Detection of Taenia solium DNA in the Urine of Neurocysticercosis Patients

Luz Toribio Center for Global Health, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru;

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Miryam Romano W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland;

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Alan L. Scott W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland;

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Isidro Gonzales Cysticercosis Unit, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Peru

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Herbert Saavedra Cysticercosis Unit, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Peru

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Hector H. Garcia Center for Global Health, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru;
Cysticercosis Unit, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Peru

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Clive Shiff W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland;

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for the Cysticercosis Working Group in Peru† Center for Global Health, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru;
W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland;
Cysticercosis Unit, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Peru

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Neurocysticercosis (NCC), caused by Taenia solium larvae that reside in the central nervous system, results in serious public health and medical issues in many regions of the world. Current diagnosis of NCC is complex requiring both serology and costly neuroimaging of parasitic cysts in the brain. This diagnostic pipeline can be problematic in resource-constrained settings. There is an unmet need for a highly sensitive and clinically informative diagnostic test to complement the present diagnostic approaches. Here, we report that T. solium–derived cell-free DNA is readily detectable in the urine of patients with the subarachnoid and parenchymal forms of NCC, and discuss the potential utility of this approach in enhancing and refining T. solium diagnostics.

Author Notes

Address correspondence to Clive Shiff, W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. E-mail: cshiff1@jhu.edu

Financial support: This study was partially supported by grants U19AI129909 from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (Peru TMRC Program, NIAID/NIH), R01NS054805 from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS/NIH), and D43TW001140 training grant from the Fogarty International Center (FIC/NIH).

Authors’ addresses: Luz Toribio, Centro de Salud Global Tumbes, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru, E-mail: luztoribio14s@gmail.com. Miryam Romano and Alan L. Scott, Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, E-mails: miryamdelosangelesromano@gmail.com and ascott@jhsph.edu. Isidro Gonzales and Herbert Saavedra, Cystercosis Unit, Instituto Nacional de Ciecias Neurologicas, Lima, Peru, E-mails: igonzales@gmail.com and hsaavedra@gmail.com. Herbert H. Garcia, Centro de Salud Global Tumbes, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru, and Department of Microbiology, School of Sciences, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru, E-mail: hgarcia1@jhu.edu. Clive Shiff, Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, E-mail: cshiff1@jhu.edu.

Cysticercosis Working Group in Peru: Hector H. Garcia, MD, PhD; Robert H. Gilman, MD, DTMH; Armando E. Gonzalez, DVM, PhD; and Victor C. W. Tsang, PhD (Coordination Board); Silvia Rodriguez, MSc; Isidro Gonzalez, MD; Herbert Saavedra, MD; Manuel Martinez, MD (Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas, Lima, Perú); Manuela Verastegui, PhD; Mirko Zimic, PhD; Javier Bustos, MD, MPH; Saul Santivanez, MD, PhD; Holger Mayta, PhD; Yesenia Castillo, MSc; Monica Pajuelo, PhD; Gianfranco Arroyo, DVM, MSc (Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Perú); Maria T. Lopez, DVM, PhD; Luis Gomez, DVM; Cesar M. Gavidia, DVM, PhD (School of Veterinary Medicine, Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima, Perú); Luz M. Moyano, MD; Ricardo Gamboa, MSc; Claudio Muro; Percy Vichez, MSc (Cysticercosis Elimination Program, Tumbes, Perú); Sukwan Handali, MD; John Noh (Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, GA); Theodore E. Nash, MD; Siddhartha Mahanty, MD, PhD (NIAID, NIH, Bethesda, MD); Jon Friedland (Imperial College, London, United Kingdom).

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