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    International Vision Care: Issues and Approaches.
    Annu Rev Vis Sci 2017 Sep;3:53-68
    Allen Foster Community Eye Health Research Centre, Gullapalli Pratibha Rao International Centre for Advancement of Rural Eye Care, L V Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad 500086, India.
    Globally, 32.4 million individuals are blind and 191 million have moderate or severe visual impairment (MSVI); 80% of cases of blindness and MSVI are avoidable. However, great efforts are needed to tackle blindness and MSVI, as eye care in most places is delivered in isolation from and without significant integration with general health sectors. Read More

    Insights Into Onchocerca volvulus Population Biology Through Multilocus Immunophenotyping.
    J Infect Dis 2017 Sep;216(6):736-743
    Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases.
    We have developed a serologically based immunophenotyping approach to study Onchocerca volvulus (Ov) population diversity. Using genomic sequence data and polymerase chain reaction-based genotyping, we identified nonsynonymous single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the genes of 16 major immunogenic Ov proteins: Ov-CHI-1/Ov-CHI-2, Ov16, Ov-FAR-1, Ov-CPI-1, Ov-B20, Ov-ASP-1, Ov-TMY-1, OvSOD1, OvGST1, Ov-CAL-1, M3/M4, Ov-RAL-1, Ov-RAL-2, Ov-ALT-1, Ov-FBA-1, and Ov-B8. We assessed the immunoreactivity of onchocerciasis patient sera (n = 152) from the Americas, West Africa, Central Africa, and East Africa against peptides derived from 10 of these proteins containing SNPs. Read More

    [Ivermectin as an adjunct in the treatment of refractory epilepsy].
    Rev Neurol 2017 Oct;65(7):303-310
    Pritzker School of Medicine. University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, EE.UU.
    Introduction: Ivermectin, a 22'23 dihydro derivative of avermectins beta-1a, is a highly effective veterinary and human anti parasitic, used to treat endoparasites of difficult control such as filariasis and onchocerciasis, with a median plasma life of at least of 16 hours. The recommended therapeutic doses range from 0.05 to 0. Read More

    A case of ocular infection with Onchocerca lupi in a dog from Germany.
    Transbound Emerg Dis 2017 Sep 17. Epub 2017 Sep 17.
    Institute of Parasitology, University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
    Onchocerca lupi is an emerging zoonotic parasite infecting the ocular connective tissue of dogs, cats and humans. The only known case of canine ocular onchocerciasis in Germany was documented in 2002 in a shelter dog. However, the species of Onchocerca causing the infection could not be identified. Read More

    The Sand Fly Salivary Protein Lufaxin Inhibits the Early Steps of the Alternative Pathway of Complement by Direct Binding to the Proconvertase C3b-B.
    Front Immunol 2017 31;8:1065. Epub 2017 Aug 31.
    Physiology of Hematophagous Insects Laboratory, Department of Parasitology, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
    Saliva of the blood feeding sand fly Lutzomyia longipalpis was previously shown to inhibit the alternative pathway (AP) of the complement system. Here, we have identified Lufaxin, a protein component in saliva, as the inhibitor of the AP. Lufaxin inhibited the deposition of C3b, Bb, Properdin, C5b, and C9b on agarose-coated plates in a dose-dependent manner. Read More

    Post-ivermectin encephalopathy in Senegal: a case report.
    Pan Afr Med J 2017 18;27:202. Epub 2017 Jul 18.
    Cheikh Anta Diop University, Neurosciences Department, Fann National Teaching Hospital, Dakar, Senegal.
    Ivermectin is an ant parasitic drug used for combating onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis. It works by inhibiting the function of neurons and muscles, thus causing paralysis of microfilariae. Side effects of this drug have been reported including post-ivermectin encephalopathy requiring emergency care in hospital. Read More

    A multi-center field study of two point-of-care tests for circulating Wuchereria bancrofti antigenemia in Africa.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Sep 11;11(9):e0005703. Epub 2017 Sep 11.
    Infectious Disease Division, Department of Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, Saint Louis, Missouri, United States of America.
    Background: The Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis uses point-of-care tests for circulating filarial antigenemia (CFA) to map endemic areas and for monitoring and evaluating the success of mass drug administration (MDA) programs. We compared the performance of the reference BinaxNOW Filariasis card test (ICT, introduced in 1997) with the Alere Filariasis Test Strip (FTS, introduced in 2013) in 5 endemic study sites in Africa.

