alpha 2, alpha 3, or alpha 5 chains of the beta 1 family of integrins blocked parasite attachment to human foreskin fibroblasts and CHO cells. Attachment of T. gondii to cells via laminin on the parasite surface and laminin receptors on the mammalian cell is consistent with the capacity of the parasite to invade almost all nucleated cells.

  16. Absence of Wolbachia endobacteria in the human parasitic nematode Dracunculus medinensis and two related Dracunculus species infecting wildlife

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Wolbachia endosymbionts are a proven target for control of human disease caused by filarial nematodes. However, little is known about the occurrence of Wolbachia in taxa closely related to the superfamily Filarioidea. Our study addressed the status of Wolbachia presence in members of the superfamily Dracunculoidea by screening the human parasite Dracunculus medinensis and related species from wildlife for Wolbachia. Findings D. medinensis, D. lutrae and D. insignis specimens were all negative for Wolbachia colonization by PCR screening for the Wolbachia ftsZ, 16S rRNA and Wolbachia surface protein (wsp) sequences. The quality and purity of the DNA preparations was confirmed by amplification of nematode 18S rRNA and cytochrome c oxidase subunit I sequences. Furthermore, Wolbachia endobacteria were not detected by whole mount fluorescence staining, or by immunohistochemistry using a Wolbachia-specific antiserum. In contrast, positive control Brugia malayi worms were shown to harbour Wolbachia by PCR, fluorescence staining and immunohistochemistry. Conclusions Three examined species of Dracunculus showed no evidence of Wolbachia endobacteria. This supports that members of the superfamily Dracunculoidea are free of Wolbachia. Within the order Spirurida, these endosymbionts appear restricted to the Filarioidea. PMID:24685011

  17. Risk factors for gastrointestinal parasite infections of dogs living around protected areas of the Atlantic Forest: implications for human and wildlife health.

    PubMed

    Curi, N H A; Paschoal, A M O; Massara, R L; Santos, H A; Guimarães, M P; Passamani, M; Chiarello, A G

    2016-08-15

    Despite the ubiquity of domestic dogs, their role as zoonotic reservoirs and the large number of studies concerning parasites in urban dogs, rural areas in Brazil, especially those at the wildlife-domestic animal-human interface, have received little attention from scientists and public health managers. This paper reports a cross-sectional epidemiological survey of gastrointestinal parasites of rural dogs living in farms around Atlantic Forest fragments. Through standard parasitological methods (flotation and sedimentation), 13 parasite taxa (11 helminths and two protozoans) were found in feces samples from dogs. The most prevalent were the nematode Ancylostoma (47%) followed by Toxocara (18%) and Trichuris (8%). Other less prevalent (<2%) parasites found were Capillaria, Ascaridia, Spirocerca, Taeniidae, Acantocephala, Ascaris, Dipylidium caninum, Toxascaris, and the protozoans Cystoisospora and Eimeria. Mixed infections were found in 36% of samples, mostly by Ancylostoma and Toxocara. Previous deworming had no association with infections, meaning that this preventive measure is being incorrectly performed by owners. Regarding risk factors, dogs younger than one year were more likely to be infected with Toxocara, and purebred dogs with Trichuris. The number of cats in the households was positively associated with Trichuris infection, while male dogs and low body scores were associated with mixed infections. The lack of associations with dog free-ranging behavior and access to forest or villages indicates that infections are mostly acquired around the households. The results highlight the risk of zoonotic and wildlife parasite infections from dogs and the need for monitoring and controlling parasites of domestic animals in human-wildlife interface areas.

  18. Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) parasitizing humans in Corum and Yozgat provinces, Turkey.

    PubMed

    Keskin, Adem; Keskin, Aysun; Bursali, Ahmet; Tekin, Saban

    2015-12-01

    In order to identify ticks infesting humans in Corum and Yozgat provinces in Turkey, a total of 2110 ticks representing 14 species were collected on humans, between June and September 2009. Of those, 1551 (687♂, 450♀, 407 nymphs, 7 larvae) were collected from Corum and 559 (330♂, 180♀, 49 nymphs) were collected from Yozgat. The majority of ticks (n = 1121, 53.1 %) was Hyalomma marginatum. Other common ticks infesting humans were Dermacentor marginatus (n = 209, 9.9 %) and Rhipicephalus turanicus sensu lato (n = 145, 6.9 %) in the study area. In addition, a total of 386 immature Hyalomma were found on humans in Corum (335 nymphs, 7 larvae) and Yozgat (44 nymphs). Ixodes laguri and Haemaphysalis erinacei taurica were recorded for the first time in Corum. To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first detailed investigation on ticks infesting humans in Corum and Yozgat, except individual or incidental records. The present study provides useful information for those concerned with ticks and tick-borne diseases in Turkey.

