Wednesday, October 25, 2017

(LML) Leprosy and related issues

Leprosy Mailing List – October 25,  2017

Ref.: (LML)   Leprosy and related issues

From:  P.K. Das, Birmingham, UK

Dear Pieter,


Thank you for the LML letter of October 13, 2017: A veterinarian view of M. leprae complex. The story (rather a truly scientific study) shows that red squirrels not "grey ones" are susceptible to a M.leprae like mycobacterium. In that study Professor Stuart Cole is involved (that is I am sure of). I think this work (a molecular/histopathological elegant study) was published in one of the top journals, like Lancet or NEJM, (off hand, I don't remember, can find it out, on a later date).

Although no one can argue about the validity of the above-mentioned study.  At the time, I had some nagging questions, {while reading the two articles}, whether

- i) red squirrels' infectious agent is responsive to MDT,

- ii) whether they suffer from demyelination and axonal damage,

- iii) are there IgM antibody to M. leprae PGL-1 present in the infected animals' sera and not but the least, whether

- iiii) immunohistochemically staining show the M. leprae specific LAM /and-or PGL-1 antigen in association with the deposition of terminal complex of complement activation(MAC).

Following my nagging questions or curiosity, I wrote to the investigators, whether we could have some biopsies and sera of these infected animals (i.e red squirrels) for exploring my nagging curiosity, unfortunately I never received any response from them.

Now, your message, entitled, "Leprosy - we've much left to learn, but are looking to squirrels, cows and cats for insights." J Feline Med Surg. 2017 Sep;19(9):977-978 A veterinarian view of M. leprae complex", makes me to be inspired to rejuvenate (at the age of 76 years old) to pick up research on this enigmatic disease, which despite being almost forgotten, certainly is neglected, but enigmatic disease keeps on arousing news flash.

In this respect, and on the basis of molecular findings that soils from endemic area show the presence of M .leprae, I wonder whether any one looked into the body and flesh of earth worm for the presence of M.leprae?


Kind regards.


LML - S Deepak, B Naafs, S Noto and P Schreuder

LML blog link:

Contact: Dr Pieter Schreuder <<


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