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Adv Food Nutr Res. 2010;59:63-85. doi: 10.1016/S1043-4526(10)59003-X. Epub 2010 Jun 24.

Transmission of chagas disease (American trypanosomiasis) by food.

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Departamento de Engenharia Bioquímica, Escola de Química, Centro de Tecnologia Bloco Sala E203, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


In April 2009, the centenary of the discovery of the American trypanosomiasis, or Chagas disease, was celebrated. A hundred years after the discovery, little has been invested in diagnostics and treatment because the disease affects mainly poor people in developing countries. However, some changes in the epidemiology of the disease are of great importance today. Chagas disease transmitted through food is a public health concern in all areas where there is a reservoir of Trypanosoma cruzi in wild animals (e.g., mammals and marsupials) and/or where infected triatomine bugs are in contact with human food source items (especially fruits and vegetables). Recently, several outbreaks of illness related to the ingestion of food contaminated with T. cruzi have been recorded in Brazil, Colombia, and Venezuela.

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