  19. Parasitic Diseases

    MedlinePlus

    ... You can get them from contaminated food or water, a bug bite, or sexual contact. Some parasitic diseases are easily treated and some are not. Parasites range in size from tiny, ... Contaminated water supplies can lead to Giardia infections. Cats can ...

  20. CD8+ Granzyme B+–Mediated Tissue Injury vs. CD4+IFNγ+–Mediated Parasite Killing in Human Cutaneous Leishmaniasis

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Claire da Silva; Boaventura, Viviane; Ribeiro Cardoso, Cristina; Tavares, Natalia; Lordelo, Morgana J; Noronha, Almério; Costa, Jackson; Borges, Valéria M.; de Oliveira, Camila I; Van Weyenbergh, Johan; Barral, Aldina; Barral-Netto, Manoel; Brodskyn, Cláudia Ida

    2013-01-01

    A protective or deleterious role of CD8+T cells in human cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) has been debated. The present report explores the participation of CD8+T cells in disease pathogenesis as well as in parasite killing. CD8+T cells accumulated in CL lesions as suggested by a higher frequency of CD8+CD45RO+T cells and CD8+CLA+T cells compared with peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Upon Leishmania braziliensis restimulation, most of the CD8+T cells from the lesion expressed cytolytic markers, CD107a and granzyme B. Granzyme B expression in CL lesions positively correlated with lesion size and percentage of TUNEL-positive cells. We also observed a significantly higher percentage of TUNEL-positive cells and granzyme B expression in the biopsies of patients showing a more intense necrotic process. Furthermore, coculture of infected macrophages and CD8+T lymphocytes resulted in the release of granzyme B, and the use of granzyme B inhibitor, as well as z-VAD, Fas:Fc, or anti-IFN-γ, had no effect upon parasite killing. However, coculture of infected macrophages with CD4+T cells strongly increased parasite killing, which was completely reversed by anti-IFN-γ. Our results reveal a dichotomy in human CL: CD8+ granzyme B+T cells mediate tissue injury, whereas CD4+IFN-γ+T cells mediate parasite killing. PMID:23321919

  1. Effect of Clinoptilolite and Sepiolite Nanoclays on Human and Parasitic Highly Phagocytic Cells

    PubMed Central

    Toledano-Magaña, Yanis; Flores-Santos, Leticia; Montes de Oca, Georgina; González-Montiel, Alfonso; Laclette, Juan-Pedro; Carrero, Julio-César

    2015-01-01

    Nanoclays have potential applications in biomedicine raising the need to evaluate their toxicity in in vitro models as a first approach to its biocompatibility. In this study, in vitro toxicity of clinoptilolite and sepiolite nanoclays (NC) was analyzed in highly phagocytic cultures of amoebas and human and mice macrophages. While amebic viability was significantly affected only by sepiolite NC at concentrations higher than 0.1 mg/mL, the effect on macrophage cultures was dependent on the origin of the cells. Macrophages derived from human peripheral blood monocytes were less affected in viability (25% decrease at 48 h), followed by the RAW 264.7 cell line (40%), and finally, macrophages derived from mice bone marrow monocytes (98%). Moreover, the cell line and mice macrophages die mainly by necrosis, whereas human macrophages exhibit increased apoptosis. Cytokine expression analysis in media of sepiolite NC treated cultures showed a proinflammatory profile (INFγ, IL-1α, IL-8, and IL-6), in contrast with clinoptilolite NC that induced lees cytokines with concomitant production of IL-10. The results show that sepiolite NC is more toxic to amoebas and macrophages than clinoptilolite NC, mostly in a time and dose-dependent manner. However, the effect of sepiolite NC was comparable with talc powder suggesting that both NC have low cytotoxicity in vitro. PMID:26090385

  2. Effect of Clinoptilolite and Sepiolite Nanoclays on Human and Parasitic Highly Phagocytic Cells.

    PubMed

    Toledano-Magaña, Yanis; Flores-Santos, Leticia; Montes de Oca, Georgina; González-Montiel, Alfonso; Laclette, Juan-Pedro; Carrero, Julio-César

    2015-01-01

    Nanoclays have potential applications in biomedicine raising the need to evaluate their toxicity in in vitro models as a first approach to its biocompatibility. In this study, in vitro toxicity of clinoptilolite and sepiolite nanoclays (NC) was analyzed in highly phagocytic cultures of amoebas and human and mice macrophages. While amebic viability was significantly affected only by sepiolite NC at concentrations higher than 0.1 mg/mL, the effect on macrophage cultures was dependent on the origin of the cells. Macrophages derived from human peripheral blood monocytes were less affected in viability (25% decrease at 48 h), followed by the RAW 264.7 cell line (40%), and finally, macrophages derived from mice bone marrow monocytes (98%). Moreover, the cell line and mice macrophages die mainly by necrosis, whereas human macrophages exhibit increased apoptosis. Cytokine expression analysis in media of sepiolite NC treated cultures showed a proinflammatory profile (INFγ, IL-1α, IL-8, and IL-6), in contrast with clinoptilolite NC that induced lees cytokines with concomitant production of IL-10. The results show that sepiolite NC is more toxic to amoebas and macrophages than clinoptilolite NC, mostly in a time and dose-dependent manner. However, the effect of sepiolite NC was comparable with talc powder suggesting that both NC have low cytotoxicity in vitro.