    Methodology: The tests were compared prior to MDA in two study sites (Congo and Côte d'Ivoire) and in three sites that had received MDA (DRC and 2 sites in Liberia). Read More

    Review of Ethiopian Onchocerciasis Elimination Programme.
    Ethiop Med J 2017 ;55(Suppl 1):55-63
    The Carter Center, Ethiopia Office, Addis Ababa.
    Onchocerciasis is a severe parasitic infection which causes disabling skin and subcutaneous tissue changes. The disease is endemic in many African countries including Ethiopia. In 2013, Ethiopia launched Onchocerciasis elimination program with the goal of attaining interruption of onchocerciasis transmission nationwide by 2020. Read More

    The National Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis from Ethiopia.
    Ethiop Med J 2017 ;55(Suppl 1):45-54
    Federal Ministry of Health, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
    Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is one of the most debilitating and disfiguring diseases common in Ethiopia and is caused by Wuchereria bancrofti. Mapping for LF has shown that 70 woredas (districts) are endemic and 5.9 million people are estimated to be at risk. Read More

    Mortality and Disability-Adjusted Life-Years (Dalys) for Common Neglected Tropical Diseases in Ethiopia, 1990-2015: Evidence from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015.
    Ethiop Med J 2017 ;55(Suppl 1):3-14
    Wellcome Trust Brighton & Sussex Centre for Global Health Research, Brighton & Sussex Medical School, Falmer, Brighton, UK.
    Introduction: Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are important public health problems in Ethiopia. In 2013, the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) has launched a national NTD master plan to eliminate major NTDs of public health importance by 2020. Benchmarking the current status of NTDs in the country is important to monitor and evaluate the progress in the implementation of interventions and their impacts. Read More

    IL-4/5 signalling plays an important role during Litomosoides sigmodontis infection, influencing both immune system regulation and tissue pathology in the thoracic cavity.
    Int J Parasitol 2017 Aug 30. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    Institute of Medical Microbiology, Immunology and Parasitology (IMMIP), University Hospital of Bonn, Germany; German Centre for Infection Research (DZIF), Partner Site, Bonn-Cologne, Bonn, Germany. Electronic address:
    Approximately 100 million people suffer from filarial diseases including lymphatic filariasis (elephantiasis), onchocerciasis (river blindness) and loiasis. These diseases are amongst the most devastating of the neglected tropical diseases in terms of social and economic impact. Moreover, many infection-induced immune mechanisms in the host, their relationship to disease-related symptoms and the development of pathology within the site of infection remain unclear. Read More

    Ivermectin Treatment in Patients With Onchocerciasis-Associated Epilepsy: Protocol of a Randomized Clinical Trial.
    JMIR Res Protoc 2017 Aug 30;6(8):e137. Epub 2017 Aug 30.
    University of Antwerp, Global Health Institute, Antwerp, Belgium.
    Background: Many studies have reported an association between epilepsy, nodding syndrome (NS), and onchocerciasis (river blindness). A high prevalence of epilepsy has been noted particularly in onchocerciasis hyperendemic areas where onchocerciasis is not or insufficiently controlled with mass ivermectin distribution. There is evidence that increasing the coverage of ivermectin reduces the incidence of epilepsy, and anecdotal evidence suggests a reduction in seizure frequency in onchocerciasis-associated epilepsy (OAE) patients who receive ivermectin. Read More

    Distribution of larval and pupal stages of Simulium (Diptera: Simuliidae) flies in the Nilgiris hills of Tamil Nadu.
    J Parasit Dis 2017 Sep 12;41(3):655-658. Epub 2016 Nov 12.
    University Research Farm, Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Madhavaram, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600 051 India.
    Endemicity of onchocerciasis (river blindness) in humans is linked to the location of Simulium spp. (black fly). The distribution of immature stages of Simulium in Sholur, Pykara, Gudalur, Coonoor and Kotagiri streams of the Nilgiris hills of Tamil Nadu was investigated during the months of May and July 2012. Read More

