Abstract in English:Leishmaniasis is a parasitic zoonosis caused by protozoans of the genus Leishmania transmitted by insects known as phlebotomines, which are found in wild or urban environments. It affects domestic and wild animals and transmission to man happens by accident. The disease occurs in tropical and sub-tropical areas, mainly in Asia, Europe, Africa, and the Americas. There are two forms that affect man: American cutaneous leishmaniasis (ACL) and American visceral leishmaniasis (AVL). The latter is caused by three species of Leishmania: Leishmania (Leishmania) donovani, Leishmania (Leishmania) infantum, and Leishmania (Leishmania) chagasi, which are grouped in the Leishmania (Leishmania) donovani complex. Wild reservoir hosts of L. chagasi known so far are foxes and marsupials. In domestic environment, dogs are the most important reservoir hosts and sources of infection to the vectors Lutzomyia longipalpis. Leishmaniasis is difficult to control, causing epidemic outbreaks, thus being an important public health problem. Due to lesions caused by the mucocutaneous type and the severity of those caused by the visceral type in humans, visceral leishmaniasis is one of the main public health concerns. This paper is part of the monograph presented at the end of the residency program in the field of Zoonosis and Public Health at the School of Veterinary Sciences and Animal Husbandry, São Paulo State University, UNESP, Botucatu, São Paulo State, Brazil, in 2005.
Abstract in English:The aim of the present study was to analyze the parametric values of Androctonus crassicauda (Oliver, 1807), the most significant scorpion species in Turkey. For this purpose, 11 male and 11 female A. crassicauda specimens were collected from Sanliurfa region. The body parts most important for species identification were measured by using sensitive calipers. Differences between sexes were statistically significant for pectinal organ length (female: 7.50±1.26mm;male: 8.63±1.05mm; p=0.033), pectinal tooth count (female: 25.36±0.86;male: 33.36±0.80; p=0.000), and carapace width (female: 10.27±1.19mm;male: 9.09±0.73mm; p=0.000). However, body length (female: 90.09±14.74mm;male: 82.95±5.40mm), abdomen width (female: 12.09±1.90mm;male: 11.09±0.88mm), and metasoma length (female: 43.09±3.08mm;male: 44.63±6.50mm) were not significantly different between sexes.
Abstract in English:In Korea, antivenoms for the treatment of patients bitten by venomous snakes have been imported from Japan or China. Although there is cross-reactivity between these antibodies and venoms from snakes indigenous to Korea (e.g. Agkistrodon genus), protection is not optimal. Antivenoms specifically prepared to neutralize Korean snake venoms could be more effective, with fewer side effects. To this end, we established an infrastructure to develop national standards and created a standardized method to evaluate the efficacy of two horse-derived antivenoms using mouse lethal toxin test. Additionally, we determined the antivenoms neutralizing activity against lethal doses (LD50) of Agkistrodon halys (from Japan) and Jiangzhe Agkistrodon halys (from China) venoms. We also performed cross-neutralization tests using probit analysis on each pairing of venom and antivenom in order to check the possibility of using Jiangzhe A. halys venom as a substitute for A. halys venom, the current standard. Slope of A. halys venom with A. halys antivenom was 10.2 and that of A. halys venom with Jiangzhe A. halys antivenom was 9.6. However, Slope of Jiangzhe A. halys venom with A. halys antivenom was 4.7 while that of Jiangzhe A. halys venom with Jiangzhe A. halys antivenom was 11.5. Therefore, the significant difference in slope patterns suggests that Jiangzhe A. halys venom cannot be used as a substitute for the standard venom to test the anti-lethal toxin activity of antivenoms (p<0.05).
Abstract in English:The presence of Staphylococcus aureus in the nasal cavities and pericatheter skin of peritoneal dialysis patients put them at high risk of developing peritonitis. However, it is not clear whether the presence of coagulase-negative staphylococci (CNS) in the nasal passages and skin of patients is related to subsequent occurrence of peritoneal infection. The aim of the present study was to verify the relationship between endogenous sources of S. aureus and CNS and occurrence of peritonitis in patients undergoing peritoneal dialysis. Thirty-two patients on peritoneal hemodialysis were observed for 18 months. Staphylococcus species present in their nasal passage, pericatheter skin and peritoneal effluent were identified and compared based on drug susceptibility tests and dendrograms, which were drawn to better visualize the similarity among strains from extraperitoneal sites as well as their involvement in the causes of infection. Out of 288 Staphylococcus strains isolated, 155 (53.8%) were detected in the nasal cavity, 122 (42.4%) on the skin, and 11 (3.8%) in the peritoneal effluent of patients who developed peritonitis during the study. The most frequent Staphylococcus species were CNS (78.1%), compared with S. aureus (21.9%). Among CNS, S. epidermidis was predominant (64.4%), followed by S. warneri (15.1%), S. haemolyticus (10.7%), and other species (9.8%). Seven (64%) out of 11 cases of peritonitis analyzed presented similar strains. The same strain was isolated from different sites in two (66%) out of three S. aureus infection cases. In the six cases of S. epidermidis peritonitis, the species that caused infection was also found in the normal flora. From these, two cases (33%) presented highly similar strains and in three cases (50%), it was difficult to group strains as to similarity. Patients colonized with multidrug-resistant S. epidermidis strains were more predisposed to infection. Results demonstrated that an endogenous source of S. epidermidis could cause peritonitis in peritoneal dialysis patients, similarly to what has been observed with S. aureus.