  3. Prolyl Oligopeptidase from the Blood Fluke Schistosoma mansoni: From Functional Analysis to Anti-schistosomal Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Fajtová, Pavla; Štefanić, Saša; Hradilek, Martin; Dvořák, Jan; Vondrášek, Jiří; Jílková, Adéla; Ulrychová, Lenka; McKerrow, James H.; Caffrey, Conor R.; Mareš, Michael; Horn, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Background Blood flukes of the genus Schistosoma cause schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease that infects over 240 million people worldwide, and for which there is a need to identify new targets for chemotherapeutic interventions. Our research is focused on Schistosoma mansoni prolyl oligopeptidase (SmPOP) from the serine peptidase family S9, which has not been investigated in detail in trematodes. Methodology/Principal Findings We demonstrate that SmPOP is expressed in adult worms and schistosomula in an enzymatically active form. By immunofluorescence microscopy, SmPOP is localized in the tegument and parenchyma of both developmental stages. Recombinant SmPOP was produced in Escherichia coli and its active site specificity investigated using synthetic substrate and inhibitor libraries, and by homology modeling. SmPOP is a true oligopeptidase that hydrolyzes peptide (but not protein) substrates with a strict specificity for Pro at P1. The inhibition profile is analogous to those for mammalian POPs. Both the recombinant enzyme and live worms cleave host vasoregulatory, proline-containing hormones such as angiotensin I and bradykinin. Finally, we designed nanomolar inhibitors of SmPOP that induce deleterious phenotypes in cultured schistosomes. Conclusions/Significance We provide the first localization and functional analysis of SmPOP together with chemical tools for measuring its activity. We briefly discuss the notion that SmPOP, operating at the host-parasite interface to cleave host bioactive peptides, may contribute to the survival of the parasite. If substantiated, SmPOP could be a new target for the development of anti-schistosomal drugs. PMID:26039195

  4. A New Human 3D-Liver Model Unravels the Role of Galectins in Liver Infection by the Parasite Entamoeba histolytica

    PubMed Central

    Petropolis, Debora B.; Faust, Daniela M.; Deep Jhingan, Gagan; Guillen, Nancy

    2014-01-01

    Investigations of human parasitic diseases depend on the availability of appropriate in vivo animal models and ex vivo experimental systems, and are particularly difficult for pathogens whose exclusive natural hosts are humans, such as Entamoeba histolytica, the protozoan parasite responsible for amoebiasis. This common infectious human disease affects the intestine and liver. In the liver sinusoids E. histolytica crosses the endothelium and penetrates into the parenchyma, with the concomitant initiation of inflammatory foci and subsequent abscess formation. Studying factors responsible for human liver infection is hampered by the complexity of the hepatic environment and by the restrictions inherent to the use of human samples. Therefore, we built a human 3D-liver in vitro model composed of cultured liver sinusoidal endothelial cells and hepatocytes in a 3D collagen-I matrix sandwich. We determined the presence of important hepatic markers and demonstrated that the cell layers function as a biological barrier. E. histolytica invasion was assessed using wild-type strains and amoebae with altered virulence or different adhesive properties. We showed for the first time the dependence of endothelium crossing upon amoebic Gal/GalNAc lectin. The 3D-liver model enabled the molecular analysis of human cell responses, suggesting for the first time a crucial role of human galectins in parasite adhesion to the endothelial cells, which was confirmed by siRNA knockdown of galectin-1. Levels of several pro-inflammatory cytokines, including galectin-1 and -3, were highly increased upon contact of E. histolytica with the 3D-liver model. The presence of galectin-1 and -3 in the extracellular medium stimulated pro-inflammatory cytokine release, suggesting a further role for human galectins in the onset of the hepatic inflammatory response. These new findings are relevant for a better understanding of human liver infection by E. histolytica. PMID:25211477

  5. Polyethyleneimine (PEI) Mediated siRNA Gene Silencing in the Schistosoma mansoni Snail Host, Biomphalaria glabrata

    PubMed Central

    Knight, Matty; Miller, Andre; Liu, Yijia; Scaria, Puthupparampil; Woodle, Martin; Ittiprasert, Wannaporn

