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Human African Trypanosomiasis ( sleeping sickness). Ankita Desai. Kinetoplastids include Sleeping sickness. Approximately 400 million people are at risk of contracting a kinetoplastid disease. Distribution of funds for sleeping sickness. What is HAT?.

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Human african trypanosomiasis sleeping sickness
Human African Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness)

Ankita Desai


Kinetoplastids include Sleeping sickness.

Approximately 400 million people are at risk of contracting a kinetoplastid disease.



What is hat
What is HAT?

  • Human African Trypanosomiasis = “sleeping sickness”

  • Early stage vs. late stage


How does one contract hat
How does one contract HAT?

  • Tsetse fly is a vector


What causes disease
What causes disease?

  • Trypanosomabruceigambiense – chronic

  • Trypanosomabruceirhodesiense – acute; infects cattle and humans


Structure of trypanosome
Structure of trypanosome

  • Nucleus

  • Kinetoplast (circular DNA inside mitochondrion)

  • Flagella for movement


Transmission the parasite s life cycle
Transmission/The parasite’s life cycle


Who does it affect
Who does it affect?

  • 36 African countries & ~ 60 million people at risk in 1996.

  • WHO estimate: b/w 50,000 and 70,000 people are infected.


Who is most susceptible
Who is most susceptible?

  • At risk if near/on:

    • forest trails

    • water collection points in forests

    • Riverbanks

    • forest edges surrounding plantations

  • Flies are attracted by large moving objects and by CO2which is why they often feed on animals and humans

  • HAT mainly affects the most productive age group (15 to 45 years).


How to detect hat
How to detect HAt

  • Look for inflammation of the brain and its covering, the meninges

  • Tests include the following:

    • Blood smear

    • Cerebrospinal fluid tests

    • Complete blood count (CBC)

    • Lymph node aspiration


How can we cure infected persons
How can we cure infected persons?

  • drug treatment

    • Melarsoprol

    • Eflornithine (T. gambienseonly)

    • Nifurtimox (used with Eflornithine)


Problem of relapse and potential drug resistance
Problem of relapse and potential drug resistance

Melarsoprol relapse rates in second-stage human African trypanosomiasis patients, Equateur Nord Province, 2001–2003


How can the disease be prevented
How can the disease be prevented?

  • WHO suggests supplying people with tsetse fly traps



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