Resumo em Inglês:The biology, epidemiology, pathogenesis, diagnostic techniques, and history of the introduction of Trypanosoma (Duttonella) vivax in the New World are reviewed. The two main immunological responses of trypanosome-infected animals - antibody production and immunodepression - are discussed in the context of how these responses play a role in disease tolerance or susceptibility. Isolation and purification of T. vivax are briefly discussed. The recent reports of bovine trypanosomiasis diagnosed in cattle on farms located in the Pantanal region of the states of Mato Grosso do Sul and Mato Grosso, Brazil, are also discussed.
Resumo em Inglês:Taxonomic markers (head structure morphometry, isoenzymes and randon amplified polymorphism of DNA - RAPD) were used to understand the population dynamics of Triatoma vitticeps, predominant triatomine species in Itanhomi district, using samples obtained from domestic, peridomiciliary and sylvatic habitats. Morphometric analysis revealed sexual dimorphism within the three samples although specimens could not be separated according to the habitat in which they were captured. Forty-two bands were analyzed from RAPD profiles generated using four primers. A dendrogram constructed from Dice's similarity coefficient values showed that migration of the insects between the habitats has occurred, without structuring of populations. Moreover, the dendrogram obtained from the genetic distance values showed an important gene flow between the sylvatic and domestic habitats. No polymorphism was found in the electrophoretic mobility of proteins for the ten enzymes studied. Our results revealed movement of triatomines between the three habitats, suggesting that the presence of T. vitticeps in houses should not be ignored. As invasion of houses by sylvatic insects is frequent and the natural infection indices of this species are among the highest known, epidemiological vigilance studies may reveal possible changes in T. vitticeps behaviour which could present future risks to public health.
Resumo em Inglês:Infection of C3H/He mice with the Peruvian strain of Trypanosoma cruzi (Biodeme type I, Z2b), a macrophagotropic strain, determined severe parasitism of macrophages, necrosis of the spleen, and high host mortality. In the present study, pentoxifylline (PTX), an inhibitor of TNF-alpha was investigated on its action upon splenic necrosis, parasitemia and host survival. Immunohistochemical data suggested the importance of this cytokine in parasite destruction and decreasing of parasitemia, although paradoxically contributing to the high mortality of infected mice. Necrotic lesions involving several organs, specially the heart, in acute Chagas disease, are important aggravating factors, increasing cardiac morbidity. Advantage of inhibiting TNF-alpha action was herein investigated. Infected mice were divided into two groups: untreated (n = 24), and PTX treated mice (n = 25). PTX was administered in two daily doses of 30 mg/kg/bw, by intraperitoneal route. Normal controls either treated with PTX or saline were also included. Histopathology of the spleen and in situ immunolabeling of TNF-alpha, using anti-TNF-alpha monoclonal antibody, were performed. Necrotic areas were evaluated by morphometry. Mice treated with PTX showed a significant decrease of necrotic areas and diminution of TNF-alpha expression in spleen tissue, suggesting that PTX treatment could control TNF-alpha effects, and thus be used as an adjuvant in the treatment of acute Chagas' disease.
Resumo em Inglês:The aim of this study was to test the possible implication of toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) and TLR4 gene polymorphisms in determining the susceptibility to Chagas' disease. Genotypes were determined by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism in 475 individuals from Colombia, 143 seropositive with chagasic cardiomyopathy, 132 seropositive asymptomatic and 200 seronegative. The TLR2 arginine to glutamine substitution at residue 753(Arg753Gln) polymorphism was absent in the groups analyzed. The TLR4 Asp299Gly and Thr399Ile polymorphisms are in linkage disequilibrium and we observed a very low frequency of these polymorphisms in our study population (2.6% and 1.8% respectively). The overall TLR2 and TLR4 alleles and genotype distribution in seronegative and seropositive were not significantly different. We compared the frequencies between asymptomatic patients and those with chagasic cardiomyopathy and we did not observe any significant differences in the distribution of alleles or genotypes. In summary, this study corroborates the low frequency of TLR2 and TLR4 polymorphisms observed in other populations and suggest that these do not play an important role in Chagas' disease. The validation of these findings in independent cohorts is needed to firmly establish a role for TLR2 and TLR4 variants in Chagas' disease.
