The immunological, environmental, and phylogenetic perpetrators of metastatic leishmaniasis

Mary Anne Hartley, Stefan Drexler, Catherine Ronet, Stephen M. Beverley, Nicolas Fasel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Cutaneous leishmaniases have persisted for centuries as chronically disfiguring parasitic infections affecting millions of people across the subtropics. Symptoms range from the more prevalent single, self-healing cutaneous lesion to a persistent, metastatic disease, where ulcerations and granulomatous nodules can affect multiple secondary sites of the skin and delicate facial mucosa, even sometimes diffusing throughout the cutaneous system as a papular rash. The basis for such diverse pathologies is multifactorial, ranging from parasite phylogeny to host immunocompetence and various environmental factors. Although complex, these pathologies often prey on weaknesses in the innate immune system and its pattern recognition receptors. This review explores the observed and potential associations among the multifactorial perpetrators of infectious metastasis and components of the innate immune system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)412-422
Number of pages11
JournalTrends in Parasitology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Cutaneous leishmaniasis
  • Leishmania RNA virus
  • Metastatic leishmaniasis
  • Pattern recognition receptor
  • Post-kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis
  • Toll-like receptor


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