Diarrhea during Cryptosporidium infection is associated with intestinal malabsorption and enhanced secretion. Infection can lead to blunting of intestinal villi, hyperplasia of crypt cells, and enterocyte brush border damage incurred during parasite invasion. Diarrhea may be a result of increased secretion as a result of ion imbalance following responses to secreted cytokines such TNFa, INFg, IL-8, and substance P. The list of parasite molecules that may act as specific virulence factors during infection is growing (Table 1). In contrast, protective host cell responses such as host cell-triggered apoptosis and secretion of TGF-p1 and IL-10 may limit epithelial cell damage.[4,12,14]
Was this article helpful?