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Surveillance of arthropod-born viruses (arbovirus)

Grant number: 17/09194-3
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: November 01, 2017 - October 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Microbiology - Applied Microbiology
Principal Investigator:Victor Hugo Aquino Quintana
Grantee:Victor Hugo Aquino Quintana
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas de Ribeirão Preto (FCFRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers: Harnoldo Colares Coelho ; Luiz Tadeu Moraes Figueiredo


Diseases caused by arthropod-borne viruses (arbovirus) represent a growing public health problem worldwide, with an increasing number of emerging and re-emerging viruses. Most of the arboviruses are zoonotic agents, since they are maintain in nature through a cycle of vertebrate and arthropods, infecting humans that enter in forest enviroments. More than 150 arboviruses can infect humans, causing frequently an acute febrile illness, with headache, myalgia, arthralgia, and malaise, but also can cause hemorrhagic and central nervous system diseases, which in some cases could be fatal. The human activities have contributed for a rapid spread of arboviruses, which mainly affect tropical and sub-tropical countries. In Brazil, the most frequent diseases cause by arboviruses are dengue, Zika, chikungunya, yellow fever and Oropouche, although several sporadic cases of other arboviruses have been reported. Most of the diseases caused by arboviruses are considered neglected diseases, for which no specific diagnostic methods, treatments or vaccines are available. Therefore, it is of great interest the surveillance for rapid identification of these viruses, allowing a proper implementation of treatment and containment strategies to minimize the risk of epidemics. Thus, the objectives of this study include the surveillance and the development of highly specific methods to be used for early diagnosis and epidemiological surveillance of these viruses. Initially, the surveillance of arboviruses will be performed using a platform of DNA microarray in malaria suspected population in the city of Manus, Amazonas, and febrile or exanthematic disease population in the city of Ribeirao Preto, Sao Paulo. In parallel, the enzootic cycle (vertebrates and culicids mosquitos) cycle of yellow fever virus will be monitored in the city of Ribeirao Preto, analyzing environmental and anthropic factors involved in the virus circulation. Then, the methods developed in this study could be used in the surveillance of viruses detected by DNA microarray, analyzing a higher number of samples. Methods of reverse transcription fallows by a polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) will be developed for specific detection of the genome of several arboviruses; in addition, biosensors for the detection of antigens of dengue and Zika viruses in saliva of patients will be developed. (AU)

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