    2011-01-01

    An in vivo, non-invasive technique for gene silencing by RNA interference (RNAi) in the snail, Biomphalaria glabrata, has been developed using cationic polymer polyethyleneimine (PEI) mediated delivery of long double-stranded (ds) and small interfering (si) RNA. Cellular delivery was evaluated and optimized by using a ‘mock’ fluorescent siRNA. Subsequently, we used the method to suppress expression of Cathepsin B (CathB) with either the corresponding siRNA or dsRNA of this transcript. In addition, the knockdown of peroxiredoxin (Prx) at both RNA and protein levels was achieved with the PEI-mediated soaking method. B. glabrata is an important snail host for the transmission of the parasitic digenean platyhelminth, Schistosoma mansoni that causes schistosomiasis in the neotropics. Progress is being made to realize the genome sequence of the snail and to uncover gene expression profiles and cellular pathways that enable the snail to either prevent or sustain an infection. Using PEI complexes, a convenient soaking method has been developed, enabling functional gene knockdown studies with either dsRNA or siRNA. The protocol developed offers a first whole organism method for host-parasite gene function studies needed to identify key mechanisms required for parasite development in the snail host, which ultimately are needed as points for disrupting this parasite mediated disease. PMID:21765961

  6. Fasciola hepatica and Schistosoma mansoni: identification of common proteins by comparative proteomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Boukli, Nawal M; Delgado, Bonnibel; Ricaurte, Martha; Espino, Ana M

    2011-10-01

    It is not unusual to find common molecules among parasites of different species, genera, or phyla. When those molecules are antigenic, they may be used for developing drugs or vaccines that simultaneously target different species or genera of parasite. In the present study, we used a proteomic-based approach to identify proteins that are common to adult Fasciola hepatica and Schistosoma mansoni. Whole-worm extracts from each parasite were separated by 2-dimensional electrophoresis (2-DE), and digital images of both proteomes were superimposed using imaging software to identify proteins with identical isoelectric points and molecular weights. Protein identities were determined by mass spectrometry. Imaging and immunoblot analyses identified 28 immunoreactive proteins that are common to both parasites. Among these molecules are antioxidant proteins (thioredoxin and glutathione-S-transferase), glycolytic enzymes (glyceraldehyde 6-phosphate dehydrogenase and enolase), proteolytic enzymes (cathepsin-L and -D), inhibitors (Kunitz-type, Stefin-1), proteins with chaperone activity (heat shock protein 70 and fatty acid-binding protein), and structural proteins (calcium-binding protein, actin, and myosin). Some of the identified proteins could be used to develop drugs and vaccines against fascioliasis and schistosomiasis.

  7. Evidence for Integrin - Venus Kinase Receptor 1 Alliance in the Ovary of Schistosoma mansoni Females Controlling Cell Survival.

    PubMed

    Gelmedin, Verena; Morel, Marion; Hahnel, Steffen; Cailliau, Katia; Dissous, Colette; Grevelding, Christoph G

    2017-01-01

    In metazoan integrin signaling is an important process of mediating extracellular and intracellular communication processes. This can be achieved by cooperation of integrins with growth factor receptors (GFRs). Schistosoma mansoni is a helminth parasite inducing schistosomiasis, an infectious disease of worldwide significance for humans and animals. First studies on schistosome integrins revealed their role in reproductive processes, being involved in spermatogenesis and oogenesis. With respect to the roles of eggs for maintaining the parasite´s life cycle and for inducing the pathology of schistosomiasis, elucidating reproductive processes is of high importance. Here we studied the interaction of the integrin receptor Smβ-Int1 with the venus kinase receptor SmVKR1 in S. mansoni. To this end we cloned and characterized SmILK, SmPINCH, and SmNck2, three putative bridging molecules for their role in mediating Smβ-Int1/SmVKR1 cooperation. Phylogenetic analyses showed that these molecules form clusters that are specific for parasitic platyhelminths as it was shown for integrins before. Transcripts of all genes colocalized in the ovary. In Xenopus oocytes germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD) was only induced if all members were simultaneously expressed. Coimmunoprecipitation results suggest that a Smβ-Int1-SmILK-SmPINCH-SmNck2-SmVKR1 complex can be formed leading to the phosphorylation and activation of SmVKR1. These results indicate that SmVKR1 can be activated in a ligand-independent manner by receptor-complex interaction. RNAi and inhibitor studies to knock-down SmILK as a representative complex member concurrently revealed effects on the extracellular matrix surrounding the ovary and oocyte localization within the ovary, oocyte survival, and egg production. By TUNEL assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM), Caspase-3 assay, and transcript profiling of the pro-apoptotic BCL-2 family members BAK/BAX we obtained first evidence for roles of this signaling

  8. Evidence for Integrin – Venus Kinase Receptor 1 Alliance in the Ovary of Schistosoma mansoni Females Controlling Cell Survival

    PubMed Central

    Gelmedin, Verena; Morel, Marion; Hahnel, Steffen; Cailliau, Katia; Dissous, Colette; Grevelding, Christoph G.

