Polluted water interferes with drug that combats parasitic scourge

Arsenic contamination fuels resistance to treatment for leishmaniasis

By Ashley Yeager, 16:28 PM October 28, 2013

Water contaminated with arsenic may block the effectiveness of a drug doctors use to treat leishmaniasis, a deadly parasitic scourge spread by sand flies.

Alan Fairlamb of the University of Dundee in Scotland and colleagues noticed resistance to antimony-based treatments in regions of India where people lived near arsenic-laced water. In the lab, the scientists gave mice drinking water contaminated with arsenic and then infected the rodents with Leishmania parasites. The scientists then moved ...

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