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PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases

Daniel P O'Brien, Adrian Murrie, Peter Meggyesy, Jonathan Priestley, Avinash Rajcoomar, Eugene Athan
BACKGROUND: Mycobacterium ulcerans causes necrotising infections of skin and soft tissue mediated by the polyketide exotoxin mycolactone that causes cell apoptosis and immune suppression. It has been postulated that infection can be eradicated before the development of clinical lesions but spontaneous resolution of clinical lesions has been rarely described. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We report a case series of five Australian patients who achieved healing of small M...
February 19, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Stephen M Chiweshe, Pieter C Steketee, Siddharth Jayaraman, Edith Paxton, Kyriaki Neophytou, Heidi Erasmus, Michel Labuschagne, Anneli Cooper, Annette MacLeod, Finn E Grey, Liam J Morrison
Human and animal African trypanosomiasis (HAT & AAT, respectively) remain a significant health and economic issue across much of sub-Saharan Africa. Effective control of AAT and potential eradication of HAT requires affordable, sensitive and specific diagnostic tests that can be used in the field. Small RNAs in the blood or serum are attractive disease biomarkers due to their stability, accessibility and available technologies for detection. Using RNAseq, we have identified a trypanosome specific small RNA to be present at high levels in the serum of infected cattle...
February 19, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Begoña Monge-Maillo, María Olmedo Samperio, José Antonio Pérez-Molina, Francesca Norman, Carla Ruth Mejía, Sandra Chamorro Tojeiro, Rogelio López-Vélez
BACKGROUND: Cystic echinococcosis (CE) is present in all continents, except for the Antarctica. Characteristically, CE lesions are found in the liver and the lungs, but virtually any part of the body may be affected (the spleen, kidneys, heart, central nervous system, bones, among others). It is estimated that the incidence of bone involvement in CE is 0.5% to 4%. METHODOLOGY: A retrospective study was performed of patients with osseous CE treated at the National Reference Unit of Tropical Diseases of the Ramon y Cajal Hospital, Madrid, Spain, between 1989 and December 2017...
February 19, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Wen-Qiang He, Ahmad Rushdi Shakri, Rukmini Bhardwaj, Camila T França, Danielle I Stanisic, Julie Healer, Benson Kiniboro, Leanne J Robinson, Micheline Guillotte-Blisnick, Christèle Huon, Peter Siba, Alan Cowman, Christopher L King, Wai-Hong Tham, Chetan E Chitnis, Ivo Mueller
BACKGROUND: The Plasmodium vivax Duffy Binding Protein (PvDBP) is a key target of naturally acquired immunity. However, region II of PvDBP, which contains the receptor-binding site, is highly polymorphic. The natural acquisition of antibodies to different variants of PvDBP region II (PvDBPII), including the AH, O, P and Sal1 alleles, the central region III-V (PvDBPIII-V), and P. vivax Erythrocyte Binding Protein region II (PvEBPII) and their associations with risk of clinical P. vivax malaria are not well understood...
February 15, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Jinxia Wang, Xinglou Yang, Haizhou Liu, Li Wang, Jihua Zhou, Xi Han, Yan Zhu, Weihong Yang, Hong Pan, Yunzhi Zhang, Zhengli Shi
BACKGROUND: Mammarenaviruses are associated with human hemorrhagic fever diseases in Africa and America. Recently, a rodent mammarenavirus, Wēnzhōu virus (WENV) and related viruses, have been reported in China, Cambodia, and Thailand. Moreover, in Cambodia, these viruses were suspected to be associated with human disease. In China, Yunnan Province is famous for its abundant animal and plant diversity and is adjacent to several South-eastern Asia countries. Therefore, it is necessary to know whether WENV-related viruses, or other mammarenaviruses, are prevalent in this province...
February 15, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Camila Ihle-Soto, Eduardo Costoya, Juana P Correa, Antonella Bacigalupo, Berenice Cornejo-Villar, Viviana Estadella, Aldo Solari, Sylvia Ortiz, Héctor J Hernández, Carezza Botto-Mahan, David E Gorla, Pedro E Cattan
BACKGROUND: Trypanosoma cruzi is a protozoan parasite that is transmitted by triatomine vectors to mammals. It is classified in six discrete typing units (DTUs). In Chile, domestic vectorial transmission has been interrupted; however, the parasite is maintained in non-domestic foci. The aim of this study was to describe T. cruzi infection and DTU composition in mammals and triatomines from several non-domestic populations of North-Central Chile and to evaluate their spatio-temporal variations...
February 15, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Julia C Dunn, Alison A Bettis, Nay Yee Wyine, Aye Moe Moe Lwin, Aung Tun, Nay Soe Maung, Roy M Anderson
BACKGROUND: Mass drug administration (MDA), targeted at school-aged children (SAC) is the method recommended by the World Health Organization for the control of morbidity induced by soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infection in endemic countries. However, MDA does not prevent reinfection between treatment rounds and research suggests that only treating SAC will not be sufficient to bring prevalence to low levels and possibly interrupt transmission of STH. In countries with endemic infection, such as Myanmar, the coverage, who is targeted, and rates of reinfection will determine how effective MDA is in suppressing transmission in the long-term...
