Tropical Protozoan Diseases

The infectious diseases that are caused by protozoa include Chagas diseases, Human African Tripanosomiasis, and Leishmaniasis, among others. Chagas disease is a tropical parasitic disease caused by the Protist, Trypanosoma cruzi which spreads through insects like “kissing bugs”.  The symptoms of this disease changes generally over the course of the infection. In the early stage, symptoms are typically either present or mildly present and include fever, headaches, swollen lymph nodes, and local swelling at the bite injury. Leishmania parasites cause Leishmaniasis through the bites of sandflies. The disease is infected in 3 ways - cutaneous leishmaniasis, mucocutaneous leishmaniasis, and visceral leishmaniasis. The cutaneous form leads to skin ulcers while the mucocutaneous forms ulcers on the skin, nose and mouth .The visceral form starts with skin ulcers and then later progresses to enlarged spleen and liver, fever, and low red blood cells. There is a dire need of new drugs for tropical protozoan diseases which causes about 120,000 fatalities annually. Pentamidine, a broad- spectrum antiparasitic drug has been used for decades against several Trypanosomatids.

  • Malaria
  • African Trypanosomiasis
  • Chagas disease
  • Leishmaniasis
  • Toxoplasmosis
  • Cryptosporidiosis
  • Drugs Repurposed
  • Drug Rescue

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