Érika Martins Braga

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Southeast Brazil is a neotropical region composed of a mosaic of different tropical habitats and mountain chains, which allowed for the formation of bird-rich communities with distinct ecological niches. Although this region has the potential to harbor a remarkable variety of avian parasites, there is a lack of information about the diversity of malarial(More)
Circulation CD4(+)CD25(+)FoxP3(+) regulatory T cells (Tregs) have been associated with the delicate balancing between control of overwhelming acute malaria infection and prevention of immune pathology due to disproportionate inflammatory responses to erythrocytic stage of the parasite. While the role of Tregs has been well-documented in murine models and P.(More)
Avian malaria parasites (Plasmodium) have a worldwide distribution except for Antarctica. They are transmitted exclusively by mosquito vectors (Diptera: Culicidae) and are of particular interest to health care research due to their phylogenetic relationship with human plasmodia and their ability to cause avian malaria, which is frequently lethal in(More)
A cross-sectional survey was conducted to estimate the occurrence of malaria infection among captive psittacine birds (n=127) from three zoological gardens in Brazil. Malaria infection was evaluated by the association of direct examination of blood smears with amplification of the 18SSU rRNA gene of the Plasmodium genus, demonstrating an overall occurrence(More)
Plasmodium malariae is commonly confounded with Plasmodium vivax at the microscopic examination of thick blood smear. In the present study, we used a nested PCR assay to amplify a species-specific sequence of the 18S SSU rRNA gene of Plasmodium in blood samples of 497 individuals living in an endemic region of the Brazilian Amazon basin. We have found that,(More)
Habitat alteration can disrupt host-parasite interactions and lead to the emergence of new diseases in wild populations. The cerrado habitat of Brazil is being fragmented and degraded rapidly by agriculture and urbanization. We screened 676 wild birds from three habitats (intact cerrado, disturbed cerrado and transition area Amazonian rainforest-cerrado)(More)
Naturally acquired antibodies to five variants of the merozoite surface protein 2 (MSP-2), a target of clinical immunity to Plasmodium falciparum malaria, were measured in a cohort of rural Amazonians. Local MSP-2 variants comprised both highly divergent families of alleles (FC27 and 3D7). Total IgG antibodies to two FC27-type antigens were found in 22-28%(More)
Vaccinia virus strains from the family Poxviridae have been frequently isolated in Brazil and associated with outbreaks of exanthematic disease affecting cows and humans. An ELISA IgG was applied to evaluate the seroprevalence of orthopoxviruses in a community located in a rural settlement in the Amazon region, where no orthopoxvirus outbreaks have yet been(More)
The success of PCR technique depends on many factors, such as high quality DNA pellets obtained from blood samples, good reagents and adequate conditions of amplification. Taking these limitations into account, a retrospective epidemiological study for malaria diagnosis was conducted in a mesoendemic area in the Brazilian Amazon. A nested PCR protocol with(More)
Avian malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by Plasmodium spp. Avian plasmodia are recognized conservation-threatening pathogens due to their potential to cause severe epizootics when introduced to bird populations with which they did not co-evolve. Penguins are considered particularly susceptible, as outbreaks in captive populations will often lead to(More)