[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Using the indirect hemagglutination (IH), indirect immunofluorescence (IIF) and enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) tests for the diagnosis of Chagas disease, 4000 serum samples were examined. This study was conducted with different purposes: clinical interest, research support and parasitological monitoring of those patients with Chagas disease who were treated with heart transplantations. The tests occurred without patient selection and in accordance with the medical requests. The results showed discrepancies and brought about several questions, considering the different results that all three methods showed when considered together. What was found brought about concerns and we suggest the adoption of different measures, aiming to avoid these mismatches in the context of this disease.
Revista do Instituto de Medicina Tropical de São Paulo 06/2012; 54(3):141-3. DOI:10.1590/S0036-46652012000300005 · 1.01 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chagas' disease is caused by the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi and is one of the most important endemic problems in Latin America. Lately, it has also become a health concern in the United States and Europe. Currently, a diagnosis of Chagas' disease and the screening of blood supplies for antiparasite antibodies are achieved by conventional serological tests that show substantial variation in the reproducibility and reliability of their results. In addition, the specificity of these assays is curtailed by antigenic cross-reactivity with sera from patients affected by other endemic diseases, such as leishmaniasis. Here we used a highly sensitive chemiluminescent enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (CL-ELISA) to evaluate a recombinant protein core of a mucin-like molecule (termed trypomastigote small surface antigen [TSSA]) for the detection of specific serum antibodies in a broad panel of human sera. The same samples were evaluated by CL-ELISA using as the antigen either a mixture of native T. cruzi trypomastigote mucins or an epimastigote extract and, for further comparison, by conventional serologic tests, such as an indirect hemagglutination assay and indirect immunofluorescence assay. TSSA showed ∼87% sensitivity among the seropositive Chagasic panel, a value which was increased up to >98% when only parasitologically positive samples were considered. More importantly, TSSA showed a significant increase in specificity (97.4%) compared to those of currently used assays, which averaged 80 to 90%. Overall, our data demonstrate that recombinant TSSA may be a useful antigen for the immunodiagnosis of Chagas' disease.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Following advances in the control of vector and blood transfusion transmission of Chagas disease, alternative mechanisms of transmission have become more relevant. This article discusses the importance of each one of these alternative mechanisms and the measures to prevent them.
A review was conducted of the scientific literature concerning alternative transmission mechanisms of Trypanosoma cruzi occurring in Brazil and the measures to prevent them. PubMed and BVS databases were consulted.
Twenty-five publications describing alternative mechanisms of transmission of Chagas disease were identified.
Oral transmission, through ingestion of contaminated food items has been the most frequent mode of transmission in Brazil in recent years. Other alternative mechanisms of transmission occur less frequently. It is important to understand these occurrences, especially now that vector transmission of the parasite is under control. Preventive measures have been presented, according to each of the situations considered, in line with current knowledge.
Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Tropical 05/2011; 44(3):375-9. DOI:10.1590/S0037-86822011005000032 · 0.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Vectorial, transfusion and congenital are considered the main transmission mechanisms in human Chagas disease. Alternative mechanisms are accidental, oral and by organ transplantation. Other hypothetic mechanisms could be by other vectors, sexual, criminal and by means of marsupial anal secretions. The present accorded strategies for prevention are: CONGENITAL: early case detection and immediate treatment. If possible, start during the pre natal period, throughout mothers serology, performing parasitological tests in the new born from positive women. For positive cases, immediate treatment; for those negative babies, conventional serology at the 8th month, treating specifically those with positive results. ACCIDENTAL TRANSMISSION: Rigorous training and utilization of protection equipments. IF accident occurs, immediate disinfection, conventional serology and beginning of specific treatment by ten days. Revision of the serology after 30 days: if positive, extend the treatment until the total dose (60 days or more). ORGAN TRANSPLANTATION: previous serology for donor and receptor. When the former is infected and the last negative, cancel the surgery or install the specific treatment by ten days before the surgery for the donor, followed by the receptor during ten days after the transplantation. ORAL TRANSMISSION: Specific measures are not available, food hygiene is recommended, including the cooking of meats delivered from possible reservoirs. Nowadays, the detection and immediate treatment of the case is recommended, followed by active research of new cases around the detected one.
Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Tropical 01/2011; 44 Suppl 2:68-72. DOI:10.1590/S0037-86822011000800011 · 0.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, there has been an increase in the incidence of cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL), which represents an important health problem. This increase may be related to the epidemiologic expansion of the infective agent and the increase in tourism in tropical areas. The difficulty in clinical diagnosis, mainly in areas in which CL is not the first consideration of local physicians, has intensified efforts to describe diagnostic tests, which should be specific, sensitive, and practical. Amongst the new tests described are those including nucleic acid amplification (polymerase chain reaction, PCR) and immunohistochemistry (IHC).
In this study, we evaluated the sensitivity of a PCR based on small subunit (SSU) ribosomal DNA, in comparison with IHC using Leishmania spp. antibodies, in biopsies embedded in paraffin.
The results indicated a total sensitivity of 96% (90.9% with PCR and 68.8% with IHC), showing the possibility of using paraffin-embedded biopsies to diagnose CL.
We propose the use of the two tests together as a routine protocol for diagnosis. This would require the provision of local medical services to perform molecular biology techniques and adequate Leishmania antibodies.
International journal of dermatology 10/2009; 48(10):1091-5. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-4632.2009.04099.x · 1.31 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mucosal leishmaniasis is caused mainly by Leishmania braziliensis and it occurs months or years after cutaneous lesions. This progressive disease destroys cartilages and osseous structures from face, pharynx and larynx.
The aim of this study was to analyse the significance of clinical and epidemiological findings, diagnosis and treatment with the outcome and recurrence of mucosal leishmaniasis through binary logistic regression model from 140 patients with mucosal leishmaniasis from a Brazilian centre.
The median age of patients was 57.5 and systemic arterial hypertension was the most prevalent secondary disease found in patients with mucosal leishmaniasis (43%). Diabetes, chronic nephropathy and viral hepatitis, allergy and coagulopathy were found in less than 10% of patients. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection was found in 7 of 140 patients (5%). Rhinorrhea (47%) and epistaxis (75%) were the most common symptoms. N-methyl-glucamine showed a cure rate of 91% and recurrence of 22%. Pentamidine showed a similar rate of cure (91%) and recurrence (25%). Fifteen patients received itraconazole with a cure rate of 73% and recurrence of 18%. Amphotericin B was the drug used in 30 patients with 82% of response with a recurrence rate of 7%. The binary logistic regression analysis demonstrated that systemic arterial hypertension and HIV infection were associated with failure of the treatment (P < 0.05).
The current first-line mucosal leishmaniasis therapy shows an adequate cure but later recurrence. HIV infection and systemic arterial hypertension should be investigated before start the treatment of mucosal leishmaniasis. Conflicts of interest The authors are not part of any associations or commercial relationships that might represent conflicts of interest in the writing of this study (e.g. pharmaceutical stock ownership, consultancy, advisory board membership, relevant patents, or research funding).
Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 05/2009; 23(9):1026-34. DOI:10.1111/j.1468-3083.2009.03238.x · 2.83 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This brief review discusses the history of leishmaniasis, considering its origin from the Paleoartic, Neoartic or Neotropic. We reassess some of the theories of the likely origin of this protozoan since the beginning of life on Earth, passing through the Mesozoic and continuing to the appearance of humans. The relationship between this parasite or its ancestors, possible vectors and hosts with regard to ecological modifications is discussed. Recent molecular techniques have helped to elucidate some of the evolutionary questions regarding Leishmania, but have also brought doubts about the origin and evolution of this human parasite. PCR has been used for studies in the new discipline of paleoparasitology, helping to elucidate some of the remaining evolutionary questions. Understanding of this global condition is fundamental in determining the best approach to use against the parasite, specifically for the development of an efficient vaccine.