New approaches to the identification of biomarkers of infection and nerve damage in leprosy
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Leprosy is an ancient disease and the first disease discovered to be caused by a bacterium, Mycobacterium leprae. M. leprae is an obligate intracellular pathogen that targets the Schwann cells in the peripheral nerves. As a result of this infection nerve damage and deformity occur. There are three main obstacles that slow the progress in M. leprae research and diagnosis. The first obstacle is the absence of a good animal model to study host-pathogen interaction. The second is the absence of good biomarkers for leprosy diagnosis and sub grouping. The third obstacle is the inability to cultivate ...