    Evaluation of Community-Directed Operation of Black Fly Traps for Entomological Surveillance of Onchocerca volvulus Transmission in the Madi-Mid North Focus of Onchocerciasis in Northern Uganda.
    Am J Trop Med Hyg 2017 Jul 31. Epub 2017 Jul 31.
    Global Health Infectious Disease Research, College of Public Health, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida.
    Entomological measures of transmission are important metrics specified by the World Health Organization to document the suppression and interruption of transmission of Onchocerca volvulus, the causative agent of onchocerciasis. These metrics require testing of large numbers of vector black flies. Black fly collection has relied on human landing collections, which are inefficient and potentially hazardous. Read More

    Phytochemical analysis and in vitro anthelmintic activity of Lophira lanceolata (Ochnaceae) on the bovine parasite Onchocerca ochengi and on drug resistant strains of the free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.
    BMC Complement Altern Med 2017 Aug 14;17(1):404. Epub 2017 Aug 14.
    Department of Molecular Physiology, Institute for Zoophysiology, Schlossplatz 8, 48143, Muenster, Germany.
    Background: Onchocerciasis is one of the tropical neglected diseases (NTDs) caused by the nematode Onchocerca volvulus. Control strategies currently in use rely on mass administration of ivermectin, which has marked activity against microfilariae. Furthermore, the development of resistance to ivermectin was observed. Read More

    Adherence to ivermectin is more associated with perceptions of community directed treatment with ivermectin organization than with onchocerciasis beliefs.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Aug 14;11(8):e0005849. Epub 2017 Aug 14.
    Université Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium.
    Background: The fight against onchocerciasis in Africa has boomed thanks to the Community Directed Treatment with Ivermectin (CDTI) program. However, in Cameroon, after more than 15 years of mass treatment, onchocerciasis prevalence is still above the non-transmission threshold. This study aimed to explore a possible association between people's beliefs/perceptions of onchocerciasis and of CDTI program, and their adherence to ivermectin in three regions of Cameroon. Read More

    Important progress towards elimination of onchocerciasis in the West Region of Cameroon.
    Parasit Vectors 2017 Aug 3;10(1):373. Epub 2017 Aug 3.
    Institut de Recherche Expérimentale et Clinique, Faculté de santé publique, Université catholique de Louvain, Clos Chapelle-aux-champs 30 bte B1.30.13, BE-1200, Brussels, Belgium.
    Background: After more than a decade of community-directed treatment with ivermectin (CDTI) in the West Region of Cameroon, epidemiological evaluation conducted in 2011 showed that onchocerciasis endemicity was still high in some communities. The conceptual framework for onchocerciasis elimination recommends in such case, to conduct additional phase 1A surveys at intervals of three to four years. Therefore, to assess the progress made towards the elimination of onchocerciasis in the West CDTI projects, we conducted a cross-sectional survey in May 2015 in 15 unevaluated communities where the highest baseline endemicity level were found in 1996. Read More

    The Current Status of Molecular Xenomonitoring for Lymphatic Filariasis and Onchocerciasis.
    Trends Parasitol 2017 Jul 27. Epub 2017 Jul 27.
    Department of Biological Sciences, Smith College, Northampton, MA, USA; Molecular and Cellular Biology Program, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA, USA. Electronic address:
    The capacity of vector insect surveillance to provide estimates of pathogen prevalence and transmission potential has long been recognized within the global communities tasked with eliminating lymphatic filariasis (LF), the underlying cause of elephantiasis and hydrocele, and onchocerciasis (river blindness). Initially restricted to the practice of dissection, the potential of vector monitoring has grown due to the advent of molecular methods capable of increasing the sensitivity and throughput of testing. However, despite such advancement, operational research gaps remain. Read More

