EPA Science Inventory

CRYPTOSPORIDIUM VIRULENCE DETERMINANTS-ARE WE THERE YET? (R828035)

Citation:

Okhuysen, P. C. AND C. L. Chappell. CRYPTOSPORIDIUM VIRULENCE DETERMINANTS-ARE WE THERE YET? (R828035). RISK ANALYSIS. American Chemical Society, Washington, DC, 32(5):517-525, (2002).

Description:

Exposure to Cryptosporidium parvum in healthy individuals results in transient infection that may be asymptomatic or can result in self-limited diarrhoea. In contrast, acquired immune deficiency syndrome patients with cryptosporidiosis can experience severe manifestations of disease. Volunteer studies have demonstrated that as few as 10 oocysts can cause infection in otherwise healthy adults and that isolates from geographically diverse regions differ in infectivity and, perhaps, virulence. Variability in isolate pathogenicity and infectivity has also been seen in bovine and murine models, respectively. Furthermore, isolate specific differences in protein composition and in host immunoreactivity have been observed. The molecular basis for differences in pathogenicity is not understood. Determining which factors are responsible for host selectivity and for the initiation, establishment, and perpetuation of infection with Cryptosporidium is key to rational drug design and vaccine development. To date, no specific virulence factors have been unequivocally shown to individually cause direct or indirect damage to host tissues nor have mutant strains been produced that could prove that particular deletions result in less virulent strains. Nevertheless, a number of candidate molecules have been identified by immunological and molecular methods. Here, we review the salient characteristics of some of these putative virulence determinants, including molecules that are involved in adhesion, protein degradation and the modulation of the host responses.

Author Keywords: Cryptosporidium; Virulence; Diarrhoea

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Start Date: 01/01/2002
Completion Date: 01/01/2002
Record Last Revised: 12/22/2005
Record Created: 10/30/2003
Record Released: 10/30/2003
Record ID: 70199

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH