Hydatid disease, or hydatidosis, is a neglected parasitic disease that causes cystic echinococcosis in humans infected with the tapeworm Echinococcus granulosus. Over one million people worldwide are affected with echinococcosis at any one time, and approximately three billion US dollars are spent every year for treatments and livestock industry compensation. In humans, the disease can be expensive and complicated to treat, sometimes requiring extensive surgery and/or prolonged drug therapy. Cystic echinococcosis is globally distributed, with highly endemic areas at the southern tip of South America. As part of a global health fellowship funded by the National Institute of Health’s Fogarty International Center, we will focus on revealing infection prevalences of E. granulosus in hosts of the parasite (dogs, foxes) and the impacts of hydatid disease on target populations (humans, sheep) on the island of Tierra del Fuego, Chile. This investigation will shed light on an extremely relevant and complex health issue involving many key stakeholders, including advocates of human health, animal health, and conservation of native species.
This project is supported by NIH Research Training Grant # R25 TW009343 funded by the Fogarty International Center; the National Institute of Mental Health; the National Health, Lung and Blood Institute; and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, as well as the University of California Global Health Institute. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health or the University of California Global Health Institute.
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