    2017-01-01

    In metazoan integrin signaling is an important process of mediating extracellular and intracellular communication processes. This can be achieved by cooperation of integrins with growth factor receptors (GFRs). Schistosoma mansoni is a helminth parasite inducing schistosomiasis, an infectious disease of worldwide significance for humans and animals. First studies on schistosome integrins revealed their role in reproductive processes, being involved in spermatogenesis and oogenesis. With respect to the roles of eggs for maintaining the parasite´s life cycle and for inducing the pathology of schistosomiasis, elucidating reproductive processes is of high importance. Here we studied the interaction of the integrin receptor Smβ-Int1 with the venus kinase receptor SmVKR1 in S. mansoni. To this end we cloned and characterized SmILK, SmPINCH, and SmNck2, three putative bridging molecules for their role in mediating Smβ-Int1/SmVKR1 cooperation. Phylogenetic analyses showed that these molecules form clusters that are specific for parasitic platyhelminths as it was shown for integrins before. Transcripts of all genes colocalized in the ovary. In Xenopus oocytes germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD) was only induced if all members were simultaneously expressed. Coimmunoprecipitation results suggest that a Smβ-Int1-SmILK-SmPINCH-SmNck2-SmVKR1 complex can be formed leading to the phosphorylation and activation of SmVKR1. These results indicate that SmVKR1 can be activated in a ligand-independent manner by receptor-complex interaction. RNAi and inhibitor studies to knock-down SmILK as a representative complex member concurrently revealed effects on the extracellular matrix surrounding the ovary and oocyte localization within the ovary, oocyte survival, and egg production. By TUNEL assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM), Caspase-3 assay, and transcript profiling of the pro-apoptotic BCL-2 family members BAK/BAX we obtained first evidence for roles of this signaling

  9. Additional Instances of Human Parasitism by the Brown Dog Tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1989-12-05

    Europe. The brown dog tick has the potential for transmitting Ehrlichia canis , the rickettsia that causes canine ehrlichiosis, as well as other...T. I., R. T. Parmley, P. C. Logas, and S. Chambl in. 1989. Infection wiLh Ehrlichia canis in a child. J. Pediatrics 114: 809- 812. Ewing, S. A., E...M. Jonnson, and K. M. Kocan. 1987. Human infection with Ehrlichia canis . New England J. Med. 317: 899-900. Fishbein, D. B., A. Kemp, J. E. Dawson, N

  10. Protozoan Parasites.

    PubMed

    Custodio, Haidee

    2016-02-01

    • Stool antigen detection for Cryptosporidium sp, Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica are now commercially available, have better sensitivity and specificity than the traditional stool microscopy, and are less dependent on personnel skill. Tests employing newer techniques with faster turnaround time are also available for diagnosing trichomoniasis.• Nitazoxanide, the only U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved medication for therapy of cryptosporidiosis, is effective among immunocompetent patients. However, on the basis of strong evidence from multiple clinical trials, nitazoxanide is considered ineffective among immunocompromised patients. (14) • Giardiasis can be asymptomatic or have a chronic course leading to malabsorption and failure to thrive. It can be treated with metronidazole, tinidazole, or nitazoxanide. On the basis of growing observational studies, postinfectious and extraintestinal manifestations of giardiasis occur, but the mechanisms are unclear. Given the high prevalence of giardiasis, public health implications need to be defined. (16) • Eradicating E histolytica from the gastrointestinal tract requires only intraluminal agent therapy. Therapy for invasive illnesses requires use of imidazole followed by intraluminal agents to eliminate persistent intraluminal parasites. • Malaria is considered the most lethal parasitic infection, with Plasmodium falciparum as the predominant cause of mortality. P vivax and P ovale can be dormant in the liver, and primaquine is necessary to resolve infection by P vivax and P ovale. • Among immunocompetent patients, infection with Toxoplasma gondii may be asymptomatic, involve localized lymphadenopathy, or cause ocular infection. In immunocompromised patients, reactivation or severe infection is not uncommon. On the basis of limited observational studies (there are no well-controlled randomized trials), therapy is recommended for acute infection during pregnancy to prevent transmission to the

  11. P2X7 receptor-mediated killing of an intracellular parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, by human and murine macrophages1

    PubMed Central

    Lees, Michael P.; Fuller, Stephen J.; McLeod, Rima; Boulter, Nicola R.; Miller, Catherine M.; Zakrzewski, Alana M.; Mui, Ernest J.; Witola, William H.; Coyne, Jessica J.; Hargrave, Aubrey C.; Jamieson, Sarra E.; Blackwell, Jenefer M.; Wiley, James S.; Smith, Nicholas C.

