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Environmental enteropathy and malnutrition: do we know enough to intervene?

Petri, William A; Naylor, Caitlin; Haque, Rashidul.
BMC Med; 12: 187, 2014 Oct 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25604120
Environmental enteropathy (EE) is a poorly defined state of intestinal inflammation without overt diarrhea that occurs in individuals exposed over time to poor sanitation and hygiene. It is implicated as a cause of stunting and malnutrition, oral vaccine failure and impaired development in children from low-income countries. The burden on child health of malnutrition alone, which affects 25% of all children and is estimated to result in more than a million deaths annually due to heightened susceptibility to infection, makes urgent a solution to EE. Efforts are thus underway to treat EE even while work continues to identify it through the use of non-invasive biomarkers, and delineate its pathogenesis. A recent study published in BMC Medicine reports the first randomized controlled phase I trial of an anti-inflammatory drug for EE. The aminosalicylate mesalazine was found to be safe in short-term treatment of a small number of severely malnourished children, although efficacy was not established. Whether such treatment trials are premature, or instead a way both to understand and intervene in EE, is the focus of this article. Please see related article http//www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7015/12/133.
Selo DaSilva