February 15, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Mohammad Afzal Mahmood, Dale Halliday, Robert Cumming, Khin Thida Thwin, Mya Myitzu, Julian White, Sam Alfred, David A Warrell, David Bacon, Win Naing, Htay Aung, Myat Myat Thein, Nyein Nyein Chit, Sara Serhal, Myat Thet Nwe, Pyae Phyo Aung, Chen Au Peh
INTRODUCTION: Every year millions of people in developing countries suffer from snakebite, causing a large number of deaths and long term complications. Prevention and appropriate first aid could reduce the incidence and improve the health outcomes for those who suffer bites. However, many communities where snakebite is a major issue suffer from a lack of information about prevention and first aid measures that a family or community member could take to prevent severe envenoming, complications and poor outcomes...
February 15, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Markus Berger, João Alfredo de Moraes, Walter Orlando Beys-da-Silva, Lucélia Santi, Paula Barros Terraciano, David Driemeier, Elizabeth Obino Cirne-Lima, Eduardo Pandolfi Passos, Maria Aparecida Ribeiro Vieira, Thereza Christina Barja-Fidalgo, Jorge Almeida Guimarães
BACKGROUND: Lonomia obliqua venom is nephrotoxic and acute kidney injury (AKI) is the main cause of death among envenomed victims. Mechanism underlying L. obliqua-induced AKI involves renal hypoperfusion, inflammation, tubular necrosis and loss of glomerular filtration and tubular reabsorption capacities. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the contribution of kallikrein to the hemodynamic instability, inflammation and consequent renal and vascular impairment. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Addition of L...
February 14, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Robert Tweyongyere, Beatrice R Nassanga, Allan Muhwezi, Matthew Odongo, Swaib A Lule, Rebecca N Nsubuga, Emily L Webb, Stephen C Cose, Alison M Elliott
BACKGROUND: Schistosoma infection is associated with immune modulation that can influence responses to non-schistosome antigens. Vaccine responses may be impaired in S. mansoni-infected individuals. We investigated effects of S. mansoni infection on responses to childhood measles catch-up immunisation and of praziquantel treatment on this outcome in a randomised trial. METHODOLOGY: The Immune Modulation and Childhood Immunisation (IMoChI) study was based in Entebbe, Uganda...
February 14, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Raquel Álvarez-Velilla, Maria Del Camino Gutiérrez-Corbo, Carmen Punzón, Maria Yolanda Pérez-Pertejo, Rafael Balaña-Fouce, Manuel Fresno, Rosa María Reguera
BACKGROUND: Visceral leishmaniasis is a neglected parasitic disease with no vaccine available and its pharmacological treatment is reduced to a limited number of unsafe drugs. The scarce readiness of new antileishmanial drugs is even more alarming when relapses appear or the occurrence of hard-to-treat resistant strains is detected. In addition, there is a gap between the initial and late stages of drug development, which greatly delays the selection of leads for subsequent studies. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In order to address these issues, we have generated a red-shifted luminescent Leishmania infantum strain that enables long-term monitoring of parasite burden in individual animals with an in vivo limit of detection of 106 intracellular amastigotes 48 h postinfection...
February 14, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Fadila Amraoui, Wiem Ben Ayed, Yoann Madec, Chafika Faraj, Oumnia Himmi, Ameur Btissam, Mhammed Sarih, Anna-Bella Failloux
In 2015, the mosquito Aedes albopictus was detected in Rabat, Morocco. This invasive species can be involved in the transmission of more than 25 arboviruses. It is known that each combination of mosquito population and virus genotype leads to a specific interaction that can shape the outcome of infection. Testing the vector competence of local mosquitoes is therefore a prerequisite to assess the risks of emergence. A field-collected strain of Ae. albopictus from Morocco was experimentally infected with dengue (DENV), chikungunya (CHIKV), zika (ZIKV) and yellow fever (YFV) viruses...
February 14, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Luz A de Wit, Donald A Croll, Bernie Tershy, Maria Dolores Correa, Hector Luna-Pasten, Paulo Quadri, A Marm Kilpatrick
Cats (Felis catus) are reservoirs of several pathogens that affect humans, including Toxoplasma gondii. Infection of pregnant women with T. gondii can cause ocular and neurological lesions in newborns, and congenital toxoplasmosis has been associated with schizophrenia, epilepsy, movement disorders, and Alzheimer's disease. We compared seroprevalence of T. gondii and risk factors in people on seven islands in Mexico with and without introduced cats to determine the effect of cat eradication and cat density on exposure to T...
February 14, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Simon Smith, Brendan J Kennedy, Alexis Dermedgoglou, Suzanne S Poulgrain, Matthew P Paavola, Tarryn L Minto, Michael Luc, Yu-Hsuan Liu, Josh Hanson
BACKGROUND: The case-fatality rate of severe leptospirosis can exceed 50%. While prompt supportive care can improve survival, predicting those at risk of developing severe disease is challenging, particularly in settings with limited diagnostic support. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We retrospectively identified all adults with laboratory-confirmed leptospirosis in Far North Queensland, Australia, between January 1998 and May 2016. Clinical, laboratory and radiological findings at presentation were correlated with the patients' subsequent clinical course...