    A novel rapid test for detecting antibody responses to Loa loa infections.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Jul 27;11(7):e0005741. Epub 2017 Jul 27.
    Drugs & Diagnostics for Tropical Diseases, San Diego, California, United States of America.
    Ivermectin-based mass drug administration (MDA) programs have achieved remarkable success towards the elimination of onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis. However, their full implementation has been hindered in Central Africa by the occurrence of ivermectin-related severe adverse events (SAEs) in a subset of individuals with high circulating levels of Loa loa microfilariae. Extending MDA to areas with coincident L. Read More

    Genome-wide analysis of ivermectin response by Onchocerca volvulus reveals that genetic drift and soft selective sweeps contribute to loss of drug sensitivity.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Jul 26;11(7):e0005816. Epub 2017 Jul 26.
    Department of Animal, Plant and Soil Sciences, La Trobe University, Bundoora, Australia.
    Background: Treatment of onchocerciasis using mass ivermectin administration has reduced morbidity and transmission throughout Africa and Central/South America. Mass drug administration is likely to exert selection pressure on parasites, and phenotypic and genetic changes in several Onchocerca volvulus populations from Cameroon and Ghana-exposed to more than a decade of regular ivermectin treatment-have raised concern that sub-optimal responses to ivermectin's anti-fecundity effect are becoming more frequent and may spread.

    Methodology/principal Findings: Pooled next generation sequencing (Pool-seq) was used to characterise genetic diversity within and between 108 adult female worms differing in ivermectin treatment history and response. Read More

    Lipid profiling of the filarial nematodes Onchocerca volvulus, Onchocerca ochengi and Litomosoides sigmodontis reveals the accumulation of nematode-specific ether phospholipids in the host.
    Int J Parasitol 2017 Jul 23. Epub 2017 Jul 23.
    Institute of Molecular Physiology and Biotechnology of Plants, University of Bonn, Karlrobert-Kreiten-Str. 13, 53115 Bonn, Germany. Electronic address:
    Onchocerciasis, a neglected tropical disease prevalent in western and central Africa, is a major health problem and has been targeted for elimination. The causative agent for this disease is the human parasite Onchocerca volvulus. Onchocerca ochengi and Litomosoides sigmodontis, infectious agents of cattle and rodents, respectively, serve as model organisms to study filarial nematode infections. Read More

    River-specific macrogenomic diversity in Simulium guianense s. l. (Diptera: Simuliidae), a complex of tropical American vectors associated with human onchocerciasis.
    PLoS One 2017 20;12(7):e0181679. Epub 2017 Jul 20.
    Laboratorio de Biología de Vectores y Parásitos, Instituto de Zoología y Ecología Tropical, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Central de Venezuela, Caracas, Venezuela.
    Simulium guianense Wise is a Latin American vector complex of black flies associated with transmission of the causal agent of human onchocerciasis (river blindness). An analysis of the chromosomal banding patterns of 607 larvae of S. guianense s. Read More

    A new methodology for sampling blackflies for the entomological surveillance of onchocerciasis in Brazil.
    PLoS One 2017 20;12(7):e0179754. Epub 2017 Jul 20.
    Laboratório de Simulídeos e Oncocercose, Oswaldo Cruz Institute, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
    The effectiveness of the MosqTent® trap was evaluated in endemic area to onchocerciasis in Brazil. This study seeks to provide subsidies for the monitoring of the onchocerciasis transmission in the country. The study was carried out at the Homoxi and Thirei villages, located in the Yanomami Indigenous Land, in the state of Roraima. Read More

    Evaluation of Onchocerciasis Transmission in Tanzania: Preliminary Rapid Field Results in the Tukuyu Focus, 2015.
    Am J Trop Med Hyg 2017 Jun 12. Epub 2017 Jun 12.
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia.
    To compare diagnostic tests for onchocerciasis in a setting that has suppressed transmission, a randomized, age-stratified study was implemented in an area in Tanzania that had received 15 rounds of annual mass drug administration (MDA) with ivermectin. Study participants (N = 948) from 11 villages underwent a questionnaire, skin examination, skin snips, and blood draw. The burden of symptomatic disease was low. Read More

