Otacílio Cruz Moreira

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Cardiotonic steroids are used to treat heart failure and arrhythmia and have promising anticancer effects. The prototypic cardiotonic steroid ouabain may also be a hormone that modulates epithelial cell adhesion. Cardiotonic steroids consist of a steroid nucleus and a lactone ring, and their biological effects depend on the binding to their receptor,(More)
BACKGROUND The factors contributing to chronic Chagas' heart disease remain unknown. High nitric oxide (NO) levels have been shown to be associated with cardiomyopathy severity in patients. Further, NO produced via inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS/NOS2) is proposed to play a role in Trypanosoma cruzi control. However, the participation of iNOS/NOS2 and(More)
Leishmaniases control has been hampered by the unavailability of rapid detection methods and the lack of suitable therapeutic and prophylactic measures. Accurate diagnosis, which can distinguish between Leishmania isolates, is essential for conducting appropriate prognosis, therapy and epidemiology. Molecular methods are currently being employed to detect(More)
BACKGROUND Chagas disease (CD) is characterized by parasite persistence and immunological unbalance favoring systemic inflammatory profile. Chronic chagasic cardiomyopathy, the main manifestation of CD, occurs in a TNF-enriched milieu and frequently progresses to heart failure. AIM OF THE STUDY To challenge the hypothesis that TNF plays a key role in(More)
Chagas disease (CD), caused by the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi, is a prototypical neglected tropical disease. Specific immunity promotes acute phase survival. Nevertheless, one-third of CD patients develop chronic chagasic cardiomyopathy (CCC) associated with parasite persistence and immunological unbalance. Currently, the therapeutic management of patients(More)
BACKGROUND Trypanosoma cruzi is the etiological agent of Chagas' disease. Cysteine peptidases are relevant to several aspects of the T. cruzi life cycle and are implicated in parasite-mammalian host relationships. However, little is known about the factors that contribute to the parasite-insect host interaction. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS Here, we(More)
Inflammatory cytokines and microbe-borne immunostimulators have emerged as triggers of depressive behavior. Behavioral alterations affect patients chronically infected by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. We have previously shown that C3H/He mice present acute phase-restricted meningoencephalitis with persistent central nervous system (CNS) parasitism,(More)
The development and production of viral vaccines, in general, involve several steps that need the monitoring of viral load throughout the entire process. Applying a 2-step quantitative reverse transcription real time PCR assay (RT-qPCR), viral load can be measured and monitored in a few hours. In this context, the development, standardization and validation(More)
BACKGROUND Chronic chagasic cardiomyopathy (CCC), the main clinical sign of Chagas disease, is associated with systemic CD8+ T-cell abnormalities and CD8-enriched myocarditis occurring in an inflammatory milieu. Pentoxifylline (PTX), a phosphodiesterase inhibitor, has immunoregulatory and cardioprotective properties. Here, we tested PTX effects on CD8+(More)
Inconclusive results of serological diagnosis in Chagas disease have an important impact on blood banks worldwide, reflecting in the high number of discarded bags or in an increased transmission by blood transfusion. Molecular techniques such as qPCR have been used for diagnosis and to monitor Trypanosoma cruzi load in peripheral blood samples. A promising(More)