Abstract in English:Literature from 1928 through 2004 was compiled from different document sources published in Mexico or elsewhere. From these 907 publications, we found 19 different topics of Chagas disease study in Mexico. The publications were arranged by decade and also by state. This information was used to construct maps describing the distribution of Chagas disease according to different criteria: the disease, vectors, reservoirs, and strains. One of the major problems confronting study of this zoonotic disease is the great biodiversity of the vector species; there are 30 different species, with at least 10 playing a major role in human infection. The high variability of climates and biogeographic regions further complicate study and understanding of the dynamics of this disease in each region of the country. We used a desktop Genetic Algorithm for Rule-Set Prediction procedure to provide ecological models of organism niches, offering improved flexibility for choosing predictive environmental and ecological data. This approach may help to identify regions at risk of disease, plan vector-control programs, and explore parasitic reservoir association. With this collected information, we have constructed a data base: CHAGMEX, available online in html format.
Abstract in English:More than 85% of all cases of schistosomiasis in Cameroon occur in the northern sahelian half of the country representing 20% of the population. Several workers have advocated the integrated approach to schistosomiasis control, including snail control, but the death and decay of aquatic organisms, and fish kill that often follows Bayluscide application at the dose of 1g/m³ decrease its acceptability. The present study was designed to assess the effect of lower Bayluscide doses on snail host and non-target fish, frog, the tadpole kill. Bayluscide was applied to study ponds at concentrations of 0, 0.25, 0.5, and 1 g/m³ (ppm). Pre and post application assessment of snails hosts of schistosomes, fish, frog, and tadpole kill were carried out. All 0.25, 0.5, and 1 g/m³ Bayluscide concentrations reduced snail population significantly. Bayluscide concentration of 0.50 g/m³ applied in two rounds of 0.25 g/m³ resulted in high snail mortality and low lethality to fish, frogs, and tadpoles. Further studies are needed to assess the cost-effectiveness of Bayluscide in the control of schistosomiasis following the simplified approach.
Abstract in English:The levels of complement C3 and C4 components were determined in non-indigenous (creoles) and indigenous (Warao) populations, the latter with an extremely high tuberculosis (TB) rate. Serum samples from 209 adults were studied and classified in 4 groups taking into account tuberculin skin tests (TST): (1) the group of Warao patients (58 positive for the TST, WP TST+ and 9 negative for the TST, WP TST-), (2) the group of creole patients (34 positive for the TST, CP TST+ and 9 negative for the TST, CP TST-), (3) the group of healthy Warao controls (38 positive and 14 negative for TST, WC TST+ and WC TST-, respectively), (4) the creole controls (26 positive and 21 negative for the TST, CC TST+ and CC TST-, respectively). With respect to the results concerning the measurement of both complement C3 and C4 components with the exception of the WC TST and the CC groups, the WP TST+ and WP TST- as well as WC TST+ groups showed a significant frequency of individuals with decreased levels of complement C3 component (20.6, 33.3, and 26.3%, respectively) and also C4 component (12.0, 11.1, and 13.3%, respectively) in comparison to both creole patients (CP TST+, 8.82% and CP TST-, 0% and CP TST+, 5.88% and CP TST-, 0%) for C3 and C4, respectively. The study of these parameters carried out in 15 Warao subjects with active infection, before and after anti-TB chemotherapy,statisticallyconfirmedthat the effective chemotherapy did not restore normal levels of the complement C3 and C4 components among Warao patients. Aditional tests for hepatitis B or hepatitis C infection, and the profile of the hepatic proteins were not associated to the deficiency in production of the complement components.In conclusion, the results show that within the Warao population, a high percentage of subjects exhibit decreased levels of both complement C3 and C4 components independent of latent or active infection and the status of TST.
