Cell phone-based microscope leads to possible strategy for treating river blindness
(NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases) River blindness, or onchocerciasis, is a disease caused by a parasitic worm (Onchocerca volvulus) found primarily in Africa. Ivermectin is used to treat onchocerciasis. This treatment can be fatal when a person has high blood levels of another worm, Loa loa. In a paper published in NEJM, scientists describe how a cell phone-based videomicroscope can provide fast, effective testing for L. loa parasites, allowing these individuals to be protected from the adverse effects of ivermectin.
Publication date: Available online 29 June 2020Source: The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In PracticeAuthor(s): Brian Lipworth, Rory Chan, Chris RuiWen Kuo
Publication date: Available online 29 June 2020Source: The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In PracticeAuthor(s): Edoardo Savarino, Greta Lorenzon, Matteo Ghisa, Giorgio Laserra, Brigida Barberio, Daria Maniero Sc, Vincenzo Savarino, Fabiana Zingone
Publication date: Available online 29 June 2020Source: The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In PracticeAuthor(s): Changlu Wang, Amanda Eiden, Richard Cooper, Chen Zha, Desen Wang, Robert G. Hamilton
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Publication date: Available online 30 June 2020Source: Physiology &BehaviorAuthor(s): Collin J. Horn, Monika K. Mierzejewski, Maesha E. Elahi, Lien T. Luong
Contributors : Lindsey B Turnbull ; Katrina A Button-Simons ; Michael T FerdigSeries Type : Expression profiling by arrayOrganism : Plasmodium falciparumThe parasite strains HB3 and Dd2 were cloned via limiting dilution and then sub-cloned. The uncloned parental line, 4 clones and 4 sub-clones were thawed in two different culture batches using different media lots and RBC donors but were otherwise maintained in identical standard culture conditions and synchronized by 3 rounds of sorbitol synchronization. Total RNA samples were collected at 24 hours post invasion (hpi).
(NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases) Scientists have sequenced the genome of the parasitic worm responsible for causing onchocerciasis -- an eye and skin infection more commonly known as river blindness. Through their work, researchers have gained insight into the workings of the parasite and identified proteins that potentially could be targeted with existing drugs or provide areas for developing new treatments and a preventive vaccine. The NIAID-supported research is described in a pair of papers published this week in Nature Microbiology.
Conclusion This study suggests a new smartphone-based approach could provide a quick way of measuring levels of infection with the Loa loa worm in blood samples, and with a high level of accuracy. This technique could allow assessment of people's infection in communities without easy access to the laboratory testing that is usually used to detect the worms. This is important, as people with high levels of this infection can suffer potentially fatal side effects with the drug ivermectin, which is used to treat two other parasitic infections. It's worth bearing in mind that this was a pilot study in only 33 people using a ...