Mary McDowell

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Octopamine receptors (OARs) perform key functions in the biological pathways of primarily invertebrates, making this class of G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) a potentially good target for insecticides. However, the lack of structural and experimental data for this insect-essential GPCR family has promoted the development of homology models that are good(More)
The primary host cells for Leishmania replication are macrophages (MP). Several molecules on the surface of professional phagocytic cells have been implicated in the initial process of parasite internalization and initiation of signaling pathways. These pattern recognition receptors distinguish molecular patterns on pathogen surfaces. Mannose receptor (MR),(More)
Phlebotomus papatasi sand flies are among the primary vectors of Leishmania major parasites from Morocco to the Indian subcontinent and from southern Europe to central and eastern Africa. Antibody-based immunity to sand fly salivary gland proteins in human populations remains a complex contextual problem that is not yet fully understood. We profiled the(More)
The Phlebotomus papatasi salivary protein PpSP15 was shown to protect mice against Leishmania major, suggesting that incorporation of salivary molecules in multi-component vaccines may be a viable strategy for anti-Leishmania vaccines. Here, we investigated PpSP15 predicted amino acid sequence variability and mRNA profile of P. papatasi field populations(More)
Phlebotomine sand flies are the subject of much research because of the role of their females as the only proven natural vectors of Leishmania species, the parasitic protozoans that are the causative agents of the neglected tropical disease leishmaniasis. Activity in this field was highlighted by the eighth International Symposium on Phlebotomine Sand flies(More)
Vitamin D signaling modulates a variety of immune responses. Here, we assessed the role of vitamin D in immunity to experimental leishmaniasis infection in vitamin D receptor-deficient mice (VDRKO). We observed that VDRKO mice on a genetically resistant background have decreased Leishmania major-induced lesion development compared to wild-type (WT) mice;(More)
BACKGROUND Sand fly saliva can drive the outcome of Leishmania infection in animal models, and salivary components have been postulated as vaccine candidates against leishmaniasis. In the sand fly Phlebotomus papatasi, natural sugar-sources modulate the activity of proteins involved in meal digestion, and possibly influence vectorial capacity. However, only(More)
BACKGROUND Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is a neglected tropical disease caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Leishmania. CL causes enormous suffering in many countries worldwide. There is no licensed vaccine against CL, and the chemotherapy options show limited efficacy and high toxicity. Localization of the parasites inside host cells is a barrier to(More)
A meta-analysis of the effects of vector saliva on the immune response and progression of vector-transmitted disease, specifically with regard to pathology, infection level, and host cytokine levels was conducted. Infection in the absence or presence of saliva in naïve mice was compared. In addition, infection in mice pre-exposed to uninfected vector saliva(More)