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American Tegumentary Leishmaniasis

  • Olga Zerpa
  • Alicia Ponte-Sucre
Chapter

Summary

American tegumentary leishmaniasis is an endemic anthropozoonosis undergoing expansion on the American continent. The disease is caused by several Leishmania species, and, thus, there are intraspecific parasitological dissimilarities that may generate different pathologies. Furthermore, in America, Leishmania spp. has diverse reservoirs (that may change continuously) and can use various vectors to infect humans and mammals. Antimonials are the drugs of choice for the treatment of American tegumentary leishmaniasis; however, their efficacy is not predictable, and this may be linked to parasite drug resistance. This is further complicated by the fact that the etiological parasitic species in America belong to both the Leishmania and the Viannia subgeni. For all these reasons, the identification of the etiological infectious agent – up to the species level – is fundamental for precise clinical diagnosis, for treatment and prognosis, and for control of the disease. The present chapter offers a description of American tegumentary leishmaniasis, a fundamental piece of knowledge for the comprehension of the challenges we face for leishmaniasis in times of drug resistance. As a way to better understand the unique scenario that America offers for leishmaniasis, some data related to the figures present in the Old World will be presented.

Keywords

Visceral Leishmaniasis Cutaneous Leishmaniasis Leishmania Species Lepromatous Leprosy Erythematous Papule 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors are grateful for the financial support received from the Coordination for Research, Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Central de Venezuela (UCV), and the Council for Scientific and Humanistic Research (CDCH), UCV. Likewise, they are grateful for the support conferred by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany, to Alicia Ponte-Sucre.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Cátedra de Dermatologia, Instituto de BiomedicinaUniversidad Central de VenezuelaCaracasVenezuela
  2. 2.Laboratorio de Fisiología Molecular, Instituto de Medicina Experimental, Escuela Luis RazettiUniversidad Central de Venezuela, Ciudad UniversitariaCaracasVenezuela

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