Resumo em Inglês:Tropical forests are species-rich reserves for the discovery and development of antimicrobial drugs. The aim of this work is to investigate the in vitro antimicrobial potential of Amazon plants found within the National Institute on Amazon Research's Adolpho Ducke forest reserve, located in Manaus, state of Amazonas, Brazil. 75 methanol, chloroform and water extracts representing 12 plant species were tested for antimicrobial activity towards strains of Mycobacterium smegmatis, Escherichia coli, Streptococcus sanguis, Streptococcus oralis, Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans using the gel-diffusion method. Active extracts were further evaluated to establish minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) and antimicrobial profiles using bioautography on normal-phase thin-layer chromatography plates. Diclinanona calycina presented extracts with good antimicrobial activity and S. oralis and M. smegmatis were the most sensitive bacteria. D. calycina and Lacmellea gracilis presented extracts with the lowest MIC (48.8 µg/ml). D. calycina methanol and chloroform leaf extracts presented the best overall antimicrobial activity. All test organisms were sensitive to D. calycina branch chloroform extract in the bioautography assay. This is the first evaluation of the biological activity of these plant species and significant in vitro antimicrobial activity was detected in extracts and components from two species, D. calycina and L. gracilis.
Resumo em Inglês:In addition to numerous immune factors, C-reactive protein (CRP) and nitric oxide (NO) are believed to be molecules of malaria immunopathology. The objective of this study was to detect CRP and NO inductions by agglutination latex test and Griess microassay respectively in both control and malaria groups from endemic areas of Iran, including Southeastern (SE) (Sistan & Balouchestan, Hormozgan, Kerman) and Northwestern (NW) provinces (Ardabil). The results indicated that CRP and NO are produced in all malaria endemic areas of Iran. In addition, more CRP and NO positive cases were observed amongst malaria patients in comparison with those in control group. A variable co-association of CRP/NO production were detected between control and malaria groups, which depended upon the malaria endemic areas and the type of plasmodia infection. The percentage of CRP/NO positive cases was observed to be lower in NW compare to SE region, which may be due to the different type of plasmodium in the NW (Plasmodium vivax) with SE area (P. vivax, Plasmodium falciparum, mixed infection). The fluctuations in CRP/NO induction may be consistent with genetic background of patients. Although, CRP/NO may play important role in malaria, their actual function and interaction in clinical forms of disease remains unclear.
Resumo em Inglês:Few investigations have been conducted on risk factors for Cryptosporidium infection in communities from developing countries. A study was conducted to determine the prevalence and risk factors for cryptosporidiosis in San Carlos island, Venezuela. A sample of 515 subjects (mean age ± SD: 21.4 ± 17.8 years) was surveyed. Single fecal specimens were collected and modified Ziehl-Neelsen carbolfuchsin staining of formalin-ether concentrate stools were examined for identification of the parasite. Infections with Cryptosporidium (67 of 515, 13%) were common. Prevalence of the parasite varied among sectors of the community; 34 of 67(50.7%) cases of cryptosporidiosis clustered in two sectors with extreme poverty. Variables strongly associated with a higher risk for the infection (p < 0.01) were residing in these sectors versus the remainder, living in a hut or small residence versus a brick or larger house, using an area of backyard rather than a toilet or latrine for defecation, and having contact with soil contaminated with human feces. Crowding was also a risk (p < 0.05). Contact with human feces contaminated-soil may be an important mode of transmission and poverty a predisposing factor for the infection.
