About this Research Topic
Chronic infectious diseases caused by bacterial and viral pathogens that can persist long-term, or regularly reoccur, have become a global priority for biomedical and translation research. In Latin America and the Caribbean, several chronic infectious diseases are currently on the rise due to various factors including: (i) changes in climatic conditions; (ii) increased human population growth and density in both urban and rural areas; (iii) increased human migration and mobility and (iv) poor public health resources.
The pathogenic agents that have been the cause of emerging and re-emerging diseases that are endemic to / highly associated with Latin America include:
(i) Bacterial pathogens: Salmonella enteritidis; Salmonella typhimurium; Salmonella typhi; Brucella abortus and Klebsiella pneumoniae.
(ii) Viral pathogens: Dengue; HPV; HIV; EBV; Zika and Chikungunya.
For example, among bacterial infectious diseases, typhoid fever represents a major public health concern in Latin America with an annual incidence close to 1% and mortality rates of up to 10%. Furthermore, it is the main cause of invasive bacterial infection in children under 5 years of age. Although the infection can be treated with antibiotics, the growing resistance to antibiotics is causing effective patient treatment to become more difficult.
The increase in the therapeutic resistance of these viral and bacterial pathogens, has increased the need for designing and implementing effective strategies that aim to prevent infection and to treat infected patients. However, the development of these strategies has been hindered thus far due to our limited understanding of the immunological processes and mechanisms underlying these diseases. The molecular and cellular events occurring between host and pathogens are critical in determining the outcome of any infection. These events are determined by many complex factors and can result in two extreme situations with either: (i) the clearance of the pathogen by the immune system or (ii) the establishment of chronic infection whereby the invading pathogen evades host immune responses; becomes tolerated by the immune system and leads to further damage and complications to the host. Along this spectrum, subclinical infections can be found that cause insignificant damage to the organism or acute infections that threaten the life of the host, as well as transitory immunological stages between effective protection and tolerance or suppression.
The mechanisms by which these pathogens evade or manipulate the immune system of the host to promote their survival are under intense investigation. In this Research Topic, we aim to discuss recent advances in our understanding of the immunopathology of infectious diseases caused by the following bacterial and viral agents which pose a significant public health burden within Latin America:
(i) Salmonella enteritidis; Salmonella typhimurium and Salmonella typhi
(ii) Brucella abortus
(iii) Klebsiella pneumoniae
(iv) Dengue virus
(viii) Zika virus
(ix) Chikungunya virus
We welcome the submission of Review, Mini-Review and Original Research articles from both local and international investigators on these infectious agents according to the following sub-topics:
(i) The mechanisms involved in the immunopathology of chronic infectious diseases caused by the pathogens outlined above.
(ii) Cutting-edge strategies for alleviating patient symptoms and treating disease caused by the bacterial and viral infections mentioned above.
(iii) Studies on the identification and characterization of novel immune-protective antigens for vaccines against the listed bacterial and viral pathogens.
(iv) Studies on current and novel bridge cell populations involved in the infectious diseases caused by the pathogens mentioned above.
(v) Technological and theoretical approaches for studying complex systems of chronic infectious disease.
(vi) Novel approaches for treating the chronic infectious diseases caused by the bacterial and viral species listed above.
This Research Topic has been established in collaboration with the recent XII Latin American Congress and XXIII Mexican Congress of Immunology in Cancún, México. Visit the conference proceedings for Immuno Mexico 2018 here.
We acknowledge the initiation and support of this Research Topic by the International Union of Immunological Societies (IUIS). Prof. Leopoldo Santos-Argumedo is the President of the Latin American Association of Immunology (ALAI); Prof. Rosana Pelayo is the President of Sociedad Mexicana De Inmunología (SMI) and Prof. Luis García is a former ALAI President.
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.