Tropical diseases
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Tropical diseases
My personal pick of news focusing mainly on insect transmitted diseases. I highlight the 'neglected tropical diseases*'. The term 'tropical diseases' is not strictly accurate as some of the diseases also occur in cooler climes but it is a convenient header that most people understand. * http://www.who.int/neglected_diseases/about/en/
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The global distribution and transmission limits of lymphatic filariasis: past and present

Background:
Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is one of the neglected tropical diseases targeted for global elimination by 2020 and to guide elimination efforts countries have, in recent years, conducted extensive mapping surveys.
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Ethical considerations for use of unregistered interventions for Ebola viral disease (EVD)

West Africa is experiencing the largest, most severe and most complex outbreak of Ebola virus disease in history.
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Colonisation resistance in the sand fly gut: Leishmania protects Lutzomyia longipalpis from bacterial infection

Phlebotomine sand flies transmit the haemoflagellate Leishmania, the causative agent of human leishmaniasis. The Leishmania promastigotes are confined to the gut lumen and are exposed to the gut microbiota within female sand flies. Here we study the colonisation resistance of yeast and bacteria in preventing the establishment of a Leishmania population in sand flies and the ability of Leishmania to provide colonisation resistance towards the insect bacterial pathogen Serratia marcescens that is also pathogenic towards Leishmania.
Sandflyman's insight:

Our study on interactions between sandfly microbiota and leishmania .  Two findings; microbes may prevent leishmania transmission, also leishmania act as a sort of probiotic protecting the host.

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Look for the parasites; PCR methods may mislead in debate about biting midges and other bloodsucker as alternative vectors of Leishmania

Sand flies remain the only proven vectors of Leishmania spp. but recent implementation of PCR techniques has led to increasing speculation about "alternative vectors", including biting midges.
Sandflyman's insight:

There is debate about whether other insects may transmit Leishmania.  This short letter contributes to the debate and suggests that using PCR can lead to misleading results. 

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Free-living ciliates as potential reservoirs for eukaryotic parasites: occurrence of a trypanosomatid inside another protist

Flagellates of the family Trypanosomatidae are obligate endoparasites, which can be found in various hosts. Several genera infect insects and occur as monoxenous parasites especially in representatives of Diptera and Hemiptera. These trypanosomatid flagellates probably share the worldwide distribution of their hosts, which are often infested by large numbers of endoparasites. Traditionally, their taxonomy was based on morphology, host origin, and life cycle. Here we report the characterization of a trypanosomatid infection detected in a protozoan, a ciliate collected from a polluted freshwater pond in a suburb of New Delhi (India).
Sandflyman's insight:

You mainly hear about kinetoplastid parasites such as Trypanosoma and Leishmania. Here a related parasite was found in a fre living ciliate - a protozoan inside a protozoan.

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Human African Trypanosomiasis Research Gets a Boost: Unraveling the Tsetse Genome

Human African Trypanosomiasis Research Gets a Boost: Unraveling the Tsetse Genome | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Serap Aksoy, Geoffrey Attardo, Matt Berriman, Alan Christoffels, Mike Lehane, Dan Masiga, Yeya Toure
Sandflyman's insight:

Finally its out there. It took them about 10 years and a huge effort. Congratulations.

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Down to zero: Nigeria stops guinea-worm disease in its tracks!

Down to zero: Nigeria stops guinea-worm disease in its tracks! | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
From more than 650 000 cases in 1988 to zero today, Nigeria has successfully stopped transmission of guinea-worm disease, also known as dracunculiasis. Thousands of volunteer polio vaccinators helped to check every household nationwide to ensure that there were no remaining cases before the country could be certified free of guinea-worm disease in December 2013.
Sandflyman's insight:

Wow a great positive story, we need more of this.