    2010-01-01

    The P2X7 receptor (P2X7R)4 is highly expressed on the macrophage cell surface and activation of infected cells by extracellular ATP has been shown to kill intracellular bacteria and parasites. Furthermore, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that decrease receptor function reduce the ability of human macrophages to kill Mycobacterium tuberculosis and are associated with extrapulmonary tuberculosis. In this paper we show that macrophages from people with the 1513C (rs3751143) loss-of-function P2X7R SNP are less effective in killing intracellular Toxoplasma gondii after exposure to ATP compared with macrophages from people with the 1513A wild-type allele. Supporting a P2X7R-specific effect on T. gondii, macrophages from P2X7R knock-out mice (P2X7R−/−) are unable to kill T. gondii as effectively as macrophages from wild-type mice. We show that P2X7R-mediated T. gondii killing occurs in parallel with host cell apoptosis and is independent of NO production. PMID:20488797

  12. Organism-like formation of Schistosoma hemozoin and its function suggest a mechanism for anti-malarial action of artemisinin

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jun; Li, Chen; Wang, Suwen

    2016-01-01

    The current theories of antimalarial mechanism of artemisinin are inadequate to fully explain the observed effects. In our study, “organism-like” formation of Schistosoma hemozoin granules by attaching to and utilizing erythrocytes to form new ones was observed. This indicates that heme iron is transferred from erythrocytes to hemozoin granules during their formation. However, as a disposal product of heme detoxification, these granules are not completely expelled from the Schistosoma gut, but decomposed again between microvilli in the posterior portion of the gut to transfer iron to eggs. Based on the function of iron transport supported by our observation of the unique process of Schistosoma hemozoin formation, here we propose a new viewpoint of antimalarial mechanism of artemisinin, which emphasizes the final outcome, i.e., interference of iron utilization in parasites by artemisinin, instead of focusing on the mode of interaction between artemisinin and heme or hemozoin. This suggests that artemisinin and its endoperoxides derivatives likely hit the Achilles’ heel of hemozoin-producing and iron-dependent organisms. PMID:27694940

  13. Eosinophilia in Patients Infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus

    PubMed Central

    Chou, Andrew; Serpa, Jose A.

    2015-01-01

    Eosinophilia is not uncommonly encountered in patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV); particularly at initiation of care or among those with advanced disease. The clinical manifestation most commonly associated with eosinophilia in this patient population is skin rash. Management of these patients is challenging due to a paucity of data evaluating diagnostic testing and therapeutic strategies. Patients born in or with significant travel to parasite-endemic countries are more likely to have tissue-invasive helminthes, such as Strongyloides or Schistosoma. Patients without such risk factors are unlikely to have parasitic infections and frequently will have self-resolution of eosinophilia. When a detailed history, physical exam and diagnostic work-up is unrevealing, we sometimes consider empirical therapy with ivermectin. Praziquantel may also be considered for those at risk for schistosomiasis. PMID:26126686

  14. Proteomic analysis of zygote and ookinete stages of the avian malaria parasite Plasmodium gallinaceum delineates the homologous proteomes of the lethal human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Patra, Kailash P; Johnson, Jeff R; Cantin, Greg T; Yates, John R; Vinetz, Joseph M

    2008-06-01

    Delineation of the complement of proteins comprising the zygote and ookinete, the early developmental stages of Plasmodium within the mosquito midgut, is fundamental to understand initial molecular parasite-vector interactions. The published proteome of Plasmodium falciparum does not include analysis of the zygote/ookinete stages, nor does that of P. berghei include the zygote stage or secreted proteins. P. gallinaceum zygote, ookinete, and ookinete-secreted/released protein samples were prepared and subjected to Multidimensional protein identification technology (MudPIT). Peptides of P. gallinaceum zygote, ookinete, and ookinete-secreted proteins were identified by MS/MS, mapped to ORFs (> 50 amino acids) in the extent P. gallinaceum whole genome sequence, and then matched to homologous ORFs in P. falciparum. A total of 966 P. falciparum ORFs encoding orthologous proteins were identified; just over 40% of these predicted proteins were found to be hypothetical. A majority of putative proteins with predicted secretory signal peptides or transmembrane domains were hypothetical proteins. This analysis provides a more comprehensive view of the hitherto unknown proteome of the early mosquito midgut stages of P. falciparum. The results underpin more robust study of Plasmodium-mosquito midgut interactions, fundamental to the development of novel strategies of blocking malaria transmission.

  15. Effects of treatment on IgE responses against parasite allergen-like proteins and immunity to reinfection in childhood schistosome and hookworm coinfections.

