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Evaluation of ectophosphatases, metalloproteases and coverage infectivity of patients with cutaneous Leishmaniasis

Grant number: 22/04395-9
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2022
Effective date (End): May 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Veterinary Medicine - Preventive Veterinary Medicine
Principal Investigator:Marina Tiemi Shio
Grantee:Rebeca Santana Souza
Host Institution: Universidade de Santo Amaro (UNISA). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Leishmaniasis is a neglected disease with worldwide distribution; it is a recurring public health problem in vulnerable populations from a socio-economic perspective. The clinical forms of leishmaniasis are associated with Leishmania species, causing cutaneous, mucocutaneous or visceral forms. In Brazil, the most common Leishmaniasis is cutaneous Leishmaniasis, caused mainly by the species L. amazonensis, L. braziliensis, L. guyanensis, and less frequent in L. naiffi. The vector of leishmaniasis is a sand fly insect, which, from the blood meal, bites a contaminated host or reservoir, aspirating macrophages containing the amastigote form of the parasite. In phlebotomy, the parasite differentiates from a non-infectious form into a host infectious form. Whereas, in the host, it inoculates the infectious form that differentiates into amastigotes and infects adjacent cells. The differentiation process occurs from metacyclogenesis in the sandfly, a process by which parasite infectivity increases in adaptations to environmental stress. Parasites have virulence markers at the surface, such as metalloprotease GP63 and lipophosphoglycan, which may be involved in the interaction of the promastigote form with host cells and in the creation of a favorable environment for an amastigote within macrophages. In addition, promastigotes also have ectophosphatases in the membrane that facilitate dephosphorylation events that help internalize and metabolize in the cell. This project aims to evaluate ectophosphatase activity and GP63 expression in L. (V). braziliensis, L. (V). naiffi and L. (L). amazonensis and their infectiveness in host cells. The results of the project may contribute to understanding the mechanisms of inhibition of virulence factors in metacyclogenesis, preventing differentiation into a host infectious form.(AU)

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