Abstract in English:The pathogenesis of Schistosoma mansoni infection is largely determined by host T-cell mediated immune responses such as the granulomatous response to tissue deposited eggs and subsequent fibrosis. The major egg antigens have a valuable role in desensitizing the CD4+ Th cells that mediate granuloma formation, which may prevent or ameliorate clinical signs of schistosomiasis.S. mansoni major egg antigen Smp40 was expressed and completely purified. It was found that the expressed Smp40 reacts specifically with anti-Smp40 monoclonal antibody in Western blotting. Three-dimensional structure was elucidated based on the similarity of Smp40 with the small heat shock protein coded in the protein database as 1SHS as a template in the molecular modeling. It was figured out that the C-terminal of the Smp40 protein (residues 130 onward) contains two alpha crystallin domains. The fold consists of eight beta strands sandwiched in two sheets forming Greek key. The purified Smp40 was used for in vitro stimulation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells from patients infected with S. mansoni using phytohemagglutinin mitogen as a positive control. The obtained results showed that there is no statistical difference in interferon-g, interleukin (IL)-4 and IL-13 levels obtained with Smp40 stimulation compared with the control group (P > 0.05 for each). On the other hand, there were significant differences after Smp40 stimulation in IL-5 (P = 0.006) and IL-10 levels (P < 0.001) compared with the control group. Gaining the knowledge by reviewing the literature, it was found that the overall pattern of cytokine profile obtained with Smp40 stimulation is reported to be associated with reduced collagen deposition, decreased fibrosis, and granuloma formation inhibition. This may reflect its future prospect as a leading anti-pathology schistosomal vaccine candidate.
Abstract in English:A polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay which amplifies repetitive DNA elements present within bacterial genomes was used to characterize and differentiate Leptospira sp. Thirty-five strains from a reference culture collection and 18 clinical isolates which had been previously analyzed by cross agglutinin absorption test (CAAT) were evaluated by this technique. PCR results from analysis of the reference culture collection showed no bands corresponding to serogroups Australis, Autumnalis, Bataviae, Celledoni, Cynopteri, Djasiman, Panama, Pomona, Pyrogenes, and Tarassovi. However, the PCR method was able to clearly discriminate the serogroups Andamana, Ballum, Canicola, Grippotyphosa, Hebdomadis, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Javanica, Sejroe, Semaranga, and Shermani. Clinical isolates previously characterized by CAAT as serovar Copenhageni, serovar Castellonis, and as serovar Canicola were in agreement with PCR results. The clinical isolate previously characterized as serovar Pomona was not differentiated by PCR. Forty additional clinical isolates from patients with leptospirosis obtained in São Paulo, Brazil were also evaluated by this PCR method. Thirty-nine of these were determined to belong to serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae (97.5%) and one to serogroup Sejroe (2.5%). These results demonstrate that the PCR method described in this study has utility for rapid typing of Leptospira sp. at the serogroup level and can be used in epidemiological survey.
Abstract in English:An ecological control method, using environmental management operations, based on biological and behavioral characteristics of Triatoma dimidiata (Latreille, 1811), was implemented as a pilot project in an area of Costa Rica where the bug is prevalent. The sample was represented by 20 houses with peridomestic colonies (two also had indoor infestation), divided in two equivalent groups of 10 each. In one group we intervened the houses, i.e. all objects or materials that were serving as artificial ecotopes for the bugs were removed, and the second group was used as control houses. After a year of periodic follow up, it became evident that in those houses with a modified environment the number of insects had decreased notoriously even after the first visits and this was more evident after a period of 12.5 to 13.5 months in which no insects were detected in eight of the houses. It also became clear that in this group of houses, recolonization by wild bugs from the surrounding areas, became more difficult, probably due to the absence of protection from bug predators. In the control houses, with the exception of three in which the inhabitants decided to intervene on their own, and another house with a peculiar situation, the insect populations remained the same or even showed a tendency to increase, as confirmed at the end of the experiment. We believe that the method is feasible, low costing and non contaminating. It could be used successfully in other places where T. dimidiata is common and also in countries where other species colonize peridomestic areas of homes. Environmental management of this kind should seek the participation of the members of the communities, in order to make it a more permanent control measure.
Abstract in English:Searches for substances with antimicrobial activity are frequent, and medicinal plants have been considered interesting by some researchers since they are frequently used in popular medicine as remedies for many infectious diseases. The aim of this study was to verify the synergism between 13 antimicrobial drugs and 8 plant extracts - "guaco" (Mikania glomerata), guava (Psidium guajava), clove (Syzygium aromaticum), garlic (Allium sativum), lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus), ginger (Zingiber officinale), "carqueja" (Baccharis trimera), and mint (Mentha piperita) - against Staphylococcus aureus strains, and for this purpose, the disk method was the antimicrobial susceptibility test performed. Petri dishes were prepared with or without dilution of plant extracts at sub-inhibitory concentrations in Mueller-Hinton Agar (MHA), and the inhibitory zones were recorded in millimeters. In vitro anti-Staphylococcus aureus activities of the extracts were confirmed, and synergism was verified for all the extracts; clove, guava, and lemongrass presented the highest synergism rate with antimicrobial drugs, while ginger and garlic showed limited synergistic capacity.
