Échinococcose alvéolaire : viabilité parasitaire et évaluation de nouveaux biomarqueurs pour le diagnostic et le suivi des patients.

Abstract : The parasite Echinococcus multilocularis is the causative agent of alveolar echinococcosis (AE), a fatal infection if not adequately managed. Medical treatment, for inoperable patients, is only parasitostatic, with many side effects. Nevertheless, in some patients, the viability of the parasite could regress sufficiently for treatment to be stopped. Currently, biomarkers for estimating parasite viability are only indirect, evaluating the immune response of the patient. Three studies were conducted to evaluate biomarkers that are innovative or already available on the market.We investigated the presence of circulating cell-free DNA (ccfDNA) at diagnosis, and after a few months of treatment. For the first time, our study identified the presence of ccfDNA in cases of AE, in an animal model and in human samples. Although the method cannot yet be used for diagnosis or follow-up, it is a starting-point for the use of ccfDNA in the management of AE.In addition, we conducted an exploratory study of parasitic lesions in mice, and in a patient who had only received medical treatment for a very short time. We analyzed DNA to estimate the proportion of parasite cells present in each sample. We then quantified different parasite transcripts from each sample, in order to directly estimate parasite viability. This approach allowed us to identify the most abundantly transcribed gene, which could potentially be used to study a larger cohort, in order to correlate results with the indirect biomarkers used today.Finally, we evaluated a rapid diagnostic test for cystic echinococcosis, which produces strong cross-reactions in the case of AE infection.This work opens new perspectives, mainly to improve the follow-up of patients with AE.
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Alice Baraquin. Échinococcose alvéolaire : viabilité parasitaire et évaluation de nouveaux biomarqueurs pour le diagnostic et le suivi des patients.. Biochimie, Biologie Moléculaire. Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019UBFCE002⟩. ⟨tel-02150310⟩

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