Resumo em Inglês:A new approach to dengue vector surveillance based on permanent egg-collection using a modified ovitrap and Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis(Bti) was evaluated in different urban landscapes in Recife, Northeast Brazil. From April 2004 to April 2005, 13 egg-collection cycles of four weeks were carried out. Geo-referenced ovitraps containing grass infusion, Bti and three paddles were placed at fixed sampling stations distributed over five selected sites. Continuous egg-collections yielded more than four million eggs laid into 464 sentinel-ovitraps over one year. The overall positive ovitrap index was 98.5% (over 5,616 trap observations). The egg density index ranged from 100 to 2,500 eggs per trap-cycle, indicating a wide spread and high density of Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae) breeding populations in all sites. Fluctuations in population density over time were observed, particularly a marked increase from January on, or later, according to site. Massive egg-collection carried out at one of the sites prevented such a population outbreak. At intra-site level, egg counts made it possible to identify spots where the vector population is consistently concentrated over the time, pinpointing areas that should be considered high priority for control activities. The results indicate that these could be promising strategies for detecting and preventing Ae. aegypti population outbreaks.
Resumo em Inglês:This study aimed to identify 2,6-dichlorophenol (2,6-DCP) in Amblyomma cajennense and to evaluate its role in A. cajennense and Rhipicephalus sanguineus courtship. Hexanic extract from attractive females was purified by solid phase extraction and the phenol was identified by the single ion monitoring method using GC/MS. In an olfactometer, the responses of A. cajennense and R. sanguineus males to females, control rubber septa or rubber septa impregnated with 2,6-DCP at 50, 500, and 5000 ng, respectively, were studied. 2,6-DCP was identified in A. cajennense extract and the males oriented themselves toward the concentration of 500 ng. These septa and the females were recognized as copula partners. The septa treated with 2,6-DCP did not attract and were not even recognized by the R. sanguineus males, whereas the females were recognized. Due to the presence of 2,6-DCP in A. cajennense and the results of biological bioassays, it was concluded that this compound acts as an attractant and mounting sex pheromone in this tick, but it does not play any role in R. sanguineus courtship.
Resumo em Inglês:Since the reinfestation of South American countries by Ae. aegypti, dengue fever (DF) and dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) have become a major public health concern. The aim of this paper was to review the information related with Aedes vectors and dengue in Argentina since the reintroduction of Ae. aegypti in 1986. The geographic distribution of Ae. albopictus is restricted to the Northeast, and that of Ae. aegypti has expanded towards the South and the West in comparison with the records during the eradication campaign in the 1960s. Since 1998, 4,718 DF cases have been reported concentrated in the provinces of Salta, Formosa, Misiones, Jujuy and Corrientes. Despite the circulation of three dengue virus serotypes (DENV-1, -2 and -3) in the North of the country, DHF has not occurred until the present. The information published over the last two decades regarding mosquito abundance, temporal variations, habitat characteristics, competition, and chemical and biological control, was reviewed. Considering the available information, issues pending in Argentina are discussed. The presence of three DENV, the potential spread of Ae. albopictus, and the predicted climate change suggest that dengue situation will get worse in the region. Research efforts should be increased in the Northern provinces, where DHF is currently an actual risk.
Resumo em Inglês:Transfusion-transmitted malaria is rare, but it may produce severe problem in the safety of blood transfusion due to the lack of reliable procedure to evaluate donors potentially exposed to malaria. Here, we evaluated a new enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay malaria antibody test (ELISA malaria antibody test, DiaMed, Switzerland) to detect antibodies to Plasmodium vivax (the indigenous malaria) in the blood samples in the Republic of Korea (ROK). Blood samples of four groups were obtained and analyzed; 100 samples from P.vivax infected patients, 35 from recovery patients, 366 from normal healthy individuals, and 325 from domestic travelers of non-endemic areas residents to risky areas of ROK. P.vivax antibody levels by ELISA were then compared to the results from microscopic examination and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. As a result, the ELISA malaria antibody test had a clinical sensitivity of 53.0% and a clinical specificity of 94.0% for P.vivax. Twenty out of 325 domestic travelers (6.2%) were reactive and 28 cases (8.6%) were doubtful. Of the reactive and doubtful cases, only two were confirmed as acute malaria by both microscopy and PCR test. Thus we found that the ELISA malaria antibody test was insufficiently sensitive for blood screening of P.vivax in ROK.
