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Saint George's, Grenada

St. George’s University is a private international university in Grenada, West Indies, offering degrees in medicine, veterinary medicine, public health, the health science, nursing, arts and science, and business Wikipedia.

Macpherson C.N.L.,St. Georges University
International Journal for Parasitology | Year: 2013

Toxocariasis, caused by infection with larvae of Toxocara canis, and to a lesser extent by Toxocara cati and other ascaridoid species, manifests in humans in a range of clinical syndromes. These include visceral and ocular larva migrans, neurotoxocariasis and covert or common toxocariasis. Toxocara canis is one of the most widespread public health and economically important zoonotic parasitic infections humans share with dogs, cats and wild canids, particularly foxes. This neglected disease has been shown through seroprevalence studies to be especially prevalent among children from socio-economically disadvantaged populations both in the tropics and sub-tropics and in industrialised nations. Human infection occurs by the accidental ingestion of embryonated eggs or larvae from a range of wild and domestic paratenic hosts. Most infections remain asymptomatic. Clinically overt infections may go undiagnosed, as diagnostic tests are expensive and can require serological, molecular and/or imaging tests, which may not be affordable or available. Treatment in humans varies according to symptoms and location of the larvae. Anthelmintics, including albendazole, thiabendazole and mebendazole may be given together with anti-inflammatory corticosteroids. The development of molecular tools should lead to new and improved strategies for the treatment, diagnosis and control of toxocariasis and the role of other ascaridoid species in the epidemiology of Toxocara spp. Molecular technologies may also help to reveal the public health importance of T. canis, providing new evidence to support the implementation of national control initiatives which have yet to be developed for Toxocara spp. A number of countries have implemented reproductive control programs in owned and stray dogs to reduce the number of young dogs in the population. These programs would positively impact upon T. canis transmission since the parasite is most fecund and prevalent in puppies. Other control measures for T. canis include the regular and frequent anthelmintic treatment of dogs and cats, starting at an early age, education and enforcement of laws for the disposal of canine faeces, dog legislation and personal hygiene. The existence of wild definitive and paratenic hosts complicates the control of T. canis. Increasing human and dog populations, population movements and climate change will all serve to increase the importance of this zoonosis. This review examines the transmission, diagnosis and clinical syndromes of toxocariasis, its public health importance, epidemiology, control and current research needs. © 2013 Australian Society for Parasitology Inc. Source

Coskuner O.,St. Georges University
Journal of Alzheimer's disease : JAD | Year: 2014

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a devastating disease of aging that initiates decades prior to clinical manifestation and represents an impending epidemic. Two early features of AD are metabolic dysfunction and changes in amyloid-β protein (Aβ) levels. Since levels of ATP decrease over the course of the disease and Aβ is an early biomarker of AD, we sought to uncover novel linkages between the two. First and remarkably, a GxxxG motif is common between both Aβ (oligomerization motif) and nucleotide binding proteins (Rossmann fold). Second, ATP was demonstrated to protect against Aβ mediated cytotoxicity. Last, there is structural similarity between ATP and amyloid binding/inhibitory compounds such as ThioT, melatonin, and indoles. Thus, we investigated whether ATP alters misfolding of the pathologically relevant Aβ42. To test this hypothesis, we performed computational and biochemical studies. Our computational studies demonstrate that ATP interacts strongly with Tyr10 and Ser26 of Aβ fibrils in solution. Experimentally, both ATP and ADP reduced Aβ misfolding at physiological intracellular concentrations, with thresholds at ~500 μM and 1 mM respectively. This inhibition of Aβ misfolding is specific; requiring Tyr10 of Aβ and is enhanced by magnesium. Last, cerebrospinal fluid ATP levels are in the nanomolar range and decreased with AD pathology. This initial and novel finding regarding the ATP interaction with Aβ and reduction of Aβ misfolding has potential significance to the AD field. It provides an underlying mechanism for published links between metabolic dysfunction and AD. It also suggests a potential role of ATP in AD pathology, as the occurrence of misfolded extracellular Aβ mirrors lowered extracellular ATP levels. Last, the findings suggest that Aβ conformation change may be a sensor of metabolic dysfunction. Source

