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Scientists uncover process enabling toxoplasmosis parasite to survive homelessness
Date:9/20/2010

e system. Later, however, the parasite can emerge from its dormant state to strike when a patient's immune system is weakened.

"Our latest findings indicate that if we design new drugs that target this stress response pathway, these drugs may be effective against both acute and chronic Toxoplasma infection," says Dr. Sullivan.

An estimated 60 million people in the United States are infected with the toxoplasmosis parasite, but for most infection produces flu-like symptoms or no symptoms at all. However, for people with an impaired immune system such as those undergoing chemotherapy, heart transplants, or people with AIDS the disease can cause life-threatening complications including cardiopulmonary problems, blurred vision and seizures. Also, if a woman becomes infected for the first time shortly before or during pregnancy, there is risk of miscarriage or congenital birth defects.


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Contact: Eric Schoch
eschoch@iupui.edu
317-274-7722
Indiana University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

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