Resumo em Inglês:Chloroquine (CQ) resistance in Plasmodium falciparum contributes to increasing malaria-attributable morbidity and mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa. Despite a change in drug policy, continued prescription of CQ did not abate. Therefore the therapeutic efficacy of CQ in uncomplicated falciparum malaria patients was assessed in a standard 28-day protocol in 116 children aged between six and 120 months in Osogbo, Southwest Nigeria. Parasitological and clinical assessments of response to treatment showed that 72 (62.1%) of the patients were cured and 44 (37.9%) failed the CQ treatment. High initial parasite density and young age were independent predictors for early treatment failure. Out of the 44 patients that failed CQ, 24 received amodiaquine + sulphadoxine/pyrimethamine (AQ+SP) and 20 received chlorpheniramine + chloroquine (CH+CQ) combinations. Mean fever clearance time in those treated with AQ+SP was not significantly different from those treated with CH+CQ (p = 0.05). There was no significant difference in the mean parasite density of the two groups. The cure rate for AQ+SP group was 92% while those of CH+CQ was 85%. There was a significant difference in parasite clearance time (p = 0.01) between the two groups. The 38% treatment failure for CQ reported in this study is higher than the 10% recommended by World Health Organization in other to effect change in antimalarial treatment policy. Hence we conclude that CQ can no more be solely relied upon for the treatment of falciparum malaria in Osogbo, Nigeria. AQ+SP and CH+CQ are effective in the treatment of acute uncomplicated malaria and may be considered as useful alternative drugs in the absence of artemisinin-based combination therapies.
Resumo em Inglês:Based on the results of comparative analyses of 1,039 specimens of several progenies of Anopheles nuneztovarifrom three localities in Colombia, eight costal wing spot patterns were observed. Patterns I and III were the most frequent: 77.96% and 11.36%, respectively. Using the diagnostic characters ratio of the length of the basal dark area of hind tarsomere II/length of hind tarsomere II, ratio of the length of the humeral pale spot/length of the pre-humeral dark spot, and the ratio of the length of the subcostal pale spot/length of the distal sector dark spot (DS-III2/Ta-III2, HP/PHD, SCP/DSD) approximately 5% of the adult females were misidentified as a species of Nyssorhynchus, different from An. nuneztovari. Approximately 5% of the specimens showed DS-III2/Ta-III2 ratio less than 0.25 (range 0.21 - 0.24), and among them 3.34% shared a HP/PHD ratio less than 1.50. Consequently, 1.52% of An. nuneztovari individuals can be misidentified as Anopheles oswaldoi. In those specimens with the DS-III2/Ta-III2 ratios higher than 0.25, 34.45% displayed SCP/DSD values greater than 0.50 and of these, 3.65% displayed HP/PHD values greater than 1.8. This combination of characters could lead one to misidentify samples of An. nuneztovari as Anopheles rangeli. Similarly, 2.43% of the females could be identified erroneously as either Anopheles aquasalis or Anopheles benarrochi. Individuals with a HP/PHD ratio greater than 2.0, could be misidentified as Anopheles trinkae, Anopheles strodei or Anopheles evansae. A distinct combination of diagnostic characters for An. nuneztovari from Colombia is proposed.
Resumo em Inglês:Abdominal angiostrongyliasis (AA) is a zoonotic nematode infection caused by Angiostrongylus costaricensis, with widespread occurrence in the Americas. Although the human infection may be highly prevalent, morbidity is low in Southern Brazil. Confirmed diagnosis is based on finding parasitic structures in pathological examination of biopsies or surgical resections. Serology stands as an important diagnostic tool in the less severe courses of the infection. Our objective is to describe the follow up of humoral reactivity every 2-4 weeks up to one year, in six individuals with confirmed (C) and ten suspected (S) AA. Antibody (IgG) detection was performed by ELISA and resulted in gradually declining curves of reactivity in nine subjects (56%) (4C + 5S), that were consistently negative in only three of them (2C + 1S) after 221, 121 and 298 days. Three individuals (2C + 1S) presented with low persistent reacitivity, other two (1C + 1S) were serologically negative from the beginning, but also presenting a declining tendency. The study shows indications that abdominal angiostrongyliasis is usually not a persistent infection: although serological negativation may take many months, IgG reactivity is usually declining along time and serum samples pairing may add valuable information to the diagnostic workout.