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Experts abuzz over latest mozzie trial

Experts abuzz over latest mozzie trial | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
TOWNSVILLE’S dengue risk will be swatted down with the field trial of a revolutionary biological control measure. (Townsvilles #dengue risk will be swatted down with the field trial of a revolutionary biological control measure.
Sandflyman's insight:

Trials are continuing for this revolutionary approach; release of mosquitoes containing a symbiotic bacterium that arrests dengue transmission. I am told that the local population are quite keen on the idea.

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In 1792 they set off to undo slavery but ended up sending yellow fever across continents.

In 1792 they set off to undo slavery but ended up sending yellow fever across ...
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The Improbable Transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi to Human: The Missing Link in the Dynamics and Control of Chagas Disease

The Improbable Transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi to Human: The Missing Link in the Dynamics and Control of Chagas Disease | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Pierre Nouvellet, Eric Dumonteil, Sébastien Gourbière
Chagas disease has a major impact on human health in Latin America and is becoming of global concern due to international migrations.
Sandflyman's insight:

This parasite is transmitted via the faeces of the bug shed whilst it is feeding on the host skin. Seems a very inefficient process, this study seeks to develop a predictive model to estimate the number of infections.

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An Unfolding Tragedy of Chagas Disease in North America

An Unfolding Tragedy of Chagas Disease in North America | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Peter J. Hotez, Eric Dumonteil, Miguel Betancourt Cravioto, Maria Elena Bottazzi, Roberto Tapia-Conyer, Sheba Meymandi, Unni Karunakara, Isabela Ribeiro, Rachel M. Cohen, Bernard Pecoul
Sandflyman's insight:

"poorest people living in the Mexico and the U.S. are silently suffering under a heavy burden of Chagas disease, with pregnant women disproportionately affected"

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Understanding the Persistence of Plague Foci in Madagascar

Understanding the Persistence of Plague Foci in Madagascar | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Voahangy Andrianaivoarimanana, Katharina Kreppel, Nohal Elissa, Jean-Marc Duplantier, Elisabeth Carniel, Minoarisoa Rajerison, Ronan Jambou
Plague, a zoonosis caused by Yersinia pestis, is still found in Africa, Asia, and the Americas.
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Hallmarks of Cancer: Where do Parasites fit in? - PLoS Blogs

Hallmarks of Cancer: Where do Parasites fit in? - PLoS Blogs | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
PLoS Blogs (blog)
Hallmarks of Cancer: Where do Parasites fit in?
PLoS Blogs (blog)
I investigate how parasites modulate the human innate immune system to cause diseases like leishmaniasis and lymphatic filariasis.
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Risk factors of visceral leishmaniasis: a case control study in north-western Ethiopia

Background:
Visceral leishmaniasis (VL, also called `?kala-azar?), is a life threatening neglected tropical infectious disease which mainly affects the poorest of the poor. VL is prevalent in Ethiopia particularly in the northwest of the country.
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Clash of the pathogens – human pathogen protects its sand fly host from an insect pathogen

Clash of the pathogens  – human pathogen protects its sand fly host from an insect pathogen | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
Guest post by Dr Rod J Dillon (@sandflyman) Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Health and Medicine, Lancaster University, UK.

As part of collaborative study between teams working at Lancaster University in the UK, IOC-FIOCRUZ and UFPI in Brazil, we have shown that sand flies carrying Leishmania are able to survive attack by a bacterial pathogen that would have otherwise killed the insect. This suggests that Leishmania benefits its insect host whilst increasing the chances for its own transmission.
Leishmaniasis is a Neglected Tropical Disease caused by protozoan parasites of the Leishmania genus and transmitted from mammal to mammal through infected sand flies. According to the WHO, 1.3 million people become infected with the parasite each year, with 20 – ...Read more
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My blog about our recent paper...