Abstract in English:The aim of the present study was to investigate the kinetics of humoral and cellular responses during leptospirosis. We observed that the presence of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) was associated with antibody production and bacterial recovery, and the compromising of both TNF-alpha and IL-6 in the immunopathogenesis of leptospirosis during an experimental infection of BALB/c mice inoculated with Leptospira interrogans serovar Canicola was verified. Results showed higher levels of TNF-alpha and IL-6 in the initial phase of infection, in which the greatest bacterial clearance was observed. However, when the bacterial recovery was compared with the kinetics of the production of antibodies, the results revealed a kinetics proportionally inverted to antibody production. This fact may be related to some inhibitory factor which could be responsible for the selective suppression of the cellular immune response. We concluded that during leptospirosis there was a greater mobilization of the cellular immune response activity, mainly in the initial phase of the infectious process, for posterior involvement of the humoral response, and that both TNF-alpha and IL-6 could be associated with the immunopathogenesis of the disease.
Abstract in English:In Uruguay, there was no information about the variations degree in Bothrops pubescens venoms until the present work, in which we investigated intraspecific venom variation using polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). We found some differences in the venom protein profile; however, they were not related to the parameters studied (geographic distribution, weight, sex, and captivity time). Moreover, we distinguished two different groups in relation to band densities at 49 and 57 kDa. Specimens with predominant density in the 49kDa band tend to be predominantly females. Weight distribution in this group extended for all the range (150-1500 g) with an average weight of 720 g. The other group (57kDa predominant band) showed restricted weight range (150-400 g) with an average weight of 280 g. Cluster analysis was also performed. The variability observed in the venom profile probably corresponds to genetic variations.
Abstract in English:Red scorpions Mesobuthus tamulus (Coconsis, Pocock) were obtained from different regions of West and South India (Ratnagiri, Chiplun and Ahmednagar from Maharashtra and Chennai from Tamil Nadu, respectively). Their venoms composition was analyzed using gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). All venom samples shared six bands of 170, 80, 60, 57, 43, and 38 kDa molecular weights. Bands of 115 kDa and 51.5 kDa were characteristic of venoms obtained from red scorpions of Chiplun region, and the 26kDa band was absent in scorpion venom from Tamil Nadu. The separated protein band patterns suggest that the venoms from Ratnagiri, Ahmednagar and Tamil Nadu had high similarities in their biochemical composition but differed from that of Chiplun region. These data were also supported by the Jaccard (J) index. The J value was 0.33 for venom obtained from Ratnagiri-Ahmednagar, 0.31 for venom from Ratnagiri-Tamil Nadu, and 0.3 for venom from Ratnagiri-Chiplun region. This suggests the existence of genetic variation among the different strains of red scorpion in western and southern India. The antiserum produced by Haffkine Biopharmaceuticals Corporation Ltd. completely neutralized proteins of venoms from all the regions studied.
Abstract in English:Laboratory profile of young ovines was studied in order to evaluate and compare their antiserum production from natural and Cobalt-60 irradiated Crotalus durissus terrificus (C.d.t.) venoms. The parameters analyzed included complete blood count, and urea, creatinine, aspartate aminotransferase, total proteins, albumin and globulin serum measurements. Three groups of six animals each were used. Group 1 (G1) received natural C.d.t. venom; Group 2 (G2) received irradiated C.d.t. venom; and Group 3 (G3) was used as control and did not receive venom, only adjuvants, using seven venom inoculations. During the experimental period, animals were fortnightly weighed. According to clinical and weight evaluation, sheep in post-weaning phase showed no changes in their physiological profiles but had excellent weight gain. The parameters analyzed were not statistically different (p<5%) among the groups tested. The hyperimmunization process was successfully accomplished with the production of specific antibodies against Crotalus durissus terrificus venom. Results bring a new possibility of utilizing ovines in the commercial production of anticrotalic serum, which may be used to treat human and animal envenomation. Its production cost may be reduced by subsequent use of hyperimmunized sheep for human consumption.
Abstract in English:Snake venoms are a mixture of complex proteins, which have many physical and pharmacological properties. Photochemical detoxification has been suggested to generate photooxidized Echis carinatus venom product (POECVP). Antigenically-active photooxidized species of Echis carinatus venom could be obtained by exposing the venom to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) in the presence of methylene blue. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of POECVP on learning, memory and stress in rats. Detoxification of the photooxidized venom was evident since the POECVP-treated group had longer survival time than the group of mice treated with Echis carinatus venom product (ECVP) following intraperitoneal and intracerebral injections. Photooxidized Echis carinatus venom product showed antidepressant activity by prolonging sleep onset and shortening the duration of pentobarbitone-induced hypnosis in mice. In single and chronic dose studies with rats, we observed that POECVP significantly decreased the time needed to reach food in T-maze, shortened transfer latency in elevated plus-maze, and decreased immobility time in forced swim test. We concluded that although there is a possibility of employing POECVP in the treatment of depressive and chronic degenerative illnesses as a nonherbal and nonsynthetic alternative for patients not responding to the available therapy, further investigation is still needed.
Abstract in English:A thirty-five-year-old Sudanese woman (gravida 4, para 3), at 34 weeks gestational age, presented with snakebite in her right leg. Examination of the cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, and central nervous systems revealed no abnormalities. Her blood urea was 58 mg/dl; creatinine, 2.6 mg/dl; whole blood clotting time, 5:35 minutes. The patient was diagnosed as having acute renal failure and was then managed conservatively. She received polyvalent antivenom serum intravenously. On the next day, she delivered prematurely and the baby passed away due to respiratory distress. There was no postpartum bleeding and the patient's clotting time was 5:30 minutes. She was discharged from the hospital after 7 days when her clinical, biochemical and hematological parameters returned to normal values without dialysis.