CHANGES IN SOME URINE PARAMETERS IN VERVET MONKEY MODEL OF TRYPANOSOMIASIS: TOWARDS NON‐INVASIVE DIAGNOSIS OF SLEEPING SICKNESS
The current diagnostic procedures for human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) are invasive. Urine being a non‐invasive sample could be an alternative to the current screening that is based on blood sampling and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). This study was aimed at determining whether urine could be used in the diagnosis of sleeping sickness. Three vervet monkeys were infected with Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense (T.b rhodesiense) while other three served as non‐infected controls. Urine samples were collected in plain 50 ml Falcon® at weekly intervals during early and late stage disease. Protein analysis in urine was done using the fortress protein assay kit. Analysis for pH, specific gravity and ketones was done using rapid test strips (ChoiceLine 10, Roche Germany). Genomic DNA was extracted using phenolchloroform method and the Serum resistant (SRA) gene amplified. There was a significant increase in total protein concentration on day14, 49, 56 and 63 postinfection (PI). Ketone, acidity and specific gravity levels in urine increased significantly (P<0.05) during the acute stage (days 7 and 14 PI). The changes in urine during infection may indicate damage to the glomerulus membrane. There was no amplification of trypanosome and this could be attributed to inhibitors in the urine (DNA degradation by nucleases and, high concentration of metal ions). This study suggests that changes in urine parameters could be used as biomarkers for early and late stage diagnosis of T.b.rhodesiense HAT and thus warrants further investigation.