    Characterizing Reactivity to Onchocerca volvulus Antigens in Multiplex Bead Assays.
    Am J Trop Med Hyg 2017 Jul 3. Epub 2017 Jul 3.
    Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria, Center for Global Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia.
    Multiplex bead assays (MBAs) may provide a powerful integrated tool for monitoring, evaluation, and post-elimination surveillance of onchocerciasis and co-endemic diseases; however, the specificity and sensitivity of Onchocerca volvulus antigens have not been characterized within this context. An MBA was developed to evaluate three antigens (OV-16, OV-17, and OV-33) for onchocerciasis. Receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analyses were used to characterize antigen performance using a panel of 610 specimens: 109 O. Read More

    Bedside diagnostics in dermatology: Parasitic and noninfectious diseases.
    J Am Acad Dermatol 2017 Aug;77(2):221-230
    Department of Dermatology, Pathology, and Infectious Diseases, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.
    In addition to aiding the diagnosis of viral, bacterial, and fungal diseases, mineral oil preparation, Tzanck smear, and other techniques can be used to diagnose parasitic infections, neonatal pustular dermatoses, blistering diseases, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, and a plethora of other benign and malignant conditions, including granulomatous diseases and tumors. In many cases, these techniques are specific, reliable, and easy to perform and interpret. In others, a certain amount of training and expertise are required. Read More

    High prevalence of epilepsy in onchocerciasis endemic regions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Jul 14;11(7):e0005732. Epub 2017 Jul 14.
    Global Health Institute, University of Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium.
    Background: An increased prevalence of epilepsy has been reported in many onchocerciasis endemic areas. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of epilepsy in onchocerciasis endemic areas in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and investigate whether a higher annual intake of Ivermectin was associated with a lower prevalence of epilepsy.

    Methodology/principle Findings: Between July 2014 and February 2016, house-to-house epilepsy prevalence surveys were carried out in areas with a high level of onchocerciasis endemicity: 3 localities in the Bas-Uele, 24 in the Tshopo and 21 in the Ituri province. Read More

    The esperanza window trap reduces the human biting rate of Simulium ochraceum s.l. in formerly onchocerciasis endemic foci in Southern Mexico.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Jul 7;11(7):e0005686. Epub 2017 Jul 7.
    Global Health Infectious Disease Research Program, Department of Global Health, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, United States of America.
    Background: The Esperanza Window Trap (EWT) baited with CO2 and human sweat compounds is attractive to Simulium ochraceum s.l., the primary vector of Onchocerca volvulus in the historically largest endemic foci in México and Guatemala. Read More

    Esperanza Window Traps for the collection of anthropophilic blackflies (Diptera: Simuliidae) in Uganda and Tanzania.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Jun 19;11(6):e0005688. Epub 2017 Jun 19.
    Faculty of Science, Gulu University, Gulu, Uganda.
    There is an increasing need to evaluate the impact of chemotherapeutic and vector-based interventions as onchocerciasis affected countries work towards eliminating the disease. The Esperanza Window Trap (EWT) provides a possible alternative to human landing collections (HLCs) for the collection of anthropophilic blackflies, yet it is not known whether current designs will prove effective for onchocerciasis vectors throughout sub-Saharan Africa. EWTs were deployed for 41 days in northern Uganda and south eastern Tanzania where different Simulium damnosum sibling species are responsible for disease transmission. Read More

    Biodiversity of Simulium metallicum sensu lato (Diptera: Simuliidae), a complex of Neotropical vectors associated with human onchocerciasis.
    Acta Trop 2017 Sep 15;173:171-179. Epub 2017 Jun 15.
    Department of Biology, University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL, 36688, USA. Electronic address:
    The polytene chromosomes of 130 larvae of the Neotropical Simulium metallicum complex from Brazil, Costa Rica, and Ecuador revealed five cytoforms, including three ('M', 'N', and 'O') that are new and two ('B' and 'J') that represent range extensions of up to 850km. The discovery of three new cytoforms brings the total number in the complex to 17. Cytoforms 'B', 'J', and 'N' are reproductively isolated from one another, and their species status is corroborated by morphological evidence. Read More

