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Biomarkers of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis

Journal article
Authors F. Bahrami
Ali M Harandi
S. Riafati
Published in Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology
Volume 8
ISSN 2235-2988
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Microbiology and Immunology
Language en
Keywords cutaneous leishmaniasis, asymptomatic, Leishmania, biomarker, immune responses, regulatory t-cells, sand fly saliva, major infection, expression, parasites, immunity, hypersensitivity, interleukin-10, individuals, macrophages, Immunology, Microbiology
Subject categories Microbiology


Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is an immune-mediated skin pathology caused mainly by Leishmania (L.) major, Leishmania tropica, Leishmania braziliensis, L. mexicana, and L. arnazonensis. The burden of CL in terms of morbidity and social stigmas are concentrated on certain developing countries in Asia, Africa, and South America. People with asymptomatic CL represent a large proportion of the infected individuals in the endemic areas who exhibit no lesion and can control the infection by as yet not fully understood mechanisms. Currently, there is no approved prophylactic control measure for CL. Discovery of biomarkers of CL infection and immunity can inform the development of more precise diagnostics tools as well as curative or preventive strategies to control CL. Herein, we provide a brief overview of the state-of-the-art for the biomarkers of CL with a special emphasis on the asymptomatic CL biomarkers. Among the identified CL biomarkers so far, direct biomarkers which indicate the actual presence of the infection as well as indirect biomarkers which reflect the host's reaction to the infection, such as alterations in delayed type hypersensitivity, T-cell subpopulations and cytokines, adenosine deaminase, and antibodies against the sand fly saliva proteins are discussed in detail. The future avenues such as the use of systems analysis to identify and characterize novel CL biomarkers are also discussed.

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