The little pigs and the big bad trypanosome
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The little pigs and the big bad trypanosome. Lucas J Cunningham. African Trypanosomiasis ( Sleeping Sickness). Neglected Tropical Diseases, fatal if untreated 66 million people at risk in 36 African countries Single cell parasites called trypanosomes

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The little pigs and the big bad trypanosome

The little pigs and the big bad trypanosome

Lucas J Cunningham


African trypanosomiasis sleeping sickness

African Trypanosomiasis(Sleeping Sickness)

  • Neglected Tropical Diseases, fatal if untreated

  • 66 million people at risk in 36 African countries

  • Single cell parasites called trypanosomes

  • Transmitted by the bite of a tsetse fly

  • Causes serious disease in animals

  • Animal African Trypanosomiasis is responsible for a loss of U.S. $4.5 billion per year across sub Saharan Africa

https://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Membrane_proteins_as_mechanisms_of_immune_system_evasion_in_Trypanosoma_brucei

http://www.raywilsonbirdphotography.co.uk/Galleries/Invertebrates/vectors/Tsetse_Fly.html

http://sitemaker.umich.edu/section003group6/impact_on_food_production_and_security

http://news.sciencemag.org/chemistry/2011/06/hitting-sleeping-sickness-where-it-lives


Importance of human african trypanosomiasis hat

Importance of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT)

Elimination 2020


African trypanosomiasis

African Trypanosomiasis

  • There are three species in the brucei group

  • Trypanosomabruceigambiense

  • Trypanosomabruceirhodesiense

  • Trypanosomabruceibrucei

SouthSudan

Gambiense (chronic) sleeping sickness

Rhodesiense (acute) sleeping sickness

Images: http://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/africa.html


Can animals be a reservoir for gambiense

Can animals be a reservoir for gambiense?

  • Past experiments have shown that pigs can be readily infected with gambiense sleeping sickness

  • Recently more importance has been placed on the possibility of animal reservoirs influencing the transmission of the disease


Pig sampling in uganda

South Sudan

Pig Sampling in Uganda

366

DRC

Gambiense sleeping sickness

400

Rhodesiense sleeping sickness


Pig sampling method

Pig sampling method


Analysis of pig blood for trypanosomes

Analysis of pig blood for trypanosomes

General test for species of interest

Specific tests for species

limited

Targets an area of DNA with 1 copy per parasite

  • Highly sensitive

  • Targets an area of DNA with 10,000 copies per parasite


Results

Results

  • 766 pigs were screened with the general test

3.26% infection of T. bruceisl overall

25 out of 400 were infected, 6.25% in Arua

Arua

Moyo


The little pigs and the big bad trypanosome

Map

29.6

3.0

2.2

13.7

1.5


Do we have the big bad trypanosome

Do we have the big bad trypanosome?

  • 25 positive samples re-screened for gambiense infections

  • So far none of the pigs appear to be positive for the big bad trypanosome, this could be good news for the farmers

  • But…

  • Not all the tests have been finished, issue with sensitivity, plus the pigs still have animal trypanosomiasis


Conclusions

Conclusions

  • 25 out of 766 pigs positive for trypanosomes of interest

  • 20 out of 25 cases came from just two sample sites

  • The issue with the sensitivity needs to be ruled out

  • Secondary tests will need to follow to determine exact species present

  • Why is Arua a hot spot and why isn’t Moyo?

  • Is the big bad trypanosome still at large, not yet concluded


Thanks to

Thanks to:

  • Stephen Torr (LSTM and Warwick NTD)

  • Jessica Lingley (LSTM, Vector Group)

  • Ugandan field technicians

  • Ugandan vets

  • Ugandan farmers

  • Lee Haines (LSTM, Vector Group)

  • Johan Esterhuizen (LSTM, Vector Group)

  • InakiTirados (LSTM, NTD)

  • Hannah Betts (LSTM, Vector Group)

  • Liam Morrison (Roslin Institute, University of Edinburgh)


Impact of finding gambiense in pigs

Impact of finding gambiense in pigs

  • Target and screen animals- requires more accurate field diagnostics

  • Identifying areas of transmission- disease is very focal, mass screening of the flies for the parasite maybe in conjunction with human and animal screening

  • Integration of controls- will probably require a number of control strategies to eliminate the disease

  • Disease eradication challenging


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