Image of the Day: Leprosy Lesion

Researchers identify two blood-clotting proteins that could be biomarkers for cardiovascular reactions in patients with leprosy.

Mar 23, 2018
The Scientist Staff

A vein surrounded by inflammatory cells and fluid, observed in a skin lesion of a leprosy patient FA LARA ET AL.

Some leprosy patients have an elevated risk of developing blood clots that can lead to stroke or heart attack. In a study published yesterday (March 22) in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, researchers identify abnormal levels of several blood clotting factors in leprosy patients that could serve as predictive biomarkers for cardiovascular events.

Flavio Alves Lara, a biologist at the Oswaldo Cruz Institute, and colleagues took blood samples from leprosy patients who had unusually fatty blood clots, which the researchers call “leprosum clots.” They found that patients with leprosum clots had increased levels of a number of different proteins, compared to blood clots from patients who did not have leprosy.

D. Santos da Silva et al., “Blood coagulation abnormalities in multibacillary leprosy patients,” PLOS Negl Trop Dis, doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0006214, 2018.