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Pathology Research International
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 4503214, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/4503214
Research Article

Trypanosoma vivax Adhesion to Red Blood Cells in Experimentally Infected Sheep

1Laboratorio de Microscopía Electrónica, Centro de Estudios Biomédicos y Veterinarios, Instituto de Estudios Científicos y Tecnológicos, Universidad Nacional Experimental Simón Rodríguez, Caracas, Venezuela
2Unidad de Toxoplasmosis y Protozoosis, Departamento de Parasitología, Centro Nacional de Microbiología, Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Calle Alejandro Casona 7, Piso 6D, 28035 Madrid, Spain
3Sección de Inmunohistoquímica y Microscopía Electrónica, Instituto Anatomopatológico “José A. O’Daly”, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Central de Venezuela, Caracas, Venezuela
4Grupo de Inmunobiología, Centro de Estudios Biomédicos y Veterinarios, Instituto de Estudios Científicos y Tecnológicos, Universidad Nacional Experimental Simón Rodríguez, Caracas, Venezuela
5Centro de Microscopía Electrónica “Mitsuo Ogura”, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Central de Venezuela, Caracas, Venezuela
6Investigador Prometeo, Universidad de Las Fuerzas Armadas ESPE, Departamento de Ciencias de la Vida, Grupo de Investigación de Sanidad Animal y Humana (GISAH), Sangolquí, Ecuador

Received 28 October 2015; Accepted 30 March 2016

Academic Editor: Piero Tosi

Copyright © 2016 Alpidio A. Boada-Sucre et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Trypanosomosis, a globally occurring parasitic disease, poses as a major obstacle to livestock production in tropical and subtropical regions resulting in tangible economic losses. In Latin America including Venezuela, trypanosomosis of ruminants is mainly caused by Trypanosoma vivax. Biologically active substances produced from trypanosomes, as well as host-trypanosome cellular interactions, contribute to the pathogenesis of anemia in an infection. The aim of this study was to examine with a scanning electron microscope the cellular interactions and alterations in ovine red blood cells (RBC) experimentally infected with T. vivax. Ovine infection resulted in changes of RBC shape as well as the formation of surface holes or vesicles. A frequent observation was the adhesion to the ovine RBC by the trypanosome’s free flagellum, cell body, or attached flagellum in a process mediated by the filopodia emission from the trypanosome surface. The observed RBC alterations are caused by mechanical and biochemical damage from host-parasite interactions occurring in the bloodstream. The altered erythrocytes are prone to mononuclear phagocytic removal contributing to the hematocrit decrease during infection.