    PubMed

    Pinot de Moira, Angela; Jones, Frances M; Wilson, Shona; Tukahebwa, Edridah; Fitzsimmons, Colin M; Mwatha, Joseph K; Bethony, Jeffrey M; Kabatereine, Narcis B; Dunne, David W

    2013-01-01

    Naturally occurring human immunity to both schistosomiasis and hookworm infection has been associated with IgE responses against parasite allergen-like proteins. Since the two helminths frequently coinfect the same individuals, there is growing advocacy for their concurrent treatment. However, both helminths are known to exert strong immunomodulatory effects; therefore, coinfected individuals could have immune responses different from those characteristically seen in monoinfected individuals. In this study, we measured changes in IgE, IgG1, and IgG4 responses to schistosome and hookworm antigens, including the allergen-like proteins Schistosoma mansoni tegumental-allergen-like 1 protein (SmTAL1), SmTAL2, and Necator americanus Ancylostoma-secreted protein-2 (Na-ASP-2), following concurrent treatment of schoolchildren coinfected with Schistosoma mansoni and hookworm. Antibody responses to schistosome egg (soluble egg antigen and SmTAL2) or somatic adult hookworm (AHW) antigens either decreased after treatment or were unchanged, whereas those to schistosome worm antigens (soluble worm antigen and SmTAL1) increased. The observed different effects of treatment likely reflect the different modes of drug action and sites of infection for these two helminths. Importantly, there was no evidence that the simultaneous treatment of coinfected children with praziquantel and albendazole affected schistosome- and hookworm-specific humoral responses differently from those characteristic of populations in which only one organism is endemic; schistosome- and hookworm-specific responses were not associated, and there was no evidence for cross-regulation. Posttreatment increases in the levels of IgE to schistosome worm antigens were associated with lower Schistosoma mansoni reinfection intensity, while no associations between humoral responses to AHW antigen and protection from hookworm reinfection were observed in this sample of school-aged children.

  16. Genetic diversity and structure of Schistosoma japonicum within two marshland villages of Anhui, China, prior to schistosome transmission control and elimination.

    PubMed

    Ding, Huan; Lu, Da-Bing; Gao, Yu-Meng; Deng, Yao; Li, Ying

    2017-02-01

    Schistosomiasis is caused by the genus Schistosoma and affected more than 250 million people worldwide. Schistosoma japonicum was once seriously endemic in China and nearly 60 years of efforts has seen great success in disease control. However, due to its zoonotic nature and complex life cycle, the schistosomiasis transmission control and final elimination would require, besides an intersectoral approach, deep understanding of population genetics of the parasite. We therefore performed a snail survey in two marshland villages of Anhui province of China and collected S. japonicum cercariae from infected snails. By using the recent developed microsatellite panel comprising seven loci, we genotyped the sampled parasites and analyzed the population genetic diversity and structure. The results showed much lower infection prevalence of S. japonicum in snails and low infected snail density in either marshland village. Through population genetic analyses, a considerable genetic diversity of parasites was revealed, whereas a small number of clusters were inferred and the sign of bottleneck effect was detected in each village. For the first time in S. japonicum in two villages, we provided estimates of effective population sizes with two different approaches. The results indicated that the parasite in two villages could eventually be eradicated with the ongoing integral control measures, but with potential risk of reinvasion of immigrant parasites through the Yangtze River. Such would be of great importance in assessment of the effects of ongoing control measures and prediction of the transmission capability for S. japonicum, thus guiding decisions on the choice of further control work.

  17. Characterization of the Phytochelatin Synthase from the Human Parasitic Nematode Ancylostoma ceylanicum

    PubMed Central

    Rigouin, Coraline; Vermeire, Jon J.; Nylin, Elyse; Williams, David L.

    2013-01-01

    Hookworm disease is a debilitating worm infection that affects hundreds of millions of people. Despite the existence of anthelmintic drugs, reports have testified of a decrease in efficacy of these drugs. Therefore, it is imperative to find new drugs and drug targets for hookworm disease treatment. In this study we identify the gene encoding the phytochelatin synthase in the human hookworm, Ancylostoma ceylanicum (AcePCS). Phytochelatin synthase 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. Phytochelatin synthase proteins also function in the elimination of xenobiotics by processing GSH S-conjugates. We found that in vitro AcePCS could both synthesize phytochelatins and hydrolyze a GSH S-conjugate. Interestingly, the enzyme works through a thiol-dependant and, notably, metal-independent mechanism for both transpeptidase (phytochelatin synthesis) and peptidase (hydrolysis of GSH S-conjugates) activities. AcePCS mRNAs are expressed in vivo throughout the life cycle of A. ceylanicum. Mature adult male hookworms isolated from the small intestines of their hosts displayed significantly enhanced expression of AcePCS with transcript levels 5-fold greater than other developmental forms. Although the role of AcePCS in A. ceylanicum biology has yet to be fully investigated the results reported here provide encouraging evidence of the potential that this enzyme holds as a target for new chemotherapeutic intervention. PMID:23916800