Resumo em Inglês:The purpose of this study was to investigate the genotypes of Giardia lamblia from human and animal feces and their epidemiological and clinical characteristics in Argentina, South America. Seventy isolates, 60 from humans (adults and children), eight from dogs and two from cows were processed by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism. Data corresponding to demographic, socio-cultural and environmental variables and presence/absence of signs/symptoms were collected. The triosephosphate isomerase gene was amplified from 43 (71.66%) of the 60 human fecal samples. Among these, 3/43 (6.98%) were genotype AII and 40/43 (93.02%) were genotype B. Assemblage AII was detected in three children who lived together in a shantytown and they were oligosymptomatic and none had diarrhea. This genotype was not found in animals. Genotype B showed a high prevalence in both adults and children. It was also found in polysymptomatic people, many of whom presented diarrhea. It was also found only in one dog. The present study represents the first contribution to the knowledge of G. lamblia genotypes in Argentina.
Resumo em Inglês:Discriminant analysis was used to identify eggs of Capillaria spp. at specific level found in organic remains from an archaeological site in Patagonia, Argentina, dated of 6,540 ± 110 years before present. In order to distinguish eggshell morphology 149 eggs were measured and grouped into four arbitrary subsets. The analysis used on egg width and length discriminated them into different morphotypes (Wilks' lambda = 0.381, p < 0.05). The correlation analysis suggests that width was the most important variable to discriminate among the Capillaria spp. egg morphotypes (Pearson coefficient = 0.950, p < 0.05). The study of eggshell patterns, the relative frequency in the sample, and the morphometric data allowed us to correlate the four morphotypes with Capillaria species.
Resumo em Inglês:Paleoparasitological studies using microscopy showed that Ascarisand Trichuris trichiura are the human intestinal parasites most found in archaeological sites. However, in pre-Columbian South American archaeological sites, Ascaris is rare. In this work we standardized a molecular methodology for Ascaris diagnosis directly from ancient DNA retrieved from coprolites. Using cythochrome b gene (142 bp) target, ancient DNA sequences were retrieved from South American samples, negative by microscopy. Moreover, the methodology applied was sensitive enough to detect ancient DNA extracted from 30 Ascaris eggs from an European coprolite. These results revealed a new scenery for the paleodistribution of Ascaris in South America.
Resumo em Inglês:An eight-year old boy from Posadas (27º 23'S, 55º 54'W) was diagnosed with visceral leishmaniasis (VL) during 2006. Lutzomyia longipalpis was discovered in the backyard of his house, while the spread of canine visceral leishmaniasis was confirmed in Posadas. This is the southernmost report of a VL transmission focus and the first in Argentina.
Resumo em Inglês:It is still imperative to develop a parasitological technique highly sensitive for diagnosing schistosomiasis in epidemiological and individual surveys. A simple and cheap hatching device with a collecting container was manufactured and tested under experimental conditions. Twelve Kato-Katz slides were performed as golden standard for comparison. Quantitative results can be carried out by counting miracidia in a plate and parasite load can be calculated (miracidia/gram of feces). Statistically significant values were higher in the hatching test. More sensitive results, with statistical significance, were achieved using 1.5 g of feces (which corresponds to 36 Kato-Katz slides) than by using the Kato-Katz method. Advantages of this technique and its limitations are presented.
Resumo em Inglês:The viability of Ochlerotatus albifasciatus (Macquart) eggs stored at room temperature and at 5ºC was studied over 31 months. After 12, 18 and 31 months of storage, eggs were acclimatized at 22ºC for ten days, and then inundated twice every seven days. The effect of the storage period on the percentage of hatching was analyzed by one way ANOVA. Differences on the hatching response between the first and second flooding were analyzed by paired t-test. Differences on the hatching response between the two storage conditions were analyzed by Mann-Whitney rank test. Results showed that (1) Oc. albifasciatus eggs were able to survive and hatch over 31 months; (2) the percent hatching of eggs stored at 5ºC was higher than that of eggs stored at room temperature; and (3) low temperatures and long periods without water favor installment hatching.