Abstract in English:Determination of seric levels of adenosine deaminase (ADA), an enzyme produced by monocytes/macrophages and lymphocytes, has been used in the diagnosis of human tuberculosis (TB). In the present study, ADA seric activity was evaluated comparatively to the comparative tuberculin test in the diagnosis of bovine tuberculosis. Two hundred fifty-six cattle were classified by origin and by the comparative tuberculin test as TB-positive animals (n = 52, from herds where the Mycobacterium bovis had previously been isolated), and TB-negative animals (n = 204, TB-free herds). The mean ADA seric value from the TB-positive group (4.45 ± 2.33 U/L) was significantly lower (p = 0.008) than that observed in sera from the TB-negative group (6.12 ± 4.47 U/L). When animals from a herd with clinical cases of enzootic bovine leukosis of TB-negative group were withdrawn from analysis, the mean ADA seric values of TB-negative group (5.12 ± 3.75 U/L) was not significantly different anymore from that of the TB-positive group (p = 0.28). There was no agreement in the diagnosis of bovine TB between comparative tuberculin test and determination of ADA seric values, using two different cutoff points, being 6.12 U/L and 15.0 U/L, (kappa = -0.086 and kappa = -0.082, respectively). In conclusion, the determination of ADA seric activity was not a good auxiliary test for bovine TB, because it was not able to distinguish between TB-positive and TB-negative animals.
Abstract in English:The objective of this study was to evaluate the relationship between toxocariasis frequency and demographic, environmental, sanitary variables, eosinophylia, and other intestinal parasites in a rural population of Argentina. Serological examination of 100 individuals was carried out by using ELISA technique for the detection of anti-toxocara antibodies. Eosinophiles in peripheral blood, presence of intestinal parasites, and demographic, environmental, and socio-cultural data were evaluated. Eighty-one feces samples of dogs belonging to the studied people were analyzed to detect eggs of Toxocara canis. Thirty of them were from 30 dogs and 51 were pools from dog feces. Samples of dirt from around the homes (n: 47) and from public park (n: 4) were taken. To determine the associations, the c² and Fisher tests were used. The seroprevalence was 23%. Eosinophilia in peripheral blood was detected in 86.95% seropositive individuals and in 37.66% seronegative individuals (p < 0.001, OR = 11.03). Of the 23 people with positive serology, 69.56% had at least one intestinal parasite. All individuals with positive serology had dogs in their homes. Among the dog owners there was a significant association between the presence of anti-toxocara antibodies and home flooding. Eggs of T. canis were detected in the feces of 5/81 dogs and three of these dogs belonged to individuals with positive serology. Eggs of Toxocara spp. were found in 41.17% of the dirt samples, eight of which came from the area surrounding the homes of individuals with positive serology (p = 0.032; OR = 4.36). Taking into account all the variables influencing the frequency of toxocariasis in this population, the implementation of Public Health programs specifically focused on anti-parasitic treatment of dogs is recommended.
Abstract in English:A cross-sectional study was conducted in order to identify hepatitis A virus (HAV) serological markers in 418 individuals (mean age, 16.4 years; range, 1 month-80 years) at a public child care center in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, as well as to analyze risk factors and determine circulating genotypes. Serum samples were tested using an enzyme immunoassay. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was used to detect and characterize HAV RNA, and sequencing was performed. Anti-HAV antibodies and IgM anti-HAV antibodies were detected, respectively, in 89.5% (374/418) and 10.5% (44/418) of the individuals tested. Acute HAV infection in children was independently correlated with crawling (p < 0.05). In 56.8% (25/44) of the IgM anti-HAV-positive individuals and in 33.3% (5/15) of the IgM anti-HAV-negative individuals presenting clinical symptoms, HAV RNA was detected. Phylogenetic analysis revealed co-circulation of subgenotypes IA and IB in 93.3% (28/30) of the amplified samples. In present study, we verify that 79% (30/38) of children IgM anti-HAV-positive were asymptomatic. In child care centers, this asymptomatic spread is a more serious problem, promoting the infection of young children, who rarely show signs of infection. Therefore, vaccinating children below the age of two might prevent the asymptomatic spread of hepatitis A.
