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Emerging Zoonoses: Eco-Epidemiology, Involved Mechanisms and Public Health Implications

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889196180 Year: Pages: 248 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-618-0 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Medicine (General) --- Public Health
Added to DOAB on : 2015-11-02 10:49:06
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Zoonoses are currently considered as one of the most important threats for public health worldwide. Zoonoses can be defined as any disease or infection that is naturally transmissible from vertebrate or invertebrate animals to humans and vice-versa. Approximately 75% of recently emerging infectious diseases affecting humans are diseases of animal origin; approximately 60% of all human pathogens are zoonotic. All types of potential pathogenic agents, including viruses, parasites, bacteria and fungi, can cause these zoonotic infections. From the wide range of potential vectors of zoonoses, insects are probably those of major significance due to their abundance, high plasticity and adaptability to different kinds of pathogens, high degrees of synanthropism in several groups and difficulties to apply effective programs of population control. Although ticks, flies, cockroaches, bugs and fleas are excellent insects capable to transmit viruses, parasites and bacteria, undoubtedly mosquitoes are the most important disease vectors. Mosquito borne diseases like malaria, dengue, equine encephalitis, West Nile, Mayaro or Chikungunya are zoonoses with increasing incidence in last years in tropical and temperate countries. Vertebrates can also transmit serious zoonoses, highlighting the role of some carnivorous animals in rabies dissemination or the spread of rodent borne diseases in several rural and urban areas. Moreover, the significance of other food borne zoonoses such as taeniasis, trichinellosis or toxoplasmosis may not been underestimated. According to WHO, FAO and OIE guidelines an emerging zoonotic disease can be defined as a zoonosis that is newly recognized or newly evolved, or that has occurred previously but shows an increase of incidence or expansion in geographical, host or vector range. There are many factors that can provoke or accelerate the emergence of zoonoses, such as environmental changes, habitat modifications, variations of human and animal demography, pathogens and vectors anomalous mobilization related with human practices and globalization, deterioration of the strategies of vector control or changes in pathogen genetics. To reduce public health risks from zoonoses is absolutely necessary to acquire an integrative perspective that includes the study of the complexity of interactions among humans, animals and environment in order to be able to fight against these issues of primary interest for human health. In any case, although zoonoses represent significant public health threats, many of them still remain as neglected diseases and consequently are not prioritized by some health international organisms.

Lyme Disease: Recent Advances and Perspectives

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889195572 Year: Pages: 114 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-557-2 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Internal medicine
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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The interplay between host and pathogen is a complex co-evolutionary battle of surveillance and evasion. The pathogen continuously develops mechanisms to subvert the immune response in order to establish infection while the immune system responds with novel mechanisms of detection. Because the majority of Lyme disease pathology is due to an over-exuberant immune response, much research in Borrelia burgdorferi pathogenesis has been devoted to understanding the mammalian host response to the bacterium. Immunological studies continue to be an active area of research employing emerging techniques, such as intra-vital imaging. These studies have furthered our understanding of inflammatory processes during long-term infection and provided some surprising insights, such as the continued presence of bacterial products after clearance. The field of Lyme disease has long debated the etiology of long-term inflammation and recent studies in the murine host have shed light on relevant cell types and inflammatory mediators that participate in the pathology of Lyme arthritis. Live imaging and bioluminescent studies have allowed for a novel view of the bacterial life cycle, including the tick mid-gut, tick-to-mammal transmission and dissemination throughout a mouse. A number of tick and bacterial proteins have been shown to participate in the completion of the enzootic cycle. Novel mechanisms of gene regulation are continuously being identified. However, B. burgdorferi lacks many traditional virulence factors, such as toxins or specialized secretion systems. Many genes in the B. burgdorferi genome have no known homolog in other bacteria. Therefore, studies focusing on host-pathogen interactions have therefore been limited by an incomplete understanding of the repertoire of bacterial virulence factors. Questions such as how the pathogen causes disease, colonizes the tick and evades host immune-surveillance have been difficult to address. Genetic studies involving single gene deletions have identified a number of important bacterial proteins, but a large-scale genomics approach to identify virulence factors has not been attempted until recently. The generation of a site-directed mutagenesis library is an important step towards a detailed analysis of the B. burgdorferi genome and pathogenome. Using this library, high-throughput genomic studies, utilizing techniques such as massively parallel sequencing have been promising and could be used to identify novel virulence determinants of disease in the mammalian host or persistence in the tick vector. Continued research on this unique pathogen and its specific interaction with host and vector may have far reaching consequences and provide insights for diverse disciplines including ecology, infectious disease, and immunology. Here, several reviews will discuss the most recent advances and future studies to be undertaken in the field of B. burgdorferi biology.

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