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Trends in Parasitology

Julie Jacobson, Simon Bush
Most well established neglected tropical disease (NTD) programs have seen great progress towards disease control or elimination. Areas in conflict, however, are a looming challenge to reaching control and elimination targets. To be successful, programs and partners need to creatively adapt to local circumstances and embrace new colleagues not traditionally seen as NTD implementers.
November 18, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Jennifer S Armistead, John H Adams
Malaria prevalence has declined in the past 10 years, especially outside of sub-Saharan Africa. However, the proportion of cases due to Plasmodium vivax is increasing, accounting for up to 90-100% of the malaria burden in endemic regions. Nonetheless, investments in malaria research and control still prioritize Plasmodium falciparum while largely neglecting P. vivax. Specific biological features of P. vivax, particularly invasion of reticulocytes, occurrence of dormant liver forms of the parasite, and the potential for transmission of sexual-stage parasites prior to onset of clinical illness, promote its persistence and hinder development of research tools and interventions...
November 16, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
(no author information available yet)
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 15, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Farah Ishtiaq
India has the climatic conditions conducive to year-round transmission of Zika virus, and a structured disease surveillance program should be implemented to prevent an outbreak. Such a program should (i) start screening before an outbreak arises; (ii) collect baseline data to assess future disease risk and monitor potential birth defects; and (iii) provide new insights into the ecology of the disease and inform public health policy following the one health concept.
November 15, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Ioannis Eleftherianos, Shruti Yadav, Eric Kenney, Dustin Cooper, Yaprak Ozakman, Jelena Patrnogic
Endosymbiotic bacteria exist in many animals where they develop relationships that affect certain physiological processes in the host. Insects and their nematode parasites form great models for understanding the genetic and molecular basis of immune and parasitic processes. Both organisms contain endosymbionts that possess the ability to interfere with certain mechanisms of immune function and pathogenicity. This review summarizes recent information on the involvement of insect endosymbionts in the response to parasitic nematode infections, and the influence of nematode endosymbionts on specific aspects of the insect immune system...
November 14, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Susanne H Sokolow, Chelsea L Wood, Isabel J Jones, Kevin D Lafferty, Armand M Kuris, Michael H Hsieh, Giulio A De Leo
Control strategies to reduce human schistosomiasis have evolved from 'snail picking' campaigns, a century ago, to modern wide-scale human treatment campaigns, or preventive chemotherapy. Unfortunately, despite the rise in preventive chemotherapy campaigns, just as many people suffer from schistosomiasis today as they did 50 years ago. Snail control can complement preventive chemotherapy by reducing the risk of transmission from snails to humans. Here, we present ideas for modernizing and scaling up snail control, including spatiotemporal targeting, environmental diagnostics, better molluscicides, new technologies (e...
November 7, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Francesca D Frentiu
Mosquito-borne viruses are major human pathogens. Introducing Wolbachia into mosquitoes could reduce disease burdens because these bacteria block virus transmission. How Wolbachia does this is unclear, but new data show that modulation of host-cell lipids is critical.
November 6, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
M Teresa Galán-Puchades
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 6, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
(no author information available yet)
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
November 4, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Sasha Silva-Barrios, Tania Charpentier, Simona Stäger
B cells are notorious actors for the host's protection against several infectious diseases. So much so that early vaccinology seated its principles upon their long-term protective antibody secretion capabilities. Indeed, there are many examples of acute infectious diseases that are combated by functional humoral responses. However, some chronic infectious diseases actively induce immune deregulations that often lead to defective, if not deleterious, humoral immune responses. In this review we summarize how Leishmania and Trypanosoma spp...
October 28, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Suzy J Campbell, Nana-Kwadwo Biritwum, Geordie Woods, Yael Velleman, Fiona Fleming, J Russell Stothard
The World Health Organization's (WHO) 2015-2020 Global Strategy on water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) and neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) encourages integration, whilst maintaining existing structured NTD investments, and acceleration towards Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets. Accordingly, SDG-associated and WASH-NTD indicators have been developed, commencing important intersectoral dialogue, alongside opportunities for future disease-specific refinements. The rationale for soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH)- and schistosomiasis-specific WASH considerations, and a traffic-light figure, are presented here to indicate where current international definitions may, or may not, suffice...
