Cryptosporidium parvum is a protozoan parasite that causes gastrointestinal disease. Infections in humans are usually acute and self-limiting, but can be life-threatening causing debilitating diarrheal disease with high morbidity and mortality rates in malnourished children in developing countries and in immunocompromised patients. Cryptosporidium was first documented in mice by Tyzzer in 1907. It was not until 1976 when the first human cases were recognized. Despite the recent recognition of this parasite as a human pathogen, Cryptosporidium has in fact a long historical association with humans as evidenced by its discovery in coprolites from ancient Andeans and Peruvians dating back 1000 to 3000 years. Two events helped to establish Cryptosporidium as a serious pathogen in humans: the increased diagnosis of Cryptosporidium in AIDS patients in the 1980s and the major waterborne outbreak in the city of Milwaukee (United States) in 1993. An estimated 403,000 individuals became infected with Cryptosporidium in the Milwaukee outbreak at a cost of $96.2 million in medical expenses and lost productivity. Sporadic waterborne outbreaks continue to occur globally, but on a smaller scale than the Milwaukee outbreak. A recent outbreak in North Battleford (Canada) in 2001 affected over 5000 individuals. Several factors including the ease of dissemination of Cryptosporidium and difficulties in monitoring in the environment led to its placement on the Center for Disease Control's B list of biological agents for use in bioterrorism.

The increase in cases and massive waterborne outbreak in Milwaukee spurred a rapid growth in research toward developing effective treatment regimes, methods of detection and inactivation of the parasite in the drinking water supply, genotyping, and understanding the interaction of C. parvum with its host. Research efforts have been hampered by the inability of the parasite to complete the entire life cycle in in vitro culture, and by the failure to cryopreserve these organisms or to genetically transform any of its stages. Advances in elucidating the genome will undoubtedly lead to new methods of detection, prevention of infection through novel inactivation strategies, successful drug therapy, and vaccine development.

Getting Started With Dumbbells

Getting Started With Dumbbells

The use of dumbbells gives you a much more comprehensive strengthening effect because the workout engages your stabilizer muscles, in addition to the muscle you may be pin-pointing. Without all of the belts and artificial stabilizers of a machine, you also engage your core muscles, which are your body's natural stabilizers.

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