 

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Brazil to unleash GM-mosquito swarms to fight dengue - health - 23 July 2014 - New Scientist

Brazil to unleash GM-mosquito swarms to fight dengue - health - 23 July 2014 - New Scientist | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
Modified mozzies will be raised and released on a commercial scale for the first time, but critics warn that this biotech has not been sufficiently tested (Use mosquitoes to fight disease!
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Development of Sand fly traps using Synthetic Sex Pheromone

Development of Sand fly traps using Synthetic Sex Pheromone | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases is an open-access journal publishing peer-reviewed research on the world\'s most neglected tropical diseases, such as elephantiasis, river blindness, leprosy, hookworm, schistosomiasis, and African sleeping sickness
Sandflyman's insight:

A synthetic sand fly male pheromone added to a simple trap may be used in the future for monitoring sand fly populations. Or could be used to attract flies to an insecticide. This is completely selective as the pheromone wouldn't attract other species of insects.

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Leishmania aethiopica with Endosymbiontic dsRNA Virus Induce Pro-inflammatory Cytokine Response

Leishmania aethiopica with Endosymbiontic dsRNA Virus Induce Pro-inflammatory Cytokine Response | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Haroun Zangger, Asrat Hailu, Chantal Desponds, Lon-Fye Lye, Natalia S. Akopyants, Deborah E. Dobson, Catherine Ronet, Hashim Ghalib, Stephen M.
Sandflyman's insight:

We are now finding viruses INSIDE the Leishmania  parasite  and they seem to be involved in the immune response. Severity of the disease could be partly due to the virus and not just the Leishmania.

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Genetically Modified Mosquitoes Will Guard the World Cup Against Dengue | VICE News

Genetically Modified Mosquitoes Will Guard the World Cup Against Dengue | VICE News | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
The future of public health is here at last, and it’s just in time for the world's biggest sporting event.
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World cup fans to face dengue mosquito in Brazil

World cup fans to face dengue mosquito in Brazil | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
Samba, football and ... a dangerous mosquito. That’s Brazil. At the World Cup 2014, supporters should worry not only about their national team, as their opponent i...
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Internal Displaced People in South Sudan are at great risk of disease outbreaks

The humanitarian situation in South Sudan has further deteriorated in the past two weeks. Poor water, hygiene and sanitation conditions in Internally Displaced Persons camps, a looming risk of disease outbreaks.
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The Effects of Weather and Climate Change on Dengue

The Effects of Weather and Climate Change on Dengue | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Felipe J. Colón-González, Carlo Fezzi, Iain R. Lake, Paul R. Hunter
Background There is much uncertainty about the future impact of climate change on vector-borne diseases.
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Relative Risk of Visceral Leishmaniasis in Brazil: A Spatial Analysis in Belo Horizonte

Relative Risk of Visceral Leishmaniasis in Brazil: A Spatial Analysis in Belo Horizonte | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Valdelaine Etelvina Miranda de Araújo, Letícia Cavalari Pinheiro, Maria Cristina de Mattos Almeida, Fernanda Carvalho de Menezes, Maria Helena Franco Morais, Ilka Afonso Reis, Renato Martins Assunção, Mariângela Carneiro Background Visceral...
Sandflyman's insight:

Dgos are a resrvoir for Leishmania in Brazil. I was impressed to read that  they test >150,000 dogs/year for leishmania infection, which was equivalent to more than half the dog population in the city. There  is also an information system to record control activities of the canine reservoir.

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Developing Eradication Investment Cases for Onchocerciasis, Lymphatic Filariasis, and Human African Trypanosomiasis: Rationale and Main Challenges

Developing Eradication Investment Cases for Onchocerciasis, Lymphatic Filariasis, and Human African Trypanosomiasis: Rationale and Main Challenges | Tropical diseases | Scoop.it
by Fabrizio Tediosi, Peter Steinmann, Don de Savigny, Marcel Tanner
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A twenty-year follow-up of canine leishmaniasis in three military kennels in southeastern France

A twenty-year follow-up of canine leishmaniosis in three military kennels in ...
7thSpace Interactive (press release)
This result is also of interest to public health, as dogs are reservoirs for Leishmania infantum.
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Use of deltamethrin dog collars to control leishmania in dogs...

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