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      Apoptosis induced by parasitic diseases

      , 1 , 2 , 1

      Parasites & Vectors

      BioMed Central

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          Abstract

          Fatalities caused by parasitic infections often occur as a result of tissue injury that results from a form of host-cell death known as apoptosis. However, instead of being pathogenic, parasite-induced apoptosis may facilitate host survival. Consequently, it is of utmost importance to decipher and understand the process and the role of apoptosis induced or controlled by parasites in humans. Despite this, few studies provide definitive knowledge of parasite-induced host-cell apoptosis. Here, the focus is on a consideration of host-cell apoptosis as either a pathogenic feature or as a factor enabling parasite survival and development.

          Cell death by apoptotic-like mechanisms could be described as a ride to death with a return ticket, as initiation of the pathway may be reversed, with the potential that it could be manipulated for therapeutic purposes. The management of host-cell apoptosis could thus be an adjunctive factor for parasitic disease treatment. Evidence that the apoptotic process could be reversed by anti-apoptotic drugs has recently been obtained, leading to the possibility of host-cell rescue after injury. An important issue will be to predict the beneficial or deleterious effects of controlling human cell death by apoptotic-like mechanisms during parasitic diseases.

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          Most cited references 76

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          Classification of cell death: recommendations of the Nomenclature Committee on Cell Death 2009.

          Different types of cell death are often defined by morphological criteria, without a clear reference to precise biochemical mechanisms. The Nomenclature Committee on Cell Death (NCCD) proposes unified criteria for the definition of cell death and of its different morphologies, while formulating several caveats against the misuse of words and concepts that slow down progress in the area of cell death research. Authors, reviewers and editors of scientific periodicals are invited to abandon expressions like 'percentage apoptosis' and to replace them with more accurate descriptions of the biochemical and cellular parameters that are actually measured. Moreover, at the present stage, it should be accepted that caspase-independent mechanisms can cooperate with (or substitute for) caspases in the execution of lethal signaling pathways and that 'autophagic cell death' is a type of cell death occurring together with (but not necessarily by) autophagic vacuolization. This study details the 2009 recommendations of the NCCD on the use of cell death-related terminology including 'entosis', 'mitotic catastrophe', 'necrosis', 'necroptosis' and 'pyroptosis'.
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            Human cerebral malaria. A quantitative ultrastructural analysis of parasitized erythrocyte sequestration.

            For investigation of the pathogenesis of cerebral malaria, immediate postmortem samples from brain and other tissues of patients dying with Plasmodium falciparum malaria, with (CM) or without (NCM) cerebral malaria, were processed for electron microscopy. Counts of parasitized erythrocytes (PRBCs) in cerebral and other vessels showed that the proportion of PRBCs was higher in CM than in NCM, and also that the proportion of PRBCs was higher in the brain than in other organs examined in both CM and NCM. Cerebral vessels from CM patients were more tightly packed with RBCs than those from NCM patients, but there was no significant difference in the amount or degree of endothelial damage or numbers of vessels with endothelial pseudopodia. Fibrillar (fibrin) deposits were present in a small proportion of vessels, but no thrombosis was present. There was neither acute nor chronic inflammation, and leukocytes were absent within or outside cerebral vessels. There was no immune complex deposition in cerebral vessels. Parasites in cerebral vessels were mainly trophozoites or schizonts. Occasional RBC remnants following parasite release were seen. Some parasites were degenerate, resembling crisis forms. PRBCs adhered to endothelium via surface knobs. It is concluded that there is no evidence for an inflammatory or immune pathogenesis for human cerebral malaria and that the clinical effects probably relate to anoxia and the metabolic activities of the parasites.
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              Erythropoietin therapy for acute stroke is both safe and beneficial.

              Erythropoietin (EPO) and its receptor play a major role in embryonic brain, are weakly expressed in normal postnatal/adult brain and up-regulated upon metabolic stress. EPO protects neurons from hypoxic/ ischemic injury. The objective of this trial is to study the safety and efficacy of recombinant human EPO (rhEPO) for treatment of ischemic stroke in man. The trial consisted of a safety part and an efficacy part. In the safety study, 13 patients received rhEPO intravenously (3.3 X 10(4) IU/50 ml/30 min) once daily for the first 3 days after stroke. In the double-blind randomized proof-of-concept trial, 40 patients received either rhEPO or saline. Inclusion criteria were age <80 years, ischemic stroke within the middle cerebral artery territory confirmed by diffusion-weighted MRI, symptom onset <8 hr before drug administration, and deficits on stroke scales. The study endpoints were functional outcome at day 30 (Barthel Index, modified Rankin scale), NIH and Scandinavian stroke scales, evolution of infarct size (sequential MRI evaluation using diffusion-weighted [DWI] and fluid-attenuated inversion recovery sequences [FLAIR]) and the damage marker S100ss. No safety concerns were identified. Cerebrospinal fluid EPO increased to 60-100 times that of nontreated patients, proving that intravenously administered rhEPO reaches the brain. In the efficacy trial, patients received rhEPO within 5 hr of onset of symptoms (median, range 2:40-7:55). Admission neurologic scores and serum S100beta concentrations were strong predictors ofoutcome. Analysis of covariance controlled for these two variables indicated that rhEPO treatment was associated with an improvement in follow-up and outcome scales. A strong trend for reduction in infarct size in rhEPO patients as compared to controls was observed by MRI. Intravenous high-dose rhEPO is well tolerated in acute ischemic stroke and associated with an improvement in clinical outcome at 1 month. A larger scale clinical trial is warranted.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Parasit Vectors
                Parasites & Vectors
                BioMed Central
                1756-3305
                2010
                17 November 2010
                : 3
                : 106
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Malaria Research Unit, University Lyon 1, 8 avenue Rockefeller, 69373 Lyon cedex 08, France
                [2 ]Institute of Parasitology and Biomedicine, CSIC, PT Ciencias de La Salud, 18100 Granada, Spain
                Article
                1756-3305-3-106
                10.1186/1756-3305-3-106
                2995786
                21083888
                Copyright ©2010 Bienvenu et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Categories
                Review

                Parasitology

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