  18. In Vitro Effect of the Synthetic cal14.1a Conotoxin, Derived from Conus californicus, on the Human Parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    De León-Nava, Marco A; Romero-Núñez, Eunice; Luna-Nophal, Angélica; Bernáldez-Sarabia, Johanna; Sánchez-Campos, Liliana N; Licea-Navarro, Alexei F; Morales-Montor, Jorge; Muñiz-Hernández, Saé

    2016-04-08

    Toxins that are secreted by cone snails are small peptides that are used to treat several diseases. However, their effects on parasites with human and veterinary significance are unknown. Toxoplasma gondii is an opportunistic parasite that affects approximately 30% of the world's population and can be lethal in immunologically compromised individuals. The conventional treatment for this parasitic infection has remained the same since the 1950s, and its efficacy is limited to the acute phase of infection. These findings have necessitated the search for new drugs that specifically target T. gondii. We examined the effects of the synthetic toxin cal14.1a (s-cal14.1a) from C. californicus on the tachyzoite form of T. gondii. Our results indicate that, at micromolar concentrations, s-cal14.1a lowers viability and inhibits host cell invasion (by 50% and 61%, respectively) on exposure to extracellular parasites. Further, intracellular replication decreased significantly while viability of the host cell was unaffected. Our study is the first report on the antiparasitic activity of a synthetic toxin of C. californicus.

  19. In Vitro Effect of the Synthetic cal14.1a Conotoxin, Derived from Conus californicus, on the Human Parasite Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    De León-Nava, Marco A.; Romero-Núñez, Eunice; Luna-Nophal, Angélica; Bernáldez-Sarabia, Johanna; Sánchez-Campos, Liliana N.; Licea-Navarro, Alexei F.; Morales-Montor, Jorge; Muñiz-Hernández, Saé

    2016-01-01

    Toxins that are secreted by cone snails are small peptides that are used to treat several diseases. However, their effects on parasites with human and veterinary significance are unknown. Toxoplasma gondii is an opportunistic parasite that affects approximately 30% of the world’s population and can be lethal in immunologically compromised individuals. The conventional treatment for this parasitic infection has remained the same since the 1950s, and its efficacy is limited to the acute phase of infection. These findings have necessitated the search for new drugs that specifically target T. gondii. We examined the effects of the synthetic toxin cal14.1a (s-cal14.1a) from C. californicus on the tachyzoite form of T. gondii. Our results indicate that, at micromolar concentrations, s-cal14.1a lowers viability and inhibits host cell invasion (by 50% and 61%, respectively) on exposure to extracellular parasites. Further, intracellular replication decreased significantly while viability of the host cell was unaffected. Our study is the first report on the antiparasitic activity of a synthetic toxin of C. californicus. PMID:27070627

  20. Detection of Schistosoma spindale ova and associated risk factors among Malaysian cattle through coprological survey.

    PubMed

    Tan, Tiong Kai; Low, Van Lun; Lee, Soo Ching; Panchadcharam, Chandrawathani; Tay, Sun Tee; Ngui, Romano; Bathmanaban, Premaalatha; Kho, Kai Ling; Koh, Fui Xian; Sharma, Reuben Sunil Kumar; Jaafar, Tariq; Nizam, Quaza Nizamuddin Hassan; Lim, Yvonne Ai Lian

    2015-05-01

    The present study was conducted to determine the occurrence of Schistosoma spindale ova and its associated risk factors in Malaysian cattle through a coprological survey. A total of 266 rectal fecal samples were collected from six farms in Peninsular Malaysia. The overall infection rate of S. spindale was 6% (16 of 266). Schistosoma spindale infection was observed in two farms, with a prevalence of 5.4% and 51.9%, respectively. This trematode was more likely to co-occur with other gastro-intestinal parasites (i.e., Dicrocoelium spp., Paramphistomum spp., strongyle, Eimeria spp. and Entamoeba spp.). Chi-square analysis revealed that female cattle are less likely to get S. spindale infection as compared to male cattle (OR = 0.3; 95% CI = 0.08-1.06; p < 0.05), and cattle weighing lower than 200 kg, were significantly at higher risk than those higher than 200 kg (OR = 5; 95% CI = 1.07-24.79; p < 0.05) to the infection. Multivariate analysis confirmed that among the cattle in Malaysia, the age (cattle with two year old and higher: OR = 21; 95% CI = 2.48-179.44; p < 0.05) and weight (weighing 200 kg and lower: OR = 17; 95% CI = 3.38-87.19; p < 0.05) were risk factors for S. spindale infection among Malaysian cattle.