Abstract in English:Erythrovirus B19 infects erythrocytic progenitors, transiently interrupting erythropoiesis. In AIDS patients it causes chronic anemia amenable to treatment. We looked for evidences of B19 infection in stored bone marrow material from patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. Histological sections were made from stored paraffin blocks from 33 autopsies (39 blocks) and 35 biopsies (45 blocks, 30 patients) performed from 1988 to 2002. They were examined after hematoxylin-eosin (HE) staining, immunohistochemical (IHC), and in situ hybridization. HE revealed intra-nuclear inclusion bodies ("lantern cells") suggesting B19 infection in 19 sections corresponding to 19 of 63 patients examined with this test. Seven of 78 sections subjected to immunohistochemistry were positive, corresponding to 7 of 58 patients examined with this test. Fourteen sections corresponding to 13 of the 20 HE and/or IHC positive patients were subjected to in situ hybridization, with six positives results. Among the 13 patients subjected to the three techniques, only one gave unequivocal positive results in all and was considered a true positive. The frequency of B19 infection (1/63 patients) in the material examined can be deemed low.
Abstract in English:Over the past two decades, nosocomial infections caused by extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing Klebsiella spp. have become a major problem all around the world. This situation is of concern because there are limited antimicrobial options to treat patients infected with these pathogens, and also because this kind of resistance can spread to a wide variety of Gram-negative bacilli. Our objectives wereto evaluate among in-patients at a publicuniversity tertiary-care hospital with documented infection due to Klebsiella spp., which were the risk factors (cross-sectional analysis) and the clinical impact (prospective cohort) associated with an ESBL-producing strain. Study subjects were all patients admitted at the study hospital between April 2002 and October 2003, with a clinically and microbiologically confirmed infection caused by Klebsiella spp. at any body site, except infections restricted to the urinary tract. Of the 104 patients studied, 47 were infected with an ESBL-producing strain and 57 with a non-ESBL-producing strain. Independent risk factors associated with infection with an ESBL-producing strain were young age, exposure to mechanical ventilation, central venous catheter, use of any antimicrobial agent, and particularly use of a 4th generation cephalosporin or a quinolone. Length of stay was significant longer for patients infected with ESBL-producing strains than for those infected with non-ESBL-producing strains, although fatality rate was not significantly affected by ESBL-production in this cohort. In fact, mechanical ventilation and bacteremia were the only variables withindependent association withdeath detected in this investigation.
Abstract in English:In this study, a total of 865 serum samples were collected between 1995 and 2002 from individuals living in Goiânia, Central Brazil, and clinically suspected of hepatitis. After exclusion of 162 samples which were positive for hepatitis B virus or hepatitis C virus, 703 samples were tested for anti-hepatitis A virus (anti-HAV) IgM antibodies by enzyme immunoassay. In addition, 588 of these samples and 22 fecal samples were analyzed by reverse transcription-nested PCR for HAV RNA detection, with positivity indices of 13.1% (77/588) and 54.5% (12/22), respectively. A similar index of viral RNA detection in anti-HAV-IgM positive or negative samples was observed in serum samples. HAV infection is a public health problem worldwide and this study underscores the extent of HAV circulation in our region.
Abstract in English:The objective of this work was to compare the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using lesion scrapping with other conventional techniques for the diagnosis of the American tegumentary leishmaniasis (ATL). For this, patients with cutaneous lesions suspected to be ATL were studied. The DNA was amplified with the MP1L/MP3H primers. From the 156 studied patients, 79 (50.6%) presented positive parasite direct search (PD), 81 (51.9%) had positive Montenegro skin test (MST), and 90 (57.7%) presented PD and/or MST positive. The PCR was positive in all of the positive-PD patients (100% sensitivity), in 91.1% of the positive PD and/or MST patients, and in 27.3% of the patients that presented negative PD and positive MST. The PCR positivity was similar to the PD (P = 0.2482) and inferior to the MST (P = 0.0455), and to the PD/MST association (P = 0.0133). The high PCR sensitivity, and positivity in those cases where the PD was negative, highlights the importance of this technique as an auxiliary tool for the diagnosis of ATL.
