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Findings on Parasites, Disease Published

Contact: Jennifer Bonck

 

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Specifically, the research focuses on parasites that live in humans long after the patient has recovered from disease. If reactivated, these parasites can lead to severe disease among individuals with weak immune systems. Unlike other types of parasites, these are poorly understood. The team has found a way to study these persistent parasites that may eventually lead to a better understanding of the disease process.

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 4, 2003) -- University of Kentucky researchers are increasing our understanding of infectious disease and immunity.

Salvatore J. Turco, Ph.D., the Antonio S. Turco Professor of Biochemistry, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, UK College of Medicine, along with colleagues at Washington University Medical School and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), have created a new way to study factors affecting a specific type of parasite involved in viruses. The findings, which may lead to a better understanding of these factors and their role in disease and immunity, has been published in the August 29 issue of Science.

Specifically, the research focuses on parasites that live in humans long after the patient has recovered from disease. If reactivated, these parasites can lead to severe disease among individuals with weak immune systems. Unlike other types of parasites, these are poorly understood. The team has found a way to study these persistent parasites that may eventually lead to a better understanding of the disease process.

Turco’s collaborators on the study include Hirowaki Segawa, Ph.D., a former postdoctoral researcher in the UK Department of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, as well as Gerald F. Spath, Ph.D., and Stephen M. Beverley, Ph.D., both of Washington University School of Medicine, and David L. Sacks, Ph.D., Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, NIAID, a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).


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