October 18, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Víctor M Castillo-Acosta, Jan Balzarini, Dolores González-Pacanowska
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 16, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Sasisekhar Bennuru, Elise M O'Connell, Papa M Drame, Thomas B Nutman
Filarial infections of humans cause some of the most important neglected tropical diseases. The global efforts for eliminating filarial infections by mass drug administration programs may require additional tools (safe macrofilaricidal drugs, vaccines, and diagnostic biomarkers). The accurate and sensitive detection of viable parasites is essential for diagnosis and for surveillance programs. Current community-wide treatment modalities do not kill the adult filarial worms effectively; hence, there is a need to identify and develop safe macrofilaricidal drugs...
October 11, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Donato Traversa, Anja Joachim
Experimental infections are required by current guidelines for investigating the efficacy of anthelmintics in dogs and cats. Recently, alternatives to experimental infections and the sacrificing of research dogs and cats have been evaluated, and novel conceptual investigations and methods of examination have been explored. Several of these approaches could potentially be used in efficacy studies for anthelmintics in dogs and cats. Here, we provide food for thought towards using new tools for evaluating the efficacy of anthelmintics in companion animals, for promoting the value of field trials, and for updating the existing guidelines for the efficacy testing of anthelmintics in dogs and cats...
October 4, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Brandon A Berger, Allison H Bartlett, Nancy Gore Saravia, Norma Galindo Sevilla
The pathological processes resulting from parasitic infection are known to have important impacts on the mother child dyad during pregnancy. The roles of parasite transmission and the maternal immune response have been described in diseases such as malaria, toxoplasmosis, and trypanosomiasis. However, the impact of parasites of the genus Leishmania, etiological agents of the neglected tropical diseases tegumentary leishmaniasis (TL) and visceral leishmaniasis (VL), is comparatively less well known, though it is an increasingly recognized concern for infected mothers and their fetuses...
October 4, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
R C Andrew Thompson, Alan J Lymbery, Stephanie S Godfrey
Parasites are the most abundant form of life on earth and are vital components of ecosystem health. Yet, it is only relatively recently that attention has been given to the risks of extinction that parasites face when their hosts, particularly wildlife, are endangered. In such circumstances, parasites that are host-specific with complicated life cycles are most at risk. Such extinction/coextinction events have been poorly documented, principally because of the difficulties of following such extinction processes in nature...
October 3, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Ciaran J McCoy, Louise E Atkinson, Emily Robb, Nikki J Marks, Aaron G Maule, Angela Mousley
Expanding 'omics' datasets for parasitic nematodes have accelerated the identification of putative drug targets derived from the nematode nervous system. However, novel drug target validation is hampered by the absence of adequate localisation, functional characterisation, and receptor deorphanisation tools in key nematode pathogens. Reverse genetics techniques have advanced to encompass transgenic, targeted mutagenesis, gene silencing (RNA interference), and genome editing (CRISPR/Cas9) approaches in Caenorhabditis elegans...
October 3, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Cristian Koepfli, Ivo Mueller
Genotyping to distinguish between parasite clones is nowadays a standard in many molecular epidemiological studies of malaria. It has become crucial in drug trials and to follow individual clones in epidemiological studies, and to understand how drug resistance emerges and spreads. Here, we review the applications of the increasingly available genotyping tools and whole-genome sequencing data, and argue for a better integration of population genetics findings into malaria-control strategies.
September 28, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Sara Lustigman, Benjamin L Makepeace, Thomas R Klei, Simon A Babayan, Peter Hotez, David Abraham, Maria Elena Bottazzi
Human onchocerciasis - commonly known as river blindness - is one of the most devastating yet neglected tropical diseases, leaving many millions in sub-Saharan Africa blind and/or with chronic disabilities. Attempts to eliminate onchocerciasis, primarily through the mass drug administration of ivermectin, remains challenging and has been heightened by the recent news that drug-resistant parasites are developing in some populations after years of drug treatment. Needed, and needed now, in the fight to eliminate onchocerciasis are new tools, such as preventive and therapeutic vaccines...
September 22, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
Michael J Holmes, Leonardo da Silva Augusto, Min Zhang, Ronald C Wek, William J Sullivan
Apicomplexan parasites Toxoplasma gondii and Plasmodium spp. use latent stages to persist in the host, facilitate transmission, and thwart treatment of infected patients. Therefore, it is important to understand the processes driving parasite differentiation to and from quiescent stages. Here, we discuss how a family of protein kinases that phosphorylate the eukaryotic initiation factor-2 (eIF2) function in translational control and drive differentiation. This translational control culminates in reprogramming of the transcriptome to facilitate parasite transition towards latency...
September 20, 2017: Trends in Parasitology
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