Special Issue "Genomics and Epidemiology of Protozoan Parasites"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2024 | Viewed by 9782
Interests: malaria; neglected tropical diseases; diagnostics; clinical studies
Globally, more than 1 billion people are at risk of infectious diseases caused by protozoan parasites. Protozoan parasites are a large and highly diverse group of unicellular eukaryotes infecting humans and animals. The most important parasitic diseases in humans include malaria, as well as African trypanosomiasis, Chagas disease, and leishmaniasis, which are considered neglected tropical diseases. Gastroenteric diseases such as cryptosporidiosis and giardiasis are also caused by protozoan parasites. These diseases are considered poverty-related and are a significant health burden particularly in poor, tropical and subtropical countries. However, they occasionally occur in industrialized countries, as do toxoplasmosis and babesiosis. Infection with Toxoplasma gondii during pregnancy is a serious risk to the unborn baby, and Naegleria fowleri is a free-living, rare but emerging protozoon causing severe disease.
Efficacious treatments and prevention measures are available for some of these parasitic diseases. Malaria can effectively be cured with artemisinin-based combination therapies, and even a malaria vaccine is on the horizon. Human African trypanosomiasis is reaching the elimination phase, and a new drug has recently been developed. In contrast, cure from Chagas remains difficult, as is the case for many other protozoan infections. Overall, there is a lack of safe and effective antiparasitic vaccines and treatments, and the development of resistance in parasites is worsening the situation. Apart from the overall limited efforts and financial investment, there are many reasons for this deficit. Compared to viruses and bacteria, protozoan parasites have more complex genomes, cellular structure, life cycle and biology; host–parasite interactions are not well understood; and many parasites evade the host´s immune response.
Genome-scale sequencing approaches can be applied to all areas of biological investigations, including understanding of gene function and of parasite biology, as well as a tool for epidemiological investigations such as the identification of new parasite strains, parasite transmission and spread, parasite evolution and spread of drug resistance. In this Special Issue we will provide a collection of in-depth, up-to-date genome-scale investigations on several protozoan parasites.
We invite original research and review articles reporting on protozoan parasites infective to humans. Potential topics include but are not limited to:
- Functional genomics to understand parasite biology.
- Evolutionary and comparative genomics to understand evolutionary relationships and phylogeny.
- Genomic variations in parasite populations (including resistance markers).
- Genomics epidemiology (including prevalence, geographic distribution, and transmission patterns).
Dr. Andrea Kreidenweiss
Prof. Dr. Peter G. Kremsner
Manuscript Submission Information
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- human pathogenic