    The Genomic Architecture of Novel Simulium damnosum Wolbachia Prophage Sequence Elements and Implications for Onchocerciasis Epidemiology.
    Front Microbiol 2017 29;8:852. Epub 2017 May 29.
    School of Natural Sciences and Psychology, Liverpool John Moores UniversityLiverpool, UK.
    Research interest in Wolbachia is growing as new discoveries and technical advancements reveal the public health importance of both naturally occurring and artificial infections. Improved understanding of the Wolbachia bacteriophages (WOs) WOcauB2 and WOcauB3 [belonging to a sub-group of four WOs encoding serine recombinases group 1 (sr1WOs)], has enhanced the prospect of novel tools for the genetic manipulation of Wolbachia. The basic biology of sr1WOs, including host range and mode of genomic integration is, however, still poorly understood. Read More

    Central and Peripheral Nervous System Disorders Following Ivermectin Mass Administration: A Descriptive Study Based on the Democratic Republic of Congo Pharmacovigilance System.
    Drugs Real World Outcomes 2017 Jun 9. Epub 2017 Jun 9.
    Unit of Clinical Pharmacology and Pharmacovigilance, University of Kinshasa, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.
    Introduction: The mainstay of onchocerciasis control currently is mass administration of ivermectin; however, this may be associated with serious adverse events, including deaths, when administered in areas where onchocerciasis and loiasis are co-endemic.

    Objectives: The objective of the current study was to describe the central and peripheral nervous system disorders that occurred after mass administration of ivermectin in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

    Methods: This is a retrospective descriptive study involving a review of data on adverse events related to mass administration of ivermectin. Read More

    Validation of onchocerciasis biomarker N-acetyltyramine-O-glucuronide (NATOG).
    Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2017 Aug 29;27(15):3436-3440. Epub 2017 May 29.
    Department of Chemistry, The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, CA 92037, United States; Department of Immunology, The Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology, The Worm Institute of Research and Medicine (WIRM), The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 North Torrey, La Jolla, CA 92037, United States.
    The Neglected Tropical Disease onchocerciasis is a parasitic disease. Despite many control programmes by the World Health Organization (WHO), large communities in West and Central Africa are still affected. Besides logistic challenges during biannual mass drug administration, the lack of a robust, point-of-care diagnostic is limiting successful eradication of onchocerciasis. Read More

    Modelling the health and economic impacts of the elimination of river blindness (onchocerciasis) in Africa.
    BMJ Glob Health 2017 Mar 24;2(2):e000158. Epub 2017 Mar 24.
    Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Basel, Switzerland.
    Background: Onchocerciasis (river blindness) is endemic mostly in remote and rural areas in sub-Saharan Africa. The treatment goal for onchocerciasis has shifted from control to elimination in Africa. For investment decisions, national and global policymakers need evidence on benefits, costs and risks of elimination initiatives. Read More

    Field-Based Evidence of Single and Few Doses of Annual Ivermectin Treatment Efficacy in Eliminating Skin Microfilaria Load after a Decade of Intervention.
    Ethiop J Health Sci 2017 Mar;27(2):129-138
    Nigerian Institute for Trypanosomiasis (and Onchocerciasis) Research (NITR), Kaduna, Nigeria.
    Background: Impact assessment of community-based ivermectin treatment control of onchocerciasis is required to determine its effectiveness. This study was conducted to evaluate geographic coverage and demographic ivermectin treatment compliance.

    Methods: The number of village dosage were obtained from the community based distributors. Read More

    Response to the Letter to the Editor by Eberhard et al.
    Parasit Vectors 2017 May 16;10(1):240. Epub 2017 May 16.
    London Centre for Neglected Tropical Disease Research, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine (St Mary's campus), Norfolk Place, London, W2 1PG, UK.
    In a Letter to the Editor, Eberhard et al. question the validity of our model of skin snip sensitivity and argue against the use of skin snips to evaluate onchocerciasis elimination by mass drug administration. Here we discuss their arguments and compare model predictions with observed data to assess the validity of our model. Read More

    Impact assessment study after 27 years of community-directed treatment with ivermectin in Galadimawa, Kaduna State, Nigeria.
    Niger Postgrad Med J 2017 Jan-Mar;24(1):14-19
    Department of Community Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Bingham University, Jos, Nigeria.
    Purpose: To assess the impact on blindness after 27 years of community-directed treatment with ivermectin (CDTI) in the Galadimawa community of Kauru Local Government in Kaduna state, Nigeria. The population of Galadimawa constituted about 12% of the total population examined during the ivermectin randomised control trial (RCT) in 1989. The RCT population of 8000 individuals was scattered over 36 villages in Kaduna state. Read More

    Anti-Onchocerca and Anti-Caenorhabditis Activity of a Hydro-Alcoholic Extract from the Fruits of Acacia nilotica and Some Proanthocyanidin Derivatives.
    Molecules 2017 May 6;22(5). Epub 2017 May 6.
    Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Ngaoundere, P.O. Box 454, Ngaoundere, Cameroon.
    Acacia nilotica fruits with high tannin content are used in the northern parts of Cameroon as anti-filarial remedies by traditional healers. In this study, the hydro-alcoholic fruit extract (crude extract (CE)) and, one of the main constituents in its most active fractions, (+)-catechin-3-O-gallate (CG), as well as four related proanthocyanidins, (-)-epicatechin-3-O-gallate (ECG), (+)-gallocatechin (GC), (-)-epigallocatechin (EGC) and (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (EGCG), were assessed for their potential in vitro anthelmintic properties against the free-living model organism Caenorhabditis elegans and against the cattle filarial parasite Onchocerca ochengi. Worms were incubated in the presence of different concentrations of fruit extract, fractions and pure compounds. Read More

    Commentary: restarting NTD programme activities after the Ebola outbreak in Liberia.
    Infect Dis Poverty 2017 May 1;6(1):52. Epub 2017 May 1.
    Centre for Neglected Tropical Diseases (CNTD), Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, Liverpool, UK.
    It is widely known that the recent Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in West Africa caused a serious disruption to the national health system, with many of ongoing disease focused programmes, such as mass drug administration (MDA) for onchocerciasis (ONC), lymphatic filariasis (LF) and schistosomiasis (SCH), being suspended or scaled-down. As these MDA programmes attempt to restart post-EVD it is important to understand the challenges that may be encountered. This commentary addresses the opinions of the major health sectors involved, as well as those of community members, regarding logistic needs and challenges faced as these important public health programmes consider restarting. Read More

    Ivermectin to reduce malaria transmission I. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic considerations regarding efficacy and safety.
    Malar J 2017 Apr 24;16(1):161. Epub 2017 Apr 24.
    ISGlobal, Barcelona Ctr. Int. Health Res. (CRESIB), Hospital Clínic-Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.
    Ivermectin is an endectocide that has been used broadly in single dose community campaigns for the control of onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis for more than 30 years. There is now interest in the potential use of ivermectin regimens to reduce malaria transmission, envisaged as community-wide campaigns tailored to transmission patterns and as complement of the local vector control programme. The development of new ivermectin regimens or other novel endectocides will require integrated development of the drug in the context of traditional entomological tools and endpoints. Read More

    Significant heterogeneity in Wolbachia copy number within and between populations of Onchocerca volvulus.
    Parasit Vectors 2017 Apr 18;10(1):188. Epub 2017 Apr 18.
    Department of Animal, Plant and Soil Sciences, School of Life Sciences, La Trobe University, Bundoora, 3083, VIC, Australia.
    Background: Wolbachia are intracellular bacteria found in arthropods and several filarial nematode species. The filarial Wolbachia have been proposed to be involved in the immunopathology associated with onchocerciasis. Higher Wolbachia-to-nematode ratios have been reported in the savannah-ecotype compared to the forest-ecotype, and have been interpreted as consistent with a correlation between Wolbachia density and disease severity. Read More

    Loa loa vectors Chrysops spp.: perspectives on research, distribution, bionomics, and implications for elimination of lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis.
    Parasit Vectors 2017 Apr 5;10(1):172. Epub 2017 Apr 5.
    Department of Parasitology, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, Liverpool, UK.
    Background: Loiasis is a filarial disease caused Loa loa. The main vectors are Chrysops silacea and C. dimidiata which are confined to the tropical rainforests of Central and West Africa. Read More

