Taenia solium cysticercosis is the main cause of acquired epilepsy in the world. The infection is highly endemic in most developing countries, and recent studies by our group have demonstrated that the antibody-positive population is composed of an ?iceberg? structure involving exposure, established infection, and symptomatic disease. At the same time, our group has advanced in the determination of some of the most important antigenic components of the parasite. We have sequenced and synthesized two of them, and are in the process of synthesizing several others. In this project we will use these synthetic antigens or combinations of them, as well as two monoclonal-antibody based antigen detection assays, to look for a sensitive and specific assay that can permit to discriminate individuals with viable cysts. In the human population, it is expectable that a proportion of individuals with established neurocysticercosis (NCC) will develop neurological symptoms in the lapse of a few years.
We aim to detect individuals with latent viable NCC to determine in a clinical trial if preventive antiparasitic therapy may prevent neurological symptoms. Finally, a simulation model will be developed in order to evaluate whether the benefits of this treatment may outweigh the costs associated with screening, detection, and treatment of asymptomatic NCC cases.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Research Program Projects (P01)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAI1)
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Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia
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