A rat model for combined Trypanosoma cruzi and Pneumocystis carinii infection

Helieh S. Oz, Walter T. Hughes, Gary W. Varilek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Dexamethasone treated rats inoculated with Trypanosoma cruzi developed acute parasitemia. In addition, these animals concomitantly developed severe Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) and died after 4 weeks of immunosuppression (100%). However, immunocompetent (untreated) rats inoculated with T. cruzi did not acquire P. carinii and recovered from T. cruzi infection. Rats immunosuppressed, but not inoculated with T. cruzi, developed only PCP and died 5-6 weeks later (93%). In contrast, immunocompetent or immunocompromized IRC mice infected with T. cruzi all died of acute parasitemia in only 8-12 days with no detectable PCP infection. In conclusion, rats immunosuppressed and T. cruzi inoculated can serve as a MOPPS model for a single drug evaluation. In addition, T. cruzi infection independently does not provoke P. carinii pneumonia in this model. Finally, patients with Chagas' disease treated with corticosteroids may be at risk for PCP and should be considered for chemoprophylaxis. (C) 2000 Academic Press.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-365
Number of pages3
JournalMicrobial Pathogenesis
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Dexamethasone
  • Mice
  • P. carinii
  • PCP
  • Rats
  • T. cruzi

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Infectious Diseases


Dive into the research topics of 'A rat model for combined Trypanosoma cruzi and Pneumocystis carinii infection'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this