Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 25256779
Drug Discov. Today 2015 Jan;20(1):114-21
The use of genetically engineered pathogens that express fluorescent or luminescent proteins represents a huge stride forward in the understanding of trypanosomatid-borne tropical diseases. Nowadays, such modified microorganisms are being used to screen thousands of compounds under a target-free (phenotypic) approach. In addition, experimental infections with transgenic parasites drastically reduce the number of animals required for preclinical studies, because no animal needs to be put down to assess its parasite load. Finally, the use of fluorescent parasites is contributing to unraveling genetic exchange events between trypanosomatid strains. This phenomenon is important for understanding the mechanism by which traits such as virulence, tissue tropism, and drug resistance are transferred, as well as the emergence of novel strains.