Abstract in English:Several anatomical parameters of the reproductive system have been used to distinguish Lymnaea cubensis from L. viatrix, the snail hosts of fascioliasis in South America and the Caribbean area. Three samples have been collected in the type localities of L. cubensis (Cuba), L. viatrix var. A ventricosa (Argentina, Río Negro Lower Valley), and L. viatrix var. B elongata (Peru, Lima), respectively. Only one parameter, the relative lengths of the penis sheath and preputium, showed significant differences between L. viatrix var. ventricosa and the two other taxa. None of the studied parameters separated L. cubensis from L. viatrix var. elongata.
Abstract in English:The immune mechanisms involved in dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic/dengue shock syndrome are not well understood. The ex vivo activation status of immune cells during the dengue disease in patients was examined. CD4and CD8 T cells were reduced during the acute phase. Interestingly, CD8 T cells co-expressing activation marker HLA-DR, Q, P, and cytolytic granule protein-Tia-1 were significantly higher in dengue patients than in controls. Detection of adhesion molecules indicated that in dengue patients the majority of T cells (CD4 and CD8) express the activation/memory phenotype, characterized as CD44HIGH and lack the expression of the naïve cell marker, CD62L LOW. Also, the levels of T cells co-expressing ICAM-1 (CD54), VLA-4, and LFA-1 (CD11a) were significantly increased. CD8 T lymphocytes expressed predominantly low levels of anti-apoptotic molecule Bcl-2 in the acute phase, possibly leading to the exhibition of a phenotype of activated/effector cells. Circulating levels of IL-18, TGF-b1 and sICAM-1 were significantly elevated in dengue patients. Early activation events occur during acute dengue infection which might contribute to viral clearance. Differences in expression of adhesion molecules among CD4 and CD8 T cells might underlie the selective extravasation of these subsets from blood circulation into lymphoid organs and/or tissues. In addition, activated CD8 T cells would be more susceptible to apoptosis as shown by the alteration in Bcl-2 expression. Cytokines such as IL-18, TGF-b1, and sICAM-1 may be contributing by either stimulating or suppressing the adaptative immune response, during dengue infection, thereby perhaps establishing a relationship with disease severity.
Abstract in English:Cell culture isolation is used for recovering respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) from respiratory specimens. As RSV is a thermolabile virus, specimens destined for inoculation into cell culture require special transport, handling, and storage. The isolation rate of RSV from nasopharyngeal aspirates (NPA) stored at 20ºC for one to 15 months after collection was investigated. A total of 126 samples considered positive for RSV by indirect fluorescence-antibody were tested by virus isolation in HEp-2 cell culture. RSV was isolated from 47/126 specimens (37.3%). These results show that RSV may be recovered from NPA stored at 20ºC by cell culture.
Abstract in English:The present work provides information on Trypanosoma cruzi genotype circulating in endemic areas of Chagas disease in Panama. A total of 26 crude stocks of T. cruzi, isolated from the blood of persons with different clinical profiles of Chagas disease were collected and crio-conserved until used. Most of the stocks had been characterized by means of isoenzyme electrophoresis on cellulose acetate membranes. The clinical profiles of infected persons included 9 (34.6%) asymptomatic and 17 acute (65.4%) including 5 (19.2%) fatal cases, 2 under 5 years old and 3 adults. A multiplex-PCR assay based on the amplification of the non-transcribed spacer of the mini-exon gene was performed. All stocks of T. cruzi included in the study were found to correspond to Tc I group. This result supports the predominance of T. cruzi-I in the transmission cycles affecting the human population in the Republic of Panama.
Abstract in English:In Brazil, until 2004, the immunization policy against diphtheria involved childhood vaccination with no official routine booster dose administered after 15 years of age. This study assessed functional antibody levels against diphtheria among blood donors. A total of 140 blood samples were collected, and diphtheria antitoxin levels were evaluated by Vero cell neutralization test. The mean age of the population was 34 years old (range: 18-61 years); 37.8% females and 62.2% males. Overall, 30.7% (95%, CI: 23.4-38.7) individuals presented neutralizing antitoxin antibody titers < 0.01 IU/ml; 42.1% (95%, CI: 34.1-50.4) showed values between 0.01-0.09 IU/ml and, 27.1% (95%, CI: 20.2-34.9) had ³ 0.1 IU/ml. In the subgroup of individuals with history of diphtheria immunization during childhood (85%), a number of 28.5% showed unprotective levels of circulating neutralizing antibody (< 0.01 IU/ml). Despite the continuous progress of immunization programs directed to Brazilian population, currently healthy adults remain susceptible to diphtheria.