The Association between Diabetes and Human T-Cell Leukaemia Virus Type-1 (HTLV-1) with Strongyloides stercoralis: Results of a Community-Based, Cross-Sectional Survey in Central Australia

Mohammad Radwanur Talukder, Hai Pham, Richard Woodman, Kim Wilson, Kerry Taylor, John Kaldor, Lloyd Einsiedel

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Abstract

In central Australia, an area that is endemic for the human T-cell leukaemia virus type-1 (HTLV-1), the prevalence of Strongyloides stercoralis and its association with other health conditions are unknown. A cross-sectional community-based survey was conducted in seven remote Aboriginal communities in central Australia, from 2014 to 2018. All residents aged ≥ 10 years were invited to complete a health survey and to provide blood for Strongyloides serology, HTLV-1 serology and HTLV-1 proviral load (PVL). Risk factors for Strongyloides seropositivity and associations with specific health conditions including diabetes and HTLV-1 were determined using logistic regression. Overall Strongyloides seroprevalence was 27% (156/576) (children, 22% (9/40); adults (≥15 years), 27% (147/536), varied widely between communities (5–42%) and was not associated with an increased risk of gastrointestinal, respiratory or dermatological symptoms. Increasing age, lower HTLV-1 PVL (<1000 copies per 105 peripheral blood leucocytes) compared to the HTLV-1 uninfected group and community of residence were significant risk factors for Strongyloides seropositivity in an adjusted model. A modest reduction in the odds of diabetes among Strongyloides seropositive participants was found (aOR 0.58, 95% CI 0.35, 1.00; p = 0.049); however, this was lost when body mass index was included in the adjusted model (aOR 0.48, 95% CI 0.48, 1.47; p = 0.542). Strongyloides seropositivity had no relationship with anaemia. Exploring social and environmental practices in communities with low Strongyloides seroprevalence may provide useful lessons for similar settings.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2084
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

Keywords

  • Anaemia
  • Australia
  • Diabetes
  • HTLV-1
  • Strongyloides

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