color = khaki
name = Trypanosomes

image_width = 300px
image_caption = "Trypanosoma cruzi" parasites
domain = Eukaryota
unranked_phylum = Excavata
phylum = Euglenozoa
subphylum = Mastigophora
classis = Kinetoplastea
ordo = Trypanosomatida
subdivision_ranks = Genera
subdivision = "Blastocrithidia" "Crithidia" "Endotrypanum" "Herpetomonas" "Leishmania" "Leptomonas" "Phytomonas" "Trypanosoma" "Wallaceina"

Trypanosomes are a group of kinetoplastid protozoa distinguished by having only a single flagellum. All members are exclusively parasitic, found primarily in insects. [cite journal |author=Podlipaev S |title=The more insect trypanosomatids under study-the more diverse Trypanosomatidae appears |journal=Int. J. Parasitol. |volume=31 |issue=5-6 |pages=648–52 |year=2001 |month=May |pmid=11334958] A few genera have life-cycles involving a secondary host, which may be a vertebrate or a plant. These include several species that cause major diseases in humans. [cite journal |author=Simpson AG, Stevens JR, Lukes J |title=The evolution and diversity of kinetoplastid flagellates |journal=Trends Parasitol. |volume=22 |issue=4 |pages=168–74 |year=2006 |month=April |pmid=16504583 |doi=10.1016/]

The most important trypanosomal diseases are trypanosomiasis (African Sleeping Sickness and South American Chagas Disease); these are caused by species of "Trypanosoma". The Leishmaniases are a set of trypanosomal diseases caused by various species of "Leishmania".

A variety of different forms appear in the life-cycles of trypanosomes, distinguished mainly by the position of the flagellum:

Most trypanosomes have at least amastigote and promastigote stages. "Trypanosoma" appears in all five forms, with the trypanosomal stage occurring in the vertebrate host. "Trypanosoma brucei" sub-species have two forms in the bloodstream of a vertebrate host, the rapidly dividing long-slender form and the non-dividing short stumpy form. The short stumpy parasites are adapted for uptake into the tsetse fly vector, and are non-proliferative in comparison with the slender forms.

Unique to the African trypanosome "Trypansoma brucei" is the expression of a variable surface glycoprotein (VSG) coat on the cell surface, which undergoes constant variation in order to evade the humoral immune system and host antibodies. It is thought that recombination from a repertoire of about 100 complete VSG genes, and a large number of VSG-related sequences, is responsible for the vast diversity of the parasite. [cite journal |author=Taylor JE, Rudenko G |title=Switching trypanosome coats: what's in the wardrobe? |journal=Trends Genet. |volume=22 |issue=11 |pages=614–20 |year=2006 |month=November |pmid=16908087 |doi=10.1016/j.tig.2006.08.003] This recombination would retain effectiveness in immune evasion by maintaining diversity.


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  • trypanosome — [ tripanozom; nɔzɔm ] n. m. • 1843; du gr. trupanon « tarière » et sôma « corps » ♦ Méd. Protozoaire flagellé, fusiforme, parasite du sang. La mouche tsé tsé peut véhiculer des trypanosomes. « quelques peuplades moisies, décimées, abruties par le …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • trypanosome — [trip′ə nə sōm΄, tri pan′əsōm΄] n. [< ModL Trypanosoma < Gr trypanon, borer (see TREPAN1) + ModL soma, SOME3] any of a genus (Trypanosoma) of zooflagellates that live as parasites in the blood of human beings and other vertebrates, are… …   English World dictionary

  • Trypanosome — Trypanosoma Trypanosoma …   Wikipédia en Français

  • trypanosome — noun Etymology: New Latin Trypanosoma, from Greek trypanon auger + New Latin soma some more at trepan Date: 1903 any of a genus (Trypanosoma) of parasitic flagellate protozoans that infest the blood of various vertebrates including humans, are… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • TRYPANOSOME — n. m. T. de Médecine Parasite microscopique vivant dans le sérum sanguin. Les trypanosomes communiquent la maladie du sommeil et d’autres maladies graves …   Dictionnaire de l'Academie Francaise, 8eme edition (1935)

  • trypanosome — (tri pan o sōm) A protozoan of the genus Trypanosoma. Trypanosomes are parasitic flagellate protozoa that often live in the blood of humans and other vertebrates and are transmitted by insect bites …   Dictionary of microbiology

  • trypanosome — trypanosomal, trypanosomic /tri pan euh som ik, trip euh neuh /, adj. /tri pan euh sohm , trip euh neuh /, n. any minute, flagellate protozoan of the genus Trypanosoma, parasitic in the blood or tissues of humans and other vertebrates, usually… …   Universalium

  • trypanosome — noun Any of a group of protozoan parasites which are transmitted by biting insects and infect the blood of humans and other vertebrates …   Wiktionary

  • trypanosome — Common name for any member of the genus Trypanosoma or of the family Trypanosomatidae. [G. trypanon, an auger, + soma, body] * * * try·pano·some tri pan ə .sōm n any flagellate of the genus Trypanosoma * * * try·pano·some (tri panґo sōm) an… …   Medical dictionary

  • trypanosome — n. type of protozoan parasite of the genus Trypanosoma that causes sleeping sickness and other diseases in man and animals (usually transmitted by insects) …   English contemporary dictionary