Macpherson C.C.,St. Georges University
Journal of Medical Ethics | Year: 2014

One manifestation of climate change is the increasingly severe extreme weather that causes injury, illness and death through heat stress, air pollution, infectious disease and other means. Leading health organisations around the world are responding to the related water and food shortages and volatility of energy and agriculture prices that threaten health and health economics. Environmental and climate ethics highlight the associated challenges to human rights and distributive justice but rarely address health or encompass bioethical methods or analyses. Public health ethics and its broader umbrella, bioethics, remain relatively silent on climate change. Meanwhile global population growth creates more people who aspire to Western lifestyles and unrestrained socioeconomic growth. Fulfilling these aspirations generates more emissions; worsens climate change and undermines virtues and values that engender appreciation of, and protections for, natural resources. Greater understanding of how virtues and values are evolving in different contexts, and the associated consequences, might nudge the individual and collective priorities that inform public policy toward embracing stewardship and responsibility for environmental resources necessary to health. Instead of neglecting climate change and related policy, public health ethics and bioethics should explore these issues; bring transparency to the tradeoffs that permit emissions to continue at current rates; and offer deeper understanding about what is at stake and what it means to live a good life in today's world. Source

Previous work has indicated that the landbirds of Skokholm island (Wales) are not in equilibrium as defined in MacArthur-Wilson's classic theory of island biogeography. This study takes a new dataset with over six decades of data and investigates equilibrium on Skokholm using cluster analysis to identify periods of turnover stability. The attributes of the identified periods were investigated in relation to the MacArthur-Wilson model using analyses of change in numbers of species, S, from one year to the next and measures of variability in S quantified for each of the periods identified together with a consideration of the dynamics in the numbers of species by habitat groupings. Cluster analysis identified four main periods of which two middle periods appeared to be in equilibrium but with a phase shift in-between. The first and last periods showed non-equilibrium dynamics but plots of species by habitat groupings suggested that this was due to habitat changes going on at those times. This decadal long dataset indicates that the landbirds of Skokholm exhibit periods of both equilibrium and non-equilibrium with the latter attributable to habitat change. The apparent phase shift in the equilibrium number of species was unexpected within the framework of island biogeographic theory and not easily explained using the current MacArthur-Wilson framework. There is a need to integrate the theory of island biogeography with more recent work on alternative stable states, tipping points, and phase (or regime) shifts, together with equilibrium and non-equilibrium dynamics, into a single framework. © 2015 The Author. Source

Torgerson P.R.,University of Zurich | Macpherson C.N.L.,St. Georges University
Veterinary Parasitology | Year: 2011

Diseases resulting from zoonotic transmission of parasites are common. Humans become infected through food, water, soil and close contact with animals. Most parasitic zoonoses are neglected diseases despite causing a considerable global burden of ill health in humans and having a substantial financial burden on livestock industries. This review aims to bring together the current data available on global burden estimates of parasitic zoonoses and indicate any changes in the trends of these diseases. There is a clear need of such information as interventions to control zoonoses are often in their animal hosts. The costs of such interventions together with animal health issues will drive the cost effectiveness of intervention strategies. What is apparent is that collectively, parasitic zoonoses probably have a similar human disease burden to any one of the big three human infectious diseases: malaria, tuberculosis or HIV in addition to animal health burden. Although the global burden for most parasitic zoonoses is not yet known, the major contributors to the global burden of parasitic zoonoses are toxoplasmosis, food borne trematode infections, cysticercosis, echinococcosis, leishmaniosis and zoonotic schistosomosis. In addition, diarrhoea resulting from zoonotic protozoa may have a significant impact. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

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