    Efficacy of Moxidectin Versus Ivermectin Against Strongyloides stercoralis Infections: A Randomized, Controlled Noninferiority Trial.
    Clin Infect Dis 2017 Jul;65(2):276-281
    Department of Medical Parasitology and Infection Biology, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute.
    Background: Infections with Strongyloides stercoralis are of considerable public health relevance. Moxidectin, a well-established drug in veterinary medicine under consideration for regulatory submission for the treatment of onchocerciasis, might serve as an alternative to the widely used ivermectin.

    Methods: We conducted an exploratory, randomized, single-blind trial to evaluate the efficacy and safety of moxidectin (8 mg) vs ivermectin (200 μg/kg) against S. Read More

    Taxonomy and polytene chromosomes of the Neotropical black fly Simulium perplexum (Diptera: Simuliidae).
    Acta Trop 2017 Jul 27;171:101-113. Epub 2017 Mar 27.
    Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Clemson University, Clemson, SC, 29634, USA. Electronic address:
    Simulium perplexum Shelley, Maia-Herzog, Luna Dias & Couch is structurally similar in the pupal stage to Simulium guianense Wise, the main vector in the onchocerciasis foci of Amazonian Brazil and Venezuela. We report S. perplexum for the first time beyond its type locality (Guyana, Potaro River), describe its larva, redescribe its pupa, and provide a chromosomal comparison with S. Read More

    Pre-control relationship of onchocercal skin disease with onchocercal infection in Guinea Savanna, Northern Nigeria.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2017 Mar 29;11(3):e0005489. Epub 2017 Mar 29.
    Department of Ophthalmology, Ahmadu Bello University Hospital, Kaduna, Nigeria.
    Background: Onchocerca volvulus infection can result in blindness, itching and skin lesions. Previous research concentrated on blindness.

    Methods: A clinical classification system of the cutaneous changes in onchocerciasis was used for the first time in this study within the context of an early ivermectin drug trial in the savanna region of Kaduna State, northern Nigeria. Read More

    Species diversity of black flies (Diptera: Simuliidae) in Oriental region and molecular phylogeny of the subgenus Gomphostilbia members.
    J Vector Borne Dis 2017 Jan-Mar;54(1):80-86
    Department of Environmental Biotechnology, Bharathidasan University, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu, India.
    Background & Objectives: Black flies (Diptera: Simuliidae) are ecologically and medically important insects. Female adults of black flies are the solitary vectors of river blindness (onchocerciasis) and their larvae play a vital role in stream ecosystem. This study examined the distribution of black flies in the Oriental region and analyzed the phylogenetic relationship of the subgenus Gomphostilbia members based on two molecular loci. Read More

    Skin snips have no role in programmatic evaluations for onchocerciasis elimination: a reply to Bottomley et al.
    Parasit Vectors 2017 Mar 23;10(1):154. Epub 2017 Mar 23.
    Department of Global Health, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL, 33620, USA.
    A critique of the recommendation that skin snips be used for post-MDA surveillance of formerly endemic onchocerciasis areas is provided. After considering several fundamental aspects of the use of this methodology within the context of prolonged mass distribution of ivermectin, we argue that skin-snipping has no value for monitoring onchocerciasis elimination programs. Read More

    Posttreatment Reactions After Single-Dose Diethylcarbamazine or Ivermectin in Subjects With Loa loa Infection.
    Clin Infect Dis 2017 04;64(8):1017-1025
    Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.
    Background: Severe adverse reactions have been observed in individuals with Loa loa infection treated with either diethylcarbamazine (DEC), the drug of choice for loiasis, or ivermectin (IVM), which is used in mass drug administration programs for control of onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis in Africa. In this study, posttreatment clinical and immunologic reactions were compared following single-dose therapy with DEC or IVM to assess whether these reactions have the same underlying pathophysiology.

    Methods: Twelve patients with loiasis and microfilarial counts <2000 mf/mL were randomized to receive single-dose DEC (8 mg/kg) or IVM (200 µg/kg). Read More

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