February 13, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Angela J Toepp, Carolyne Bennett, Benjamin Scott, Reid Senesac, Jacob J Oleson, Christine A Petersen
Visceral Leishmaniasis is a deadly disease caused by Leishmania infantum, endemic in more than 98 countries across the globe. Although the most common means of transmission is via a sand fly vector, there is growing evidence that vertical transmission may be critical for maintaining L. infantum infection within the reservoir, canine, population. Vertical transmission is also an important cause of infant morbidity and mortality particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. While vertical transmission of visceralizing species of Leishmania has been reported around the globe, risk factors associated with this unique means of Leishmania transmission have not been identified therefore interventions regarding this means of transmission have been virtually non-existent...
February 13, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Kanya C Long, Juan Sulca, Isabel Bazan, Helvio Astete, Hugo L Jaba, Crystyan Siles, Claudine Kocher, Stalin Vilcarromero, Julia Schwarz, Karin S Escobedo-Vargas, Fanny Castro-Llanos, Leslye Angulo, Guadalupe Flores, Cesar Ramal-Asayag, Eric S Halsey, Robert D Hontz, Valerie A Paz-Soldan, Thomas W Scott, Louis Lambrechts, Amy C Morrison
BACKGROUND: Transmission of dengue virus (DENV) from humans to mosquitoes represents a critical component of dengue epidemiology. Examinations of this process have generally been hampered by a lack of methods that adequately represent natural acquisition of DENV by mosquitoes from humans. In this study, we assessed artificial and natural blood feeding methods based on rates of DENV infection and dissemination within mosquitoes for use in a field-based epidemiological cohort study in Iquitos, Peru...
February 12, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Saber Esmaeili, Ashraf Mohabati Mobarez, Mohammad Khalili, Ehsan Mostafavi, Pardis Moradnejad
Mounting evidence suggests that Q-fever is more prevalent in Iran than originally believed. However, in most parts of the country, clinicians do not pay enough attention to Q fever in their differential diagnosis. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of Coxiella burnetii in suspected cases of acute Q fever in north-western Iran using molecular techniques. Febrile patients were enrolled in the study and investigated for C. burnetii infection. Sera samples were tested using real-time PCR for detection of IS1111 gene, and positive samples were confirmed with nested PCR...
February 11, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Jose Angel Regla-Nava, Karla M Viramontes, Teodora Vozdolska, Anh-Thy Huynh, Tom Villani, Graeme Gardner, Michael Johnson, Pamela J Ferro, Sujan Shresta, Kenneth Kim
Clinical reports of Zika Virus (ZIKV) RNA detection in breast milk have been described, but evidence conflicts as to whether this RNA represents infectious virus. We infected post-parturient AG129 murine dams deficient in type I and II interferon receptors with ZIKV. ZIKV RNA was detected in pup stomach milk clots (SMC) as early as 1 day post maternal infection (dpi) and persisted as late as 7 dpi. In mammary tissues, ZIKV replication was demonstrated by immunohistochemistry in multiple cell types including cells morphologically consistent with myoepithelial cells...
February 11, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Amy C Morrison, Julia Schwarz, Kanya C Long, Jhonny Cordova, Jennifer E Rios, W Lorena Quiroz, S Alfonso Vizcarra, Robert D Hontz, Thomas W Scott, Louis Lambrechts, Valerie A Paz Soldan
As part of a study to investigate drivers of dengue virus (DENV) transmission dynamics, this qualitative study explored whether DENV-infected residents of Iquitos, Peru, considered it acceptable (1) to participate in direct mosquito feeding experiments (lab-reared Aedes aegypti mosquitoes fed directly on human volunteers) and (2) to provide blood meals indirectly (Ae. aegypti fed on blood drawn from participants by venipuncture). Twelve focus group discussions (FGDs; 94 participants: 82 females and 12 males) were conducted in January 2014 to explore six themes: (1) concerns and preferences regarding direct mosquito feeds and blood draws, (2) comprehension of and misconceptions about study procedures, (3) motivating factors for participation, (4) acceptability of children's participation, (5) willingness to provide multiple samples over several days, and (6) preference for direct feedings in homes versus the study laboratory...
February 11, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Joyce Pijpers, Margriet L den Boer, Dirk R Essink, Koert Ritmeijer
BACKGROUND: Miltefosine (MF) is the only oral drug available for treatment of visceral leishmaniasis (VL) and post-kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis (PKDL). Although the drug is effective and well tolerated in treatment of VL, the efficacy and safety of MF for longer treatment durations (>28 days) in PKDL remains unclear. This study provides an overview of the current knowledge about safety and efficacy of long treatment courses with MF in PKDL, as a strategy in the VL elimination in South Asia...
February 11, 2019: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
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